It opens inside the great room of “Mariah’s Apartment, New York City,” where there’s white stockings hanging above the fireplace and a tree that practically touches the ceiling. Carey, who arrives on the scene in sequined red knit pajamas, tries to get her daughter “Mimi” to hang a monogrammed gold butterfly ornament on the tree, but she’s too sad about 2020 to do it.
What to do when you’re Mariah Carey and your kid is sad? Sing, obviously.
Carey belts out “Sleigh Ride,” then gets a call on a red sequined iPhone, hidden in a fake box of chocolates. Guess who? Santa’s number one elf, Billy Eichner, who tells Carey she must get to the North Pole to put on a show because the whole world is upset about Covid-19.
Carey hops in her sleigh (a red convertible car with skis on the bottom, of course) and arrives in under a minute. She sings along the way and is greeted with a choreographed dance party and carried around by two Christmas soldiers.
Once they set her down, she’s tasked with throwing a concert that very night to cheer up the world. Carey gives Santa’s elf her rider (four wind machines and buckets of glitter) then appears in a gold sequined dress to sing. (I guarantee you never heard a “Jingle Bells” this good in your life.)
Ballerina Misty Copeland gets a solo as a sugar plum fairy, while Carey gets lost in a forest. When she stumbles upon a gospel choir and a baby grand piano, she takes advantage of her good luck and sings “Oh Holy Night.”
Carey wakes up back at home in full glam thinking it was all a dream, but Eichner reappears in her living room to tell her to get to the show. She’s next dressed in a wedding gown to sing “Joy To the World,” while her kids and a dance troupe dance around her.
Meanwhile, this was all just a story Tiffany Haddish has been reading us while sitting in a cozy cabin, though Carey still closes out the show. After Haddish calls for an encore, Carey appears in a red velvet nutcracker mini dress to sing “All I Want for Christmas.”
“Mariah Carey’s Magical Christmas Special” is now streaming on Apple+.