Chaos Attraction

Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer

2003-12-15, 5:32 p.m.

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"Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer"* is my favorite Christmas song. I am unashamed to admit it.

(If you just got dragged out of a cave and haven't managed to hear it by now, here's a sample.)

I'm quite fond of reindeer in general- Rudolph was my favorite before I heard the song stylings of Dr. Elmo, and I was delighted recently to discover a wacky song called "Dang It, I'm Vixen" that I'll get into later. But still, Grandma is my favorite. I think it's the song that got me started on the whole kooky holiday music liking in the first place.

I have nothing against my grandma, mind you, but I love the wackiness of the song. It makes holiday death kinda funny. One gets the feeling Grandma may not have been the most easy person to deal with, between her getting tanked and Grandpa being strangely remorseless about her death ("he's been taking this so well, see him in there watching football, drinking beer and playing cards with Cousin Mel"). There's plenty of snarkiness in it, and I especially love how Dr. Elmo does the song, alternating between serious and wistful at points (like at the candles that would have matched Grandma's wig) and smartass and amused at others, like when he snarks, "They should never give a license to a man who drives a sleigh and plays with elves." (More on "playing with elves" later in this series, incidentally...) Lord knows Dr. Elmo's not the best singer out there, but he's got his charm, and none of the imitators of the song do it as amusingly.

I was incredibly excited some years ago when I was in a drugstore and stumbled across Dr. Elmo's Twisted Christmas. There's SEQUELS! In fact, there's three sequels.

The first one on the album is "Grandma's Spending Christmas With The Superstars," which is, I'm sorry to say, the weakest of the lot. Rather dull, slow song mentioning various old-time movie stars. Yawn. Then things heat up with "Grandpa's Gonna Sue The Pants Off Of Santa," which has a catchy chorus , if an er, unsatisfying ending. And finally, Dr. Elmo makes fun of himself portraying a frustrated DJ in "Don't Make Me Play That Grandma Song Again." You gotta like a guy who can do that. (Incidentally, "Grandma's Killer Fruitcake" is NOT a prequel, but seems to be about some other Grandma altogether. And no, nobody dies. Sigh. A disappointment.)

(Incidentally, I did once find a song, not by Dr. Elmo, called "Grandpa Got Run Over By A Beertruck." Maybe drinking with Cousin Mel wasn't the best idea.)

Someday, yes, I will acquire the other Dr. Elmo albums.

I also got excited the other day, when I was in the hardware store buying wrapping paper with Dave, and he started pawing through the DVD section next to the register and showed me... the Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer movie! I would probably have bought it right there, except it was $20 and I had little cash on me. Plus, well, $20 for that is a bit much even for me.

And then I read the back of the DVD. I'll quote you from the Amazon listing:

"Grandma Spankenheimer, a universally adored shopkeeper in the bustling town of Cityville, is the victim of a Christmastime conspiracy masterminded by Cousin Mel, her money-grubbing granddaughter. When Grandma refuses to sell her store to Austin Bucks, the local fat cat, Mel, determined to make a fortune, poisons a batch of the silver-haired do-gooder's famous fruitcakes with reindeer nip, thus causing Rudolph and company to crash into her while making their Christmas Eve rounds. Soon there's an APB out on Santa, named the culprit of a hit-and-run and possible kidnapping (Grandma, nowhere to be found, is sidelined with a nasty case of amnesia in the North Pole)."

Somehow I knew that if they made a movie about this song, Grandma wouldn't actually die. Which just ruins the humor of the entire damn thing. Plus if you read the reviews on the site, there is apparently very little that happens the same as in the song. The reindeer hit, and that's IT.

I have two words: Fucking travesty!

* All lyrics are the property and copyright of their respective owners. All lyrics are provided for educational purposes and personal use only.


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