The air is getting colder, the Weather Network has been calling for flurries, you can smell pine trees, and hear the unmistakable sound of 24-hour Christmas radio stations. The holiday season is finally upon us, and what better way to celebrate than by gathering around the TV with family and friends to watch some classic specials? Here are Ignite News’ top five Christmas-themed TV specials:
5. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964)
Produced in stop-motion animation by production mogul Rankin/Bass, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is currently the longest-running Christmas television special in history. The special is based on the 1939 poem and 1949 song of the same name, and the visualization of its concepts and characters has been celebrated since its release.
4. A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)
Who could forget poor Charlie Brown, trying to direct the school play, but getting ignored and teased by his classmates, especially when he arrives with a small, dead Christmas tree? A Charlie Brown Christmas focuses on the true meaning of Christmas, reminding viewers what the holiday season is really about.
3. Frosty the Snowman (1969)
This iconic Christmas special, similar to Rudolph, is based on the 1950 song of the same name. The popularity of the special generated four sequels for Frosty, however none could match the success and love garnered by the original.
2. Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town (1970)
Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town is a Rankin/Bass Christmas special based on the 1934 song of the same name. The special chronicles the story of how Santa Claus came to exist, along with the creation of a number of Santa-related traditions. Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town also features an all-star voice cast, with Mickey Rooney providing the voice for Kris Kringle/Santa Claus and Fred Astaire providing the voice of the narrator.
Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (1966)
The 1966 Christmas special, based on the Dr. Seuss book of the same name, tells the classic tale of the Grinch, an anti-Christmas curmudgeon, who makes it his mission to destroy Christmas for the town of Whoville. How the Grinch Stole Christmas! is one of the rarer Christmas specials, typically only aired twice during the season (get those DVRs ready!).
Honourable mentions: The Year Without a Santa Claus, and Michael Bublé’s annual Christmas special.