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Street Season 48
Sesame Street's 48th season
officially began Monday August 6 on PBS. After you see the new episodes,
post here and let us know your thoughts.
Discussion in 'Sesame Merchandise' started by Phillip, Nov 1, 2012.
Oh, I thought it was cut out of DVD and VHS releases as well.
I have seen "A Special Sesame Street Christmas" more than once now and I love it!
If they only had select Muppets to choose from for the special, they did a great job to include Big Bird and Oscar the Grouch- they are definitely some of the most memorable (particularly at that time)- and I'm glad to see Barkely on it too. As rare as this thing is, I just think it's great to have it on DVD finally and even the soundtrack on CD! Nice! (Now if we can only get some other rare Sesame Street specials and such to DVD- like, say- the 10th. anniversary special and the 1974 "Out to Lunch" special that was a team-up with The Electric Company. I love Sesame Street! And as funny as it is to see and read the different reviews lampooning it, I still enjoy watching it regardless. I think it's fun and I enjoy Anne Murray's song and Ethel Merman's song. Leslie Uggams does great too. And Mr. Hooper, Bob, Maria and David are there too. It's Sesame Street fun.
It's specials like this that make me wish I had a blog so I could rip this to shreds. It has none of the charm of Sesame Street and all of the creepiness of Anne Murray singing a love ballad to Big Bird.
Anne Murray sang a love ballad for Big Bird- I don't think the song was directed at him in the sense that she was professing her love for a six year old bird.
I suppose I should also mention that I genuinely enjoy things like "The Star Wars Holiday Special" and "Legends of the Superheroes" (both also late 1970s TV specials that are rather infamous to say the least) just for the sheer goofiness of them if nothing else. But I still think "A Special Sesame Street Christmas" has its moments- there is some Sesame Street charm, I think. But it's hard for me to dislike anything Sesame Street or Muppets in general. (Me munch them all up....)
I understand if most fans don't like it though- that's cool. But still- I'm glad it's on DVD. Like it or not, it is a piece of Sesame Street history and I'd prefer to have it available for those who want it than not. (I wish Disney would actually officially release "The Star Wars Holiday Special" to DVD one day and be done with it- I feel confident there are plenty of Star Wars completists who would buy it on the spot. Even "Legends of the Superheroes" recently made it to DVD.
The problem with the special is that whoever wrote it clearly only had the barest of knowledge of Sesame Street. And that was "Oscar is the mean one. Big Bird was the not mean one." I find Elmo's Christmas Countdown to be kinda garish, loud, and uncharacteristically mean (Charles Blitzen's constant taunting of Stiller the Elf is incredibly heavy handed), but overall it's still much more in tune with Sesame Street. And it has more than 2 Muppets in it.
I'd reference how I didn't see A Sesame Street Christmas Carol and make a joke about how it's a clip show so I technically did see it.
Of course, Sesame Street is lucky. It has 2 great Christmas specials (Christmas Eve on Sesame Street and Elmo Saves Christmas- put your thoughts about the little red monster aside, it's awesome), one enjoyable educational special about Christmas and holidays (Elmo's World:Happy Holidays which mops the floor up with all the other EW segments combined by having a plot), a loud celebrity based special that actually has some good, solid moments in it and is worth seeing once or twice, a clip show that doesn't sound too bad, and that bad special that would have been completely forgotten if not for the internet. So basically 3 good specials out of 4 (again, haven't seen the clip show one). Most properties that have a bad Christmas special only have that bad Christmas special.
Now, I never saw the first Smurfs one with Gargamel, but I did see the one where they were helping out a poor woodcarver, and the Christmas Carol one based off the Movie (which was better than the movie)... but I hear awful things about that first one... so it has 2 out of 3. TMNT had that terrible concert one and that pretty good 2k3 episode based on a comic book story... Star Wars is forever scarred by the Holiday special. The guy who thought Jar Jar Binks was a great character thinks it was an embarrassment. The guy who said we need to focus episode one on a Pod Racing child Anakin instead of Obi Wan and Qui Gon Jinn and the rise of Darth Maul thought the holiday special was an embarrassment. If I were Disney, I'd bury that thing and make something much better.
I'd still watch the SW Holiday Special over this any day. At least that one gave us our first glimpse of Boba Fett.
You should watch the Smurfs Christmas special with Gargamel- it is awesome! It features one of the most terrifying Smurfs villians ever, in my opinion- and it is very much in keeping with the Smurfs. I also LOVE the other one you mentioned where the Smurfs help the poor woodcarver- that one brings me to tears- such a good Christmas special.
I had always heard that the idea for Jar Jar Binks came from George Lucas' young female relative (I forget if it was a granddaughter or niece or something or whatever...) But maybe that was just an Internet story. In any case, I like the Star Wars prequels just fine. (And The Star Wars Holiday Special, for that matter.)
As far as Sesame Street and Christmas goes- of course, I think "Christmas Eve on Sesame Street" would win hands down as the most beloved and best special ever. And I do LOVE it.
And yes, I also LOVE "Elmo Saves Christmas"- it's a great one too. (And I don't have any issues with Elmo to begin with- I love him too.)
And "Elmo's World: Happy Holidays" is really good too. I LOVE that the show actually presented a Christmas pageant (directed by Prairie Dawn, of course!) and told kids about the birth of Jesus. (Of course, I wish He had been presented clearly as the Savior Christ The Lord, as Luke 2:11 declares Him to be- but I suppose I can only expect so much out of a secular non-sectarian production. As a Christian, I just appreciate that they actually told kids that the birth of Christ is the reason for celebration of Christmas and were respectful of Christ.)
And I also appreciate that the show spent time explaining the origins of both Hannukah and Kwanzaa. (I suppose they could have delved into Saturnalia and the Winter Solstice if they really wanted to cover all the bases, but you can only get so much history into a kids' show. Probably better to stick with holidays that are still widely celebrated the most during December.)
And the title of the video is quite right in using the term "Happy Holidays"- as it entails the origins and celebrations of multiple holy days for different people. (Since "holidays" itself originates from the words "holy days".)
What I get annoyed with is when we have specials that are not clear in their labelling. I have "A Sesame Street Christmas Carol" on DVD and enjoy watching it. There are actually even some elements that echo "A Special Sesame Street Christmas". (Seeing as how both videos have Oscar in the role of Scrooge in a take on Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol". And the Ghost of Christmas Present on ASSCC looks fairly similar to the Ghost of Christmas Present on ASSSC.
And hey- the Ghost of Christmas Future on "A Sesame Street Christmas Carol" is i-Sam (a CGI version of Sam the Robot! That's pretty awesome!
And yes- the video does show clips from three other classic Sesame Street Christmas specials- "Christmas Eve on Sesame Street", "Elmo Saves Christmas" and "Elmo's World: Happy Holidays". The thing is- it shows the clips about celebrating Hannukah and Kwanzaa on there- I just didn't feel that was necessary, seeing as how the Ghost of Christmas Present (in the book anyway) shows how people are presently celebrating Christmas on Christmas Day. (Yes- I know we want to be sensitive to people who believe differently and celebrate other things, so I suppose that's why they wanted to show that some people at this time of year are celebrating Chanukah and Kwanzaa instead. Still, it felt tacked on and out of place, in my opinion.)
Anyway- that quibble aside, it's still a fun special and worth watching. And Oscar the Grouch is pretty much the main Sesame Street Muppet starring in that special (i.e. in new footage, that is- of course, we have cameos from the various flashback scenes.)
And there are other characters like the Joe Marley Muppet who is pretty funny.
And there's also "Elmo's Christmas Countdown", which I enjoy as well. I think it's pretty cool that it teaches kids about the concept of an Advent calendar, which is a great Christian tradition at Christmas- which obviously some non-Christians use as well in a secular celebration of Christmas. That special wasn't heavy on the idea of the Advent season as a time in Christian churches for reflection upon the birth of Christ and the salvation He came to bring- but the concept of an Advent calendar was still there and that's way cool. And there were even some Christmas carols that speak of the birth of Christ- like "Do You Hear What I Hear?" Awesome! (And "Carol of the Bells", which has some distinct Christian lyrics proclaiming the birth of Christ- but those lyrics aren't always used- if any at all. And "I Saw Three Ships" is also a classic Christian Christmas carol proclaiming the birth of Jesus.)
And with all of those on hand- yeah, I still enjoy "A Special Sesame Street Christmas" too. Mainly for the adaptation of "A Christmas Carol"- and for all the fun guest star appearances. And some great songs- even if they aren't specifically Christmas songs.
Oh well- everyone is welcome to their opinion on it. But as I said before, I'd still rather have such material available on DVD so that those who enjoy can have it to enjoy- and those who don't can ignore it.
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