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December 22, 2009 11:13 AM   Subscribe


 
In Finland we used to watch Disney xmas special as well, but I don't remember it having quite so well defined timeslot. In Finland just like the Sweden the most popular Disney character is Donald i.e. Aku Ankka. I've also heard that the Finnish Aku Ankka comic book is has the highest circulation of any Disney continuous publication, but couldn't verify that with a quick google search.
posted by zeikka at 11:26 AM on December 22, 2009




We've had the same tradition in Norway for as long as I can remember. That, and the Czech-German movie Three Nuts for Cinderella.
posted by Dumsnill at 11:29 AM on December 22, 2009


Does the special include Pluto's Christmas? That is by far my most favourite Xmas thing of all. Is this tradition really so bizarre?
posted by autodidact at 11:33 AM on December 22, 2009


Bizarre tradition indeed! What's next, putting boxes under a tree and pretending a fat man from the North Pole put them there?
posted by gonna get a dog at 11:34 AM on December 22, 2009 [7 favorites]


It's so nice to see that white cultures can be othered too.
posted by Kattullus at 11:40 AM on December 22, 2009 [4 favorites]


Bizarre? I'd be hard pressed to think of a better way to spend Christmas Eve.
posted by marxchivist at 11:43 AM on December 22, 2009 [1 favorite]


That's funny. In my country, we watch a clinically depressed kid try to put on a Christmas pageant, and then screw up buying a tree until his polyanna buddy tells him to look on the bright side.
posted by mccarty.tim at 11:54 AM on December 22, 2009 [23 favorites]


I was just getting into "weird" art in high school (from reading Lovecraft to discovering Giger to discovering a whole new world) and was really blown away by Gottfreid Helnwein, to the point that I mail-ordered a whole book of Helnwein art from Taschen via catalogue (ah, the pre-Internet world!). I loved the book, but was completely baffled by the fact that among the smorgasbord of horrors in the book -- the wired faces, bruised children, shattered glass, bandages, and forks in the eyes -- there was an unusual number of Donald Duck paintings, rendered perfectly straight and winkless. Just... Donald Duck.

So this, I guess, sort of explains that, a bit, partly.
posted by Shepherd at 11:56 AM on December 22, 2009 [2 favorites]


Previously: "Dinner for One," the inexplicable German New Year's tradition.
posted by Iridic at 12:05 PM on December 22, 2009


I'd rather watch Looney Tunes on Xmas Eve, but to each his/her own.
posted by blucevalo at 12:08 PM on December 22, 2009 [3 favorites]


The Swedish version of MetaFilter has "Odd things Americans do at Christmas" on their site. This includes:

1. Dragging a tree inside their house and putting enough lights on it that about 250 of them catch fire every year.
2. Waiting for a fat elf dressed in red to shimmy down a chimney and give presents
3. Going in to debt to buy consumer goods to give as presents
4. declaring that anybody who doesn't support the most vocal proclaimations of Christianity is somehow "at war with Christmas" and actually sponsoring legislation to address it
5. Sitting alone at home and weeping while masturbating to Santa-themed porn.
posted by Astro Zombie at 12:08 PM on December 22, 2009 [7 favorites]


Everybody just shut up -- that tradition is DANISH!!!

It was the only thing keeping me from going completely bananas waiting for permission to open my presents when I was a kid (we'd open them before going to bed on the 24th).

After, say, 14 years of watching I knew all the segments by heart, and Disney would always preview a new movie coming out. Great stuff.
posted by AwkwardPause at 12:08 PM on December 22, 2009 [1 favorite]


Astro Zombie: 1,2,3,5 are very much part of Swedish yule as well. 4, not so much.
posted by mr.marx at 12:17 PM on December 22, 2009 [1 favorite]


Dinner For One is also a traditional broadcast in South Africa on New Years Eve...
posted by PenDevil at 12:22 PM on December 22, 2009


4. declaring that anybody who doesn't support the most vocal proclaimations of Christianity is somehow "at war with Christmas" and actually sponsoring legislation to address it

This is actually my favorite yuletide tradition. I'm already sharpening my legislatin' quill
posted by Think_Long at 12:25 PM on December 22, 2009 [1 favorite]


Lately I've been spending Christmases in Britain, and it seems there's a tradition of showing especially cheesey James Bond films around the big day, although I recall a showing of "Flash Gordon" a couple of Christmases ago.

Although one Christmas my mother-in-law did suffer me to watch an hour-long show of "Tommy Cooper's Greatest Hits" -- suffer being the operative word here. What a throughly unfunny fellow.

I'd take Donald Duck over Tommy Cooper any day.
posted by potsmokinghippieoverlord at 12:34 PM on December 22, 2009


There is something about Santa's birthday that brings out the crazy in people.
posted by clearly at 12:44 PM on December 22, 2009 [3 favorites]


This is actually my favorite yuletide tradition. I'm already sharpening my legislatin' quill

He's making a bill, he's checking it twice...
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 12:47 PM on December 22, 2009 [3 favorites]


Davis Sedaris on those wacky Dutch: Six to Eight Black Men
posted by Sys Rq at 12:49 PM on December 22, 2009 [1 favorite]


This is actually my favorite yuletide tradition. I'm already sharpening my legislatin' quill

He's making a bill, he's checking it twice...

Gonna find out who's been sinful and hell-bound or nice
posted by Think_Long at 12:52 PM on December 22, 2009


I was just getting into "weird" art in high school (from reading Lovecraft to discovering Giger to discovering a whole new world) and was really blown away by Gottfreid Helnwein, to the point that I mail-ordered a whole book of Helnwein art from Taschen via catalogue (ah, the pre-Internet world!). I loved the book, but was completely baffled by the fact that among the smorgasbord of horrors in the book -- the wired faces, bruised children, shattered glass, bandages, and forks in the eyes -- there was an unusual number of Donald Duck paintings, rendered perfectly straight and winkless. Just... Donald Duck.

I had a postcard book of those Donald Duck paintings. Creepiest thing ever. Some of the people I sent them to asked me to not send them postcards again.
posted by showmethecalvino at 12:55 PM on December 22, 2009 [2 favorites]


5. Sitting alone at home and weeping while masturbating to Santa-themed porn.

To be fair, AZ, that would be weird in America too. Most of us do our weeping and masturbating at the midnight mass with the community.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 12:59 PM on December 22, 2009 [2 favorites]


Nothing says Christmas like a duck with no pants.
posted by Kabanos at 1:01 PM on December 22, 2009 [3 favorites]


I've never been so proud to be a Swede.
posted by pjern at 1:03 PM on December 22, 2009 [1 favorite]


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Krampus
posted by gonna get a dog at 1:03 PM on December 22, 2009 [1 favorite]


Seems like a fine tradition, but it's no WPIX Yule Log.
posted by explosion at 1:07 PM on December 22, 2009 [1 favorite]


Bizarre tradition indeed! What's next, putting boxes under a tree and pretending a fat man from the North Pole put them there?

That's just messed up. Everyone from Finland knows he's actually from Lapland.
posted by slimepuppy at 1:16 PM on December 22, 2009


I love my people.
posted by sararah at 2:05 PM on December 22, 2009


In Finland we used to watch Disney xmas special as well.

And in the UK as well, prior to the days of Cable/Satellite TV and Disney putting out all their product on DVD. Throughout the 60's and 70's though, the format was a handful of Disney shorts, some clips from whichever animated feature they were about to reissue that year, and a feature on the new movie they had coming out.

Because Disney managed the scarcity of their product so carefully, people really did regard it as a major treat and something of an event -- because kids loved Disney, and adults had grown up with the shorts and the big animated features.

It all seemed to die out with the launch of the Disney Channel though.
posted by PeterMcDermott at 2:23 PM on December 22, 2009


I do take one slight issue with the writer's calling the animation "antiquated". I don't know if I'd call a lot of current animation "modern" or "better".
posted by jscott at 2:37 PM on December 22, 2009


I didn't realize how much I personally looked forward to the Charlie Brown Christmas Special every year, until this year both attempts to TiVo it failed (the first due to scheduling conflicts, and the second because my wife bumped it inadvertently to tape some new reality show.)

So, uh, I guess I totally get this tradition.
posted by davejay at 2:47 PM on December 22, 2009


Davis Sedaris on those wacky Dutch: Six to Eight Black Men

Meh, Sinterklaas has been over for nearly half a month. We Dutch get to celebrate Christmas as a completely separate excuse to watch TV, eat sugar, and complain about cultural imperialism!
posted by HFSH at 2:56 PM on December 22, 2009


Is this like the (fairly common in the US, I believe) tradition of listening to Alice's Restaurant on the radio every Thanksgiving?
posted by Nick Verstayne at 3:02 PM on December 22, 2009


Anyone have any idea why The Sound of Music plays every Christmas on the CBC? I mean, aside from one wintry verse of one song in the movie, what the heck makes it so Christmasy?
posted by Sys Rq at 3:07 PM on December 22, 2009 [1 favorite]


Another cartoon that is traditionally shown on Christmas eve in Sweden right after the Disney show (I think...) is "Sagan om Karl-Bertil Jonssons Julafton". Not as popular as Disney though.

It's a story about a 14 year old boy who steals Christmas presents from the post office and give them to the poor. When his father discovers this he makes him go to everyone we stole a present from (just rich people) and apologize. Of course everyone is happy about not having to receive yet another sweater or something, and the father ends up proud of his son in the end. It's been a bit controversial some times.

The first part in Swedish and dubbed to English.
posted by rpn at 3:10 PM on December 22, 2009


the best thing about swedish christmas is the julmust.
posted by yeoz at 3:18 PM on December 22, 2009


Netherlands, we'll stop giggling at Sinterclaus when we want to. It's part of American exceptionalism that we get to choose when we laugh, and how everyone else should celebrate the holidays we love.

Besides, I don't remember the history between our two countries right now, but we either saved you or defeated you in World War 2, so either be respectful or be very afraid instead of telling us that your Sinterclaus day is all over.
posted by mccarty.tim at 3:40 PM on December 22, 2009


>
I would infinitely respect any media company that plays that in the US, if only for the right wing freakout.

Glenn Beck: CHRISTMAS IS NOT ABOUT GIVING! NOR IS IT ABOUT CLASS WARFARE! IT'S ABOUT GOD, AND GOD'S FAVORITE COUNTRY'S ECONOMY!
posted by mccarty.tim at 3:41 PM on December 22, 2009


Us wacky Americans can be seen watching an old cartoon about a hapless bald boy who is terrible at everything and thus symbolizes all of our inadequacy fears.
posted by maus at 3:43 PM on December 22, 2009 [1 favorite]


I am so going to ask my uncle if he used to watch Donald Duck on Christmas Eve. I mean, he just moved here about 9 years ago and married my aunt maybe 5 to 6 years ago. I really want to know if he will have watched Donald on Christmas Eve.

I got his name for Christmas. I've been wracking my brain trying to think what to get him. The sad thing is, I currently live with them on their boat. I haven't been able to come up with anything. If I can find this on DVD (and a gift certificate or power tool or something that he could use).

Does anyone know where I could find this on DVD in Birmingham? Obviously internet is out. Is it even sold on DVD? Should I be asking this question on AskMefi instead? I know the answer is yes, but you know... This topic just came up and it gave me an idea (instead of just walking around looking until I found something that I thought would suit him... that hasn't worked out well so far and time is getting short).
posted by robtf3 at 3:47 PM on December 22, 2009


If you're going to have a Disney Christmas tradition it might as well be centered around the coolest things about the company (their amazing classic animation department), and if you're going to focus on that, you might as well fixate on their most awesome character, like, the only one with a personality to speak of.

Shepherd, on Gottfreid Helnwein: I've got to find out more about this guy.
posted by JHarris at 3:49 PM on December 22, 2009


Oh and that's Birmingham, AL and I should have said "If I can find this on DVD it would be great."

Also, I don't see this as that crazy of a tradition. I mean, I always watch The Nightmare Before Christmas around Halloween and Christmas. I also always watch Charlie Brown around Christmas. It's just fun.
posted by robtf3 at 3:54 PM on December 22, 2009


I got his name for Christmas.

This took me several attempts to parse.
posted by dammitjim at 5:07 PM on December 22, 2009 [1 favorite]


Think_Long: Gonna find out who's been sinful and hell-bound or nice discreet
posted by Decimask at 5:08 PM on December 22, 2009


Sys Rq: Anyone have any idea why The Sound of Music plays every Christmas on the CBC? I mean, aside from one wintry verse of one song in the movie, what the heck makes it so Christmasy?

Do they also show Jaws 1, 2 and 3? Because if they do CBC might be broadcasting to Heaven.
posted by Kattullus at 5:09 PM on December 22, 2009


Well, they don't play it twice an hour.
posted by Sys Rq at 5:14 PM on December 22, 2009


I have the Kalle Anka special as a video, but I haven't watched it in years. I will this year, though, for nostalgia's sake!

There are a few other things in Sweden that are centered around watching TV around the holidays as well. I love "Sagan om Karl-Bertil Jonssons Julafton", as already mentioned. But there's also watching Ivanhoe at 3pm on New Year's Day, as well as watching the ski jumping competition from Garmisch-Partenkirchen.
posted by gemmy at 6:02 PM on December 22, 2009


So long as they don't go out and sing Spike Jones (having been inspired by Donald in Der Fuehrer's face)
posted by rough ashlar at 8:02 PM on December 22, 2009


(For what it's worth, The Sound of Music was in fact broadcast on CTV, and not CBC as previously stated. I apologize for the reckless abandon that resulted in such an error.)
posted by Sys Rq at 7:52 PM on December 27, 2009


It is certainly a Danish tradition of the best. There is even a Danish Facebook group:
Til os, som stadigvæk ser Disneys Juleshow den 24. December!

Another very Danish tradition is dancing around the Christmas tree after dinner on Dec. 24 just before getting your presents. I think that it is one of the more local traditions of Denmark.
posted by KimG at 8:17 PM on December 27, 2009


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