Mr. Magoo’s Christmas Carol

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Mister Magoo's Christmas Carol

So the animation is cheesy and primitive? The songs by Jule Styne and Bob Merrill (they did the song People and music for the movie Funny Girl) more than make up for it. The only song I don’t like is The Winter is WarmThis was the first animated holiday special made for television in 1962 and presents Mr. Magoo as a Broadway actor starring as Mr. Scrooge.

Jim Backus (Thurston Howell the third on Gilligan’s Island) was the voice of Mr. Magoo and this special spawned a t.v. series for Mr. Magoo, but because animation was on a downturn (UPA Studios), the cost was too expensive and it didn’t last long. The animation is rather folk-art in nature and can’t compare to Disney or other well known animation studio’s but there is still a charm in this version that is hard for me to resist.

I love the song Ringle, Ringle that Magoo sings as Ebeneezer Scrooge, counting his coins. The song The Lord’s Bright Blessing is a song I can’t get out of my head after hearing it. I think it’s the razzleberry dressing. Actually all these songs have that effect on me. Songs are wonderful that way. The song Alone in the World is the most touching as a young Ebeneenzer’s sweet youthful voice blends with that of the elderly Scrooge at his lonely boarding school.

During the scene when all the vendors are throwing in their lots for Scrooge’s belongings after he has died, is the song We’re Dispicable” which was spoofed on The Simpsons. So see? Mr. Magoo gets around. This is a fitting kick off for my Christmas Carol feast.

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