Throwback Thursday is your weekly concentrated dose of nostalgia, where we round up the bests and worsts of all things 90s (and the early 2000s.) This week: The Top 5 claymation Christmas specials


Okay, Internet friends.  You caught me in a tiny fib.  The Claymation Christmas specials weren’t exactly a product of the 90s. So, to all of you sitting in front of your laptops thinking, “Awkward Abby lied to us! She’s only supposed to blog about things from the 90s and the early 00s! The Claymations are from at least three decades before then! She is not the person I thought she was, she’s not the man I married, and she never takes me dancing!!” the answer is, yes, you are right.  But I certainly remember watching them over and over again as a kid in the 90s.  And I promise that I will do better to rebuild this relationship, I didn’t mean to lose your trust! But before I do that, let me bring you the best of the Christmas Claymations.

Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer

This is, of course, a Christmas classic.  And yes, the story of Rudolph is legendary and children grow up knowing the tale by heart.  Rudolph and Clarice are adorable and everybody loves them.  But the characters I’m the most fascinated by are Yukon Cornelius and Hermey.  Just how exactly did a prospector end up at the North Pole?  Also, is it just me or is Hermey just a little bit faaaabulous?  But more importantly, what’s up with the snowman narrator?  Am I the only kid that was a little bit scared of the walking, talking, omniscient snowman?

Rudolph’s Shiny New Year

This is the sequel to the original Rudolph.  And I remember spending most of it going, “What is happening?!!” Why were they following a baby in a Top Hat?  How did they end up on an island with a caveman?  Why is there a knight?  What the hell is Benjamin Franklin doing in this?! As a kid, I just kind of accepted that all of that was exactly what was supposed to be happening.  Why wouldn’t Rudolph be hanging out with a caveman?  But now I think Rankin and Bass might been imbibing in a tad too much eggnog when they decided to write this one.

The Year Without A Santa Claus

So, this one is great primarily because it introduced the world to Heat Miser and Cold Miser – they’re “too much!”.  Also, it has a pretty quality cast with Mickey Rooney as Santa Claus and Shirley Booth as Mrs. Claus.  Plus, it really helped humanize Santa.  He’s not just some mythical dude that’s happy all the time and lives just to deliver toys.  Even Santa goes through a rough patch every now and then.  Maybe a better name for this one would have been The Year Where Santa Suffered From Seasonal Depression.  See, he’s just like everyone else.  He puts his red suit on one leg at a time just like the rest of us.

The Little Drummer Boy

Is it just me or was this one super religious for Rankin and Bass, and also kind of a downer?  I mean, the Drummer Boy’s only friends are a sheep, a donkey, and a camel, and his only worldly possession is his drum. Plus he has to join the circus just to make ends meet.  This one also feels kind of politically charged because the Romans are always being huge jerks.  They hit the sheep with their car!  But in the end, everything is okay because the Drummer Boy goes to see the birth of Jesus.  And he plays his drum for the baby—because, you know, after a newborn baby is finally asleep, what else should you be doing, if not playing a drum near him?

Santa Claus Is Coming To Town

There is so much I like about this Claymation.  First off, Fred Astaire is the narrator.  Also Burgermeister Meisterburger is the best name for a villain ever and also probably just the best villain.  Also Santa is a ginger!! And voiced by Mickey Rooney.  Also he has a pet penguin named Topper.  And his adopted family were the first toy makers to the king.  But the most important part of this movie, aside from Ginger Santa, is the song, Put One Foot In Front Of The Other.  It’s basically a motivational anthem for the ages.  I’m sorry but there is nothing about this Claymation that isn’t everything that is right and good in the world.

What’s your favorite Christmas movie?


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