DregNog Video Advent Calendar: Day #4 - A Cosmic Christmas

A Cosmic Christmas, Part 1. (Part 2 and Part 3.)

You always suspected the Care Bears had a dark secret, didn't you? Well, you're right. But this isn't about Funshine's drunk-driving record -- instead, we're going to focus on the bear behind the Bears: the Canadian animation studio Nelvana. A few years before they cozied up to American Greetings and started raking in the bucks with Care Bears and Strawberry Shortcake and Ewoks, this northerly toon factory had one hell of a freak streak going. See also: Rock & Rule, a dystopian New Wave epic starring Cheap Trick as a bunch of anthropomorphic animals. (What can you expect when your lead animator cut his teeth on Yellow Submarine?) And before that was Easter Fever, featuring a jive-talking Easter Bunny; Intergalactic Thanksgiving, about a planet where comedy is king and "a group of industrious bugs" save the day; and a robot rework of Shakespeare called Romie-0 and Julie-8.

But perhaps no other Nelvana work showcased their early fixation on science fiction and holidays as unnervingly as their first television special, 1977's A Cosmic Christmas. In a nutshell: Lured in by the star of Bethlehem, three alien wise men come to Earth to find the true meaning of Christmas. But the real take-away message here is: Canadians are profoundly disturbed. (Perhaps there's something in the bagged milk.)

One more thing: you know the Boba Fett cartoon in the infamous Star Wars Holiday Special? That was pure Nelvana. Enjoy:

Luke, Han, and Leia meet Boba Fett. It's a Christmas miracle!

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