I am going to divulge a secret to my blog-friends. Even though I became a nurse, that choice was #3 on my list of "favorite careers." #2 was chef (but I chose to stay in my small-town area, so not much a market for that here). And #1 was....a puppeteer! I was obsessed with the Muppets since I was really little. I remember getting up at 6 a.m. when I was 5 or so and watching "The Muppet Show" on TnT with my mom. There was another show, I think it was called "Madame's Place", where the main character was an old, rich woman puppet. The rest of the characters were humans. I have a really good memory!
I really enjoy all things claymation...which explains my love of Gumby and Mr. Bill...so the Bass-Rankin classics like "Rudolph" and "Frosty the Snowman" are definitely childhood favorites when it comes to Christmas-season shows. But the REAL Jim Henson (before his death...and before his company was bastardized by the Disney Company) will always win my heart. Here are my all-time favorites!
From 1977, "Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas" is just a classic. I remember watching it on HBO as a kid during the season. I found it on DVD at Walmart a couple of years ago and was sooo excited. Basically, it is about a poor otter and his mother who both want to get each other a Christmas gift so bad... so they compete in a talent competition to try to win money to do so. It is a great video, and a GREAT example of classic, genius puppetry. Plus the jug-band music is so catchy, I often find myself singing the "Barbeque" song.
"The Christmas Toy" is from 1990, and I it was on one of the network channels when it aired. I was 10 at the time ☺ It is about the toys in the toyroom making room for the new toys from Christmas. There is a really great song called "Old Friends, New Friends". Another classic Henson, in my book.
This movie has been impossible to find. Several years ago, I saw VHS copies of it at Shopko. I kick myself for not buying one then...they have been selling on eBay for upwards of $60 a copy! BUT... on November 4th, it was released on DVD, which I just found out today. Now I can buy it for $8.99!!!
Today was definitely a good day. ☺