About Christmas TV History

Sunday, December 6, 2009

24-Hour Christmas Movie Marathons

The annual tradition of the twenty four-hour marathon of the movie A Christmas Story has really touched everyone. People who usually don't watch much TV at all still seem to know about how that movie runs continuously over the holiday. I'm frequently asked about that phenomenon and I usually respond in two parts:
1) I think it's a nice alternative to the TV Yule Log (looped broadcast of a burning fire in a fireplace). It's the kind of movie that appeals to both young and older viewers. But since everyone has seen it already, it's nice to just have on the TV in the background while the family gathers and goes about their usual traditions. Thus it has become just another Christmas tradition for many families. The story is so familiar to everyone that it's more about catching your favorite scenes throughout Christmas Eve or the following Christmas Day than about sitting and watching the movie in its entirety during the marathon.
2) I'm surprised more networks don't do the same marathon idea since it has become such a popular Christmas experience.

But last year, a rival cable network did just that--and broadcast twenty four hours of Will Ferrell in Elf. I have to admit, in my house, we flipped back and forth between the two marathons the whole holiday. I see that this year the Fox Movie Channel is airing a twenty four hour-marathon of Home Alone. Maybe next year: twenty four hours of A Very Brady Christmas?

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