Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Day 21: Look at Frosty Go!

There are so many songs that leap to mind when we think of Christmas that its hard to really even compile a list of all of them.  There are the religious ones like O Holy Night and The First Noel that feel timeless and classic, and then there are the more secular ones like Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer and Silver Bells.  However, there are several "Christmas Songs" that have little, if anything, to do with Christmas...like Let it Snow, Winter Wonderland, and, a perennial favorite, Frosty the Snowman.  Frosty the Snowman tells a familiar story and we all enjoy its magic little tale, but it is really about winter more than its about Christmas itself.  Of course, since Christmas happens in the winter we allow it...but really, you have to wonder.  Anyway, all nitpicking aside, Frosty has become almost as much as tied to Christmas as Rudolph and Santa himself, and so it makes sense that he should get his own animated specials just like those characters did.  In 1969, Rankin-Bass animated the song for a Christmas special narrated by Andy Griffith and it was a big success...so successful in fact that Rankin-Bass commissioned a little-known sequel in 1976.  A sequel to a show about a magic snowman???  What could they possibly have come up with for the story?  Well, let's find out as we watch Frosty's Winter Wonderland.

Its winter again and Frosty, lonely at his home in the North Pole, returns to town to visit with his friends.  There's trouble in the air, however, as the nasty Jack Frost has become jealous of the attention that the children lavish on Frosty and begins thinking of what mean tricks he can play on them.  Meanwhile, Frosty is still lonely at night when all the kids go to bed and so the kids decide to make Frosty a snow wife named Crystal.  The only trouble with her is that she is not alive like Frosty...at least, not until Frosty gives her an ice bouquet.  This gift of love gives life to Crystal and she and Frosty begin to frolic across the land together.  Enraged by this, Jack Frost then sets about a plan to keep the two snow persons apart and to ruin winter forever.

The cartoon is really cute...perhaps even too cute.  Problems are resolved a little to easily when they arise and Jack Frost's transformation from grump into lovable friend just seems predictable and tacked on.  However, there is a sincere sweetness in the show that addresses the universal wish to have a special partner in our lives.  Frosty's need for companionship is something we can all relate to...especially when we feel like we won't ever find the right person.  We always watched this special at Christmas when Miss J and I were kids and it always seemed just right for the occasion.  Oddly enough, we never had the original movie recorded and I think I only saw it once...but if you want to see what happens to Frosty after the song ends, this one is a keeper for sure.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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