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The Way of Water’s official Christmas carol is amazing

The Way of Water’s official Christmas carol is amazing

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Screenshot: 20th Century Studios

It’s almost Christmas, but we’ve got another important holiday season ahead of us: the release season of Avatar: The Way of Water, and you can bet some marketing genius has decided to smash those two things in an unholy marriage. But in doing so, they opened a very different kind of Pandora’s box than presumably what Jake Neytiri’s Christmas present put in it.

Avatar’s official YouTube channel released 12 Days of Christmas, a Pandoran Christmas Carol to celebrate the holiday season and the existence of an Avatar film at the box office. Unfortunately, unlike virtually every decision James Cameron has made in recent weeks to open his mouth when it comes to The Way of Water, it is a video of deep cowardice for instead of anyone actually reading the Pandora lyrics “12 Days sings of Christmas” is just an instrumental of the classic Christmas carol. What, you couldn’t even ask the Weeknd?

12 Days of Christmas, a Christmas carol from Pandora

Anyway, that’s not what got me excited about 12 Days of Christmas, a Pandoran Christmas Carol. I mean, that’s it, but it’s mostly everything else about it too. Who is this for when the lyrics not only feature character names that are hard to remember because they’re mostly from the first film 13 years ago instead of The Way of Water, but even deep cuts for the Avatar heads there included outside that remember characters like Sylwanin, Neytiri’s dead sister who is only mentioned in the Extended Cut of the original film? Why is this happening, apart from the fact that it’s the week before Christmas and James Cameron wants Avatar to be absolutely everywhere?

But what does it also mean that there is a Pandora version of a Christmas carol? Did people bring Christmas with them when they came to Pandora? Has Jake tried to continue the tradition after deciding to stay in the world and start a family with Neytiri? Did Jake and the rest of the humans single-handedly pass the idea of ​​Christmas to the Forest Na’vi? And if so, which version, the commercialized holiday or the Christian theology behind it? Do the Na’vi have any awareness of who Santa Claus or Jesus Christ is? Has anyone at any point in the making of literally any details about the world-building of the Avatar franchise, let alone at this particular moment, paused to contemplate the colonial undercurrent of introducing earth holidays to a species with its own pervasive spiritualism?

I do not know. But I know it’s kind of weird that most of the gifts in this version of the Christmas carol are local fauna and then you get some military hardware thrown in as well. Who is giving these away?

Want more io9 news? Find out when to expect the latest Marvel, Star Wars and Star Trek releases, what’s next for the DC Universe in film and television, and find out everything you need to know about James Cameron’s Avatar: The Way of Water need to know.

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