Rudolph, The Proboscis-Enhanced ReindeerDecember 5, 2007 at 3:55 PM | Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment
A difference which, in this enlightened age, does not matter. Although we suspect–because of his name–that he is probably of German descent and therefore most likely an anti-Semite, the fact that his nose lights up is not considered a handicap. In some sort of fairy tale way it could even be considered a positive characteristic.
I sat down by the fire in my Howdy-Doody pajamas, sipping hot Olvaltine with marshmallows, and settled in for the evening’s entertainment: Rudolf was on TV. Yessir, it’s that time of year. Our tree is up, our house is decorated, and the faint odor of jasmine and burnt chocolate chip cookies permeates the air.
We sat as a family before the big black and white console TV. GE, made in America, they tell me. Me, my beloved fiance, her disturbed sister, and the dog and the cat. It was an all-American Christmas.
Burl Ives as a snowman is the way most of America remembers him. But this little piece of Americana, this relic of a bygone era–this thing is filled with not only a subversive message, but open sexism, racism, discrimination, and the mildest hint of pedophilia, not to mention a little bestiality thrown in for good measure.
Right away the family is ashamed and tries to hide Rudolph’s handicap like he’s the Elephant Man. He goes to the tryouts, makes a friend and meets a girl, but when his deception is uncovered, everyone in Christmas Land,even Santa–who is supposed to be the most kind, caring, understanding prick in the world living in the most kind, understanding, caring town in the world –turns out to be bigots and racists.
In terms of children’s animation, it was practically a race riot, and Rudolf had to run before he got strung up from the nearest Christmas tree. Meanwhile, Hermes, the closeted gay elf gets berated and abused on the job site for his different believes. Again, because it’s a children’s show, they show him as wanting to be a dentist, but it’s an obvious metaphor for his love of "oral."
In this unenlightened elfen sweat shop they don’t believe in "Don’t ask, don’t tell," and there is no shop steward or union rep to take his problems to, so he ends up leaving–jobless, homeless, penniless, and worst of all. . . oral-less.
He hits the road and meets up with Rudolph, where the story digresses briefly into a buddy-flick. I imagine the live action version with Andy Dick as Hermes, and Frankie Muniz as Rudolph. Yukon Cornelius will be played by Will Ferrell. I hope Kevin Smith is available to direct. Plus, Jay and Silent Bob would be awesome as slacking elfs getting high behind the lead-based paint factory.
Meanwhile, back in town, the guilt overpowered Rudolph’s father. What Donner didn’t know was that Rudolph wasn’t his. . .it was Blitzen’s baby. Mrs Donner would take that secret to the grave with her….until DNA testing is invented. But it doesn’t really matter, because all these fucking deer look alike. Mel Gibson is playing Donner, because he can be forceful and manly when he says he’s going to look for Rudolph. The women (mother, Minnie Driver, Rudolph’s love interest, Claire Danes) say they want to go and Donner says, "NO. This is Man’s work." The women wait an appropriate amount of time (two seconds) before setting out on their own to look, because they know Donner couldn’t find his ass if his head was shoved up inside it.
Meanwhile, Rudolph and Hermes travel with the insane Yukon Cornelius. They find another of Christmas Town’s secrets: The seedy underbelly that is the Island of Misfit Toys. Essentially, these are the homeless and crack whores of Christmas Town. Charlie in the Box would do anything to please, and the scene with him (played by Heath Ledger) and Hermes is disturbing.
Rudolph bolts outta there, seriously wigged out. Hermes and Yukon go after him, and save him from the Abominable Bumble. Of course, in an entirely "Metaphorical" sense, Andy Dick gives the giant CGI beast oral, after which Will Ferrell wrestles comically with it in the snow. They disappear over a cliff, thankfully, but all the reindeer that were looking for Rudolph were coincidentally holed up in the same cave. Everyone is rescued.
In another remarkable display of caveman-like sexism, Donner says, "We need to get these woman back to the cave. –er, town. You know what I mean."
And by "women," that included Andy Dick.
Back in town, it was a day or two before Christmas Eve. Playing against type, Christopher Walken was cast as Santa. He is strutting around the shop wearing just pants and suspenders, creeping the elves out. There is a big storm, and he’s thinking he can weasel out of delivering this year because of the winter weather advisory.
"Besides," he said, "Most of the fuckin kids were brats this year."
There follows the fight scene between Santa and Rudolph, and it finally ends with Santa ceding the point, but not without some violence. "I’ll deliver the presents. If I have to. But you’re going with, and leading the sleigh. How’s that for funny, Rudy? Huh? You like that? Here’s a reindeer game for ya, Rudy. Hold him down, Hermes." And Santa tea-bagged Rudolph while he sing, "You better not cry, you better not shout–"
The big finale is when Yukon Cornelius returns with the Abominable Bumble, tame and obedient. Santa tests this by having it eat Mrs. Claus, played by Susan Sarandon.
The patriarchal order having been restored, Christmas went on as scheduled. And they all lived happily ever after, until the DEA busted Santa and his Cocaine smuggling ring. Finally, the terrible secret behind the reason for Rudolph’s shiny red nose is revealed, as well as the metaphorical Burl Ives.
I sat quietly, staring down at my hot cocoa. No marshmallows left, a fitting metaphor for my feelings at that point. I sighed. This sure wasn’t the way I remembered it as a child.