Putting a Rap on Scrooge

A sprawling, contemporary version of A Christmas Carol engagingly sets Dickens' classic in a Washington ghetto

Ebenezer Scrooge may seem the embodiment of Victorian England, that era of top hats and class warfare, but his journey of self-discovery could be just as meaningful had he been American. Or black. Or a man of the late 20th century, a period of more casual clothing but equal bitterness between haves and have- nots. For that matter, there's nothing in the essence of Dickens' story to preclude glimpses of fast-food workers and airline pilots, or riffs of rap and gospel music, and it's reasonable enough to have an urban American Tiny Tim (T.T. to his kin) be a victim of...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!