About Christmas TV History

Saturday, July 21, 2018

Christmas in July 2018: Rob Martinez

Christmas in July 2018: Rob Martinez - producer/host of "The Nights Before Christmas"

Used to work here: "A Christmas Yuleblog"  (Google: yuleblog)

Christmas music collector / Collects vintage December issues of LIFE, LOOK, Saturday Evening Post / TIME / Newsweek / etc for the Christmas ads.

The Cratchits from Muppet Christmas Carol

1) Name your favorite Henson's Muppet Christmas program and why.

The Muppet Christmas Carol from 1992.  This was the first Muppet production without longtime Muppeteer Richard Hunt and sadly Jim Henson.  It's the perfect amount of Charles Dickens, Muppet humor, and music - the song "One More Sleep 'Til Christmas" deserves to be in rotation at holiday time. 

Plus, Michael Caine as Scrooge... he snarls, he charms, his transformation at the end is touching, and he sings! Perfect.

2) Which decade produced the bulk of your favorite Christmas entertainment?

The 1980s. There are countless Christmas TV episodes that I love from this time (1982's "Santaclaustrophobia" from Hill Street Blues is my favorite) but it's the movies from this decade that seals it - A Christmas Story, Scrooged, National Lampoon's A Christmas Vacation, Die Hard (technically no but...).  If you're up for some fun, there's a ton of really cheesy BAD movies (i.e. Silent Night, Deadly Night) that are worth holiday looks.

Frank & Bing Crosby from the 1957 Christmas episode of The Frank Sinatra Show

3) Imagine the entertainment behind your ideal Christmas Eve dinner. Name the appetizer, entreé, and dessert.

Appetizer: Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In / S2 - Ep 12 - December 16, 1968.
Guest stars: Douglas Fairbanks Jr.; Billy Barty; Jack Riley (as LBJ); cameo appearances by Jack Benny, Barbara Bain, Otto Preminger and Rock Hudson. 
The jokes are varied and fly very fast (just like great appetizers do).

Entreé: The Frank Sinatra Show / "Happy Holidays with Bing and Frank"  (1957)
You'll need great music to go with dinner & conversation so why not watch Frank invite Bing over for Christmas dinner?

Dessert:  Love Actually (2003)
Best served by an open fire with plenty of after-dinner cocktails.

Filmmaker John Waters

4) What Christmas episode, special or movie doesn't exist--that you wish did?  Feel free to get creative.

In 2008, John Waters was preparing to make a children's Christmas movie called Fruitcake starring Johnny Knoxville and Parker Posey.  Filming was scheduled to start in November of that year but thanks to the economy tanking, the production company went under and the film was shelved in January, 2009.  Waters has been trying to find someone, ANYONE who will give him $5 million dollars to make the film.  We need a serious KickStarter campaign...

5) If one Christmas movie, special or episode was to be selected for a time capsule to opened in 1,000 years, which title do you think should be included?

A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965) - enough said.


  1. John Waters and children's movie does not necessarily compute, but I admit I'm intrigued.

  2. We love "Santaclaustrophobia" and watch it every year. "Lordy God, it's Christmas Eve and I'm gonna be shot dead in a moose suit."

  3. I've had "One More Sleep Til Christmas" stuck in my head ever since you mentioned it! Thanks for participating :)

  4. Love your inclusion of Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In and Happy Holidays with Bing and Frank, Rob. And you are right about One More Sleep 'Til Christmas. It should be played on all the holiday music stations and channels.