A Cartoon Christmas - "A Jetson Christmas Carol" (1985)

Monday, December 5, 2022

I enjoyed writing "A Cartoon Christmas" last year, and reviewing "A Flintstone Christmas" from 1977 so much (CLICK HERE) that I decided to continue the series again this year.  What better to pair our first two entries into the series than the Flintstones and Jetsons!  

Technically, this is the third entry in the series.  In 2019, I made a short list of my Top Five Favorite Cartoons, which you can find HERE.  

The Hanna-Barbera cartoons get a bad rap these days, but I love the simple animation and old-time, clean, family fun.  The Jetsons (and The Flintstones) were from before my time, but when I was younger, both shows would air on TBS in morning reruns before school.  I remember many times during elementary school that I would have my bowl of cereal or Granny's English muffin sandwiches and dread the closing credits because that meant the bus was coming any minute to take me to school.


As I get older, I get more enjoyment from Christmas television specials, especially the older ones from long ago when things were so different it seems like we all lived in a different universe.  These older ones just seem like charming, innocent family fun.  Isn't that what Christmas (and the TV specials) should be all about?

This animated show features a slightly different take on the familiar storyline of the Charles Dickens classic "A Christmas Carol."  In it, we find the Jetson family and the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Yet-To-Be, and Present, teaching the Scrooge-like Mr. Spacely the true meaning of Christmas.  

Originally airing in syndication on December 13, 1985, this 22-minute cartoon was later released in 1996 on VHS.  The 1996 VHS tape incorrectly calls this episode "The Jetson's Christmas Carol."  

By the way, before we start, based on the show's history, George Jetson was born earlier this year, on July 31, 2022.  It's kind of depressing that in this episode, he's approximately 40 and living in such a futuristic world just 40 years from where we currently sit.  

Oh well, maybe there are significant advances in technology made very quickly right around the bend!  It's Christmas, and I don't mean to be a downer, so positive thoughts!

Please click "Keep Reading" to check out "A Jetson Christmas Carol!"  

Retro RePost: Was that the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade in Christmas Vacation?

Friday, December 2, 2022

As we get past that post-Thanksgiving food coma and run full speed into the holiday spirit, here at home, I'm busy decorating, relaxing, and preparing for my annual simulator training for work.  Throw in the extra-busy holiday flight schedule, and my free time is limited.   

So, forgive another RePost here, but this one's a good one from 2019 featuring my favorite Christmas movie, "Christmas Vacation!"


I often wondered about this tiny, somewhat throw-away scene in the movie.  As a matter of fact, it's what's happening in the background of this short scene that caught my interest.  

The original intention of this site was dedicated to getting the nostalgia nonsense off my brain and onto paper (so to speak), so what better way to do some research and finally figure out the answer to a nagging question? 

The question I kept asking myself was, "Is that the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade in "Christmas Vacation?"  Did that mean the Grandparents spent the last week of November and all of December with Clark and Ellen?  Or was it something else?

I couldn't have been the only one wondering this because this article is the 5th most popular article on YesterYear Retro!  Many of you must have wondered the same thing!  So, check it out, won't you?


This Month in YesterYear History - December

Monday, November 28, 2022

I can't believe it's time for December already!  Let's get on with another edition of  "This Month in YesterYear History!" 
In this series, we take a brief look back at the "best" or "top" of popular culture from the past 20 (2002), 25 (1997), and 30 (1992) years ago!   



Below, you'll find a little time capsule of what was significant in our lives during those days.  Hopefully, as you read these brief synopses of the past, you'll begin to remember the who, when, and where of your memories from that time.  

That's why I post to this site, after all!

So, let's get into those time machines, my friends!  We're headed back to Twenty, Twenty Five, and Thirty years ago!

Classic Christmas TV Guide For 2022

Wednesday, November 23, 2022

Thanksgiving is arriving soon, and as we prepare the turkey, we turn our attention toward our annual Christmas and holiday television specials!  

You've had the nonstop Hallmark movies for what seems like forever already, but it's time for the yearly classics that get us all in that festive Christmas spirit!  

I wanted to get this posted before Thanksgiving to give you a heads up for some of those classics like Planes, Trains, and Automobiles for turkey day... or the annual showing of The Wizard of Oz or March of the Wooden Soldiers on Thanksgiving Day.

Here is a list of what I consider the best of the holiday season.  I'm adding the list here as a regular post, but from now on you'll find it on the right side of the page as well (or below the weekly articles if your using a mobile browser!) Or feel free to bookmark this page and keep checking back!   

Obviously, this schedule is subject to change, but as of writing...

Here is The YesterYear Retro Christmas Classics TV Guide for 2022!

Items Of Note:
 
Charlie Brown's Christmas will not air on network TV again this year.  It will only be available on Apple TV+ but will be made available free to non-subscribers from Dec 22 to December 25.

FreeForms "25 Days of Christmas" begins on December 1st!  Between Halloween and Christmas, Freeform easily has some of my favorite marathons!

"The Wizard of Oz" airs on TBS on Thanksgiving Day, Nov 24 at 6:00PM and Nov 25 at 5:45PM.

"It's a Wonderful Life" airs as a marathon on E! on Friday, Nov 25th and on Christmas Eve on NBC at 8PM.

"A Christmas Story" marathon returns to both TBS *AND* TNT this year! It begins at 8 PM on TBS and 9 PM on TNT on Christmas Eve. Final showings air at 6 PM on Christmas Day on TBS and 7 PM on TNT.

I've highlighted the first showings of movies in RED that are what I consider "must-watch at least once" films this season.  Some are repeated so much that the whole list would be red, so I highlighted them only on their first showing, but of course watch when you can!  If you feel something should be red that I didn't consider, please leave a comment below!  I'd love to hear about your annual required viewing.  

I also BOLDED some of the more "can't miss" items, such as the once-a-year airings of Wizard of Oz or It's a Wonderful Life. 

All times listed are Eastern. 

Thanksgiving on Frasier

Monday, November 21, 2022

As we discovered in the "Halloween on Frasier" feature, the series didn't focus much on holidays.  That should come as no surprise, as Frasier wasn't your everyday sitcom that featured an "average working-class American family" like Full House or Home Improvement.  


Thanksgiving is a time when most sitcoms highlight family and togetherness.  Where most families celebrate with a large family dinner complete with all of the trimmings, jokes, laughter, and family squabbles, the idea of that is almost the antithesis of Frasier.  As a series, Frasier focused more on the absurdity of life's finer things while still portraying the differences among family members.  While Frasier (the character), living with his father and being best friends with his brother, certainly loved his family, the show Frasier often focused on the affluent urban life of parties, dinners, and private clubs.  Compared to shows like Roseanne that featured the "everyday" aspects of a typical suburban middle-America family, a sitcom show like Frasier is often not considered in the same category.  

This was always sort of funny to me.  While Frasier may have been a bit "elitist," at its heart, the entire family was, deep down, all blue-collar folk attempting to fit in as best they could with the upper class of Seattle.  Martin was as down to earth as you can get, being a retired policeman who would rather spend his time at Duke's, his favorite dive bar.  Pair that with Frasier and Niles trying to weasel their way into elite social circles while still acting like buffoons puts them in everyday familiar sitcom family territory, in my opinion.  

Frasier may not have gone all out for Thanksgiving like Roseanne did every season, but they touched on the holiday twice during eleven seasons.  Like Halloween, Thanksgiving served as more of a backdrop for each episode than the central focus.  It also took the series four years to mention the holiday and another three before mentioning it again. 

Continuing the "Holidays on Frasier" series, we'll look back and see how they briefly touched on the Thanksgiving season.  I must admit that, much like Halloween, one episode stood out to me even before considering Frasier for this year's series.  I strongly remember watching one of the two Thanksgiving episodes with my parents when it first aired.  I'm not exactly sure why; perhaps it was one of the first times I remember seeing Lilith, Frasier's ex-wife, or maybe it was another "travel" episode as the cast left Seattle and headed east for Boston.  I also can remember the roaring laughter from my entire family as Niles attempts to prepare the Thanksgiving meal.  For whatever reason, this episode is so memorable that I can still picture where I was seated in my parent's living room as we watched this episode, and I'm happy to cover it here.  

Get ready for some eloquent, upper-crust, loving family dysfunction as we look back at "Thanksgiving on Frasier!"