The Two Gay Geeks and our Staff are taking a much needed break from Thanksgiving through the end of the year, but we still wanted to have content for you to read during that time. As such we got busy and watched all of our favorite holiday videos. Some are classics and others are off-beat and loosely associated with the holidays. We hope you enjoy our offerings and that you holiday season is safe, sane, and satisfying.
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
I remember seeing Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer the first time it aired in 1964. I remember feeling like Rudolph because I was in a cast from the waist down and told my parents to tell Santa Claus to take all my presents back because apparently, I wasn’t going to make it. The thinking of a child…
Anyway, on with the story of Rudolph; the story opens with Sam the snowman, voiced by Burl Ives, telling of the great Christmas snowstorm that was so bad nobody could get around, not even Santa. He then slips in the birth of Rudolph who has a bright red nose that lights up and makes noise. Donner, Rudolph’s Dad doesn’t want Santa, who is a bit of a bigot (at least in this film), to see the red blinker of a nose. Santa says some nasty things about Rudolph and leaves. No wonder Rudolph has a complex, he needed therapy after his first interaction with Santa.
Rudolph grows up and it is time for the reindeer games so Donner being a good dad covers up Rudolph’s nose which makes him sound stuffed up. Rudolph is hangin’ out with the other young reindeer and gets all excited when a young female comes up and he says, “Hello Clarice”… errr wrong film. Uh where was I , oh right, Clarice is the young female reindeer that has told Rudolph he is cude, his way of saying cute with his covered nose and takes off flying. When he lands his nose covering comes off and there he is in all his glory, nose shining and all of the other reindeer are googly-eyed. Coach Chuck tells Rudolph he can’t join in the reindeer games and Donner takes Rudolph home in shame. Rudolph sneaks out and runs away.
In another part of the North Pole at Santa’s workshop is an elf, Hermy, that doesn’t want to make toys, he wants to be a Dentist. Huh? He isn’t good at toy making and is always missing elf practice where Santa derides the elves. As I said Santa is not very nice in this film. Hermy sneaks out and runs away.
Rudolph and Hermy cross paths and decide to be misfits together. As they are wandering aimlessly through the wilds of the North Pole they come across Yukon Cornelius (one of my favorite characters) who is a prospector and a larger than life character with a Brian Blessed-esque voice. He warns Hermy and Rudolph about the Bumble (Abominable Snowman) and wouldn’t you know it, here comes the Bumble. They escape and wind up on the island of misfit toys where they are granted only one night on the island. They can’t stay because they are not toys. It’s all Rudolph’s fault so he climbs out the window in a blinding snowstorm.
Rudolph, Hermy, Yukon Cornelius, Clarice, Mrs. Donner, and of course the Bumble all magically find each other and head back to the North Pole and Santa’s Castle. The storm is worse than ever. Snat is contemplating cancelling Christmas when in comes Rudolph with his nose so bright and Santa asks him to lead his sleigh. They take off and visit the island of misfit toys and all are packed up and carried away to new homes.
The story is a little corny but it has to fit the song the already existed. The stop motion filming was great for its time, with a few goofs here and there. It clocks in at 52 minutes on the restored version of the DVD but I swear as a kid watching it every year it was four hours long. It does have a happy ending and we always watch it because it takes us back to the magic of being a kid again. A little holiday fluff never hurt anyone except for, maybe, the Bumble.
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