The thing about How the Grinch Stole Christmas! is that it totally chucks the normal Christmas-y values that are blared at us in shopping malls and on TV right out the window. You know what we're talking about—door buster sales, seasonal cans of Coke, themed drinks at Starbucks (okay, okay, the peppermint mocha is delicious), and Christmas carol music videos not-so-secretly geared toward selling you Nintendos.
Sure, it's all in good fun, but it's also all in the name of commercialism. The message (however subliminal) is always, "Buy, buy, buy!" And it's a pretty convincing message. Did we mention those mochas are to die for?
But in Seuss's book, the whole "buying" and "receiving" thing isn't the point. In fact, it's entirely beside the point. When deprived of their oodles of gifts, the Whos just shrug it off. They're too busy celebrating Christmas to worry about the things we shopaholics usually think make Christmas.
How the Grinch Stole Christmas! is about how even when all of that has been slurped up into the Grinch's bag, the Whos can still celebrate Christmas because really, the Grinch didn't steal Christmas at all. Christmas is a good feeling and sense of community that lives inside all the Whos, gifts or no gifts. And that's just why the Grinch's plan fails—nothing he ever does could take that community spirit away.