...and a Partridge in a Pear Tree

Blog: 12.20.11

Tuesday, December 20, 2011 - 01:02 PM

Christmas starts earlier every year, and perhaps the wreaths and peppermint mochas have you rolling your eyes. If so, too bad! It’ll be over soon enough, so light a pine-scented candle, set your Pandora to "Jingle Bells," and dig in to the Studio 360 Christmas archive.

Redesigning Christmas
Back in 2006, we gave Christmas a makeover. One of the country's leading design firms presented a plan for revamping Christmas for the 21st century, including the color scheme, the wrapping paper, the tree, even the name. (That design firm, perhaps fittingly, is called Pentagram.)


We also served up some alternative Christmas music — indie rock legend Robyn Hitchcock made up a song just for us, while boombox carolers paraded through New York playing a techno “Unsilent Night.”

A Robyn Hitchcock Holiday

"Unsilent Night"


Design for the Real World: Santa

In 2008, we examined the evolution of Santa Claus in one of our Design for the Real World segments. Where did that image of a fat, bearded man in red velvet come from? (Santa, the '70s called — they want their jumpsuit back.)


"Human Intelligence: A Holiday Tale"

Last year, we told a sci-fi holiday tale about alien spies and melting ice caps, written by our own Kurt Andersen.


Tim Minchin's Christmas Carol

Finally, at our live show last month, Australian musician/comedian Tim Minchin performed a Christmas song that he wrote for his daughter. The ironies of modern Christmas are rich material for Minchin’s satirical eye (he has “all the usual objections” to “the westernization of a dead Palestinian press-ganged into selling Playstations and beer”), but if this tune doesn’t move you, you’re due for a visit from the Ghost of Christmas Past. 


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