Saturday, December 15, 2007


We were visited last weekend by PHILLIP POTEMPA of THE TIMES newspapers and he wrote this!

Cover concept by Bob Plant

After seeing my friend BOB PLANT (Round 2) at my BORDERS book signing last weekend, I thought back to the days when we were going to do a BOOK/FIGURE package with PLAYING MANTIS in 2001! Bob did several wonderful, alternate cover concepts for my book and this was one of them that I REALLY liked. When I was signing books at the zoo, a few women asked me to draw RUDOLPH & CLARICE together and this image immediately popped into my head.

Another original RUDOLPH cast member that survived..

This guy is from the collection of ROMEO MULLER (Photograph by Gene Muller). I think it was given to Romeo during the 10th Anniversary party for RUDOLPH. It looks like Donner or one of the reindeer team from the 1964 special.

Friday, December 14, 2007

RUDOLPH Recording session

Arthur Rankin, Jr. gives direction to the RUDOLPH voice actors as JULES BASS stands behind hime. Bernard Cowan is in the foreground and recording engineer Bill Giles is just behind Arthur's right arm.

TONY PETERS designs...

TONY PETERS designed all of the early RANKIN/BASS series and TV Specials such as THE NEW ADVENTURES OF PINOCCHIO, TALES OF THE WIZARD OF OZ, WILLY McBEAN & HIS MAGIC MACHINE and RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER. He had a beautiful lettering style as seen here on these Christmas seals he designed! The lettering style was used on THE TALES OF THE WIZARD OF OZ & PINOCCHIO. TONY resides in NY today and has had a long career in animation and design! (Click image to enlarge)


I picked this HALLMARK Greeting card up tonight from WALGREENS. It features RANKIN/BASS' FROSTY THE SNOWMAN as inked by my friend PATRICK OWSLEY. When you open it up it plays Burl Ives' "Holly, Jolly Christmas." Perhaps HALLMARK didn't realize BURL voiced SAM THE SNOWMAN in RANKIN/BASS' RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER. Cool card anyway!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

PATRICK OWSLEY art for Christmas!

Artist and friend PATRICK OWSLEY is still doing those RANKIN/BASS original art drawings for Christmas! E-mail him at and click the link at the right for his BLOG. He actually did some of the DVD covers for CLASSIC MEDIA and EAST WEST DVD! HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

Collector's DVDs in!

Just received some RANKIN/BASS collector's DVDs! E-mail: Also, check out EBAY under seller ANIMAGIC1 and MISER BROS for some cool things! Orders placed by December 20th, sshould still make it by Christmas! Got in more WILLY McBean (re-mastered), LEPRECHAUN'S CHRISTMAS GOLD, THAT GIRL IN WONDERLAND, THE LIFE & ADVENTURES OF SANTA CLAUS, MOUSE ON THE MAYFLOWER, etc.


The original RUDOLPH & SANTA Animagic figures will be appearing in TOY GALAXY in the Monroeville Mall in Pittsburgh, PA courtesy of . I signed a LIMITED # of my MAKING OF RUDOLPH books for the event. Tons of RANKIN/BASS toys will be available for the event also! Check it out!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007


I heard from my friend Elliot Cowan (Son of RANKIN/BASS Vocal Supervisor BERNARD COWAN) and he is in the process of having the sessions (from the New York Song sessions) from the RUDOLPH THE RED-NOSED REINDEER transferred from 1'2" tape. He said the quality is amazing and there are out-takes, studio chatter, etc. There are also demos of LARRY D. MANN (Yukon Cornelius) singing "Silver & Gold"and "Ruidolph the red-nosed reindeer." AMAZING stuff! Now, hopefully CLASSIC MEDIA will see the value in this material as extras for next year's DVD box set release of the RANKIN/BASS classics!


Tuesday, December 11, 2007

BROOKFIELD ZOO Part 2 Sunday Dec. 9th

The HOLLY, JOLLY Stage on a cold Winter's night...
Questions from the audience...

Trivia and Prizes! Prizes provided by
Kevin took questions from the audience while I signed books.

Could you Please draw RUDOLPH & CLARICE?
What was wrong with the Misfit girl doll?
Mark & Kevin talk RANKIN/BASS Merchandise at the zoo!

The threat of a storm kept some away....
THOSE FUNNY LITTLE PEOPLE danced on Sunday night too!

We want to THANK Ken Grzeslo and all the GREAT people at the BROOKFIELD ZOO for a wonderful RANKIN/BASS Event! They asked us to come back and we just may!

RADIO SHOW Friday Dec. 14

Bob Mangels
Oldies Radio WJQZ
Wellsville, NY (near Buffalo)
I will be on with BOB at 9:40am Eastern time on WJQZ

I want to be a Dentist!

(from l to r: My hygenist MARSHA SOIC, My Dentist MISHA IVETICH and myself)
I had to visit the Dentist for a filling and I always forget about HERMEY THE ELF and I was reminded by DR. PAPPAS in the waiting room. He said HERMEY might have been one of the reasons he decided to be a dentist. MISHA is holding the Ornament EXCLUSIVE of the HUMBLE BUMBLE and KING MOONRACER and MARSHA is holding the DELUXE EDITION DVD release of THE YEAR WITHOUT A SANTA CLAUS available at TARGET (with RANKIN/BASS Documentary). I have been going to HOMETOWN DENTAL CARE since I was in Kindergarten.

BORDERS BOOKS & MUSIC Sunday Dec. 9th, 2007

We received a nice mention in the CHICAGO TRIBUNE Friday section picking us as the #4 thing to do that weekend:,0,1316728.story

Kevin had to start the talk by himself Sunday while THE STARVING ARTISTS were still playing some music!

We met some GREAT fans! We talked a bit about the CBS airing of RUDOLPH and we met a very nice person from RC2 (They bought PLAYING MANTIS) and will be getting their remaining RANKIN/BASS stock!


I always get tons of e-mails at about THE LIFE & ADVENTURES OF SANTA CLAUS. I do have it on a collector's DVD-R to enjoy! The ANIMAGIC head you see at the left was one of the few ANIMAGIC pieces to survive.


Robin Walsh from (check out the restoral pictures on their site!) gets interviewed on NPR under the article title PUPPETS FROM THE 1964 RUDOLPH GET THE STAR TREATMENT! Robin actually restored the original ANIMAGIC RANKIN/BASS RUDOLPH & SANTA figures from very rocky shape, while keeping their integrety intact! You can also listen to the interview BILLIE MAE RICHARDS (Voice of RUDOLPH) and I did for NPR a few years back, from this NPR page...when RUDOLPH turned 40!

RUDOLPH doesn't shine so bright on CBS!

"You mean you never heard the story about how CBS messed up our show? Well, pull up an iceberg and lend an ear!" I never heard so many complaints about the annual airing of RUDOLPH on the network, as I did at my appearances this year. Apparently CBS not only time compressed the whole show BUT they even shortened songs and took out the instrumental section of "we are Santa's elves" again. But apparently the worst thing they did was use sections of both the animation from "Fame & Fortune" and the "We're a couple of misfits" animation and mixed it together during the abridged version of the song "We're a couple of misfits" and Rudolph & Hermey's mouths were not moving when they should have been and vice versa. Who edited this??? I would be happy to help get the correct version of the show on air for the first time since 1964 and help put together a Documentary that would include all of the members of RANKIN/BASS as well as the voice actor cast! This is the longest running, Highest rated TV Special (Not just Christmas) of all-time and CBS needs to start treating it as such! On the commercials they said it is Re-Mastered and High Definition? They still are not showing the PEPPERMINT MINE sequence that was restored to the DVD version in 1998. It hasn't aired on the networks since 1964?

Monday, December 10, 2007


We got an early start to our day on SUNDAY and BORDERS BOOKS in Schaumburg, IL was Rockin' to the sounds of the STARVING ARTISTS!

Den introduced SKATES the Chicago Wolves mascot and the coaches'wife for an event that followed our performance. Dennis is quite the announcer.

' You can see it in my Eyes!'

"Good Afternoon BORDERS Customers! Make sure you take advantage of those BORDERS rewards points!"

STARVING ARTISTS lead guitar player shows up and discusses a RANKIN/BASS sculpting project with Kevin of

Sunday, December 09, 2007

BROOKFIELD ZOO Saturday Night! HUGE Turnout!

My Mom took all of the following pictures...
We had a very enjoyable time at BROOKFIELD ZOO'S Holiday Magic Saturday night! If you can make it out Sunday night, I would strongly recommend it! We want to THANK Ken Grezslo and the ZOO for putting on a wonderful event for all! I signed and drew in many, many books!

The book line got so long, that Kevin had to do the question and answers on the mike alone.

The weather was bad last weekend, so HOLIDAY MAGIC actually began tonight!

RUDOLPH'S Nose was Shining bright!

We will be back tonight and I will have more DVDs!

The HOLLY, JOLLY stage...

RANKIN/BASS Questions and answers....

This is part of our traveling RANKIN/BASS museum!

Kevin was interviewed by Philip Potempa for THE TIMES newspaper. The feature will come out between Christmas and New Year's Day!

The ZOO is decorated beautifully!

A Dancing Elf!