All posts tagged: Santa Claus

Farkakte Film Flashback: Off-Kilter Christmas Movie Edition

When I was a kid, every year around this time I would watch Santa Claus Conquers the Martians. I did this despite the fact that critics regularly put this 1964 movie on their list of the worst films of all time, probably because of its inane plot, juvenile dialogue, bargain-basement costumes and the fact that it appears to have been filmed entirely in a single room that may or may not have been made of cardboard. I think I may have watched it because as a child, it’s comforting to know that Santa, in addition to bringing you toys every year, is also capable of warding off an alien invasion if necessary. Also, New York’s Channel 9 scheduled it on a Saturday afternoon every December — your choice was either that or reruns of “Hee-Haw” on Channel 11, and Roy Clark certainly never conquered any aliens, with the possible exception of Minnie Pearl. (Incidentally, I’ve embedded the entire Santa Claus Conquers the Martians below via Hulu, in case you ever have a spare 80 minutes …

Way Out Wednesday: Boris Karloff, “The Year Without a Santa Claus”

With the holidays coming up, I thought I’d present a Christmas selection from my blog, “Way Out Junk.” This features Boris Karloff, not too long after he narrated “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” performing “The Year Without a Santa Claus.” Now I was only familiar with this story from the Rankin/Bass television special, and didn’t even know that it was a story before that, but here it is. Both the original (by Phyllis McGinley) and the TV version start in a similar way: Santa Claus is tired and sore and decides he wants to take Christmas off this year just like everybody else. However, the original story doesn’t have Jingle and Jangle the Elf, Mother Nature, or the Heat Miser and Snow Miser, all major elements to the story most of us know best. Heck, Mrs. Claus isn’t even in this version! The only other character that is in both stories is little Ignatius Thistlewhite, but in the book he’s a Santa believer from the start. I don’t want to give too much away because …

DVD Review: “South Park: The Complete Twelfth Season”

South Park: The Complete Twelfth Season (2009, Paramount) purchase this DVD collection from Amazon: DVD | Blu-ray I haven’t been a steady watcher of South Park since its early days, right after Jesus and Santa Claus fought and Kenny died in every episode. Some time after the brilliant movie musical, South Park: Bigger Longer & Uncut, catching new episodes became difficult, what with children running around and Comedy Central being broadcast on an east coast feed here in Los Angeles. By the time TiVo came around, South Park was off of my radar. Now in its 13th season, South Park continues to be the most consistently rude, obnoxious, vulgar and funniest damn show on television. What amazes me about what creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone pull off each week is how topical and current their storylines are. As Comedy Central began airing new episodes last week, they also released the 12th season as a three-DVD collection. When the opportunity presented itself to review this latest season of South Park on DVD, I was excited …