The Toy That Saved Christmas


The Toy That Saved Christmas

Infobox_Film
name = The Toy that Saved Christmas


caption = DVD cover
writer = Phil Vischer
director = Phil Vischer,
Chris Olsen
producer = Phil Vischer,
Chris Olsen
distributor = Big Idea Productions
Lyrick Studios
(2000 to 2003)
Sony Wonder
(2003 to present) | starring = Phil Vischer,
Mike Nawrocki,
Lisa Vischer,
Kristin Blegen,
Dan Anderson,
Ken Cavanagh | music = Kurt Heinecke,
Phil Vischer,
Mike Nawrocki | released = October 1996 (VHS release) October 29,2002 (DVD release)| runtime = 30 minutes
language = English
preceded_by = "Dave and the Giant Pickle"
followed_by = "A Very Silly Sing-Aloong"
imdb_id = 0284614

"The Toy that Saved Christmas" is the sixth episode of the "VeggieTales" animated series and the first holiday special in that series. It was released in October of 1996 on VHS. Unlike its predecessors it does not feature an opening countertop. Like the other holiday episodes, it also has no “A Lesson In…” subtitle. The lesson is apparent enough anyway, clearly presenting the Biblical story of the birth of Jesus as the true meaning of Christmas.

Synopsis

Grandpa George tells a story about Wally P. Nezzer, the owner of a toy company who is spreading the word via television commercial that the meaning of Christmas is to get more and more toys. After seeing this, the Dinkletown kids were whining about wanting more toys. He explains to his assistant (Mr. Lunt) that this is a strategy to create demand for his toys in order to boost sales. The toy in question is called “Buzz-Saw Louie,” the only toy featuring an actual working buzz saw built into his arm.

On Christmas Eve, while most of the Veggie children are filled with a mad desire for the new toy, Larry, Bob, and Junior go sledding. They happen upon a lone Buzz-Saw Louie toy that has questioned Mr. Nezzer’s values and escaped the factory to find the true meaning of Christmas. Bob suggests that they go see Grandpa George. George explains to them that the true meaning of Christmas is not to get, but to give, the way God gave us Jesus, the greatest gift of all. The children are heartened by the news, but puzzle about how to tell the rest of the Veggies before Christmas Day.

The story is interrupted by a Silly Song entitled "Oh Santa!". Larry is staying up late awaiting the arrival of Santa Claus, eager to give him some home-made cookies. Instead of Santa, however, he is visited first by a bank robber (Scallion #1), then by a Viking (played by Pa Grape), and finally by an agent of the IRS (played by a Peach). They all take refuge is his home and eat his cookies (except for the IRS agent who Larry evidently considers too loathsome to invite inside). Santa finally shows up, but rather than being jolly he angrily chases after Scallion #1 and Pa Grape for stealing his props. Larry is left without any cookies, and no Santa or friends.

Returning to the story, the characters' solution is to sneak into Mr. Nezzer’s toy factory and use his television studio to broadcast the message to all the surrounding towns. The plan is a huge success, except that Mr. Nezzer finds them out and threatens to get rid of them. He ties them to a sled and is about to send them downhill into a deep ravine when the other Veggie families intervene. Laura Carrot shows him kindness by giving him a gift, and he quickly repents the errors of his ways. However, the sled with Bob, Larry, Junior, and Louie is accidentally sent on its fateful course in the process but the Dinkletown kids were begging for more toys.

A chase scene ensues in which Mr. Nezzer and a half dozen Penguins attempt to save the doomed Veggies. The tables turn, however, when Buzz-Saw Louie is able to divert the sled’s course, leaving Mr. Nezzer alone racing toward the ravine. Louie again springs into action, using his buzz-saw to rally the Penguins and save Mr. Nezzer just as he is about to plummet to certain death. Then, Buzz-Saw Louie puts the buzz-saw for good use making furniture and the show ends. It was edited from the TV version due to the show's length only for thirty minutes.

VeggieTales Christmas Spectacular!

There was a special that aired in 2006 that featured this episode but added an opening on a big stage where the Veggies have ostensibly booked time with a major network to air a special film for the "VeggieTales Christmas Spectacular!" However, one big problem becomes almost immediately clear: Larry the Cucumber can't find the film. Given this discouraging news, the Veggies attempt to fill the time with a variety of musical performances.

First up is Junior Asparagus who is being uplinked by satellite live from the Holy Land (This was seven years before the Iraq War). He sings the song “While By My Sheep” surrounded by a flock of sheep that bleat along with the melody. When the satellite uplink is lost, the Veggies continue to scramble while Pa Grape attempts to buy time with the network, which is threatening to pull the plug on the production.

Next up is the Love Songs with Mr. Lunt called "His Cheeseburger"

The third musical number features Archibald Asparagus singing a German folk song while ringing some bells. Larry joins in, but as the song ends the Veggies learn that the network is about to pull the plug. Fortunately the film reel is found and the feature, "The Star of Christmas", begins.

This TV special is available as a special feature under these titles "The Star of Christmas" (2002) and Holiday Double Feature (2006) on DVD.

Cast of Characters

VeggieTales Christmas Spectacular|VeggieTales Christmas Spectacular!

* Mr. Lunt as Uncle Billyboy
* Bob the Tomato as the host
* Larry The Cucumber running the film "The Star of Christmas" projector
* Pa Grape as the director
* Junior Asparagus, live from the Holy Lands
* Jimmy and Jerry Gourd, helping to find the film "The Star of Christmas"
* Archibald Asparagus, doing a musical number

Oh, Santa!

* Larry The Cucumber as himself
* Scallion #1 as a bank robber
* Pa Grape as a Viking
* The Peach as an IRS agent
* Bob the Tomato as Santa Claus

The Toy that Saved Christmas

* Grandpa George as the narrator and mailman
* Annie as his granddaughter
* Bob the Tomato as himself
* Larry The Cucumber as himself
* Junior Asparagus as himself
* Wally P. Nezzer as the owner of the Nezzer Toy Factory
* Mr. Lunt as his "little elf helper"
* Buzz-Saw Louie as himself
* Laura Carrot as herself
* Lenny Carrot as himself
* Various other Peas, Carrots, and Asparaguses as townsfolk
* Delivery Penguins (real penguins, not Zidgel or Fidgel or Midgel or Kevin on the Veggie Tales spin-off "3-2-1 Penguins!")

Segments

"The Toy that Saved Christmas" is broken into the following segments:

* The Toy that Saved Christmas: First Half
* Silly Song: Oh, Santa!
* The Toy that Saved Christmas: Second Half

The show's integration with the "VeggieTales Christmas Spectacular!" adds several segments of new material to the beginning of the main feature. In this format, the Silly Song is also relocated to the prefatory material. The modified sequence is:

* VeggieTales Christmas Spectacular!
* While By My Sheep
* Silly Songs with Larry: Oh, Santa!
* Ring, Little Bells
* The Toy That Saved Christmas

Songs

Due to the format of the show, this episode does not contain the usual "What We Have Learned", although the "VeggieTales Theme" is still present. It also contains the following songs:

* "Can't Believe It's Christmas", sung by the Veggie children
* "Grumpy Kids", sung by Buzz-Saw Louie
* "Oh, Santa!" (Silly Song), sung by Larry, Bob, Scallion #1, and Pa Grape

The "VeggieTales Christmas Spectacular!" adds the following songs:

* "While By My Sheep", sung by Junior Asparagus and his Sheep
* "Ring, Little Bells", sung by Archibald Asparagus

References

1. http://www1.epinions.com/kifm-review-2A60-8730598-389AEFBF-prod1

2. http://www.christiananswers.net/spotlight/movies/pre2000/rvu-vegtoy.html

External links

* [http://bigidea.com/products/shows/shows_content.aspx?pid=28 Official Website]
* [http://www.imdb.com/title/0284614 IMDB Article]
* [http://www.tbn.org/index.php/2/4/p/412.html Airtime Listing on TBN]
* [http://www.qubo.com/veggie_show.asp Veggietales at Qubo.com]
* [http://christiancartoons.blogspot.com/2007/05/veggietales-christian-animation-cg-3d.html VeggieTales] at [http://christiancartoons.blogspot.com/ Christian Cartoons Online]
* [http://www.darrenandchristy.com/veggie/classic/index.html Ultimate Veggie]


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