If you’re not familiar with A Claymation Christmas Celebration, you’ve missed a real treat.
The television special won a 1988 Emmy for Outstanding Animated Program following its original broadcast on the CBS TV in 1987.
It was my youngest daughter’s favorite holiday television special. Still is.
We watched the show live and then for years afterward on VHS to kick-start the holiday at our house. She’s now sharing with her children.
Producer and director Will Vinton used stop motion clay animation to create awesome animation that equals some of today’s high tech productions.
So what’s the story about?
Two prehistoric dinosaurs one named Rex, an intellectual tyrannosaurus, and the other Herb, a dimwitted, bespectacled styracosaurus with a voracious appetite, are the main characters.
The pair guides you along a typical small town’s Christmas choral celebration with various Christmas carols preformed. The California Raisins are special guest stars.
Throughout the story, Rex tries to explain the true pronunciation and meaning of the term wassail. Different groups sing their rendition, all of which are lyrically incorrect.
Finally, a large truck loaded with elfin, cider-swilling townsfolk arrives, singing the correct version. When one of the townies explains wassailing means going around the neighborhood singing Christmas carols and getting treats and cordials, Rex’s theories are validated, much to his delight.
My favorite carol from the show is “We Three Kings.”
The Walrus ice-skating to “Angels We Have Heard on High” is a very close second.
If you want, you can watch the full thirty-minute show on YouTube here.
For repeated viewing, you can purchase your own VHS video from Amazon or a DVD with Will Vinton’s Claymation productions for Easter and Halloween.
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