Christmas Names: Special TV Special Names
1962’s Mister Magoo’s Christmas Carol was the first animated holiday program produced specifically for TV. In it, much of the focus is on Belle, Scrooge’s lost love. In modern times, Belle has been overshadowed by Bella and Isabel/la, but it was a Top 100 name in the 1880s and has made something of a comeback as a middle; Belle is Number 215 on Nameberry.
- Christmas Carol was the first animated holiday program produced specifically for TV. In it, much of the focus is on Belle, Scrooge’s lost love. In modern times, Belle has been overshadowed by Bella and Isabel/la, but it was a Top 100 name in the 1880s and has made something of a comeback as a middle; Belle is Number 215 on Nameberry." >
- Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, produced in stop-action animation, and based on the poem and song, debuted in 1964, and now is ubiquitous at Christmas time, one of only five surviving 1960s specials. Rudolph is one of the once-popular (Number 111) names that suffered from anti-German feeling during the two World Wars, but enough time may have passed for a comeback." >
- Charlie Brown Christmas, which made annual appearances from 1965 on, winning both Emmy and Peabody Awards, and is still going strong. It features the Peanuts gang--Charlie, Lucy, and the especially well-named Linus, Violet and Frieda. Linus, which has mythological and papal cred, doesn’t rank on the national list but is Number 38 in Germany, 240 on Nameberry." >
- Virginia O’Hanlon, Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus became an Emmy-winning animated TV special in 1974. Virginia is a neglected classic place name—it was in the Top 10 for 25 years, hitting a high of Number 6 in 1921, now down at 551." >
- Jim Henson produced a charming TV special based on the Russell Hoban book Emmet Otter’s Jug-Band Christmas, hosted by Kermit the Frog and starring a cast of fellow Muppets. Emmet, also spelled Emmett, ranks at Number 173 in the latter spelling partly thanks to its Twilight prominence, and now also stars in The Lego Movie." >
- Mickey’s Christmas Carol was the first of several Mickey Mouse animated specials, originally seen in 1983. Roughly following the Dickens scenario, it features Mickey as Bob Cratchit and Goofy as Jacob Marley’s ghost. Both Jacob and Marley are current faves, with Jacob at Number 3 and Marley (for girls) at 209." >
- Ziggy’s Gift is a 1982 animated TV special based on the Ziggy comic strip. Ziggy is a somewhat comical nickname name associated with David Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust persona and with the Jamaican musician known as Ziggy Marley, born David, and the son of reggae singer Bob." >
- Welcome to Pooh Corner: Christmas at Pooh Corner, there was a regular procession of Winnie the Pooh specials. In this one, the characters are portrayed by actors in puppet suits. The original Winnie was a black bear in the London Zoo, fully named Winnipeg. For girls, the name got instant celebrity cred when it was chosen by the Jimmy Fallons for their daughter." >
- Miracle at Christmas: Ebbie’s Story, the Dickens plot is revisited with a hard-hearted female (Susan Lucci) in place of the miserly Ebenezer Scrooge—and there’s even a Roberta Cratchit! We just had to include Ebbie here for its being such a unique nickname for Elizabeth." >
- Christmas special, Elmo Saves Christmas, in 1996, narrated by Maya Angelou, which was then followed by two other Elmo starrers. Though a venerable saint’s name (‘St. Elmo’s Fire’), Elmo, Number 246 in 1909, has pretty much been over-Muppetized by the furry red monster." >
- Olive the Other Reindeer is a 1999 CGI animated Christmas TV special, produced by Matt Groening and based on the eponymous children’s book, with the title character voiced by Drew Barrymore. (Aha! Could this be behind her first daughter’s name?) Olive hasn’t caught up with cousin Olivia, but she’s doing very nicely, now at Number 291 nationally and a Hot 79 on Nameberry." >
- Christmas special based on the Shrek movie characters, with Cameron Diaz once again performing Princess Fiona, mother of Fergus, Farkle and Felicia. The lovely Scottish name Fiona entered the US popularity list in 1990 and is now at Number 197." >
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on December 19th, 2014 at 8:27 am
I expected to see Cindy, as in Cindy Lou Who, here!
on December 19th, 2014 at 9:56 am
I think Cindy is still too retro, along with Debbie and Beth and Nancy and Barbie and all the other names I grew up with.
on December 19th, 2014 at 11:23 am
I was surprised that Rudolph was here and not Clarice- his love interest. She makes me love the name (just forget about Hannibal Lector). I also expected to see Zuzu from It’s a Wonderful Life. Great list, though!
on December 19th, 2014 at 12:36 pm
Absolutely love the name Linus!
on December 19th, 2014 at 1:39 pm
I think I’m in love with any name that can get me to the nickname Rudy (thanks to The Book Thief, this has become a growing favorite). Love Winnie (but only as a nickname for Gwendolyn or Guinevere), Marley (for a boy because A Christmas Carol is one of my favorite things to watch or read at Christmas time) and Linus (which may be easily rhymed with something to tease him about but is such a sweet name).
I like Ebbie for Elizabeth. It’s not a nickname you hear too often. A new name I’m currently loving is Eben, which I’m led to understand is a nickname for Ebenezer.
on December 22nd, 2014 at 12:13 pm
@eechick – I was expecting the same!! Clarice has become one of my special loves solely for this classic character, and I’ve often (dreamily) considered it as great pairing for a Christmas b/g twin set with Gabriel.
I’ve heard Libby as a nn of Elizabeth before, but not Ebbie.. I like it! Very cute
And thanks, Nameberry! I completely forgot about Ziggy’s Gift; haven’t seen it for a few years! Now I’ll have to watch it!! 🙂
on December 22nd, 2014 at 10:23 pm
Why not Ebenezer? It has the popular Z like Ezra, Boaz (there’s a baby named Boaz at my church), Jabez.
How about Clarence (the angel from It’s A Wonderful Life). Or Peter, after Peter Bailey from the same.
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