11 Burning Questions I Have After Rewatching “Home Alone”

Burning Questions I Have After Rewatching Home Alone

I’ve been watching all the Christmas classics this holiday season since the Chicago Bears are a train wreck and the Capital R Roommate refuses to re-watch Breaking Bad with me because it’s “too scary.” The most recent was last night’s viewing of the 1990 Chris Columbus Christmas classic, Home Alone.

I have some very reasonable, adult questions that this film does not answer. I’m going to attempt to answer them here. And yes, I do realize this is a kids movie that came out over 25 years ago, but it’s three weeks until Christmas, and we’re all a little checked out now, aren’t we?

1. Is Mitch Murphy the ghost of the airport van driver’s dead son?

Burning Questions I Have After Rewatching "Home Alone"

The little shit with the over the top Irish-Chicago accent appears seemingly out of nowhere, badgering the airport driver who immediately gets extremely agitated. Smash cut to Mitch sitting basically on the guy’s lap in the front seat asking more questions. When the McCallisters line up outside to be counted, not a single one of them acknowledges little Mitch’s existence. He stands there, waving as they drive away yelling “Bring me back something French!”

Theory: three years prior, the airport van driver was flying his family to Orlando for Christmas. Well, first they had to stop in Missouri to pick up their grandma. In the driver’s hurry to get out of the city before the Eisenhower gets jammed with rush hour traffic, he accidentally runs over his 10-year-old son Mitch, killing him. Just like he did with the McCallister’s statue. Now every time he drives his van for the holidays the ghost of his dead son appears, reminding him of his tragic error. Even worse the ghost doesn’t seem to recognize him. It’s driven the driver to drink (ha) because he knows his youngest son Mitch will never get to visit the France Pavillion at Disney World’s Epcot Center.

2. What are the “odd marketable securities” the McCallister house might have? Also, what are odd marketable securities?

Burning Questions I Have After Rewatching "Home Alone"

Seriously, I’ve done some Googling and can’t for the life of me figure out what they are. Is this something I’m supposed to know? More importantly, is this something I’m supposed to have? I’m 27 with an apartment, a car and student loans. Should I ask my parents for “odd marketable securities” for Christmas? I hate feeling like I’m behind the curve of all the people from high school on Facebook who I constantly compare myself too.

Wait, except if odd marketable securities have something to do with marriage. Fuck that noise.

3. How tough was Sergeant Balzak’s career?

Burning Questions I Have After Rewatching "Home Alone"

Let me get this straight. This guy starts off in the Chicago Police Academy, with the last name Balzak? I know from personal experience having a funny last name is a death sentence for a young man. He works his way up the ranks, first as a patrolman on the South Side, avoiding hails of gunfire and White Sox fans. Eventually he walks a beat down in the Loop. This was 1990, back when cops walked “beats” instead of “beat” teenagers to death.

In his last five years of his career he gets a cushy desk job in the North Suburbs working in Family Affairs. He gets to sit on his ass until his pension kicks in, eating stacks of doughnuts a day. Balzak shouldn’t be viewed as an unhelpful heel in Mrs. McCallister’s plan. If he was honored at a sporting event, he would be given a standing ovation. You do you Balzak.

4. Did Kevin have ADHD?

Here are the major symptoms of ADHD in children: hyperactivity, inability to focus on others, and impulsivity.

Kevin’s displayed every one of these things.

The first thing he does when he realizes his family is gone is run around the house screaming like a maniac and eating sweets.

Burning Questions I Have After Rewatching "Home Alone"

When the pizza guy brings by FOURTEEN pizzas for fifteen people, Kevin is quick to ask:

Burning Questions I Have After Rewatching "Home Alone"

And any kid who can do this all evening, for hours on end should be seriously tested for more than just a little too much sugar intake.

Burning Questions I Have After Rewatching

Christ almighty, I’m never having kids or getting married.

5. Was that my ex girlfriend working checkout at the grocery store?


Sure looks like one of the Midwest 6’s I remember from back in the day!

6. Why didn’t Gus Polinski and the rest of the “Polka Kings of the Midwest” rent a minivan instead of a Budget moving van? How is that legal?


They are most certainly not getting their deposit back after this! Were all regular minivans gone? They could have been fine with renting two coups. Also, you know those moving vans have no insulation back there. I hope Kate McCallister is able to hug her lost son with frostbitten fingers.

Oh, and if this happened today there’d be no way in Hell I’d let my significant other get in a moving van with a bunch of polka players from Wisconsin. I don’t care how badly she wants a ring.

7. Just kidding, the elf was my ex girlfriend.


Your boy JR used to clean up back in 1990. When I was 2. Seriously though, this chick’s a hard Midwest 8/10.

8. Does Kevin grow up to develop a lactose intolerance?


The entire film the only thing this eight-year-old boy does is eat dairy. Cheese pizza, ice cream, macaroni and cheese and a big tall glass of milk. That’s early ’90s parenting for you. My mother used to not let us leave the table until we finished an entire glass of milk. With our fucking fettucini alfredo.

Today, if I had everything Kevin ate in one day in a weekend, I would have to take two sick days from work. Plus lose ten pounds out of both ends of my body. My apartment would be Ground Zero, but that’s fine because I’m not planning on living with ANYBODY.

9. Why didn’t the scene where the nail goes through Marv’s foot earn this film an NC-17 rating?


What the actual fuck? This is some Jigsaw shit. I’d rather watch hardcore torture porn than this stuff.

And last but certainly not least, the most burning question of them all…


If you don’t believe me here’s proof:


I can’t imagine Mrs. Harry knows her husband is a burglar. Where does he say he goes all day? Is Harry a disgraced former Chicago PD? It would make sense, he has the uniform at the beginning of the film. It would also explain the odd hours to his wife, who thinks he’s still on the force. Did he and Balzak go to the Police Academy together? Did they start off as friends but eventually fall on opposite sides of the law? Did Marv lure Harry into a world of thievery and riches? Once they get enough scratch and odd marketable securities together they were gonna create an empire and finally take down Balzak? I just had another much more important thought…

11. Has Marv been the brains behind this operation the entire time?

I hope all of these questions are answered in the sequel, which I haven’t watched yet. In it, I hear Marv and Harry join the mob in NYC. Can’t wait to check it out and give you my review.

Happy Holidays!

Image via YouTube

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JR Hickey

Stand up comedian and writer from Chicago who now resides on the West Coast. JR can be seen performing at Cobbs Comedy Club in San Francisco and Zanies Comedy Clubs in Chicago. His work has been published in the Chicago Tribune and recently he was a part of SF Sketchfest 2015. JR's also the host of the PGP dating podcast Don't Take It From Us. He loves you very, very much.

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