And here, to get the month started, is Pentatonix with a cover of the 12 Days of Christmas One thing about the 12 Days of Christmas is that most of those gifts aren’t really that impressive. I mean, what am I going to do with a bunch of drummers drumming after the holidays? And do they just keep on drumming through the whole month? That’s going to get annoying.
I do like the diamond rings, though …. oh wait. They’re golden rings, aren’t they? For some reason, I always remember them as being diamond rings. Heh heh.
I do like Pentatonix, though I typically hate anything that’s a cappella. Like, I’ve always had this fear that I’ll be out somewhere and suddenly, an old timey barbershop quartet will appear out of nowhere and start singing and they’ll be really bad but I’ll be obligated to stand there and listen to them until they finally stop. That’s actually one of my number one fears. Don’t ask me why I have this fear, I just do. I’m also haunted by Bo Bice’s decision to go a cappella during the finale of America Idol because I think that decision led to him losing to Carrie Underwood. So, as you can see, I have my reasons for dreading a cappella in general.
But Pentatonix is pretty cool, I think. They’re the exception to the rule. Kind of like how folk music is the music of evil people, except for Bob Dylan and Arlo Guthrie.
Every December 25th, we watch the the movie that Arleigh Sandoc has often declared to be the greatest holiday movie ever made …. Treevenge!
With Christmas coming to a close, now seems like a good time to do just that!
So here, for your holiday enjoyment …. it’s Treevenge!
Happy holidays, everyone!
(And Happy Birthday to the Shattered Lens, which is ten years old today! Formal celebration begin on January 1st, 2020 and will run all the way through December 31st of that year. Hope to see you there!)
“The sad part is, I can’t really play the song live anymore because too many people misunderstand the connotations of Ground Zero. It’s not a reference to 9/11, obviously. It was written in 1986 when ‘ground zero’ just meant the epicenter of a nuclear attack.”
— Weird Al Yankovic
Try to force Weird Al to do a Christmas album and this is what you’re going to get.
In 1986, Weird Al’s record label insisted that he record something for the holiday season. In response, Yankovic came up with Christmas At Ground Zero, a Phil Spector-style production about Christmas in the aftermath of a nuclear attack. It wasn’t really what the record company had expected and, at first, they refused to release it. Yankovic responded by creating his own music video for the song. This video was not only his first stab at directing but it also proved to be popular enough to convince the record company to change their position on the song.
Though the majority of this video is made up of stock footage, the live action scenes of Weird Al and the carolers performing surrounded by rubble were filmed in The Bronx. No nuclear explosions were needed to get the bombed-out feel. Instead, they just filmed in New York in the 80s.
Has it ever bothered you that, at the end of It’s A Wonderful Life, Mr. Potter basically gets away with nearly destroying George’s life? It’s certainly bothers me!
Well, fortunately, the lost ending of It’s A Wonderful Life has been uploaded to YouTube! Broadcast on a 1986 episode of Saturday Night Live and introduced by William Shatner (who, it must be said, really gets into introducing the clip), this clip gives George the revenge that he deserves!
As George Bailey put it: “You double-crossed me and left me alive!”
(Incidentally, I love the fact that Uncle Billy says that he talked to “Clarence at the bank.” Obviously, Clarence put those wings to good use!)
This radio production of A Christmas Carol was originally broadcast on Christmas Eve, 1939. It’s not really Christmas unless you experience at least one version of Charles Dickens’s classic holiday tale and this version features not only Orson Welles providing the narration but Lionel Barrymore playing the role of Scrooge!
Other members of the cast included such well-known Welles’s associates as Everett Sloane (Marley’s ghost), Frank Readick (Bob Cratchit), Erskine Sanford (Fezziwig) and George Coulouris (Ghost of Christmas Present). Two years after this broadcast, Welles, Sloane, Sanford, and Coulouris would all appear in Citizen Kane.
For your listening pleasure, we offer up this journey to the past….