Here's my favorite apocalyptic Christmas song

To help you get into the holiday mood, I’ve using my cartoon slot on the left side of the page to cycle through a lot of Christmas-related shows. It sure seems weird that, in addition to tons of public domain Christmas video, is able to offer material that’s probably still under copyright, such as Ziggy’s Gift, Yogi’s First Christmas, Mr. Magoo’s Christmas Carol, and plenty more like them. Let’s hope everybody’s okay with that.

Anyway, I noticed that it’s been too long since I shared an 80’s music video, and when I tried to think of one that involved Christmas, my mind returned to Weird Al Yankovic. Sorry about that. “Christmas At Ground Zero” was recorded in 1986, back when “ground zero” referred to an atomic detonation point. Yankovic wrote and performed the song, then directed this video, which stitches together lots of public domain snippets before ending with a live shot from a real, distressed street in the Bronx.

After 9/11, “ground zero” was co-opted to include other attack sites. This unfortunate extension of the phrase has pretty much killed commercial airplay for the song, which had been on its way to becoming a rock music holiday staple. (In 1994, it was included on the Billboard Rock N Roll Christmas CD with Queen’s “Thank God It’s Christmas”, the Beach Boys’ “Little Saint Nick”, and similar songs.) But we know this song isn’t about terrorist attacks, it’s about nuclear war! Much better, right? Enjoy it with a glass of egg nog.