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Dexter vs. Santa's Claws (Dexter's Laboratory)

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Dexter vs. Santa's Claws (Dexter's Laboratory)
Dexter vs Santas Claws.jpg
That's right, kids! It's all about the presents! Uhh.. maybe no.
Part of Season: 2
Episode Number: 37
Air Date: April 29, 1998
Writer: Jason Rote
Director: Rumen Petkov
Genndy Tartakovsky
Previous episode: Pain in the Mouth (The Justice Friends)
Dexter & Computress Get Mandark!
Next episode: Dyno-might


Dexter vs. Santa's Claws is the Christmas episode of Dexter's Laboratory. In this episode, Dexter tries to convince Dee Dee that Santa Claus doesn't exist.

Plot

Dexter wants to prove to Dee Dee that Santa Claus doesn't exist, so he sets up a monitoring system on the roof. A man in red finally shows up and when he enters the living room, Dexter tries to take a picture to prove that it's just his Dad in a Santa costume. When Santa resists, Dexter decides that more drastic measures must be taken, taking the chase from the bedroom to the rooftop to the skies.

Why It’s Not About The Presents

  1. Dexter is very out-of-character here as he becomes a moronic, dim-witted little brat. Due to his mega stupidity, he tortures Santa Claus to prove to Dee Dee that he isn't real. That's because Dexter is supposed to be a super boy genius.
  2. Despite being a child prodigy, Dexter's presented as a clueless idiot and a sadist who ruins Christmas here, thinking that the reindeer is his mom in a costume and Santa’s sleigh is a minivan (even though it’s flying in the sky).
  3. For some reason, Santa just says "Ho, Ho, Ho" throughout the episode, and nothing else, as if it were his language. Since when did he get the portrayal where he acts like a Pokémon?
  4. Dexter's rap song (while catchy) is rather forced, childish, and cringeworthy.
  5. The ending is extremely pathetic: It ends with Dexter destroying the house and ruining Christmas for everyone again. He apologizes for the incident and tries to cover it up with him saying what Christmas is truly about, gets chewed out for the message about Christmas being about love and sharing by Dee Dee, and instead it has the bad message about what Christmas is about (see WINATP #6).
  6. The episode states that Christmas isn't about family, love, giving, being kind to everyone, joy, or sharing. It states that it's all about the presents, which is not what Christmas is all about. Not to mention, this statement can make anybody just as selfish and spoiled as possible.
  7. Another thing on that topic from WINATP #6 is that the illogical and immoral statement of Christmas being about presents is taken as a life lesson rather than being thought into being made as a simple joke. The logic of that makes sense in South Park as the way South Park says it, it's not meant to be taken seriously as this statement was taken for satire. But here, this doesn't come off as satirical, it comes off as sadistic.
  8. Its air date was April 29, 1998, which is way too very VERY early to air a Christmas special. How can you air it this early at this time?
  9. On that topic from WINATP #8, it was rushed in April rather than December because Easter falls in this month. Talk about poor scheduling.
  10. Misleading Title: Despite the title being called Dexter vs. Santa's Claws, Santa never uses any claws in the episode. The most he did to defend himself was to sacrifice some gifts to explode with Dexter's launched rockets.
  11. The scene where Dexter rips off the reindeer's antlers is very painful.

Redeeming Qualities

  1. For the first time, Dee Dee is right.
  2. For reruns of the episode, it aired during the Christmas season, every year.
  3. Despite the episode conveying a bad lesson where Christmas is all about the presents (see WINATP #5, 6, and 7), fortunately, it is not the main focus of the entire episode unlike a certain Christmas episode, as it is only brought up in the ending.
  4. Despite his idiocy, Dexter is sorta right when he says that Christmas is about love, family, and sharing (and not about presents, as Dee Dee thinks it is) - so at least he knows about the true meaning of Christmas. Still this does not excuse what he did in this episode.

Reception

This episode received negative feedback and backlash from fans and was regarded as one of the worst episodes made in the series along with Jeepers Creepers Where Is Peepers?, and Sore Eyes. WatchMojo, however, puts this episode in their number 10 spot for best CN Christmas Specials

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