Long, long ago … there was a one-off Christmas special based on a little book called “Emmet Otter’s Jug-Band Christmas.” Produced by Muppet genius Jim Henson and originally airing on HBO in 1977, this “Gift of the Magi” story has become a much beloved cult classic. But trying to find it has sometimes proved problematic. It almost makes you wish you’d kept your VHS copy from the ’90s. Almost.
But take heart, “Emmet Otter” fans. In 2015, ABC Family is airing “Emmet Otter” on Saturday, Dec. 12 and Sunday, Dec. 13 so you can record it to your DVR and have it forever. Sing along with Ma and Emmet, or even the menacing Riverbottom Nightmare Band. You’ll remember the songs quickly, promise.
Or, there’s always YouTube if you can’t wait and want to watch it now.
“Emmet Otter” used a variety of puppetry effects not usually employed by Jim Henson and company, including marionettes and radio controlled puppets. Jim Henson is quoted in “Jim Henson: The Works” as saying “Emmet Otter” “was the most elaborate production the company had done up until that point.”