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Christmas Television Favorites (Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas! / The Year Without a Santa Claus / Rudolph and Frosty's Christmas in July / Rudolph's Shiny New Year / and More)

4.6 out of 5 stars 64 customer reviews

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(Oct 02, 2007)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Spotlighting the voice talents of stars like Boris Karloff, Mickey Rooney, Andy Griffith, Shelley Winters, Red Buttons, Ethel Merman, Red Skelton, Frank Gorshin, Hans Conreid, Roger Miller and too many more to name, here is the perfect holiday treat! Coupling six Bass and Rankin treasures with two Dr. Seuss standards and Christmas cheer just overflows. Includes How the Grinch Stole Christmas: Deluxe Edition (1966/26 min.), Horton Hears a Who! (1970/26 min.), The Year Without a Santa Claus (1974/51 min.), Rudolph's Shiny New Year (1976/47 min.), Nestor, the Long-Eared Christmas Donkey (1977/22 min.), Frosty's Winter Wonderland (1976/25 min.), 'Twas the Night Before Christmas (1974/25 min.) and Rudolph and Frosty's Christmas in July (1979/97 min.). 4 DVDs. Animated. Color/NR.

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It may not be what you think at first glance, but Christmas Television Favorites is indeed a set of vintage holiday specials, mostly from the team of Rankin/Bass (all previously available on DVD). Start with the one that's not Rankin/Bass, but is a flat-out classic, How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (1966), the Dr. Seuss tale about a curmudgeon who tries to stop Christmas from coming. From its Seussian zaniness to its humor to its music, Grinch is just about perfect in every way. The version included is the 2006 remastered version with Horton Hears a Who! (1970) and other material. The next most famous special is The Year Without a Santa Claus (1974), a stop-motion story in which Santa (voiced by Mickey Rooney) decides to take the holiday off, only to have the movie stolen by Heat Miser and Snow Miser. The 2007 deluxe edition has some documentary material and the two specials that were on the previous DVD, Rudolph's Shiny New Year (1976) and Nestor, the Long-Eared Christmas Donkey (1977). On the third disc are the cel-animated Frosty's Winter Wonderland (1976, narrated by Andy Griffith), in which Frosty gets a snow wife, and 'Twas the Night Before Christmas (1974), which uses the Clement Moore poem as an excuse to tell a story about a human and a mouse who have to make amends when an offended Santa decides not to visit their town.

Finally, the stop-motion Rudolph and Frosty's Christmas in July (1979) is a feature-length (105 minutes!) special that follows the reindeer and the snowman as they get jobs at a Fourth of July circus! One of the fun things about this special is how a number of the original voices return to give the programs a similar look and feel: Jackie Vernon puts in his third stint as the voice of Frosty, Billie Richards again voices Rudolph, Shelley Winters three-peats her role as Crystal (Frosty's wife), and Mickey Rooney returns as Santa. A quick look at the cover may lead one to think that this is all the original Rankin/Bass specials--Santa Claus Is Coming to Town, Frosty the Snowman, etc. These aren't those, but they're still vintage Rankin-Bass and many people think of them just as fondly. --David Horiuchi


Special Features

  • Includes:
  • Disc 1:
  • How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (1966) deluxe edition
  • Horton Hears a Who! (1970)
  • Dr. Seuss and the Grinch: From Whoville to Hollywood
  • Songs in the Key of Grinch
  • Making-of featurette and pencil test
  • Disc 2:
  • The Year Without a Santa Claus (1974) deluxe edition
  • Rudolph's Shiny New Year (1976)
  • Nestor, the Long-Eared Christmas Donkey (1977)
  • Featurettes: We Are Santa's Elves, Stop Motion 101
  • Disc 3:
  • Frosty's Winter Wonderland (1976)
  • 'Twas the Night Before Christmas (1974) (TV)
  • Disc 4:
  • Rudolph and Frosty's Christmas in July (1979)

Product Details

  • Actors: Shirley Booth, Mickey Rooney, Boris Karloff, Thurl Ravenscroft, Dick Shawn
  • Directors: Arthur Rankin Jr., Ben Washam, Chuck Jones, Jules Bass
  • Writers: Bob Ogle, Clement Moore, Dr. Seuss, Irv Spector
  • Format: Animated, Box set, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Original recording remastered, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 1.0)
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Rated:
    Unrated
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Warner Home Video
  • DVD Release Date: October 2, 2007
  • Run Time: 322 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000S0PLG0
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #30,199 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Christmas Television Favorites (Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas! / The Year Without a Santa Claus / Rudolph and Frosty's Christmas in July / Rudolph's Shiny New Year / and More)" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By W. F. Spencer on December 2, 2007
This serviceable DVD set contains the exceptional (Chuck Jones, Boris Karloff) "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" along with seven Rankin/Bass Christmas shows -- the '70s sequels to Rudolph and Frosty.

The true joy of this disk is the Grinch, which my kids watch over and over - much more than the (pretty good) Jim Carey movie.

The very same Grinch disc in this set is available separately --
Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (50th Birthday Deluxe Remastered Edition). However, this 4-disc DVD set is only a few dollars more, with the assorted Rudolph & Frosty sequels. It's a very handsome bookshelf edition of four Christmas disks already separately published from the Warner Brothers library, three of them the Rankin/Bass sequels.

(If you want the original Rankin/Bass cartoons of Rudolph and Frosty, not the sequels, they're available on this terrific DVD: The Original Television Christmas Classics (Rudolph, Santa Claus is Comin' to Town, Frosty and Frosty Returns, Little Drummer Boy, and Cricket on the Hearth).)

DVD Contents:

Disc 1: Dr Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas! (50th Birthday Deluxe Edition, 26 mins., 1966, animated)
Also includes
- Dr Seuss' Horton Hears a Who! (26 mins., 1970, animated)
- Special Features - From Whoville to Hollywood, Grinch Songs, Who's Who in Whoville, Grinch Pencil Test, TNT's Special Edition: Phil Hartman on making the Grinch (19 min), and Trailers

Disc 2: The Year Without a Santa Claus (Deluxe Edition, 125 mins.
Read more ›
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OK, what can I say but here is the DVD you want for the holidays! It has "The Year Without a Santa Claus" and with the Mr. Cold Miser (My Favorite) and Mr. Heat Miser acts, plus Dr. Seuss and others listed! Boy do I love the Cold and Heat Miser songs!

Play this while you're putting up decorations, to help get into the Christmas mood! Buy it so you don't have to keep looking through the TV Listings to see when it'll be on to watch/record.

It's sad they don't make this type of Christmas shows anymore.
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So if you were born after 1964, you will undoubtedly have already purchased the 1st "Christmas TV Classics" boxset that contained Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer, Frosty the Snowman, Santa Claus Is Coming To Town, Little Drummer Boy and Frosty Returns.

Now here is all you will need to complete your Christmas nostalgia memories to pass it on to your kids. Not only did the makers manage to pull together the remaining classic Rankin Bass holiday cartoons (including The Year Without A santa Claus, the woefully grim Nestor The Long Eared Christmas Donkey, Twas The Night Before Christmas, the Frosty's Winter Wonderland that SHOULD have been in the previous set instead of that execrable Frosty Returns, and the feature-length Rudolph's & Frosty's Christmas In July), but somehow also added How The Grinch Stole Christmas---all in one pretty blue box for under $20.

All of the discs contain the features that would also be included if they were bought seperately, such as the featurettes and bonus cartoon of Horton Hears A Who! What more could animation/Christmas junkies need?!
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Back in the fall of 2007, this set was actually cheaper than getting How The Grinch Stole Christmas, The Year Without A Santa Claus, Frosty's Winter Wonderland, & Rudolph and Frosty's Christmas in July as separate DVDs. In 2008, this set was redone as the Classic Christmas Favorites Collection, dropping Horton & adding 3 more Rankin/Bass Christmas classics; The Stingiest Man In Town, Pinocchio's Christmas, and The Leprechauns' Christmas Gold. Lucky for me I just own the set I'm reviewing, because those 3 specials were re-released with The Little Drummer Boy Book 2 on 1 Warner Archive DVD in 2012. I'm sure other people who own the 2007 set will be relieved to see and read this. The original MGM classics How The Grinch Stole Christmas & Horton Hears A Who (respectively made in 1966 and 1970 from Chuck Jones and Dr. Seuss themselves), were made by the same animation team responsible for many classic Looney Tunes shorts AND all the Tom & Jerry shorts from 1963 to '67; too bad my father doesn't realize that fact, as much as he hates the Grinch. But both have been beloved classics for tons of other folks worldwide to this very day, especially the Grinch. Horton being the only non-holiday special of the bunch has always proved the old Seussian saying, "A person's a person, no matter how small", even before getting its own Remastered Edition collection in 2008. The Year Without A Santa Claus (from 1974) stars Mickey Rooney as Santa, especially since this was one of the sequels to Santa Claus is Comin' To Town. But here, it was the Miser Brothers, Heat and Snow, who stole the show, ending up in countless fan-fiction stories & its own sequel in 2008, A Miser Brothers' Christmas.Read more ›
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