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Halloween festivities wrapped up weeks ago and winter holidays are right around the corner, which might leave some 3rd hour of TODAY viewers wondering why one celebrity guest visited the show decked out in full witch regalia Tuesday morning.
But the answer is easy: Actor-turned-children’s book author Aubrey Plaza is making sure everyone knows that pointy hats and cackling laughs aren’t just for the spooky season anymore.
Tuesday also marked the release of Plaza’s book, written with author Dan Murphy, called “The Legend of the Christmas Witch,” which she spoke about during her hilarious and witchy stop by Studio 1A.
“Well, I don’t choose these things,” she said when asked about her red velvet costume. “I am chosen by the Christmas Witch to represent her. I’m honoring her today, on the publishing day of my book. She appeared to me in a dream, and I just knew I had to get her story out. ... It came to me in a hallucination, late at night, whispered into my ear in a melatonin-induced state.”
And what a story it is, one that Plaza describes as both “merry and bright” and “a little dark, a little creepy sometimes.”
“The Christmas Witch is Santa Claus’ long, lost twin sister, so she is part of the merry and bright crew,” the 37-year-old explained. “But she’s got a little chip on her shoulder. ... She’s a misunderstood character, you know. People project things onto her and they call her evil, but I don’t think she’s evil at all. I think she’s trying to bring the true meaning of Christmas back, and her brother maybe lost his way.”
Not that St. Nick is suddenly a bad guy or anything.
“No, no, no — nope! — we’re not going there,” Plaza insisted. “All I’m saying, look, siblings, you know sibling rivalry, that kind of thing. Santa’s fine. He’s doing his thing. He loves the presents and the packages.”
But his sister has a distinctly different holiday vibe.
“The Christmas Witch is all about nature,” she continued. “She’s a Yuletide witch, so she’s all about honoring plants and animals and remembering the old-timey traditions of the witch’s solstice.”
And just generally “cursing” everyone to have a happy holiday.
Plaza dedicated the book to her mother, whom she calls “a brave witch indeed.”
“My mother taught me to be a little witch as a child,” she explained. “Well, she always had a kind of magic in her step. She always inspired me. She had me very young and taught me that anything was possible. ... She’s a magical woman.”
The former “Parks and Recreation” star never broke from her witchy persona during the fun chat, even when asked about her recent marriage to longtime partner Jeff Baena.
“It’s great,” she raved while opening her eyes wide and looking right into the camera. “He’s not embarrassed of me at all. No, not at all. He loves the things that I do!”