Monday, November 7, 2005


Took another trip down memory lane today. I was browsing in my favorite big-box-economy-killing-Mart and came across the Christmas DVD section. Being the Christmas junkie that I am, I just had to stop and take a look, lol. There, right in front was a little show called "Emmit Otter's Jugband Christmas". I almost squealed with delight!

"EOJBC" is a wonderful special that Jim Henson did for HBO back in 1977, while he was still doing "The Muppet Show". It's based on a sweet little book of the same name by Russell and Lillian Hoban that tells the story of a widow otter and her son who are struggling to make ends meet and wishing they had the means to give each other "real, store-bought Christmas presents". It's not an overtly Christmas themed show, just a sweet story with beautiful bluegrass and folk songs that ring true with most of the music created by Paul Williams for other Muppet productions. You won't find Kermit or Piggy here, but it's definitely worth the watch.

I can remember this show from early childhood. It first aired when I was one or two, but I'm sure that I remember it from a slightly later date. I had searched for it for a long time with no luck, even calling our movie supply house (when I worked for 'International Video Rental Store') to see if they had any leads on where I might be able to find a copy. I'm so happy to have found it today!

While watching this afternoon, I was reminded of why I had been searching so hard. This is such a great story! Not to mention the beautiful work by Jim Henson and Company. Henson was such an artist and this special really shows it. The music is so lovely and it often brought tears to my grown-up eyes that never would have been understood by my childhood self. The fact that he accomplishes "suspension of disbelief" using puppets is a true testament to his labors. And he did it all without CGI!

Go out, find this one, and enjoy it with your family! You won't be sorry!

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