When Spanky was a little pup, I took him out for a day trip to the doggy park on Mulholland Drive in the Hollywood Hills. He was so small, couldn’t run fast like the other dogs due to a hip issue and I was immediately reminded of Rudolph. I vividly remember thinking, Spanky couldn’t partake in the “reindeer games” and how sad that made me. My little Spanky would always be different.
Have you ever had a moment when you felt different or didn’t necessarily fit in? Spanky and I have and so did Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.
Rudolph was loved unconditionally by his Mom and a cute little girly reindeer – Clarice. However, his coach, his Dad and the other reindeers wanted nothing do with him because of his red nose that glowed. It was the very thing that made Rudolph different that landed him a spot as lead reindeer for the big man himself – Santa Claus.
Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is timeless because it is a lesson in not judging on looks but what is one’s character. A lesson that in the 21st century has yet to be mastered.
It first aired Sunday, December 6, 1964, on the NBC television network in the United States, and was sponsored by General Electricunder the umbrella title of The General Electric Fantasy Hour. The special was based on the Johnny Marks song “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” which was itself based on the 1939 poem Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer written by Marks’ brother-in-law, Robert L. May. Since 1972, the special has aired on CBS, with the network unveiling a high-definition, digitally remastered version of the program in 2005.
It has been telecast every year since 1964, making it the longest running Christmas TV special in history, and one of only five 1960s Christmas specials still being telecast, the other four being A Charlie Brown Christmas, Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas, The Little Drummer Boy, and Frosty the Snowman.
Take a look back with me to Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer