I first crossed paths with Mr. Stink at the BBC Showcase meeting last February. At that time, we saw a simple one-time-only special with a big name cast grab the hearts of some of the most cynical television program executives attending the Liverpool screenings. Although it had already aired on BBC One on Christmas Day 2012, the hope amongst all attendees was that this would become the perennial holiday classic along the lines of It’s A Wonderful Life, Charlie Brown’s Christmas and How the Grinch Stole Christmas in the U.S.
David Walliams’ best-selling children’s novel Mr Stink tells the touching, twisted and hilarious tales of Mr Stink, who is befriended by a local girl Chloe. Chloe sees Mr Stink every day, but she’s never spoken to him, which isn’t surprising, because he’s a tramp, and he stinks. (Good thing “Smell-O-Vision” or “AromaRama” never took off as a concept back in the 60’s, right?).
When it looks like Mr Stink might be driven out of town, Chloe hides her unusual friend in her garden shed. As she struggles to make sure no one sniffs out Mr Stink, her dad tries to hide a secret of his own, and the stage is set for an epic family confrontation. There is also one other person with an extraordinary secret: it turns out that there is more to Mr Stink than meets the eye… or nose.
Adapted by Walliams himself with Simon Nye of Men Behaving Badly fame and starring Hugh Bonneville (Downton Abbey, Twenty Twelve), Sheridan Smith (Jonathan Creek), David Walliams (Blandings, Big School, Little Britain) and introducing Nell Tiger Free as Chloe, this charming hour of family television comes to PBS on Sunday, December 22 at 7:00pmCT/8:00pm ET. Hopefully, it is destined to be a holiday classic.
What transpires over the course of the 60-minutes is as magical as the Jimmy Stewart film, It’s A Wonderful Life. All you have to do is believe….