Yes, I know Christmas is over and as I'm typing this, I just want to look back at last Christmas. Some of the moments in my favorite animated specials have scenes that make kids so sad they realize it's Jesus' birthday.
Personally, some music in toys and music boxes made me sentimental. One is a picture of my mother and a picture of young me, playing a music box version of "You Are My Sunshine". I also had a few CD's and cassettes that made realize how precious life is. Sometimes the music can make me sad in unexpected ways- like Bob Clampett's 1940's Warner Bros. cartoon "Farm Frolics", as well as a few others. The early 1940's Looney Tunes narrated by Robert C. Bruce can have as much sadness as another Merrie Melody/Looney Tune, "Tom Thumb in Trouble". (Personally, I think the cartoons he narrated in the more "popular" package, the post-48 cartoons weren't as depressing).
Anyway, enough personal stuff and back to the Christmas specials. Like those music boxes, CD's and unexpected cartoon scores/narration, Christmas specials can be depressing. While dramatic Artic , winter cartoons can make people sad, you'll see a pattern in this list (mostly). If you've gotten the best possible grades on your college reading assignment, or if you like to read, sometimes to the point where you've actually written a novel, sometimes often not, or if you just like to read for the sake of it, it probably wouldn't take much brains what the pattern this list mostly goes for.
5. Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer- There's Always Tomorrow
OK, this made me cry when I was little, probably because Clarice comforted Rudolph and letting go of the past. I used to get this mixed up with a certain "Annie" number, bringing even more sadness to the sentimental musical number. But it feels like a nice Broadway number, probably due to adapting the Montogomery Ward promotional story into something that resembles the children's MGM musical- "The Wizard Of Oz".
4. Rudolph- Again! (The hopelessness of Santa not coming)
OK- this is the last sad Christmas moment from Rudolph, I promise. Just some sadness from the misfit toys that they will not get in Santa's sleigh. This was depressing when I believed in Santa. It only happens briefly, but can you blame it?
Trivia: This scene was a result from letters from children wanting the Misfit Toys to get a home for children to play with. It aired beginning in the first subsequent broadcast, replacing the "Peppermint Mine" scene
3. How The Grinch Stole Christmas- The Grinch relazing Christmas means just a bit more
This is one that makes me shed some tears since the Whos obviously know they can do Christmas without decorations or presents because THEY know it's about Jesus. Nothing is more symbolic then the Star of Christmas shining on Who-Ville, and Boris saying "It came just the same!". So sentimental, and so pretty. For a full-service bank organization sponsoring this cartoon, it comes as ironic. But not as ironic as the next one.
2. A Charlie Brown Christmas-Linus reads the Gospel of Luke to tell Charlie Brown what Christmas is all about.
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Charles Schulz fought with the network and sponsor about putting in a scene decipeting The Bible. "If we don't tell the true meaning of Christmas who will?". The whole production story is a miracle, but this scene told the original miracle. Ironically, this was a sponsored film done almost like Jam Handy for Coca-Cola and it's franchised bottlers, reminiscent of "Boy Meets Dog", but slightly more subtle. Everyone makes fun of Charlie Brown and his sad tree, with Charlie Brown doubting what Christmas is all about. Desperate to know what it's about, Linus gives a monologue reciting the definitive Bible verses Luke 2:8-14. The way Linus said it makes you believe the shepherds had fear of the Angels but told them a Savior was born, bring peace on earth and goodwill toward men. The whole scene used to choke me up in some ABC airings, due to how sentimentally, saying this is what Christmas is all about. The commercialism depicted in the special was more handled in a more mature way than VeggieTales' "The Toy Who Saved Christmas", I now would rather watch a depressed boy then a local friendly neighborhood advertiser lying to the children making the little kids into brats.
I mentioned this and I mentioned this again, this was a televised promotional film to tie-in with Coke's "Holiday Ideas" booklet.
But Schulz fought to make it more than that. Rest in Peace, Bill Melendez and Charles Schulz.
And the NUMBER ONE SADDEST MOST SENTIMENTAL moment is
Animaniacs- Little Drummer Warners
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I can't even watch the cartoon without crying. The songs are VERY beautiful, and the TMS studio knew what they were doing since there was Christian animes before. The writer, Earl Kress passed away last year which makes this even more sad. It really chokes me up. I never saw Little Drummer Boy (I felt it seemed too long), fell asleep during "The Lion King", and while had Bambi merchandise, I avoided the movie at all costs. So Warner Bros. reminded people what Christmas was all about. I tried my best not to watch it on VHS otherwise I'd have insomnia. It is THAT sad. It's a good thing that Warner Bros. TV Distribution did not have to fight with the Fox network (but then again, they air religious messages found on "The Simpsons" at the), nor Kids WB didn't ban the episode, and ALL subsequent channels have aired this with no complaints. And it's also on the Volume 2 DVD.
No censorship scott-free aside, I think despite the happy ending Richard Stone's music and the children's choir makes it a good watch. If you think your kids can't handle the bullying in Charlie Brown Christmas or the Grinch doing Exactly What It Says On The Tin, and if you don't feel religious enough to buy a Nativity video at a Christian store, then show this Animaniacs segment. You'll find it beautiful. Very unlikely for a show filled with Groucho Marx-like sexual innuendo.
Well and that's what sad Christmas moments, are all about, Charlie Brown!