For Avocados of a certain age, the most formative Christmas viewing experience is 1978’s Christmas Eve on Sesame Street. Look. You’re a kid. You love Sesame Street. You love Christmas. The Sesame Street on Ice intro is a bit inconsistent from the perspective of scale but whatever. This special introduced impressionable young minds to several concepts. One being that not everyone celebrates Christmas. The late Mr. Hooper is Jewish, though he does have such a big heart that he helps Bert and Ernie with their O. Henry situation.
RIP Mr. Looper.
Oscar provides a twist to an age old conundrum: how can Santa squeeze down those narrow New York City chimneys in one night? This is a show made for kids. You don’t want to introduce a straight up “Is Santa real?” question at this early an age.
Big Bird decides to stay up on the roof until he gets answers to his questions, gosh darn it. His disappearance distresses all of Sesame Street… including Oscar, who insists he was only teasing. Guess it takes a Maria to have the grouch see the error of his ways.
As Big Bird drifts off into that slumber in the middle of the freezing night atop a dingy New York rooftop, he’s approached by a strange and vaguely sinister looming shadow, creeping ever closer. And closer. It comes to an uncomfortable stop in front of Big Bird, who slowly awakes from his slumber. But… there’s no one there.
MUST BE SANTA!
It all ends on a happy note. Big Bird comes down after failing to find Santa, but cannot dispute the evidence before his very eyes that presents were indeed delivered underneath the tree. Though Oscar leaves him with a parting conundrum: how does the Easter Bunny deliver all them eggs? That’s my Oscar!
Also Oscar has a command performance of one of my favorite anti-Christmas songs, “I Hate Christmas”. I don’t know why he hates Christmas, though. It seems like he’s got carte blanche to act like a jerk to everyone. Is Christmas the equivalent of April Fools’ Day to grouches?
The song was written by R&B and jazz musician, David Axelrod. He also wrote the other song from Christmas Eve on Sesame Street that I consider a classic, “Keep Christmas With You.” (One of his non-Sesame Street pieces was once sampled by Dr. Dre. When asked about it, he said, “I hate sampling because it takes jobs away from musicians, but it allows me to have fun. It’s screw-you money. So I love this, naturally. Thank you Dre.”)
The episode also features the classic conundrum for Cookie Monster, when he learns that if he wants gifts from Santa… he must leave out a plate of cookies. Too high a price?!?!?!
NOTE: the “Share your Yuletide decor” Thread is still going! Drop by and check out the awesome decorations put up by your fellow Avocados!