The 12 Days Of Obscure Xmas Movies (Day 6)

After creating the motion picture camera back in 1894, the Lumière Brothers had no idea their invention would go on to become the most important art form in history. More culturally significant than novels, paintings or songs, the motion picture is a indispensable cultural artifact that documents not only the culture and times in which it was made, making it the world’s greatest time capsule, it’s the only thing that unites us all as a people. Music comes close but music has lyrics and with that comes an instant wall that separates people. You can’t connect everyone if not everyone understands the meaning.

Silent films don’t have that problem. A well made silent comedy will give you all the information you need from visuals alone. Now, the motion picture has evolved far beyond the old black and white flicker shows of old but the sentiment is still there. A well made film can be understood purely on visuals alone and that’s why it’s the most important art form there is. It connects us all through magic. Because at the end of the day, films are, at their very core, illusions. They’re a series of pictures that, if played in rapid succession, create the illusion of motion.

They’re magic tricks.

Magic tricks that have been capturing audiences imaginations for over 100 years. Let’s honor that magic by highlighting some less than famous magicians that have sadly been forgotten by time.

This will be part of an on going segment that aims to shine a light on the forgotten and the obscure.

 

Day 6 Of The 12 Days Of Xmas: 5 Random Holiday Specials (mostly involving puppets)

When it comes to television, there’s only three things that are absolutely certain:

1. If the show has kid actors, once they stop being kids, the show will suck hardcore.

2. If the show is animated, there will be a Fantastic Voyage themed episode at some point.

3. If the show gets a second season, there will be episodes dedicated to both Christmas and Halloween.

Even though I can talk at length at how many shows went to shit after their adorable kid grew into a hideous teenager or the inexplicable phenomenon that is the Fantastic Voyage episode, you clicked this article to read about Christmas movies you’ve never heard of (and will never watch) and by god, sailor will deliver the goods.

Audiences love the Christmas episode. It’s a near universal tradition that most can relate to or at least understand on a conceptual level. The writers don’t need to explain any element because it’s ingrained into our DNA. We all know what it’s like to open up presents on Christmas day or alternatively, the hell that came with hunting down a hard to find toy (ask your parents about the Tickle Me Elmo skirmish of 96 or the Furby war two years later. Dark Times)

We’re grown up knowing all the traditions and the iconography–i.e., mistletoe, reindeer, wreaths and the like but what is more amazing, is the fact that we’re born with an almost innate sense of goodwill around that time of year. Even the biggest shit heels and assholes tone down their dickishness for at least 30 days out of the year because there’s a sort of magical aura that compels them to be good.

Or maybe they just saw some of these specials and it made them better people. Or maybe I’m just talking out of my ass because I have a word count quota I gotta hit or sailor doesn’t eat today.

 

1. The Christmas Toy

The Christmas Toy is a 1986 television film, directed by Eric Till and produced by the Jim Henson Company, featuring Jim Henson’s Muppets, including Rugby the Tiger who remembers how he was the Christmas Toy last year, and thinks he’s going to be unwrapped again this year. 

Two second summary:

Toys come alive, Kermit gets cut for legal reasons and Pixar gets away with theft yet again. And I’m pretty sure that curly headed toy gave me nightmares as a kid. Dead eyes.

 

 

2. The Great Santa Claus Switch

The Great Santa Claus Switch was a Muppet television special that first aired on CBS on December 20, 1970. The show, narrated by Ed Sullivan, begins at the North Pole with Santa Claus and his elves getting ready for another Christmas. However, Cosmo Scam has hatched a plan to kidnap Santa and take his place. As part of the plan, Cosmo plans to abduct Santa’s elves (one at a time) and replace them with his evil henchmen.

Two second summary:

Art Carney is a shitty Santa.

 

 

3. Christmas Eve On Sesame Street

Big Bird worries when Oscar tells him that if Santa Claus can’t fit down the chimney on Christmas Eve, nobody would get presents.

Two second summary:

Oscar fucks with Big Bird and there’s a lot of ice skating in this for some reason.

 

 

4. A Star Shall Rise

Story of the Three Magi’s search for the Christ child following their discovery of a new star foretold in Jewish scripture and Zoroastrain religious texts.

Two second summary:

Raymond Burr anchors a really solid retelling of the birth of Jesus. It’s by far the most obscure on this list and quite possibly the best. Definitely worth a watch.

 

 

5. Emmet Otter’s Jug Band Christmas

A poor otter family risks everything for the chance to win the cash prize of a talent contest for Christmas.

Two second summary:

Not really obscure but if by chance you haven’t seen it, It’s the greatest Christmas special of all time. Full stop. And I could drunkingly argue that it’s the best puppet film ever made.

 

  • King Alvarez

    Done!

  • King Alvarez

    I was going to yesterday but then left work. I will do that today!

  • You should reverse moriartys face on your evil twin lol

  • King Alvarez

    I didn’t delete any of them. There’s now this one, @twstdbydsn and now @King Alvarez’s Evil Twin

  • See the only sad part is that that means we actually have one less regular lol. You sly devil you.

  • King Alvarez

    Apparently, I created a new account instead of logging in. Not sure how that actually happened, but it did. I’m now back to normal! And now you all know my other secret identity. @twstdbydsn:disqus, was the one that got me banned at /voldemort. I created this one a few months later as a spinoff and used Moriarty for my avatar as a jab at my return under the new alias. It’s to be back and to be the king! @twstdbydsn:disqus is my name on Xbox too if anyone cares.

  • King Alvarez

    it all comes together. 😉

  • Maybe it’s got something to do with disqus being sold

  • Omg it’s the avatar of @twstdbydsn:disqus and now everything makes sense.

  • King Alvarez
  • 🎅Poppity🌟

    I will let that pass since you are so darned likable a person. 😉

  • Sailor Monsoon

    He’s in the beginning of the vhs tape.

  • William Dhalgren

    Snoopy is awesome.

  • William Dhalgren

    Elmo is awesome.

  • William Dhalgren

    I’ve always wanted to ask: what is the significance of your name?

  • Sailor Monsoon

    You definitely need to see it.
    Our tastes never align but i can’t imagine anyone disliking it.
    It’s charming as hell.

  • I’ve never heard of it before so it was obscure to me!

  • Don’t you dare accuse Peanuts of anything!

  • Sailor Monsoon

    It’s not even hate
    Once he became popular, it became his show and the show has suffered ever since.
    Just like what happened to peanuts once everyone started loving snoopy

  • Sailor Monsoon

    I will not disagree

  • Kemosabe 🦇

    I didn’t know Elmo had haters.

  • Sailor Monsoon

    1. I have no idea
    2. Why thank ya kindly mrs pops

  • Sailor Monsoon

    I agree
    I almost didn’t include it because it’s so well known but it’s a great conversation starter

  • King Alvarez

    Started a discussion in the support hub. We’ll see what happens next.

  • 🎅Poppity🌟

    That is very odd indeed. It says for me that you have 11 upvotes and around a dozen comments. I would write down those numbers if I were you just in case you have to contact Disqus.

  • King Alvarez

    Strangely enough, I just logged in on my phone and everything is normal. My glorious 2840 upvotes and 1733 comments are still there.

  • 🎅Poppity🌟

    I watch mostly Old School clips with my kids because most of the new stuff sucks. Sesame Street was tons better before Elmo arrived in town.

  • 🎅Poppity🌟

    Mine has not but it sucks that you lost all your upvotes. You should contact Disqus about it, especially since your High Rep status is now lost. 🙁

  • 🎅Poppity🌟

    I’m definitely going to check out Raymond Burr’s feature. Do you know if the one with Boyer has been uploaded as well?
    This is a really cool mix of selections! 😛

  • I think my account was untouched.

  • Sailor Monsoon

    Kids probably still watch it

  • I love Emmet Otter’s Jug Band Christmas. Might have to dust off the ol’ DVD this year.

  • Oh I saw it. I meant relevant in that kids actually still watch it. They know Elmo and Abby CaDabby.

    (I love the Cookie Monster parodies)

  • Lando Plenty

    I still watch it every year. Undisputed classic.

  • King Alvarez

    Anyone else have their Disqus profile reset? Mine now shows I’ve only ever posted twice.

  • King Alvarez

    Totally just for marketing.

  • Sailor Monsoon

    Somebody didn’t see that stranger things parody….

  • Sailor Monsoon

    Everyone knows everything Henson did

  • I miss the days when Sesame Street was still relevant and still just humans and puppets.

  • How does everyone know Emmet Otter?! Does Kermit even factor in or is his face there just for marketing?

  • King Alvarez

    I used to watch Emmet Otter on HBO every year!