12 Days Of Christmas: The Birds

“On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me… A Partridge in a Pear Tree.”

Also included in the song are 2 Turtle Doves, 3 French Hens, 4 Colly Birds, 6 Geese-a-Laying and 7 Swans-a-Swimming so I present Alfred Hitchcock’s The Birds from 1963. That should cover all the fine feathered friends in the list. Not that I’m actually following the list.

Last year’s 12 Days of Christmas theme was movies that just happened to take place at Christmas. This is year the movies have a gift / package theme – being that the Twelve Days of Christmas song is all about gift giving.

Tippi Hedren is a bored rich girl who bumps into Rod Talyor only to discover that he is a lawyer and is familiar with her rich girl shenanigans (she apparently jumped naked into a fountain). He intrigues her so she buys the love birds that he was looking at and drives up the coast to give him the birds at his home in Bodega Bay, California.

Once Hedren arrives some strange things begin to happen. It starts with a bird attacking her. The next you know it seems like the birds are attacking people everywhere. Maybe it’s the end of the world. The end of the world caused not by man but by birds. Maybe bringing birds as a gift wasn’t a such good idea.

Author: Shane Hnetka

Shane Hnetka spends most of his life watching movies and reading comic books, using his vast knowledge of genre culture for evil instead of good.

6 thoughts on “12 Days Of Christmas: The Birds”

  1. It’s Colly Birds, not “Calling Birds”, actually.

    The verse, four calling birds, is actually a corruption of the English word colly or collie. So, we are referring to “four colly birds” or four collie birds (the words to the song were probably written before the creation of the dictionary, so the spelling of old words tends to be flexible).

    What is a colly bird? It is a black bird. In England a coal mine is called a colliery and colly or collie is a derivation of this and means black like coal. For a long time in England, blackbirds have been referred to as both blackbirds (as in the nursery rhyme Sing a Song of Sixpence) and colly birds as in The Twelve Days of Christmas.

    One of very many sources, upon a quick “google” : http://hubpages.com/hub/On_the_Fourth_Day_of_Christmas

  2. …and Google was where I found the “calling birds” lyrics, when I quickly (perhaps too quickly)doublechecked. Thanks for the further reference; etymology is fun.

  3. Holy moley, if I’d edited this blog post I would’ve changed that to “calling”. Thanks for teaching me something new, Anonymous!

  4. No problem, kids.

    Shane seems like a smart guy, so I didn’t think he’d be careless enough to use something incorrectly that seemed so specific…

    I’m glad that his Colly Birds have been defended and redeemed!

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