Nick Wishes You A Merry "Nickmas"

(Above: The Nicktoons family, rendered in clay, wishes you a merry "Nickmas", from a promo for Nick's "Nickmas" specials. From this SpongeBob SquarePants forum. ©2002 Viacom.)

The Nicktoon characters featured in this ad:

The two soldiers: on the left, Jorgen von Strangle; on the right, The Crimson Chin (both from The Fairly Oddparents)

Back row: Patrick (SpongeBob SquarePants), Vicki (Oddparents)

Top row: Debbie (The Wild Thornberrys), Arnold, Gerald, Helga (all from Hey Arnold), Courtney (As Told by Ginger), Mr. Krabs (SpongeBob), Tommy (Rugrats), Snap (ChalkZone)

Middle row: Donnie (Thornberrys), Carl (Jimmy Neutron), Hoodsey, Carl (both from Ginger), Chuckie, Angelica (both from Rugrats), CatDog

Bottom Row: Jimmy Neutron and his pet, Goddard the robot dog, Squidward, SpongeBob (both from SpongeBob), Zim, GIR (both from Invader Zim)

(Information and above picture courtesy of Don Del Grande)

During the 2002 holiday season, Nickelodeon (US) presented its viewers something special, other than the usual steady diet of holiday specials. From a Viacom press release:


Primetime Presents Include New Yuletide Episodes of Rugrats, Invader Zim and Dora the Explorer, December 9, 10 & 11, and Diverse Seasonal Favorites All Month; A Christmas Carol Premieres on Nick's Sunday Movie Toon, December 8

Festive Lineup to Feature All-Star Santas: Jim Belushi in One-Hour Rugrats and Backstreet Boy Howie Dorough in Dora's Bicultural Celebration

Santa Monica, Calif. -- November 4, 2002 -- 'Tis the season for SpongeBob and eggnog, Rugrats and reindeer. Spreading cheer from Bikini Bottom to Stu Pickles' Christmasland, Nickelodeon celebrates Christmas, Chanukah and Kwanzaa with a bounty of specials throughout December. Among these are primetime premieres of Rugrats, Invader Zim and Dora the Explorer, airing respectively on Monday, December 9 (8-9 p.m. ET/PT), Tuesday, December 10 (8:30 p.m. ET/PT) and Wednesday, December 11 (8:30 p.m. ET/PT). And if Santa sounds different in each, it's because Jim Belushi voices the jolly gent in Rugrats' one-hour 'Babies in Toyland' and Backstreet Boy Howie Dorough does the ho-ho-ho-ing in Dora's 'A Present for Santa'.

In fact, nearly every weeknight in December is 'Nickmas', as the kids' network delivers a primetime slate of back-to-back specials, Mondays Thursdays, December 2-26 (8-9 p.m. ET/PT) that kicks off on December 2 with Chanukah-themed favorite episodes of Rugrats and As Told by Ginger. Nickmas marathons will make kids merry on Sunday, December 8 (TEENick: 6-9 p.m. ET/PT) {TeeNick's holiday marathon has since been cancelled, or at least, delayed until 12/22. -- SM} and Saturday, December 14 (2-6 p.m. ET/PT). Among the holiday favorites to be telecast from hit series are episodes of SpongeBob SquarePants, Hey, Arnold!, Rugrats, The Fairly OddParents, Kenan & Kel, 100 Deeds for Eddie McDowd, The Wild Thornberrys and CatDog.

In addition, Nick's Sunday Movie Toons will premiere an animated, musical re-telling of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol the afternoon of December 8 (12:30- 2 p.m. ET/PT) {Since moved to 12 Noon ET. -- SM}. The classic tale of a stingy old man who must confront his past, present and future to reclaim his Christmas spirit features an all-star voice cast including Tim Curry as Scrooge, Whoopi Goldberg as the ghost of Christmas Present and Ed Asner as Jacob Marley.

New Nick seasonal treasures from hit series will mix fantasy, comedy and adventure:

'Babies in Toyland' finds the Rugrats frolicking in a spectacular, high-tech Christmasland designed by Stu Pickles for Dil's first Christmas -- and braving the Battle of the Toy Soldiers in search of a Santa (Belushi) driven to quit by greedy 'little angel' Angelica. A hyperactive snow machine strands the grown-ups in a little cabin on the prairie to celebrate and appreciate an old-fashioned Christmas, while the Santa-seeking babies even ride a goat to 'Bethlehem'. And toy-hungry Angelica treks to Santa's North Pole workshop where a singing elf actually opens her eyes to the gift of giving!

In Dora the Explorer's 'A Present for Santa' the bilingual tot turns the tables on St. Nick to deliver his gift, and she climbs snow-capped mountains and crosses an icy river to his North Pole headquarters. Backpack, Boots and Map help the little Latina tackle Project Present Drop, during which lessons are learned about shape identification and Spanish vocabulary. Elves come caroling to celebrate the mission accomplished, and a Backstreet Santa (Dorough) treats Dora to his rendition of 'Feliz Navidad'.

Older kids may enjoy an outlandish Christmas with Invader Zim who disguises himself as Santa Claus in order to woo adoring humans to their doom at the North Pole in 'The Most Horrible Xmas Ever' {The final episode of Invader Zim, which is scheduled for Tuesday 12/10 at 8PM ET, and yes, it will be seen. -- SM}. In his quest to conquer planet earth, he harnesses the power of St. Nick by programming a special Santa Suit filled with all known Christmas knowledge. Dib must find a way to stop Zim from executing his diabolical scheme before humanity is destroyed. The tide begins turning in Dib's favor because Zim may have designed his suit too well. When anything jolly comes Zim's way, the outfit begins to turn against him and Zim becomes Santa. Zim must fight against his own jolly creation from taking over his mind.

Entwining the specials, eight interstitials serve as on-air stocking stuffers, spoofing the classics and starring the Nicktoon characters in the likes of 'The 12 Days of Nickmas', 'Grinchelica Who Stole Nickmas', 'The Nutcracker Suite' starring The Fairly OddParents' Cosmo and Wanda and 'A Chuckie Finster Nickmas'.

It should be noted that the interstitials (fillers during the commercial breaks) are all knockoffs of evergreen Christmas chestnuts:

12 Days of Nickmas -- "12 Days of Christmas" (featuring "3 cans of hairspray" for Arnold, Gerald and Helga)

The Grinchelica Who Stole Nickmas -- "The Grinch Who Stole Christmas" (a.k.a. "How The Grinch Stole Christmas"); "Grinchelica" tries to steal chocolate from everyone; also starring Plankton as "Plankton Lou Who"

A Chuckie Finster Nickmas -- "A Charlie Brown Christmas" ("sponsored" by "Dork Krabby-Mint Patties* ", which, in itself, was a knockoff of longtime CBS Peanuts special sponsor York Peppermint Patties)

* -- Spokesman Mr. Krabs says, "When I bite into a Krabby Dork Patty, I get the sensation I'm swimming in MONEY!"

And not mentioned in the press release, but also appearing:

A "Rudolph" parody -- SpongeBob wants to be a fry cook, instead on an elf; like in Rankin-Bass' Rudolph special, he gets taunted by the other elves, only this time, they're played by other Nicktoon characters.

Plankton's Greatest Holiday Hits -- Take-off of those "not sold in stores" record ads. With yuletide lyrics such as "Oh come all ye fearful! Cower as I crush you!", and "Deck the halls with fist of fury. Mwahahahaha, hahahaha!"

Patrick The Snowman -- Patrick The Starfish plays Frosty The Snowman, built by the kids from Jimmy Neutron and narrated by Nigel Thornberry in another spoof of a Rankin-Bass classic.

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