I love the story of Rudolph, but parts of his song upset me

Published 2:12 pm Friday, December 23, 2016

Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer is a Christmas icon.

We all know this.

We learned the words to the song seemingly when we came out of the womb.

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We’ve seen him a hundred times in various iterations of media. What sticks out most in my mind is the Claymation features. What classics! Somehow, the magic in those old films still hold up to this day. The brilliance shines most in the values and good-natured lessons they teach.

But one little part of Rudolph lore has always irked me.

In the song (and displayed in the Claymation movie), Rudolph’s nose is a source of embarrassment for the poor little guy. It freaks his parents out so much that they put a black nose cover over the glowing snout. I suppose that’s just a good mom and dad looking out for their kid.

But here’s where the story starts to upset me.

“All of the other reindeer

Used to laugh and call him names

They never let poor Rudolph

Join in any reindeer games.”

So because Rudolph has the reindeer equivalent of a superpower, the other reindeer have to laugh and insult him? I don’t think it could be more obvious just how jealous these other reindeer actually are. They all look exactly the same! Shouldn’t one of them be dying to look a little bit different?

Rudolph gets sent away with howling laughter following behind him into the woods. I’m sure the other reindeer get even more jealous when the sole female reindeer in the pack (apart from Rudolph’s mom) chases after Rudolph.

Next is the part that upsets me the most.

“Then one foggy Christmas Eve

Santa came to say

‘Rudolph, with your nose so bright

Won’t you guide my sleigh tonight?’

Then how the reindeer loved him

As they shouted out with glee.”

Santa recognizes Rudolph’s amazing talent. Of course he does, because Santa is smart, loving and one of the most intelligent people in this tale.

But the other reindeer, who spent all this time shunning him because he’s a “misfit”, suddenly like him now. You’ve got to be kidding me. I’m disappointed that it took Santa using Rudolph’s power in a brilliant way for the other reindeer to start liking him.

They’re all very lucky Rudolph is such a nice guy, because most people wouldn’t forget about the bullying they were put through so easily. The other reindeer spent a whole verse of the song insulting him. But as soon as Santa dishes out praise, they jump on the bandwagon.

Oh, come on!

I’m glad everything worked out in the end, though. Rudolph is the equivalent of Superman for reindeer, and deserves all the recognition in the world. I guess that’s why the song says it best.

“Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer

You’ll go down in history.”

Merry Christmas!