Sunday, August 4, 2019

Christmas in July 2019: RECAP



Did you check out all the responses by our Christmas in July participants? In case you were late to the party this summer, here's your chance to catch up. Below is a complete list of links to each of our guests who participated this year. It goes by quickly, doesn't it?

If you're curious, there wasn't much consensus on answers this year. Favorite Saturday Night Live sketches ranged throughout the series' forty years. The most popular soundtrack was Vince Guaraldi's A Charlie Brown Christmas, however many other responses were also provided. And, I heard you all with your suggestions for future discussions for the website. Thanks for contributing your ideas and I'll see what I can do :)

Thanks to everyone who participated in Christmas in July and to all who left comments. If you would still like to leave comments, please feel free to do so--the discussion doesn't have to end just because the blogathon is over. Merry Christmas in July!




Original Introduction--answers by Joanna Wilson
Tom Beiter
Hugh H. Davis
Cathie Kahle from Christmas Movies and Music
Drew Flowers from Christmas Movies and Music
Skyler Harvey




Sleepy Kitty Paws
Sean Sotka (e_xander) at My Merry Christmas.com
Dana
Kevin Bowman
Randall Buie
 



 Dominic Caruso from 1701 Press
 Adam Parker from Merry Britsmas
 Rick Stoneburner
 Lisa Iannucci from the Virgin Traveler
 Linda M. Young from Flying Dreams




Travis Van Hauen
Jim Inman from Christmas Movies and Music
Donna Bock
Martin Johns from Stubby's House of Christmas
Ed South from What's Your Favorite Movie podcast




Ronda Roxbury
Jonathan Sowers
Laura Rachel from What to Watch
Jeff Fox, from Name That Christmas Special
Patrick Labelle




Chantelle from All Things Christmas.com
John D.
Sally Silverscreen from 18 Cinema Lane
Anson Sage Jr.
Jim Fanning at Tulgey Wood 







Rick
Tony Scotto
Aaron Henton (Der Bingle)  www.merryandbright.blogspot.com
J.A. Morris and RigbyMel from Holiday Film Reviews
D.X. Ferris, from "Suburban Metal Dad: Christmas Sevenfold"



If you're interested in our mini-questionnaires from years past, here are the links:

Christmas in July 2018

Christmas in July 2017

Christmas in July 2016

Christmas in July 2015

Christmas in July 2014


Joanna Wilson is a TV researcher and book author specializing in Christmas entertainment. More about the TV programs mentioned on this website can be found in her book "Tis the Season TV: the Encyclopedia of Christmas-themed Episodes, Specials, and Made-for-TV Movies." Her latest book "Triple Dog Dare: Watching--& Surviving--the 24-Hour Marathon of A Christmas Story" was released in 2016. Her books can be found at the publisher's website: 1701 press.com

*Support this website and its research by purchasing the books at 1701 press.com



Christmas in July 2019: D.X. Ferris






Christmas in July 2019: D.X. Ferris@dxferris, "Suburban Metal Dad: Christmas Sevenfold"


1. What is your favorite Saturday Night Live Christmas/Hanukkah/New Year's sketch?

“Hallmark’s A Gumby Christmas: Merry Christmas, Dammit!”
This sketch is studded with stars, real and impersonated. And it’s THICK with quotable lines. My favorite is Joe Piscopo’s Frank Sinatra Xmas medley. It’s a tribute to cartoon greats. Piscopo’s Frank was a national treasure, and his salty take on “Silent Night” makes me laugh every time: “Round that virgin chick / She had a kid / He grew up to be famous / You all know what he did!”




2. Do you most look forward to watching holiday episodes from series? Specials? Movies? Animation? or, all of it?

I like all the Christmas everything. Cookies. Movies. Whadda ya got? But now that my kids are both teenagers, it’s hard to get them to sit down with the rest of the family for any length of time. So in recent years, the family DXmas viewing has shifted from All Christmas All Day to Christmas episodes, because they’re short, and they’re an easy way for everybody to get together and have a bite-sized holiday experience. Once everybody’s in bed, I have a canon of movies I enjoy, like In Bruges and Scrooged.


3. What's your favorite soundtrack from a holiday program? (it doesn't have to have been officially released as an album--just what program features your favorite collection of music?)



The Community season 3 Christmas episode is a musical extravaganza. It’s all brilliant. Some of the songs depend on you knowing who the characters are. But a few stand alone as devastating satire, like “Teach Me How to Understand Christmas,” which sends up tunes about infantilized sexuality, like “Santa Baby.”





4. What one program are you patiently (or impatiently) waiting for me to review on this blog?



I’ll stop evangelizing for Community a minute. Instead, I can’t wait to hear what you think about my new discoveries for the year: The new Documentary Now episode “Original Cast Album: Co-op” has a couple swell Christmas tunes. And episode 4 from season 1 of Hardy Bucks, a show that’s on also on Netflix now. It’s like an Irish version of Trailer Park Boys. Speaking of Trailer Park Boys, I forget: Have you seen the Trailer Park Boys Xmas Special: Dope and Liquor Edition Yet?


5. What change in Christmas entertainment have you noticed over the years? Do you like the trend?

Christmas programming has proliferated in an amazing way. Look at what Hallmark is doing. I like the trend: if you want to create magic art, you need a lot of output to get to the great material. So the more Christmas shows there are, the more great stuff we’ll get.


D.X. Ferris is a lifelong Christmas fan. In his social circles, he is the guy who makes holiday music mixes. He formally entered the Xmas media game last year, when he released the book “Suburban Metal Dad: Christmas Sevenfold.” The paperback collects seven years of Christmas and holiday strips from his ongoing comic strip, Metal Dad.
D.X. Ferris, @dxferris, "Suburban Metal Dad: Christmas Sevenfold"

Saturday, August 3, 2019

Christmas in July 2019: Holiday Film Reviews



Christmas in July 2019: Holiday Film Reviews / J.A. Morris & RigbyMel http://holidayfilmreviews.blogspot.com/

1. What is your favorite Saturday Night Live Christmas/Hanukkah/New Year's sketch?

J.A. Morris says: I’m going with “The Killer Trees”, a great sketch that features mutant Christmas trees that go on a killing spree, from SNL’s Season 2 Christmas show.

RigbyMel says: Of late, I’ve been partial to the “Two A-holes in a Live Nativity Scene” sketch from Season 32 starring Kristen Wiig and Jason Sudeikis. “Whaddaya want for Christmas, babe?” “A beach … and a donkey.”


2. Do you most look forward to watching holiday episodes from series? Specials? Movies? Animation? or, all of it?

J.A. Morris says: Specials, especially the “Big Three” classic specials: Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, A Charlie Brown Christmas and How The Grinch Stole Christmas.

RigbyMel says: Everything really. We have special favorites that MUST be watched during the holiday season every year, but I enjoy checking out new and “new to me” holiday programming as well.



3. What's your favorite soundtrack from a holiday program? (it doesn't have to have been officially released as an album--just what program features your favorite collection of music?)

J.A. Morris says: I’m going with Vince Guaraldi’s soundtrack for A Charlie Brown Christmas. It doesn’t really feel like the holiday season until I hear this classic Christmas music.

RigbyMel says: I also love the soundtrack to A Charlie Brown Christmas, but will plunk for a more recent soundtrack as well since I seem to quote songs from 2008’s A Colbert Christmas: The Greatest Gift of All! year round! (Especially bits from “Please Be Patient” and “Little Dealer Boy”!) Also Emmet Otter’s Jug Band Christmas because, of course!


4. What one program are you patiently (or impatiently) waiting for me to review on this blog?

J.A. Morris says: We’re big fans of superheroes, I’d be interested to read your reviews of Christmas episodes of Wonder Woman, Batman:The Animated Series, Ultimate Spider-Man or movies like Iron Man 3 and Batman Returns (which take place during the holiday season).

RigbyMel says: I second J.A. Morris on this! :-)


5. What change in Christmas entertainment have you noticed over the years? Do you like the trend?

J.A. Morris says:
I’ve noticed that cable networks have acknowledged that people are still interested in watching Christmas movies and specials after Christmas Day. For a long time, this was not the case and it’s nice to flip channels on December 27 and stumble on Clark Griswold or a Rankin-Bass special.

RigbyMel says:
I agree with J.A. It’s also nice that recently, more attention has been paid to other holidays and traditions like Hanukkah and Kwanzaa. For example, watch Crazy Ex-Girlfriend: “My Mom, Greg’s Mom and Josh’s Sweet Dance Moves!” (2015) and Everybody Hates Chris: “Everybody Hates Kwanzaa” (2007) or Jon Stewart’s Hanukkah song in A Colbert Christmas (2008).




Friday, August 2, 2019

Christmas in July 2019: Aaron Henton


 

Christmas in July 2019: Aaron Henton (Der Bingle)  www.merryandbright.blogspot.com

1. What is your favorite Saturday Night Live Christmas/Hanukkah/New Year's sketch?

It's without a doubt the song from when Candice Bergen hosted in season one.  Candice, Jane, Gilda, Laraine backing up Garrett Morris, then John Belushi, Chevy Chase, and Dan Ackroyd joining in.  It was a really simple little song performance, but so wonderful and in the spirit of the season.


2. Do you most look forward to watching holiday episodes from series? Specials? Movies? Animation? or, all of it? 

One of my favorite traditions is watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade (and it's on my bucket list to go in person some day). This tops my list because it's a new live broadcast every year.  We also watch the Christmas from Rockefeller Center program for the lighting of the tree. As far as the classics, a year never goes by without A Charlie Brown Christmas. I seem to find some new nuance in it every time I watch.



3. What's your favorite soundtrack from a holiday program? (it doesn't have to have been officially released as an album--just what program features your favorite collection of music?) 

The Star Wars Holiday Special?  No, nope, not that. A Christmas Story includes a great selection of music, but I'll narrow it down to White Christmas.  Interestingly, the soundtrack album does not include Rosemary Clooney because of record label nonsense.  The album has Trudy Stevens performing Rosemary's parts.


4. What one program are you patiently (or impatiently) waiting for me to review on this blog? 

How about Santa Claus' Workshop that ran on KAKE-TV from Wichita KS every year as I was growing up in the early '70s?  Hard to find anything you haven't reviewed yet! :-)


5. What change in Christmas entertainment have you noticed over the years? Do you like the trend? 

The Hallmark Christmas movies is certainly most notable. I shied away from them the first few years, but have become more accepting of them the last couple, and do enjoy a few of them.  I've noticed some attempted returns to the Christmas variety show format, with mixed results. Overall there seems to be more Christmas programming now then in the decade or two prior, which is a very good thing!

Thursday, August 1, 2019

Christmas in July 2019: Tony Scotto




Christmas in July 2019: Tony Scotto

1. What is your favorite Saturday Night Live Christmas/Hanukkah/New Year's sketch?

Eddie Murphy doing Mr Robinson's Neighborhood
He talks about how his landlord gave him a eviction notice for Christmas. Then he goes into the closet and pulls out a ball and bucket that Santas use to collect for the Salvation Army. Then he taught us about x-mas and other words that begin with x. X-con and x-scape! Lol


2. Do you most look forward to watching holiday episodes from series? Specials? Movies? Animation? or, all of it?

The Spirit of Christmas. It's a marionette double feature. First is The Night Before Christmas and the second is The Greatest Story Ever Told.  They are local (Philadelphia region) but I now I think people have seen it nation wide. Made by the the Bell Telephone Company in the early 60s. Real classic. My elementary school had it on film and the classes would take turns going to the library to watch it.



3. What's your favorite soundtrack from a holiday program? (it doesn't have to have been officially released as an album--just what program features your favorite collection of music?)

I wish they made the soundtrack to A Christmas Story. All those great Christmas songs from the 40s just make the season feel right and make me feel like I'm a kid again.


4. What one program are you patiently (or impatiently) waiting for me to review on this blog?

The Paul Winchell Christmas Special
This guy is a legend. He did this show, did one of the voices for the Banana Splits, did the voice for Tigger, played the director in the episode of the Brady Bunch when they got to star in a soap commercial if you can remember that, and even patented the artificial heart!
https://youtu.be/recGPhrqUPE


5. What change in Christmas entertainment have you noticed over the years? Do you like the trend?

There is very little effort into making one great Christmas special but rather they make 20 mediocre ones to fill time. Also the good movies and specials are played to death. Would like to see a slowed pace to it all.