Hello-Hello, and welcome to a new week.
Today’s post could be dubbed “Friday Fun on a Monday,” I meant to share it last week and then ran out of time. (To say the holiday frenzy is already underway here at the shop would be an understatement, yikes!) At any rate, as many of our treasured readers are well, it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. And Hanukkah. Not to mention Thanksgiving, my word.
Some of it has just been plain weird. Behold, Exhibit A, the exterior of an abode not far removed from our tiny Palace.
The photo was taken before Halloween. But that’s not all, since this image was memorialized, far more has been added to the scene. Santas, elves, sleighs, detritus that would make the skin crawl for even the most dedicated of Christmas decorating fanatics. Mercifully, we are a half-mile removed from the abomination, yet must encounter it every time we leave the neighborhood by our normal route.
We also have Exhibit B.
People camped out in front of a Best Buy so they might be at the head of the line on Thursday night or Friday morning. This is where your fearless scribes says “I don’t get it” and pounds her head into the keyboard. Lifts, repeats.
However, all is not lost. In the face of what often seems like over-the-top commercialism and greed a bright light continues to shine.
We’re talking about Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and his nose-so-bright.
The program originally aired in 1964, it continues to be shown every year on CBS. Obviously, it features frightfully archaic graphics.
The animation is light years removed from today’s whiz-bang cartoons and movies and video games.
Yet it continues to win the time slot every time it airs: last year 12.7 million people watched it. (It is a huge night for us here at the Prepatorium.)
Here is the synopsis from IMDB:
A misfit reindeer and his friends look for a place that will accept them.
As a child I was terrified by the Abominable Snowman, if only I had known how tiny the puppets used to make the show actually were, Santa was roughly 8″ tall, Rudolph only 4″.
Narrated by Burl Ives in the role of Sam the Snowman, the show has aired every year since 1964. This photo is especially for TQM (The Queen Mum), would you believe she had quite a few Burl Ives albums?
More on Mr. Ives’ feelings about the popular program.
When I lent my voice to Sam the snowman back in 1964, 1 had no idea that the special would air on network television every year since then. When I tour across the country, I am recognized as Sam by everyone from the airline stewardesses down to the smallest of children. The popularity of that special overshadows my Oscar performance in The Big Country and my performance as ‘Big Daddy’ in Cat On A Hot Tin Roof” put together.”
Back to the show, it airs on CBS at 8pm Tuesday, December 4. Before then, fans might enjoy some of the trivia IMDB has in its database, here is one such tidbit:
In the original TV version of the show, Rudolph, Herbie the elf and Yukon Cornelius visit the Island of Misfit Toys and promise to help them, but the Misfits are never mentioned again. After it was shown, the producers were inundated with letters from children complaining that nothing had been done to help the Misfit Toys. In response, Rankin-Bass produced a new short scene at the end of the show in which Santa and his reindeer, led by Rudolph, land on the Island and pick up all the toys to find homes for them, which has ever since been the standard version of the show run during the holidays.
IMDB also has some great “goofs” they share, like this one:
The reindeer females are referred to as does, males are referred to as bucks, and babies are referred to as fawns. They should be referred to as cows, bulls, and calves.
I can promise I’ll be singing along (and The Consort will be cringing) with all of the music come December 4th.
All together now, “We are Santa’s elves…. building Santa’s shelves…with a toy for each girl and boy, we are Santa’s elves!”