A Lifetime of Happiness: Movies, TV, and Video Games

Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

December 22, 2021 Steve Bennet-Martin, Stephen Martin-Bennet, Bridget McMullen Season 1 Episode 99
A Lifetime of Happiness: Movies, TV, and Video Games
Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)
Show Notes Transcript

The Steves welcome their Tim Burton expert, Bridget McMullen, to discuss the 1993 holiday blockbuster, A Nightmare Before Christmas, along with what's making them happy in pop culture today.

What's Making Us Happy

  • Stephen- Queen of the Universe (Paramount+)
  • Steve- Hawkeye (Disney+)
  • Bridget- It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia (Hulu)


A Nightmare Before Christmas Discussion

  • Our favorite Tim Burton movies
  • The talent behind the movie
  • Our favorite parts of Halloween and Christmas Town
  • How Steve poisons Stephen just like Sally poisons Finkelstein
  • Life lessons learned from the movie

Ending- Any music or audio clips were borrowed from the original source material.

Support the show (http://www.patreon.com/happylifepod)
Steve:

Hello returning happies and new listeners. This is Steve Bennet-Martin.

Stephen:

And this is Stephen martin-Bennet. And welcome to a

Steve:

lifetime of happiness. The podcast where we take you on our journey through some of the movies, TV shows, and other bits of pop culture that are helping to keep us happy while hopefully bring a smile to your face along the way.

Stephen:

And today we're weighing in on the struggle between Jack Skellington, the pumpkin king and good old 10 day clause. As we discussed the animated classic the nightmare before Christmas, and to top it off today, we're joined by our friend, a huge Tim Burton fan and an all around fabulous person. Bridget McAllen. Welcome, Bridget. We're very happy to have you here,

Bridget:

Hi! Thank you so much. I am so honored to be here with you to,

Stephen:

so Bridget, tell the audience a little bit about yourself.

Bridget:

Oh, I currently am a meditator. Teacher and I work and I'm an assistant manager at the wild ginger Pondicherry in Sarasota, Florida. I just moved back to Sarasota area, which I love. And yeah, I'm a huge movie fan and a recent fan. I'm a huge fan of the Steve's and their podcast. So again, I'm just really grateful

Stephen:

to be here today and you have a deep love of Tim Burton and his movies. Tell us a little bit about what you love about Tim Burton and his style.

Bridget:

So I just remember being, you know, young teenager, the first time I'm seeing Tim Burton's film. And honestly, I can't remember if it was Beetlejuice or Edward Scissorhands, but I just remember walking out of the movie theater, like what just happened. It just made such an impact on my life. See, I knew like this is unique, this is different. And I just felt that deeply because I felt different. And I just, just everything, the artistry, the uniqueness, the music, like everything just captured. And

Stephen:

I think his movies always speak to those that have been othered in their lives. And I always find it interesting too, that the most Tim Burton films are family films. There's a part of them that can be scary for certain age children. Like, and we'll get into favorite Tim Burton things in a minute, but he's just so magical. He really is. We went to when we were in Las Vegas two years ago, we went to the gravy, the neon graveyard that was having the Tim Burton exhibit. And so you have all of the old neon signs from around Vegas, mixed in with Tim Burton art from his movies. And. It was so amazing. I'll have

Bridget:

to show you pictures. I'm jealous and that had to be awesome.

Stephen:

It was

Steve:

yes. And before we get into the amazing Tim Burton, what's been making you happy. My love,

Stephen:

oh, there's been so much. That's making me happy. Right now I'm also very happy that it is almost Christmas. It

Steve:

is. That's kind of the whole gig we're doing this month with our episode theme, huh? I

Stephen:

know. And but we've been watching some fun stuff on TV. I, anybody who's been listening knows that we love our drag Queens and I am an O G American idol fan from way back in the day. My love of Paula Abdul got me to watch in the beginning and then Kelly Clarkson sold me on the first season. And so now. Paramount. Plus has the show that combines American idol and drag Queens called queen of the universe. You have

Steve:

to say queen of the universe.

Stephen:

Yes. Just like that. And it's got Vanessa Williams who I love Leona Lewis, who I love Trixie Mattel, who was great. And then Michelle massage, who is just a delight with everything. Yes she is. And Graham Norton is the host. And so instead of like what we're used to with RuPaul where the drag Queens have to lip sync for their life, there is no lip sinking. It's all live singing. So these gorgeous women in these amazing costumes, belting for the gods and it's joyful, it's fun. And I love every second of it. Yes.

Steve:

And speaking of American idol connections, do you have a favorite that you're already familiar with?

Stephen:

Don't you? I do. I love ADA Vox so much. So if anybody that's listening knows. Let her know that we're big, big fans and we'd love to have

Steve:

you on the podcast

Stephen:

anytime you want. I watched that part of American idol for her, and I felt that the fans and the media really did her dirty because she competed as a drag queen. And, you know, as mainstream, as drag has become hate is also very mainstream in America still. And unfortunately ADA bore the brunt of that, but she is not with queen of the universe.

Steve:

She's

Stephen:

fully appreciated. Yeah. And what else has been making us happy?

Steve:

Someone who's not necessarily appreciated yet by good old Hawkeye is Ms. Kate Bishop in Marvel's Hawkeye, but we are enjoying the right. It's almost making me not hate Jeremy Renner's face. I

Stephen:

know, like, I, I, I'm not a fan of Jeremy Renner. His performance of Hawkeye and all the Avengers movies, not a fan. I feel like he's so boring and just wallpaper as a superhero, he is doing amazing in his own show. Good. In the show I'm like, where has he been? Yeah. Where is that? Jeremy Renner band? Because I know it's not the directors because the Russo brothers are fantastic. Yeah. So I'm not sure, but all that is, but the show was a

Steve:

great, yes. I've been enjoying getting to know Kate Bishop, our newest young Avenger and,

Stephen:

Spoiler alert for anyone that's

Steve:

not seen black widow yet,

Stephen:

or I was going to say that may not have seen the last step. Cover your ears real quick. But the, it looks like some of the characters from the Netflix Marvel shows are making their way to the MCU because we just saw king pan. Yes we did. And I was very, very excited

Steve:

about that. Yes. And it was also just not that same last episode that Elena was just circled on screen the new black widow.

Stephen:

And we should not mention any details of it, but we did see the new Spider-Man movie last night.

Steve:

Yes. And that didn't make us very happy as well. We will be sure to give it a couple more weeks before we give some spoiler filled takes on it, but it was just awesome. Yeah,

Stephen:

it was, it was everything that you want it to be. And I do have some marvels on fire marvels on fire, right. Now Ms. Bridget, what's been making you

Bridget:

happy, darling. Well, I'm, it's funny. I have Hawkeye on my watch list and the Spider-Man movie, cause my sons both are raving. They're huge DC comics, Marvel, you know, they're just huge fans. So that's on my watch list and I've heard it's amazing. So I'm super excited for that for my holiday watching. What's making me happy is I have been a huge fan of it's always sunny in Philadelphia, which kind of took a break due to the COVID, you know, TV series. So they have this new season, which is the first to actually the first four episodes are released and they're releasing a new episode every Thursday on Hulu. But the first episode is hilarious and it was very well. It was very, it's very creative. The comedy is on point and you can just see the chemistry of the cast and they're on their 15th season. Oh

Stephen:

my goodness.

Steve:

It's a lot to catch up on. Yeah.

Bridget:

It's but it's just really creative. And then also they go to Ireland, the season two, which has been hysterical. So yeah, it's been really silly and it's very you know, it's kind of like in the same fashion of Schitt's Creek where, you know, these characters sometimes say an act like this awful way to one another, but you just can't help to fall in love with these characters. And so that's how it's always sunny in Philadelphia. So that's, what's making me happy.

Steve:

It sounds fantastic. Yeah. I'll have to check it out. You have some extra time with the, your first week off and how long, 18 years. So that's going to make you happy. I've

Stephen:

never, I, I am not taking five days off in a row since 2000.

Steve:

Oh, my gosh. Yes. And then when I added the weekends and then I was like nine days in a row, you were like, whoa, that's awesome. Good for you. A little more time to get ahead on podcasting and speaking of podcasting, I love let's get into the movie.

Stephen:

And what movie is it again?

Steve:

Nightmare before Christmas. And tell us a little bit about it. It is a 1993, stop motion, animated, musical, dark fantasy holiday film. That's enough at all. It's all right there and directed by Henry Selick and produced and conceived by Tim

Stephen:

Burton. And while this was Selix debut, his career continued afterwards with James and the giant peach and Corleen, which both have the same aesthetic look,

Steve:

he's the stop

Stephen:

motion guru. And it's kind of, you know, we all grew up watching Rudolph the Red-Nosed reindeer. And so this is kind of like that turned up to.

Steve:

Yes. It certainly is. And Burton me and Myla son, a couple other movies, hasn't he?

Bridget:

Yes, he sure has. And fun fact, I don't know if you guys know this. The reason why he didn't direct nightmare before Christmas is because he was already committed to Batman returns. Oh yes. So that is actually why, but he also has stated in many interviews, he did not have the patience because this film actually took

Steve:

three years,

Stephen:

I guess it did. They say like back in the day it took six months to do a single Simpsons episode. So I can imagine what this was an hour and about 20 minute long film, three years. Because if you watch this, the attention to detail, like none of the backgrounds are bland. Like even the castles and things have the little lines in. All of the stone and stuff like that. Like, they worked really hard on this and I, I can understand that for somebody like him to devote three years of his life to that, that's kind of like a James Cameron avatar level of

Bridget:

commitments, right. It just, that kind of just blows my mind, like, you know Netflix had that series, the movies that made it and they talk about, but there's a episode for nightmare before Christmas. And it's really interesting to get the backstory on all of that. Lots of drama actually took place in the production of the film. So

Stephen:

we will have to watch that. Cause we watched the one that related to the movie, Halloween, John carpenter's 1978. Yeah. That was a really, like I thought I knew most of the things around that film. Cause it's one of my favorite. But I still even learned a lot from that

Steve:

show. And while this is certainly one of your favorite Tim Burton films what would you say is your absolute favorite? Tim Burton film?

Bridget:

This is hard, but you know, actually big fish is just very, it just hits in my heart. And then of course, I mean, I always feel like it's hard for me to choose, honestly, between Edward Scissorhands and beetle juice. I it's just always, it's one of those two, but big fish really has a big piece of

Stephen:

my heart that especially, you know, the non-believing son and at the end, when he's telling them how it all happened I have not watched that and not just absolutely. Oh. And it has such an amazing like Albert Finney as the dad, Jessica Lange and perfectly cast. Oh. And then you have a lot of Tim Burton's favorite people in it in some of the background. And it's just a FA we went and saw that my friend Brady and I when saw that when it was in the theater and we actually, like, there's not like a Marvel movie. There's no scenes during the credits, but we were crying so much. We had to wait until we were done crying before we can get up to leave the theater. And it was one of those happy cries that you're, it's like, it's really cathartic. And

Bridget:

the very first time you're watching the fish, you're not expecting Tim Burton to go there. You know? So you're like, wow. And it's statically. It's like different, but the feeling is so,

Stephen:

and it was especially when you get to that town with the no shoes, you're like, that's a very temper right there. My favorite so it's hard for me. Not to say beetle juice because beetle juice is one of my favorites, but I actually have to go back to the first Tim Burton movie I ever saw, which was Pee-wee's big adventure. And it was the first time I had seen a movie that was over the top on purpose and was just so

Steve:

out there. And that since then has become your favorite type of movie. I do.

Stephen:

I love camp for the sake of camp. Yeah. And like, you know how we love death becomes her and like, if you're going to go for it, just go. And like, that's what made me think of as a child, large March terrified me.

Bridget:

That scene was so scary.

Stephen:

Like it was, it was a couple of years before I didn't turn my head when she. And she looked like this and like I had to have to turn my head, or even like later, whenever the is going to melt his bike in his fever dream. That's scary. And it's, it's interesting that, well, I mean, beetle juice is right on the edge of horror.

Steve:

And then Mars attacks. When that came, I was 10 years old when that came out and I was terrified. I had nightmares for days with those aliens. I was just so creepy.

Stephen:

Glenn close is the first lady in that it's

Bridget:

oh God, that's brilliant. I mean, the cast is brilliant for that. I mean it's yeah, Jack

Stephen:

Nicholson. I wish that one had done better, but I don't think people because we were in a post independence day world at that point, and I don't think people were ready for. Burton take on the end of the world. Yeah. True. But I loved it. Oh

Bridget:

yeah. I mean, I'm, I will never say I dislike a Tim Burton film cause I'll find it even if it's not my favorite. I mean, I'll find something, I mean, I'll add, you know, I could say here, I mean, I, you know, I there's something I just love about it and I just think it's him bringing his energy to it.

Steve:

Yeah. Yeah. I mean, speaking of ones I wish did better. Well, nightmare is probably my favorite of his. I do have to give a shout out to miss peregrines because he did such a great job at turning it into a movie. Like, so oftentimes book addict to adaptations when you love the original source material are so easy to mess up. He did such a great job with like what he had, but still making it his own. That like, I, I love that movie for what it is. Have you read those books?

Stephen:

Oh my God, you will love them. And it's written by a guy from Sarasota when I first moved to town. I was at you know, when George Capella knows everyone. And so I made friends with George Capella when I first moved to town and I was at a party that was definitely out of my social circle and the author was there and he's not much older than me. And he had just sold the book and everything, and they were in RD and sold the film rights at that point too. And I mean, it was, it's really, really good. You will ransom Riggs. Yeah. And cause it's all set and Inglewood, Sarasota. Right. Yeah. Yeah.

Bridget:

So, but even the opening scene. Yes. Yeah. With the Ringling circus and everything like that, that's right. I had forgotten about

Stephen:

I do before we move on, want to give a special shout out to Tim Burton for creating, I believe the two best Batman films ever made with that man and Batman returns, especially Batman returns his work with Michelle Pfeiffer as Catwoman and Danny DeVito is the penguin is just so spectacular. That it's really hard for me to see anybody else try to be Catwoman because it's like Michelle Pfeiffer just nailed that.

Bridget:

Agreed. Agreed. And I feel like even most Batman. Fans. I know, even my sons, their favorite Batman, you know, is Tim Burton, Batman and Batman returns. Although they do love Christopher Nolan's version, the dark Knight trilogy on its own, of course is standout. But yeah, I mean, I feel like giving that comic book feel, Tim Burton. It's just everything again, the music, he just knows he is the great storyteller. Yeah, totally agree. And I mean, again, the cast with Batman returns. Perfect.

Steve:

Okay. Yes. And this had an amazing cast, I didn't realize before it, but it also had an amazing composer and in a musical that's more important than ever. This had Danny health man

Stephen:

who was funding. Yeah.

Bridget:

That you could do a whole other podcast on Danny Elfman. I mean, we could start with his beginnings in ongo Boingo with. I might be dating my age, but that was one of my favorite eighties bands and Danny elephant. I mean, really all his music through for many Hollywood films is just, he is just such a yeah.

Steve:

Yeah. But one thing I didn't realize until this research is that he also was the voice of singing Jack

Bridget:

skeleton, Jack. Yeah. And Chris Surandon did the actual voice seeing.

Steve:

Okay. And he was chosen because he sounded like the singing voice alpha was awesome.

Stephen:

Yeah. And it's interesting that whenever it first came out, Disney kind of wanted to hide themselves from the movie.

Steve:

Yes. They were worried that it would be considered too dark and scary for kids. So they actually released it under their production company, touchstone pictures, which is what they used for their more adult films. It was released on October 29th, 1993, just in time for Halloween. And then the holiday.

Stephen:

But it turned out to be a huge success. Yeah.

Steve:

Yes. It had a budget of 24 million. And how did it do in the box office, babe?

Stephen:

The original box office is 91.5 million and it has done like even better.

Steve:

And then yeah. Yes. Not to mention all the merchant, everything from the parks and

all

Stephen:

of that. I mean, yeah. The Disney has fully claimed it as its own

Steve:

because yeah, that started in 2006 with the Blu-ray releases annually. They were like, Nope, it's not touchstones. It's ours.

Stephen:

Yep. 100% now, how did it all start, darling?

Steve:

It actually started out as a poem. That's older than I am. Tim Burton wrote a four-page poem back in 1982 during his days that isn't the animator at Disney. And he kept coming back to the poem, trying to turn it into something, whether it be a short film or a 30 minute TV, special for the holidays with no success until he landed the development deal with Disney in 1990. The poem of course, after the success of the movie was turned into a children's picture. After its success.

Stephen:

Now you had mentioned that Chris Sarandon is Jack speaking voice. And I personally know Chris Sarandon always as Humperdinck, comfort and comforting from the princess bride.

Steve:

Yes. Also had Catherine O'Hara S Sally. We know her from a couple other movies, including Tim Burton's beetle juice, which we covered in a previous episode home alone, which we covered last week. Yes. Correct. And of course she was Moira.

Stephen:

Yes. Now I love that there's even another small beetle juice connection because the mayor is voiced by the same guy that did ortho in beetle juice. Yes. So I love that Tim Burton, he, you know, there's kind of like the Tim Burton repertoire.

Steve:

Yeah. I feel like tiny debt might've been in one or two of his movies.

Bridget:

Yeah. He, he, him and Johnny Depp have like this great chemistry, although I'm content with him not being a part of this. I don't see Johnny Depp in that, that, you know you know, he probably was doing something else, but I don't see his energy in this at all. And that's okay. That's

Steve:

okay. Yes. We also had William Hickey as Dr. Finkelstein and Ken pages. Ogie bogey. They were uncle Louis and national Lampoon's Christmas vacation and king Gator in all dogs go to heaven. Respectively

Stephen:

I'll I'll wait. I like, whenever you hear Dr. Finkelstein, I always hear his whole section from Christmas vacation. I want you to say grace, grace, grace died three years ago. That blast thing.

Steve:

They want you to say the black side.

Stephen:

Ah, I like, it's just that voice that you're like, I know that one. And Ken pages, OGI bookie, that's just a special velvety voice right there. It's

Steve:

perfect for the role it's level of creepiness and villainy

Stephen:

and just his singing voice. I was like 10 more OGI Wilkie songs, please.

Bridget:

Yes. And so if I'm not mistaken, I believe now it's become this annual gathering at the Hollywood bowl where Danny Elfman assembles most of the cast and they perform it live this year. Billy Eilish, I think did Sally

Steve:

and

Stephen:

because I not to toot my own horn, but I am friends with Paul Rubin and I did, he did go back to perform the, his part as Locke.

Steve:

Yes. Wow. Now, as we get into the details

Stephen:

of it was a name I dropped her. She probably

Steve:

picked that up. Yes. As we get into it, like all of the movies we cover it is fully spoiled. So if somehow you've managed to get through any Halloween or Christmas of your life without seeing this movie go watch it. It's on Disney plus right now. And

Stephen:

because it is a Halloween and a Christmas movie, it's both.

Steve:

Yes. Actually, you know, the inspiration behind the movie. Tell us about it. Yeah.

Bridget:

So actually, so there was a poem written, but Tim Burton was shopping and you know how the retailers are these days where, you know, they're always kind of throwing the next holiday at us two months ahead of time. He was shopping and there was Halloween stuff and Christmas stuff right next to Halloween. So that kind of inspired yeah. That we are trying to progress the story as like, okay.

Stephen:

Yeah, I, cause I always tell people, you know, people claim that there's a war on Christmas and I don't believe that that's true. I think there's a war by Christmas because Christmas has already taken over Thanksgiving and it's coming for Halloween.

Steve:

Yes. I don't think it's ever going to meet it though. I love Halloween. No,

Stephen:

I just mean that it's going to like cannibalize

Steve:

it. Yes. Well, if that were to happen, we'd get this movie. Yes, yes. Now it starts off with explaining that this is Halloween and Halloween town. We get to meet all the characters with a focus on our pumpkin king, Jack Skellington, who was then lavished on by the town while Sally has to Ansel her arm to get away from Dr. Finkelstein.

Stephen:

And I love that it starts off with, because the best musicals tell you pretty much everything you need to do. With the opening song, and this is a really good one with the whole, this is Halloween, this is Halloween, and you get to meet everybody in there. And I love that they have a take on Frankenstein and Frankenstein's monster with Sally, where it's you went to see something strange with

Steve:

this is Halloween,

Stephen:

Halloween

Steve:

yes. Just

Stephen:

in case you haven't heard at recess. And, you know, I love that they took Frankenstein's monster and made her into like a living doll. And I thought that was a great way to take something that is, you know, a typical Halloween monster and maybe. Kid appropriate in some ways. They introduced so many different types of Halloween character tropes in that first scene. What are your favorite background characters?

Bridget:

I like the witches in the what's. She called the big whites or the tall, which yeah,

Steve:

which

Stephen:

I love the vampires that they're just so I like not trying to be the lead and I love later where they're all out, but they have their umbrellas up against the

Steve:

sun off. Yes. And I would say, I love in a surprising turn of events, the clown with a tearaway face.

Stephen:

Yeah. And that's interesting that it's a terrible face, but there's nothing underneath. Yes.

Steve:

Which is probably for the better. Yes. And so it does a great job at setting up the characters you can tell as Jack is getting like lavished on by the town's folk, that he's clearly not into it. And he then goes off to lament in the graveyard, singing about how he wants more. And as I was writing this, I was like, what's that song called? He's lamenting things. It's called Jackson. He, he's clearly tired of the same routine in repetition of doing Halloween over and over again. He has his ghosts zero looking on as well as Sally.

Stephen:

Yeah. And she goes back to the scientist to get her arm reattached. And she shares with the doctor that she wants more as well. She doesn't just want to. His kitchen winch slave. Yes,

Steve:

exactly. Now one thing when I saw zero that I didn't kind of make the allegory to pray previously, is that Burton created zero to be the max to Jack's Grinch. And I never imagined like Jack has a Grinch, even though, you know, there is once you've, once you hear it, you can't unhear it. Yeah. But yeah, he's kind of the max character, the dog from the Grinch who stole

Stephen:

Christmas. My favorite thing in that scene is the iconic pose on top of the spiral hill with the full moon in the background. Because anytime you see artwork for the movie, that's what they pick. And it's just, so the colors that they choose and just the whole aesthetic of it, I love and it's right in the scene where I think they nail it head on and it just makes me very

Bridget:

happy. Yeah. It's so great. And zero, you brought up. And Tim Burton puts a dot, I mean, Frankenweenie, there's you know, a boy and his dog or a man and his dog. And so that, you know, you can kind of sense, like that's Tim Burton kind of trying to add like this element of devotion and love into his movies. And zero is just so, like, he doesn't say much by the way, his noises are by Tim Burton.

Stephen:

That does not shock me at all. Yeah. So

Bridget:

that's a little tidbit I found out and I never knew for a long time. So I thought that was kind of

Steve:

cool. Yes. Meanwhile, with Sally and Dr. Finkelstein, a big part of their relationship is how sale Sally likes to poison him with deadly night shade. Yup. That reminded you of

Stephen:

something had doesn't it? Yeah, because you like to poison me with cashews. It was one

Steve:

time vape. One time. I am definitely

Bridget:

allergic Trina

Stephen:

allergy, but it's only cashews because they're in the poison Ivy. Oh, my goodness. Yeah. Did

Bridget:

not know

Steve:

that. And I did not know that it sent him any over the counter

Stephen:

pesto sausage. Yeah. Because they go the cheaper route instead of using pine nuts. They'll put in cashews instead. And you know, you go to Publix, you buy the jar pesto and I died.

Steve:

Yeah. He almost died. But then he poisoned me a week or two later with soapy water. So,

Stephen:

yeah. So that was an accident. There was, I had forgotten to. His cup that way. And it was next to the sink, but I had already put soap in it to wash it out and I had forgotten to wash it out. So the next morning he goes to the kitchen and the dark

Steve:

cup grab Mike grabs my cup. I always take a sip of

Stephen:

water in it and then drinks it. And it had soap and he was so poisoned for a whole

Steve:

day. I was like burping

Stephen:

bubbles. And you can't drink lots of water. Cause that just makes it worse. Cause it'll expand more in your stomach.

Steve:

It was rough. So he got me back for that. So yes, we've poisoned each other, at least once you're

Bridget:

both here.

Stephen:

I love the mayor having two faces. And I honestly think that was like Tim Burton, like as like symbolically talking about politicians in general, like the face they present to the world. And then like when Jack was missing and you see the white face and like his inner trauma and. Each one has a different personality. And I liked that aspect of it because it's not really a horror character at all, except that he's a politician. Yes.

Steve:

Now, after walking all night, Jack stumbled upon a gateway to all the different holidays. We see Valentine's day St. Patrick's day, Easter and Thanksgiving, before he goes into Christmas town, leading him to one of my favorite songs from the movie.

Stephen:

what's this what's, this has covered everywhere. What's this, this white things in the end. What's this? I can't believe my eyes. I must be dreaming. Wake up Jack. This isn't about what's this

Steve:

what's this,

Stephen:

I love that song so much because it's the child like, wonder that he has on seeing all of these yeah. All of these things that he's never seen before, because all he knows is Halloween and there are so many great things like talking about how you know, they're asleep and there's nothing under the bed. Yes.

Steve:

Yeah. Well, what was your favorite thing about Christmas town? So

Bridget:

I think just that, you know how they're showing us the scenes of Halloween and it's dark, and then you're going into the Christmas and there's lights and, you know, the fascination with the things we probably take for granted just like snow, the snow flakes and how everything's intricate and decorated. And it, you know, really creating that magic, how we all probably felt as a child, like feeling that magic there.

Stephen:

I love whenever he pulls the Christmas lights down and they fit right in front of his eyes. Yes. And because I love Christmas lights, we don't put any up and I'm okay with that because I grew up at work. What did I say this

Steve:

year? When we were walking by the house, I was like, if only we had some. By all the lights, put them all up, turn them on every night for us, turn them off every morning for us, and then take them down at the end of the year. I'd be perfectly okay with

Stephen:

I'm having lights, but there are so many houses in the neighborhood that a beautiful light we'll just take Remy for walks. And I just came for a walk every night and I get to see them all. And it's fantastic. And I, so I love Christmas lights. The Christmas lights are my favorite part, I guess the whole time that, you know, what's, this is happening. We've got Halloween town and a panic because Jack's missing. And they're all like, has anyone dredged to the lake? And did anyone check the forest? All those things. And you know, he's only been gone for a day and they're all, like there is only 365 days till the next Halloween 360 4. Cause obviously Jack's not allowed to vacation after all that hard work.

Steve:

Not at all, but he does eventually return to Christmas town and he gathers everyone with the town hall song, revealing his plan to bring Christmas to Halloween town. And of course, Sally poisons the scientist again. So she's able to see

Stephen:

it. I love that. She just that's the thing that she always does. The town doesn't get. His idea for

Steve:

Christmas, she just doesn't get it.

Stephen:

Doesn't get it. And I love that, you know, when the only part that they really liked when it is when he menacingly talks about Sandy

Steve:

Kohl's yes. I like halfway through, he was like, this isn't working. So he gives him what he wants. Yes. Then he becomes obsessed while he sings Jack's obsession. Yeah. I was struggling to capture the magic of Christmas, the

Stephen:

whole cutting a paper snowflake to try to create something and he opens it up and it's a spider. Yes. Or he tries to make his own Christmas tree and that's on an electric chair. Like, yeah. I love that. Can I? And I'm like, there definitely is a blend. I like this blend. I love like

Bridget:

when he's on the chalkboard and he's like trying to formulate Christmas lights, why is this like a math

Steve:

problem? While he's just doing that Sally has a prophetic vision of a Christmas tree. But that doesn't stop him from coming to the conclusion that this year Christmas will belong to Halloween town. It

Stephen:

will be ours.

Steve:

Yes. And so what's step one of his plan to bring a Christmas to everyone. Well,

Stephen:

first they need to get rid of the man in charge. So he sends a lock shock and barrel out to kidnap the Sandy claws and leave and be out

Steve:

of it. Yes. Because when you want to keep a secret from someone, you hire their loyal henchmen to do the task for you. Yup. Always, but I mean, I love it because it gives us the beautiful song that I like. This is I think my favorite

Stephen:

side, I think it's mine too. I

Steve:

want to do it. Let's trust jars

Stephen:

together. Three of the

Bridget:

birds of a feather.

Steve:

not the Sandy claws.

Stephen:

That's such like, I love that too. The voice work in this, in the home movie is just so really, really good. And, you know, people that you see, you know, from other parts, I think Catherine O'Hara is the one, like once you know where enough, but you're, nobody's going to be like, oh, of course, Sally. Yeah. She hides that really well.

Bridget:

And Sally is such a. I love Sally's character in this, because I really feel like, and maybe I'm going off the outline a little bit, but she's trying to help Jack and she's sewing herself up. So she's like trying to fix herself, but she's so worried about Jack. I just love that, that, that in the storyline.

Steve:

Yeah. I mean, as you mentioned, she is warning Jack that Christmas is going to be a disaster, but he doesn't want to hear it instead pushes her to make the Santa Claus costume. And she does it for him because she cares, but she knows it's not

Stephen:

going to work. And so it brought me back to honestly screamed too. And of course it did. So, and nev is in a play in Sydney is in a play in that where she's playing Cassandra and Cassandra sees what's going to happen to everything. She sees the tragedy. That's going to be. And I, I was like, I'm watching this and I'm like, Sally's the Cassandra. She sees the disaster that is coming, but no one will listen to her, but in this, she doesn't have a strong enough voice to get up there and say, this is going to end poorly. We've got to stop in a way that people will listen.

Steve:

Yes. Meanwhile, the tree, our return with Santa Claus. Nope. With these turbines. But they're sent right back to go through the right door. Meanwhile, Dr. Finkelstein is creating the reindeer and slay one might say the whole town is making Christmas. So what are your favorite toys? The town

Stephen:

makes, oh, that one is I honestly love the duck with the gunshot wherever you took my

Steve:

fucked up

Bridget:

dog. And just like the scary dolls

Stephen:

and the dolls with that ahead, or they have that beautiful toy car that they crushed with a hammer. Yes. I mean, all of that, it's like the perfect blend of Christmas and McCobb

Steve:

yeah. The reef that comes

Stephen:

to life. Yes. And the sleigh is made from a coffin. Like this is brilliant stuff.

Steve:

Yeah. And certainly a is now eventually lock shock and barrel do show up with Sandy Claus, a jacket, shocked to learn. He doesn't have claws, but he has hands. He takes his hat to finish off the costume. Meanwhile, Sally continues to fail at convincing anyone that this is all

Stephen:

wrong. And of course the kids take Sandy to meet Augie boogie because the kids think that if they give Sandy close to Augie boogie, then Augie can take over Halloween town. And they'll be kind of like the crown princes. And that was, they're trying to tell. Sandy Claus over there, it was like, how did you ever heard of peace on earth, Goodwill towards men? And the kids are all like,

Steve:

no.

Stephen:

And then we get OGI bookies villain song, which is this new Orleans jazz brilliance. what have we stand at? Clause scale. So you're the one everybody's talking about. Russia. I can't believe you gotta be. This can be the right guy. I love that zone so, so much. And you love a good villain. Love a good villain song. Like my favorite Disney movies are the ones that have a villain song. Ulla you pull, run forwards and it's all.

Steve:

Yes. Now backing Christmas town is Christmas or back in Halloween town. As Christmas is starting. Sally uses fog juice to thwart Jack's plan because the reindeers can't see in the fog, but right out of a Christmas book, cause Jaxton has homework. They get zero as Rudolph when he leaves, Sally gets her own song. Aptly named Sally, sorry.

Stephen:

I mean, they're really creative with the songs now.

Steve:

They are.

Stephen:

Sally song Jack's lament like Vaxis this was some really good creative thinking on these song titles,

Steve:

but on the flip side of being genuine creative thinking, I only just realized during research for this movie, that zeros knows that lights up, like Rudolph is actually a little jack-o-lantern

Stephen:

that's right. I did not know that until we read, I read this in the outline.

Steve:

Now, what do you think of Sally saw?

Bridget:

So sweet. I mean, you just feel like she's miserable. She's at a low point and yeah, and I mean, Kathy again, Catherine O'Hara is Boyce her range. Like it's perfect. Like you're feeling poor, Sally.

Steve:

I love her. I do too. Yes. I mean, well,

Stephen:

Jack is, is ruining Christmas. Yes.

Steve:

By accident, but he's giving their twisted gifts and the world is ready to take military action against Jack.

Stephen:

I love the first one where the kid comes downstairs and sees Jack and Jack leaves. And he can't do the whole ho he's entered the home. And and the parents are like, what did Santa Claus leave? You? And the kid pulls out a Strunk and hand. Yes. I was like, it kind of looks like the shrunken head from beetle juice from the

Steve:

guy in the waiting room. That's right. Yep. Now Halloween town's residents. Couldn't be happier with how it's going because they think this is exactly what they were all set out to do. Exactly. They do, and up. That's sad though, when Jack is shot out of the air presume I'm

Stephen:

dead. And I love that at first he's like, they're celebrating me. Whoa. That one was a little close there fellows. And then it's like, oh, you're trying to hit me.

Steve:

Meanwhile, Sandy tries and almost rescues Santa Claus, but ultimately he gets caught by Okie buggy as well. So now the

Stephen:

director's leg at the

Steve:

door. Oh

Bridget:

yeah. He is not giving up in this movie. No. And she's not giving

Stephen:

up. And I, I think it was in her song where even though she says that, you know, she's not good enough for Jack. But he's her best friend that she's going to do what she can because in the end she knows what is right. And she knows what's important even. Jack. Can't see it just yet.

Steve:

Yes. Oh, meanwhile, he is alive in the cemetery cause he's already dead, but he sings his poor Jack song that re inspires him to save Christmas and to take pride in the fact that he is the pumpkin king. I

Stephen:

love that whenever it's just that moment of realization for him that I don't need to be Sandy Claus. I am. Yeah, this is me.

Steve:

This is me. Yes. Jack manages to save both Sally and Santa Claus from OGI and his wheel of torture, reducing him to a literal pile

Stephen:

of bugs. And like there are parts of Ogee buggy. Scary for a child.

Steve:

I mean that, that wheel of torture that he has, it's just not great. Now what I found interesting isn't in an earlier draft of the script, they had planned for OGI to be the evil scientist, Dr. Finkelstein in disguise. However burden was so revolted by the idea because it was not part of his original vision that he had that stricken from the script right away and said no, over my dead body.

Stephen:

Yeah. I, I think that looking needs to be this material being that is, you know, he is the essence of nightmares or as he said, I'm the shadow on the moon. And I think that that is needed. You need that unspoken. Like bogeyman type of character that they found a way to put into physical form, even though it's just a burlap sacks soda, because in the end it's just evil and bugs and vile things sewn up in there. Then whenever you take it off, it all falls apart.

Steve:

Yes. So Santa is able to fix Christmas, even bringing it to Halloween town, resulting in a reprise of what?

Stephen:

And I love that because they've got the snow coming down and the vampires are ice skating, which I thought was a really cute. Yes,

Steve:

it certainly was. And it ends with Jack and Sally sharing a moment in the graveyard.

Stephen:

Ah, very sweet lovey. I love it.

Steve:

And what do you think are the ending of the movie?

Bridget:

I was in that movies that made us, they talk about that there were alternate endings and Tim Burton threw, fits over that as well. He wanted, you know,

Stephen:

he wanted just that specific ending with and it does end appropriately because Jack has come to the realization that Halloween is what he is meant for Sally stood up to try to do the right thing. And they both see each other

Steve:

for who they are for who they are. Yeah, no, I certainly love it. And like any successful movie, there have been talks of SQL on and off since it pretty much came out. Right. I know in 2001, Disney wanted to produce a SQL using computer animation and Burton convinced Disney to drop the idea, looking to keep the films purity rather than having Jack visit Thanksgiving worlds or the like. But if there had been a SQL based off of another world, what world would you have wanted them to go to?

Stephen:

So I had a whole like movie idea. It wasn't that Jack had learned his lesson because I don't think you want to take away his character growth, no people that have not learned their lessons are lock, shock and barrel. And they find something written in the. That tells them that if they can steal magical artifacts from the other lands, they can resurrect Ogee, bookie. And so I see them going to the other worlds and not one specific for a movie. Like it's hitting all of them where they have to get the Christmas tree star or the special Easter egg, and they're causing chaos and everything. And Jack Stanley and zero have to band together to go to these lands, to help put things back the way they should have been. I

Steve:

love that. I love that idea too. I just was ready to crack up because as you were saying, like they steal important things from each land, like Mr. Land, they

steal

Bridget:

Jesus. Well, it's funny. Cause when you asked me like what, where, and I thought of Easter and then I thought, yeah,

Steve:

They already got the bunny.

Bridget:

I was like, well, but I love this

Stephen:

idea. Thank you. And like, and then it doesn't call us and it sets up a final confrontation because after all this, you still want OGI to be able to come back and have a song and then have something like Jack and Sally can, as a final confrontation with Ogee, that way it still keeps the purity of the original. And it gives them a way to kind of see what's going on in the others and a way to help them see other cultures as well. Yeah. An idea

Bridget:

to Jack and Sally have a family and the kids, it's kind of like repeating the same story and they run away and they decide like, let's go over here. Let's go to Easter land or let's go over here. And, you know, they're kind of like going on their own little journey, Jack and Sally in the town. I think your ideas butters even, but there there's possibilities, but then again, I kind of feel like leave this alone at the same time, because it is perfect the

Steve:

way it is. I agree. Yeah. I mean, and February of 2019 rumors were circulating, the Disney was considering either a stop motion SQL or doing a live action remake, neither one materialized.

Stephen:

I, as long as Tim Burton directed the live action remake, I would be okay with seeing it because at that point Burton eyes, like, you know how he did Alison Wonderland and how that was like his demented take on, because that was hard to as a, as a fan, as a fan of Alice in Wonderland to see his take on it. I was like, Ooh, okay. I just have to go for it. And then you can really appreciate it. And then. They had never made this equal that wasn't his but as long as he was involved with a live action of this, I would be okay,

Bridget:

Tim, Burton's not involved with this. I can't get behind it because it's not, you know, I just feel like the essence of it has to come from

Stephen:

him. And so Burton NESC.

Steve:

Yeah. Yes. I mean, I loved as a gamer that while it was non-canonical, which means it didn't take place according to Tim Burton and the universe, the film was featured into the kingdom hearts games, and they were some of my favorite worlds in those games. Cause they pretty much insert Sora as this like third party character, like being part of the plot of the movie. So it followed the plot of the movie, but you got to like actually play in this world where like in the first game you were in Halloween town fighting shadows, and then you were like in Christmas town in the second one. And I just feel like it was great. Like they kind of brought these like imaginative worlds to life in a way it was fun playing through.

Stephen:

And I'm still waiting for one of the parks to create a ride of some side of some sorts. That's like immersive with that. Like, I don't want them to get rid of the haunted mansion, but something along the lines of that, whether you're riding through and experiencing this is Halloween, and then you get to experience the what's this, and maybe even a dive into Ogee bogeys area before you're rescued by Jack.

Steve:

I liked that. Yeah.

Bridget:

Don't you find it interesting too, that, I mean, when this first came out, you know, in 1993, it wasn't until at least a decade, maybe more so that Disney kind of integrated nightmare before Christmas things into the theme parks, it took a while. I think they were waiting. And then once they realized, oh, there's a cult following here, we can. Yeah,

Steve:

capital one. Once they know people will spend their money on something they love and they're

Bridget:

like, oh, there's Jack and Sally walking around Disney.

Stephen:

Oh yeah. For the, Mickey's not so scary Halloween. And because Disney has embraced it, all the Disney files embrace it more too. And they've made so much more money now that they've embraced the movie. Yes.

Steve:

And then I thought of you, it, with your love of Sally, would that on February 22nd, 2021, he was announced by Disney publishing. That SQL is being written in the form of a young adult novel written by Shea or I'm Shaw following Sally after the events of the film. And this book is titled long live the pumpkin queen, and it is coming out next July, July 5th, 2020. So we will get our SQL in that.

Stephen:

And so it's the same publishing arm that did the Hocus Pocus sequel. Yes.

Bridget:

That's amazing.

Steve:

So who knows if the book is a hit, what that might mean for the movies, but I'm excited to see how the pumpkin queen is in the future.

Stephen:

Now, what are your final thoughts on the movie?

Steve:

I want to say it is one of the few movies that could be a holiday movie for two different holidays and fits both. It's a perfect Halloween movie and it's a perfect Christmas movie and I love it for that, where it stands in each holiday.

Stephen:

Okay. And it's so magical, like for all of the right reasons. And I love its sense of wonder about everything. Even the, you know, even lock shock and barrel and their sense of wonder some of the things they're finding around. Like, I don't know. I always love, I think it captures the spirit. Of being a kid at Christmas. Yes, extraordinarily. Well, it

Steve:

does. And it's one of those few like holiday movies that I could see watching, not around the holiday season. Like I could watch the SMR so I could watch it in August.

Bridget:

Yeah. Yeah. I mean, I watched this a few times. I mean, I do, it's, it's one of those movies I put on if I'm like cleaning or I just want a movie in the background, it's in that realm of movies that I want to hear the music, I love the lines, you know, I love everything about it. And I also just think this is like capturing the human spirit. I mean, you know, the grass is not always greener and just like appreciating what is,

Stephen:

yeah. I just show you, because I wrote this last night and I wrote it's all about the grass is greener, you know? Or is it just new? Yes. And so that's exactly what I got from. Jack had to experience for himself that the grass wasn't greener. It was just something that he wasn't familiar with, but it turns out what he had had all along was what he was meant to have.

Bridget:

Yes. We also have to talk about that. You and I have the same favorite line. One of the lines is just because we cannot see it doesn't mean we can't believe it. So

Stephen:

yes, that's. I like the whole idea of believe. Yes, I hold true in my whole life. Like, you know, the spirit of Christmas and giving whether it's, you know, a guy in a red suit or just the magical human kindness that can happen this time of year. Like it's all about belief

Bridget:

then just adding some Tim Burton, ask Intuit. If you look at a lot of Tim Burton's films, aesthetically, it can be scary. Right. And I think it's this great thing that Tim Burton is. This amazing, sensitive being he's unique. He is introverted. He's cut, but you can sense, like, it's a great thing of don't judge a book by its cover

Stephen:

100%.

Bridget:

Don't judge his films by the cover because there's this underlying like such a humanness to it, of all that we experience and love is a theme in a lot of his movies.

Steve:

Yes. And there actually were some morals that we didn't see or realize necessarily that you read up on.

Bridget:

Oh yeah. So actually, as we were kind of, I wanted to kind of research because I knew that Steven Steven would be like so prepared, but I came across and, you know, I didn't even, I used to teach and I mean, I wish I would've came across this article Years ago, but preparing for today there, I came across this great article published by teaching with an edge. And it's six lessons that kids can learn from, from the nightmare before Christmas. And I'm just going to go over. I won't go over the article, but some of the main points was consider the consequences of your actions. Is it name in the movie? Listen to others who are trying to help

Stephen:

you, Sally would like everyone to remember that yes,

Bridget:

cultural appropriation is wrong. Yes,

Stephen:

it is wrong. And that's a great way to, you know, you see that, that, you know, they like the idea of Christmas, so they try to take it and miss the whole point. Yeah.

Bridget:

Other cultures are impossible to

Stephen:

understand which that's 100% truth. If you can't live it, you can't know it. Yeah.

Bridget:

And this is my favorite. If there's nobody better to beat.

Stephen:

And, and I, that was Jack finally. And the graveyard realized that.

Bridget:

Yeah. And so I just thought, oh, and the, and there was another one when you make a mistake, do whatever it takes to set things. Right. Jack did that. Yeah. Jack, you know, it took him a minute, but he did it.

Stephen:

Oh, thankfully. He was able to rescue Sandy Claus and Christmas wasn't canceled. Yes.

Steve:

I agree. So, yeah. I love the movie. Great movie. Yes. You know what? I also love our fans. Yes. I love our fans and our listeners. We love to hear from you. And we'd love to hear your thoughts on this movie. Well, how can they talk to us about it? They can email [email protected] or they can get involved in the conversation where

Stephen:

on all of the socials, whether that is Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and now even Tik TOK at happy life pod. Yes.

Steve:

And until next time,

Stephen:

everyone

Steve:

stay happy.