History Main / TwasTheNightBeforeChristmas

6th May '12 9:43:06 AM movie007
Is there an issue? Send a Message
6th May '12 9:41:49 AM movie007
Is there an issue? Send a Message


1) An 1823 poem by Clement Clarke Moore about a visit from [[SantaClaus St. Nick]]. Originally titled and also known as "A Visit from St. Nicholas".

[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=upuUV_TdmtM Here it is as read by none other than the trumpet master Louis Armstrong, himself.]]

!! The poem contains the following tropes:

* AdaptationDistillation: The poem crystallizes a number of ideas about St. Nicholas first found in Washington Irving's ''Knickerbocker History of New York''.
* BeamMeUpScotty:
** "On, Comet! On, Cupid! On, Donner and Blitzen!" Only it isn't--the original poem retained the ''Dutch'' names ''Donder'' and ''Blixen'', as was suitable to the old Dutch settlers of New York who introduced [[strike:Sinterklaas]] Santa Claus to America. Later re-printings RetConned the names into their more familiar German forms.
** The phrase "[[strike:Merry]] Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!"
* TropeCodifier: As stated above, this little poem etched in stone a lot of the core image we have of SantaClaus.

----

[[quoteright:250:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/RankinBassTwasTheNightBeforeChristmas.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:250:Not even a mouse...]]
2) A 1974 animated ChristmasSpecial from RankinBassProductions starts when the town of Junctionville has all of its letters returned from Santa Claus -- because a letter proclaiming Santa and his reindeer are fakes has appeared in the local paper and offended the jolly old elf. Father Mouse (George Gobel) investigates, and realizes his know-it-all son Albert (Tammy Grimes) has written the letter. Meanwhile, clockmaker Joshua Trundle (Joel Gray) tries to makes a singing clock in hopes of bringing Santa back. Things go from bad to worse when the clock publicly malfunctions -- but in the end, with the help of a HeelFaceTurn on Albert's part, a happy Christmas ensues. Unlike most R/B productions, this featured 2D animation, rather than the usual StopMotion puppet animation (called "Animagic").

!!The special contains the following tropes:

* AuthorityInNameOnly: The Mayor has shades of this.
* ChristmasSpecial
* ClapYourHandsIfYouBelieve: The driving problem behind the plot is that Albert doesn't believe in Santa. His father tries to musically persuade him to believe in pretty much every legendary character affiliated with a holiday.
* ClockTower: Where Trundle wishes to install his singing clock.
* CrossDressingVoices: Tammy Grimes as Albert.
* DontTouchItYouIdiot: Really, Albert's fascination with the model should have been a warning to Father Mouse to keep him away from the real clock.
* ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin: Character example -- Father Mouse's name seems to be...Father Mouse. Even Trundle calls him that. He's a mouse who fathered children.
* FlatEarthAtheist: Santa's existence is a demonstrable fact in this special. He makes no effort to hide himself when making deliveries, can receive and return mail, and even has official operators representing him at the North Pole that you can call up at any time. Doesn't stop Albert from disbelieving.
** Might also count as ArbitrarySkepticism. You live in a world of [[MouseWorld sentient talking mice]], but think Santa Claus is ridiculous?
** Albert also claims that "grown-ups never believe in Santa". Hard to see where he got that idea, ''every'' grown-up in the special professes belief, even the mayor who authorizes a massive public works project just to please the jolly old elf.
* HaveAGayOldTime: ABCFamily removed the "Give Your Heart a Try" number for having the word "gay" in it when it re-aired the special.
* HeelFaceTurn: Albert
* [[HeyItsThatVoice Hey, It's That Voice!]]: The mayor was voiced by John [=McGiver=], a character actor who specialized in playing "stuffed shirt" roles, perhaps most familiar as the Tiffany's salesman in ''[[BreakfastAtTiffanys Breakfast at Tiffany's]]''.
* IllGirl: Several, and boys too. Father Mouse takes Albert to a hospital full of depressed children to show him the consequences of his letter about Santa.
* ItGotWorse: After the clock malfunctions, no one wants to give Trundle any work. Not only is Santa not bringing gifts for his family, but he can't pay his bills or put food on the table.
* MacGuffin: The clock.
* ManlyTears: Father Mouse sheds a few during the finale.
* MeasuringTheMarigolds: In "Give Your Heart a Try," Albert is admonished to stop "asking why" so much and just enjoy life.
* TheMerch: A record album featuring all the music and some dialogue was released at the time of the special's original airing.
* MouseWorld: Which, unusually for the trope, freely interacts with the human one.
* {{Narrator}}: Father Mouse
* NoNameGiven: Most of the cast, including Trundle's two children and Father Mouse's non-Albert children.
* NonHumanSidekick: The implication seems to be that most of the humans have a rodent equivalent who does the same job right alongside them. Trundle has Father Mouse helping in the clock shop; the postman has a mail mouse who rides on his shoulder to deliver mail to the other mice.
* SantaClaus: Convincing him to come is the object of the story.
* SesquipedalianLoquaciousness: The Mayor strives for this, but usually ends up stumbling over his words. Conversely, Albert's penchant for long words is what makes Father Mouse realize who wrote the letter that so offended Santa.
* SublimeRhyme: Trundle recites the Clement Clark Moore poem, thus also resulting in a TitleDrop.
* StrawVulcan: Albert, who repeatedly rejects the concept of thinking with his heart.
* TechnoBabble: Albert spouts off several clock-related scientific terms, which his father doesn't begin to understand and refers to as "algebry."
* TokenMinority: In this case, an entire TokenMinority ''family''. Among all of the white families, there is one black family.
* UncannyFamilyResemblance: Each human family appears to have one son and one daughter, who look like little clones of their parents. The parents in each family also bear uncomfortable resemblance to their spouses.
* WhereTheHellIsSpringfield?: All the mail is addressed to the residents of "Junctionville, U.S.A."
* [[YesVirginia Yes, Virginia]]: There is a SantaClaus -- and he apparently believes strongly in DisproportionateRetribution.
** Well, the special says that the offending letter was written by Albert ''and his friends'', who then signed the letter "All of Us." The implication is that Santa interpreted "All of Us" as not meaning "Albert and his Know-It-All Friends" but "The entire population of Junctionville, U.S.A."
*** If only Santa had some means of distinguishing who was naughty and who was nice, he could probably have cleared that up.
*** Since the special looks as if it were set some time in the past, [[FridgeBrilliance maybe]] this incident is what led him to start making his "naughty or nice" lists to prevent this in the future...

to:

1) An ''Twas The Night Before Christmas'' can refer to:
* [[Literature/TwasTheNightBeforeChristmas the
1823 poem by Clement Clarke Moore about a visit from [[SantaClaus St. Nick]]. Originally titled and also known as "A Visit from St. Nicholas".

[[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=upuUV_TdmtM Here it is as read by none other than the trumpet master Louis Armstrong, himself.]]

!! The poem contains the following tropes:

Moore]], or...
* AdaptationDistillation: The poem crystallizes a number of ideas about St. Nicholas first found in Washington Irving's ''Knickerbocker History of New York''.
* BeamMeUpScotty:
** "On, Comet! On, Cupid! On, Donner and Blitzen!" Only it isn't--the original poem retained the ''Dutch'' names ''Donder'' and ''Blixen'', as was suitable to the old Dutch settlers of New York who introduced [[strike:Sinterklaas]] Santa Claus to America. Later re-printings RetConned the names into their more familiar German forms.
** The phrase "[[strike:Merry]] Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!"
* TropeCodifier: As stated above, this little poem etched in stone a lot of the core image we have of SantaClaus.

----

[[quoteright:250:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/RankinBassTwasTheNightBeforeChristmas.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:250:Not even a mouse...]]
2) A
[[WesternAnimation/TwasTheNightBeforeChristmas 1974 animated ChristmasSpecial from RankinBassProductions starts when the town of Junctionville has all of its letters returned from Santa Claus -- because a letter proclaiming Santa and his reindeer are fakes has appeared in the local paper and offended the jolly old elf. Father Mouse (George Gobel) investigates, and realizes his know-it-all son Albert (Tammy Grimes) has written the letter. Meanwhile, clockmaker Joshua Trundle (Joel Gray) tries to makes a singing clock in hopes of bringing Santa back. Things go from bad to worse when the clock publicly malfunctions -- but in the end, with the help of a HeelFaceTurn on Albert's part, a happy Christmas ensues. Unlike most R/B productions, this featured 2D animation, rather than the usual StopMotion puppet animation (called "Animagic").

!!The
special contains the following tropes:

* AuthorityInNameOnly: The Mayor has shades of this.
* ChristmasSpecial
* ClapYourHandsIfYouBelieve: The driving problem behind the plot is that Albert doesn't believe in Santa. His father tries to musically persuade him to believe in pretty much every legendary character affiliated with a holiday.
* ClockTower: Where Trundle wishes to install his singing clock.
* CrossDressingVoices: Tammy Grimes as Albert.
* DontTouchItYouIdiot: Really, Albert's fascination with the model should have been a warning to Father Mouse to keep him away
from the real clock.
* ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin: Character example -- Father Mouse's name seems to be...Father Mouse. Even Trundle calls him that. He's a mouse who fathered children.
* FlatEarthAtheist: Santa's existence is a demonstrable fact in this special. He makes no effort to hide himself when making deliveries, can receive and return mail, and even has official operators representing him at the North Pole that you can call up at any time. Doesn't stop Albert from disbelieving.
** Might also count as ArbitrarySkepticism. You live in a world of [[MouseWorld sentient talking mice]], but think Santa Claus is ridiculous?
** Albert also claims that "grown-ups never believe in Santa". Hard to see where he got that idea, ''every'' grown-up in the special professes belief, even the mayor who authorizes a massive public works project just to please the jolly old elf.
* HaveAGayOldTime: ABCFamily removed the "Give Your Heart a Try" number for having the word "gay" in it when it re-aired the special.
* HeelFaceTurn: Albert
* [[HeyItsThatVoice Hey, It's That Voice!]]: The mayor was voiced by John [=McGiver=], a character actor who specialized in playing "stuffed shirt" roles, perhaps most familiar as the Tiffany's salesman in ''[[BreakfastAtTiffanys Breakfast at Tiffany's]]''.
* IllGirl: Several, and boys too. Father Mouse takes Albert to a hospital full of depressed children to show him the consequences of his letter about Santa.
* ItGotWorse: After the clock malfunctions, no one wants to give Trundle any work. Not only is Santa not bringing gifts for his family, but he can't pay his bills or put food on the table.
* MacGuffin: The clock.
* ManlyTears: Father Mouse sheds a few during the finale.
* MeasuringTheMarigolds: In "Give Your Heart a Try," Albert is admonished to stop "asking why" so much and just enjoy life.
* TheMerch: A record album featuring all the music and some dialogue was released at the time of the special's original airing.
* MouseWorld: Which, unusually for the trope, freely interacts with the human one.
* {{Narrator}}: Father Mouse
* NoNameGiven: Most of the cast, including Trundle's two children and Father Mouse's non-Albert children.
* NonHumanSidekick: The implication seems to be that most of the humans have a rodent equivalent who does the same job right alongside them. Trundle has Father Mouse helping in the clock shop; the postman has a mail mouse who rides on his shoulder to deliver mail to the other mice.
* SantaClaus: Convincing him to come is the object of the story.
* SesquipedalianLoquaciousness: The Mayor strives for this, but usually ends up stumbling over his words. Conversely, Albert's penchant for long words is what makes Father Mouse realize who wrote the letter that so offended Santa.
* SublimeRhyme: Trundle recites the Clement Clark Moore poem, thus also resulting in a TitleDrop.
* StrawVulcan: Albert, who repeatedly rejects the concept of thinking with his heart.
* TechnoBabble: Albert spouts off several clock-related scientific terms, which his father doesn't begin to understand and refers to as "algebry."
* TokenMinority: In this case, an entire TokenMinority ''family''. Among all of the white families, there is one black family.
* UncannyFamilyResemblance: Each human family appears to have one son and one daughter, who look like little clones of their parents. The parents in each family also bear uncomfortable resemblance to their spouses.
* WhereTheHellIsSpringfield?: All the mail is addressed to the residents of "Junctionville, U.S.A."
* [[YesVirginia Yes, Virginia]]: There is a SantaClaus -- and he apparently believes strongly in DisproportionateRetribution.
** Well, the special says that the offending letter was written by Albert ''and his friends'', who then signed the letter "All of Us." The implication is that Santa interpreted "All of Us" as not meaning "Albert and his Know-It-All Friends" but "The entire population of Junctionville, U.S.A."
*** If only Santa had some means of distinguishing who was naughty and who was nice, he could probably have cleared that up.
*** Since the special looks as if it were set some time in the past, [[FridgeBrilliance maybe]] this incident is what led him to start making his "naughty or nice" lists to prevent this in the future...
Rankin/Bass Productions]]
24th Dec '11 8:22:18 PM Elan
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

** Albert also claims that "grown-ups never believe in Santa". Hard to see where he got that idea, ''every'' grown-up in the special professes belief, even the mayor who authorizes a massive public works project just to please the jolly old elf.
20th Dec '11 4:36:22 PM ThreeferFAQMinorityChick
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

* TokenMinority: In this case, an entire TokenMinority ''family''. Among all of the white families, there is one black family.
7th Dec '11 9:17:00 AM FoominBlue
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* EarWorm: Applies to most of the musical numbers, but especially [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2kRt1gbUXJg "Even a Miracle Needs A Hand"]].


Added DiffLines:

* StrawVulcan: Albert, who repeatedly rejects the concept of thinking with his heart.
7th Dec '11 8:54:26 AM Craverguy
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* UnfortunateImplications: Santa Claus comes off as passive-aggressive and a believer in DisproportionateRetribution, while the song "Give Your Heart a Try" has a definite DumbIsGood[=/=]ScienceIsBad vibe.
7th Dec '11 8:54:16 AM Craverguy
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

* UnfortunateImplications: Santa Claus comes off as passive-aggressive and a believer in DisproportionateRetribution, while the song "Give Your Heart a Try" has a definite DumbIsGood[=/=]ScienceIsBad vibe.
7th Dec '11 8:52:49 AM Craverguy
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

* MeasuringTheMarigolds: In "Give Your Heart a Try," Albert is admonished to stop "asking why" so much and just enjoy life.
5th Dec '11 10:28:15 AM MarkLungo
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* HaveAGayOldTime: ABC Family removed the "Give Your Heart a Try" number for having the word "gay" in it when it re-aired the special.

to:

* HaveAGayOldTime: ABC Family ABCFamily removed the "Give Your Heart a Try" number for having the word "gay" in it when it re-aired the special.
5th Dec '11 10:27:06 AM MarkLungo
Is there an issue? Send a Message


2) A 1974 animated ChristmasSpecial from RankinBassProductions starts when the town of Junctionville has all of its letters returned from Santa Claus -- because a letter proclaiming Santa and his reindeer are fakes has appeared in the local paper and offended the jolly old elf. Father Mouse (George Gobel) investigates, and realizes his know-it-all son Albert has written the letter. Meanwhile, clockmaker Joshua Trundle (Joel Gray) tries to makes a singing clock in hopes of bringing Santa back. Things go from bad to worse when the clock publicly malfunctions -- but in the end, with the help of a HeelFaceTurn on Albert's part, a happy Christmas ensues. Unlike most R/B productions, this featured 2D animation, rather than the usual StopMotion puppet animation (called "Animagic").

to:

2) A 1974 animated ChristmasSpecial from RankinBassProductions starts when the town of Junctionville has all of its letters returned from Santa Claus -- because a letter proclaiming Santa and his reindeer are fakes has appeared in the local paper and offended the jolly old elf. Father Mouse (George Gobel) investigates, and realizes his know-it-all son Albert (Tammy Grimes) has written the letter. Meanwhile, clockmaker Joshua Trundle (Joel Gray) tries to makes a singing clock in hopes of bringing Santa back. Things go from bad to worse when the clock publicly malfunctions -- but in the end, with the help of a HeelFaceTurn on Albert's part, a happy Christmas ensues. Unlike most R/B productions, this featured 2D animation, rather than the usual StopMotion puppet animation (called "Animagic").


Added DiffLines:

* CrossDressingVoices: Tammy Grimes as Albert.
This list shows the last 10 events of 32. Show all.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Main.TwasTheNightBeforeChristmas