T. Bag's Christmas Carol

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UK Air Date26/12/1989, 9.25am
Repeat ScreeningN/A
Copyright Year1989
VTR Dateunknown
Fremantle Archive Ref48957
Consecutive Episode Number52
IMDB LinkEpisode page

T. Bag (Tallulah Bag)Elizabeth Estensen
T. ShirtJohn Hasler
Sally SimpkinsKellie Bright
Emily ScrumptiousGillian Martell
Giles PickensJohn Clive

Make UpAngela Seyfang
Costume DesignerRaymond Childe
Graphic DesignerJeff Harrison
Stage ManagerMary Motture
Floor ManagerJohn Lopes
Lighting DirectorPeter Bower
Production AssistantKim Robson
Written ByLee Pressman
Grant Cathro
DesignerStuart McCarthy
ProducerCharles Warren
DirectorLeon Thau

T-Bag ruins Sally’s Christmas by turning her into a street urchin but Emily Scrumptious lets her into her home for warmth and something to eat. T-Bag must stop Emily Scrumptious being so nice and subsequently ruining Sally’s Christmas.
The High-T Website synopsis
T-Bag sets out to make people unhappy at Christmas, taking T-Shirt along with her. She picks on Sally and transports her rival to Victorian England, making her a street urchin. Will Sally have a cold and lonely Christmas out in the snow or will her new-found friends Mrs Emily Scrumptious and the author Giles Pickens help her?
TV Times listing
Once again, T-Bag sets out to make people unhappy at Christmas. Along with T-Shirt, she picks on her rival Sally and takes her to Victorian England where she turns her into a street urchin, leaving her out in the cold and snow. Boo, hiss!
Lookin listing
Now T-Bag sets out to ruin Sally's Christmas and transports her to Victorian England.
Anglian ITV Region voice-over introduction

If you would like to contribute your favourite/funniest etc quotes from this episode please contact me.

Your Christmas cuppa

Sally: Merry Christmas Ted.
Sally is in her bedroom, turns off the light, shakes her snow globe and goes to bed.
In T-Bag’s new T-Room, inside the Ice castle in Sally’s snow globe.
T-Shirt: Tea’s up Your Majesty.
T-Bag: About time too, what kept you?
T-Shirt: Well you see.
T-Bag: Never mind, just give it here. (T-Bag drinks it and pulls out a holly leaf).
T-Bag: What the figgy pudding is this?
T-Shirt: It’s your Christmas cuppa Your Majesty, to put you in the mood for Christmas. Jingle Bells, Jingle...
T-Bag: Listen Boy and listen good. I hate Christmas with every atom of my body, I hate it! I’ve come all the way to the North Pole to get away from it. Christmas makes me sick, Christmas Pah!
T-Shirt: But I like it.
T-Bag: That’s because you’re an idiot (T-Bag looks in her saucer and sees Sally), and speaking of idiots who have we here.
T-Shirt: It’s Sally.
T-Bag: Little Miss smug features herself, look at her, yuck!
T-Shirt: Uh, she’s got all decorations and cards and stuff. What have we got? Nothing!
T-Bag: What a shame.
T-Shirt: What?
T-Bag: Why should one child have a lovely, happy Christmas when another child has a downright miserable time?
T-Shirt: Are you serious?
T-Bag: Indubitably! All children should have a downright miserable time especially her, after all the grief she’s caused me but I’ll get my revenge you see if I don’t.
T-Shirt: You never change, you’ve got a heart of ice you have and after all the bother I went to, to get you a nice Christmas Card well here you can stuff it in your pipe and smoke it for all I care.
T-Bag: Stupid Boy, what’s this rubbish (T-Bag opens the envelope to reveal a card with a Dickensian London street), Sentimental Hogwash, mind you this gives me a rather novel idea. Yes I like it, No I don’t. I love it!
(T-Bag uses a spell to cast Sally into the card as a street urchin. Her face comes out from the snow globe and into Sally’s bedroom).
T-Bag: Christmas is coming; the goose is getting fat. The world is full of happy folk, but that’s enough of that! Tomorrow’s going to find her with miseries untold. She’ll wake up lost, without a friend. She’ll be out in the cold!
(T-Bag’s face returns to the snow globe, and Sally gets out of bed and walks off)

Mince pies and merriment

Sally: What? What? What's happened? Where am I? (Sally notices a woman and a young boy walking past) Hello. Excuse me. Can you help me please?
T-Bag: Mmm.
Sally: T-Bag!
T-Bag: Oh, look my boy, a horrid wretched ragamuffin. Be off with you, you grubby creature.
T-Shirt: It's Sally.
T-Bag: Quiet! Away with you urchin.
Sally: You brought me here didn't you? I bet you did. I want to go home.
T-Bag: Euuuuggghhhh! She touched me, the scrawny little beggar touched me.
T-Shirt: But it's Sally.
T-Bag: Having a horrid Christmas are we? What a shame, what a pity, poor little pauper. Come my boy, let's away to our blazing log fire and stuff our faces full of mince pies and merriment.
Sally: Well you can't just leave me here.
T-Bag: Toodlepip. Come on you.
(T-Bag leaves).
Sally: T-Shirt. (T-Shirt shrugs his shoulders and he leaves). Ohhhh.

Added: 26/12/2015

But what about the mince pies

T-Bag: Ha ha ha ha ha ha. Did you see her miserable little puppy dog face? You can't just leave me here, pah ha ha ha. Priceless wasn't it (continues to laugh).
T-Shirt: You can't just leave her there, she'll freeze to death.
T-Bag: I know, (laughs) hilarious isn't it. Oh come on, let's go and find someone else whose Christmas we can ruin.
T-Shirt: But what about the mince pies and the blazing log fire?
T-Bag (off screen): Oh be quiet.
(T-Shirt tuts).

Added: 26/12/2019

Once upon a time

Giles Pickens: Oh yes, yes. Oh Giles Pickens you're a genius. You really are.
Emily Scrumptious: Coo-ee.
Giles Pickens: Ah.
Emily Scrumptious: Helloooo.
Giles Pickens: Mistress Scrumptious, good morning, good morning, good morning, the loveliest landlady in London town.
Emily Scrumptious: Oouh, away with you. Those stairs will be the death of me.
Giles Pickens: Here sit yourself down.
Emily Scrumptious: I do hope I'm not interrupting your writing.
Giles Pickens: No, not at all. Not one little bit. As a matter of fact, I've just come up with the most marvellous idea for my new Christmas story and I'd like you to be the first to hear it.
Emily Scrumptious: Mercy, what an honour.
Giles Pickens: Yes, righty-ho. Here we are, now then. (He coughs to clear his throat). Are you sitting comfortably?
Emily Scrumptious: Oh yes.
Giles Pickens: Then I'll begin. Once upon a time. What do you think of it so far?
Emily Scrumptious: Wonderful.
Giles Pickens: Yes, there's more, there's more. Once upon a time there was a young girl who was as kind as she was beautiful.
Emily Scrumptious: Awwww.
Giles Pickens: Get's you right there, doesn't it? But she had two wicked and ugly sisters who treated her like a skivvy.
Emily Scrumptious: Ohhh.
Giles Pickens: Hmm. They made her to all the work, dressed her in rags whilst they went off to the ball.
Emily Scrumptious: Shame.
Giles Pickens: At night, when she was all alone, cold and hungry, she laid down by the hearth for some warmth. Mr Cinders and the soot and thus it was she became known as... Sooty. Well what do you think, do you like it?
Emily Scrumptious: Well, it's, erm, it's, errr.
Giles Pickens: You, you don't do you? You, you, you don't, I can tell right away, you know, when people don't like... Well neither to do I. I don't like it one little bit. It's a load of old rubbish.
Emily Scrumptious: Oh, no, Mr Pickens.
Giles Pickens: Yes it is, I don't know what I'm going to do. I've been sitting at this desk now for nearly two months. Every single day, trying to come up with an idea for a Christmas story and what have I got to show for it? Writer's cramp, an empty quill and a fistful of confetti. Merry Christmas.
Emily Scrumptious: Oh, you mustn't take on so, Mr Pickens.
Giles Pickens: Well I've got no money, I'm weeks behind with the rent. I'm a total failure.
Emily Scrumptious: Tush, tush, now. Don't say that, you know I have great expectations of you Mr Pickens.
Giles Pickens: Great Expectations, that is a wonderful title.
Emily Scrumptious: One day you're going to be a rich and famous writer and you won't have to worry your head about the silly old rent.
Giles Pickens: Oh, Mistress Scrumptious, you're the salt of the Earth. You really are.
Emily Scrumptious: Now, look here, I know you haven't got much this Christmas morning so I've taken the liberty of bringing you a few tasty little morsels.
Giles Pickens: Oh yes, you shouldn't have you know.
Emily Scrumptious: Now, now, you take it and have yourself a Merry little Christmas on me.
Giles Pickens: I don't know what to say. Except well, thank you dear lady, thank you very much, indeed.
Emily Scrumptious: I'll leave you to it then. Byesie-Bye Mr P.
Giles Pickens: Goodbye, goodbye, goodbye, yes, and a very Merry Christmas to you to. Arrhh.

Added: 08/12/2012

Emily Scrumptious's mince pies

Emily Scrumptious: Feeling better dear?
Sally: Oh yes, thank you.
Emily Scrumptious: That's the way. I'm Emily, Emily Scrumptious. What's your name?
Sally: Sally.
Emily Scrumptious: Well Sally, you just stay there and thaw yourself out while I fetch you a nice hot bowl of broth.
Sally: I can't thank you enough Emily.
Emily Scrumptious: I won't be a minute. Oh, by the way, if the carol singers call you could hand them out some of those mince pies, they do love Emily Scrumptious's mince pies.

Added: 04/04/2020

The ghost of Christmas

Emily Scrumptious: The soup won't be long dear.
Sally: Thanks Emily.
Emily Scrumptious: Look, why don't you go upstairs and get out of those awful rags? You'll find some of my niece's little frocks hanging up in the wardrobe.
Sally: Oh that would be great.
Emily Scrumptious: Right, first door on the left, just help yourself.
Sally: Emily, you're the kindest, sweetest, most thoughtful person I've ever met.
Emily Scrumptious: Oh away with you lass.
(Sally leaves and the room fills with an eerie light).
Emily Scrumptious: Oh mercy on us, whatever's happening?
T-Bag: Woooh.
Emily Scrumptious: Oh!
(T-Bag appears dressed as a ghost).
T-Bag: Emily Scrumptious, Emily Scrumptious.
Emily Scrumptious: I am Emily Scrumptious.
T-Bag: I am the ghost of Christmas.
Emily Scrumptious: Ghost?
T-Bag: You are a foolish woman Emily Scrumptious.
Emily Scrumptious: Foolish? How?
T-Bag: Give, give, give. All you ever do is give to others.
Emily Scrumptious: Well what's wrong with that?
T-Bag: All give and no take, nothing but a bad mistake.
Emily Scrumptious: It is?
T-Bag: They're all laughing at you Emily Scrumptious. Ha, ha, ha, here comes Emily Scrumptious, soft in the heart and soft in the head.
Emily Scrumptious: No.
T-Bag: Yes (T-Bag casts a spell on Emily) say after me Emily, I'm a mean old miserly misery guts and I hate Christmas.
Emily Scrumptious: I'm a mean old miserly misery guts and I hate Christmas.
T-Bag: That's the spirit, well done. I'll bid you good day.
(T-Bag disappears).
Emily Scrumptious: Christmas, hmm, humbug.

Added: 04/04/2015

This is the worst Christmas I've ever had

Sally: Well Emily, how about this one?
Emily Scrumptious: Who said you could have that frock?
Sally: You did.
Emily Scrumptious: Well I've changed my mind, you want it, you can pay for it, I'm not running a charity.
Sally: But you said I could change and have some hot soup and....
Emily Scrumptious: Soup! Soup! You must be joking. What are you doing in here anyway?
Sally: You took me in.
Emily Scrumptious: Oh did I? Well now I'm taking you out.
Sally: Emily, what's happened to you?
Emily Scrumptious: All give and no take, nothing but a big mistake.
Sally: You're hurting me.
Emily Scrumptious: Good.
Sally: Ow, ow.
Emily Scrumptious: Out you little brat. Go on, out of my sight, little scrounger. Yes and I can think of another scrounger who's not been paying his way. I'll soon sort him out. Out of my way brat.
(Emily leaves then T-Bag and T-Shirt enter).
T-Bag: Well, well, well, if it isn't the poor little pathetic pauper again, having a ghastly Christmas, I do hope so.
T-Shirt: Alright, that's enough.
T-Bag: Well while you're out here, cold and hungry, I think I'll just pop indoors and see what yummy goodies there are for the taking. All this misery and suffering has given me quite an appetite, coming?
T-Shirt: No I'm not, I've had enough of all this.
T-Bag: Oh suit yourself, good riddance to the lot of you.
T-Shirt: Are you alright Sally?
Sally: This is the worst Christmas I've ever had.

Added: 26/12/2019

The best Christmas I've ever had

Giles Pickens: This is the best Christmas I've ever had.
Emily Scrumptious (off screen): Pickens!
Giles Pickens: Ha. Hello again Mistress Scrumptious.
Emily Scrumptious: Don't you hello again me you lazy good for nothing leech. Where's my rent?
Giles Pickens: But I thought you said that I...
Emily Scrumptious: I want my rent.
Giles Pickens: Yes but, but, but I haven't got it.
Emily Scrumptious: Right, then you can just get out.
Giles Pickens: What?
Emily Scrumptious: You heard. And I'm taking my food back, must have been mad given it to you in the first place. Out!
Giles Pickens: Oh, yes, yes, of course. But, well, ah-uh, it is Christmas you know.
Emily Scrumptious: Christmas, phh, humbug Sir. Humbug!
Giles Pickens: Ooh.

Added: 26/12/2019

Merry Christmas T-Bag

Sally: So it was really T-Bag who was the ghost of Christmas.
Giles Pickens: The ghost of Christmas. What a good idea.
Emily Scrumptious: And to think you all thought I was a mean old miser.
Giles Pickens: A mean old miser, that's wonderful, wonderful.
T-Shirt: Some story eh?
Giles Pickens: It's a fantastic story. It's got everything, misers, ghosts, the lot. Everything I need for my new book. I've even thought of the most wonderful title. Giles Pickens, A Christmas.... Turkey. What do you think?
Emily Scrumptious: Well, errr, more trifle anybody?
T-Shirt & Sally: Yes please.
Sally: Merry Christmas T-Bag wherever you are.

Added: 08/12/2012

"Continuity Conundrum"
T-Bag has been defeated but she is back and is after Sally for causing her so much trouble. How can this be? Shown after T-Bag And The Revenge Of The T-Set this is a continuity error but this episode was filmed during this series.

"Victorian Boom"
Yet another boom mic appears when Sally appears in the Victorian street. This bobs into view just as Sally turns round, above her. Before it becomes too visible though the camera cuts to a close-up of Sally.

"Big Bad Mistake!"
When T-Bag (as the Ghost Of Christmas) casts her spell on Emily Scrumptious T-Bag says "All give and no take, nothing but a bad mistake". Afterwards when Sally comes down with a dress Emily repeats what T-Bag says but intead of 'Bad mistake' says 'big mistake', "All give and no take, nothing but a big mistake"

For more mistakes from other episodes, please see the Nitpicker's Guide

  • Out of the five girls Sally is the only one to appear in a Christmas special.
  • This is the only time that T-Bag inhabits an item not found in the curiosity shop. Instead she finds home in Sally's snowglobe.
  • This is the last episode featuring Elizabeth Estensen as Tallulah Bag to air on it's original broadcast.
  • The character name 'Emily Scrumptious' is a take-on from 'Truly Scrumptious' from the film 'Chitty Chitty Bang Bang'.
  • Emily Scrumptious mentions that she has 'great expectations' of him, alluding to the title of a Charles Dickens story.
  • John Clive, who played Giles Pickens, sadly passed away on 14th October 2012, aged 79.
  • Gillian Martell, who played Emily Scrumptious, sadly passed away on 16th January 2020, aged 83.
  • This is the only Christmas special that T-Bag uses her saucer to see what is happening.

  • Gillian Martell, who plays Emily Scrumptious, appears in two episodes throughout the nine series of T-Bag. This is her second of her two appearances.
    (T. Bag and The Revenge of the T. Set, Episode 5: Hazel Knutt's Muesli Bar)
  • John Clive, who plays Giles Pickens, appears in two episodes throughout the nine series of T-Bag. This is his second of his two appearances.
    (T-Bag Bounces Back, Episode 5: Bobby Jobsworth and The Temple Of Doom)
  • This episode features the character Giles Pickens whose name is a pastiche of the famous author, Charles Dickens. Other episodes also used authors as basis of their character name.
    (T. Bag and The Revenge of the T. Set, Episode 9: The Bard)
  • T-Bag’s catchphrase of ‘Curse and blast and double curse and blast again’ is said in this episode. This is used several times, three times by Tallulah Bag and once by Tabatha Bag.
    (T. Bag and The Revenge of the T. Set, Episode 3: Lost In Space)
    (T. Bag and The Revenge of the T. Set, Episode 10: The Ceremony)
    (T. Bag and The Rings of Olympus, Episode 2: Bandits)
  • T-Bag often refers to herself as ‘The High-T’ as she does during this episode. This is mostly spoken by Tallulah Bag but is said once by Tabatha Bag.
    (Wonders in Letterland, Episode 5: Debbie In The Land Of P)
    (Wonders in Letterland, Episode 10: Back To Square One)
    (T-Bag Strikes Again, Episode 1: The Town Clock)
    (T-Bag Strikes Again, Episode 3: Ben And Bunty Badshot)
    (T-Bag Strikes Again, Episode 9: Charlie Chuckles)
    (T-Bag Strikes Again, Episode 10: The Magic Garden)
    (Turn on to T-Bag, Episode 10: Turn On To T-Bag)
    (T. Bag and The Revenge of the T. Set, Episode 1: The Stone Circle)
    (T. Bag and The Revenge of the T. Set, Episode 3: Lost In Space)
    (T. Bag and The Revenge of the T. Set, Episode 4: Turkish Delight)
    (T. Bag and The Pearls of Wisdom, Episode 1: Any Old Port)
  • This episode has two contrasting scenes with the last line of one scene being the opposite of the first line in the next scene. In this episode it is the scenes with Sally saying 'This is the worst Christmas I've ever had' to T-Shirt, then Giles Pickens saying 'This is the best Christmas I've ever had' to himself. This narrative-device is used in other episodes.
    (T. Bag and The Revenge of the T. Set, Episode 7: Anastasia)
    (T. Bag and The Pearls of Wisdom, Episode 7: Tut Tut)
  • Giles Pickens, whilst reading his story to Emily, mentions his character is going to be called 'Sooty'. Sooty was mentioned in episodes of T. Bag and The Revenge of the T. Set and Take off with T. Bag. John Hasler also appeared in the Christmas special of 'The Sooty Show' in 1985.
    (T. Bag and The Revenge of the T. Set, Episode 2: When In Rome)
    (T. Bag and The Revenge of the T. Set, Episode 9: The Bard)
    (Take off with T. Bag, Episode 5: Doctor Strangebag)
  • T-Bag and T-Shirt sings the Christmas Carol 'Good King Wenceslas', this is also sung in an episode of Turn on to T-Bag.
    (Turn on to T-Bag, Episode 6: Scrimp)
  • Giles Pickens, T-Shirt and Sally sing the Christmas Carol 'We wish you a Merry Christmas', this is also sung in other episodes.
    (Turn on to T-Bag, Episode 6: Scrimp)
    (T. Bag's Christmas Turkey)