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For more than 30 years, John Kiesewetter has been the source for information about all things in local media – comings and goings, local people appearing on the big or small screen, special programs, and much more. Local media is still his beat and he’s bringing his interest, curiosity, contacts and unique style to Cincinnati Public Radio and 91.7 WVXU. Contact John at johnkiese@yahoo.com.

No Celebration For 'The Grinch' 50th Anniversary?

Courtesy NBCUniversal

"Dr. Seuss' How The Grinch Stole Christmas," the beloved holiday cartoon which premiered in 1966, returns to TV for a 50th year without any celebrations on NBC, TBS or TNT.

You're a mean one, NBC! You're a foul one, TBS!

It could be that their heads weren't screwed on just right.

It could, perhaps, that their shoes were too tight.

But I think that the most likely reason of all,

May have been that their hearts were two sizes too small.

Or maybe NBC and TBS don't care because "The Grinch" wasn't their baby. The cartoon debuted on CBS on Dec. 18, 1966.

Credit NBCUniversal
The Grinch comforts Cindy-Lou Who

Theodor Seuss Geisel in 1957 first published "How the Grinch Stole Christmas," about how the Grinch tried to ruin Christmas in Whoville by stealing all their presents, decorations, stockings, lights, trees, toys, Who-pudding and Who-roast beast (which was something the Grinch couldn't stand in the least).

Legendary animator Chuck Jones (creator of Wile E. Coyote, Pepe Le Pew, Road Runner) directed the TV version, with song lyrics by Geisel sung by Thurl Ravenscroft (voice of Kellogg's Tony the Tiger). Horror movie star Boris Karloff narrated the half-hour cartoon three years before his death in 1969. 

Last year ABC broadcast a one-hour special celebrating the 50th anniversary of "A Charlie Brown Christmas," even though the groundbreaking cartoon premiered on CBS in 1965.

This year, nothing for "The Grinch."  NBC, TBS and TNT will air it a total of nine times, and make lots of money from the TV commercials. And they can't spend one penny to celebrate the Golden Anniversary of a TV treasure?

Credit NBCUniversal

Their heart's an empty hole.

Their brain is full of spiders.

They've got garlic in their soul!

(I wouldn't touch you with a Thirty-nine and a half foot pole!)

Credit NBCUniversal

The irony here is that – just like "A Charlie Brown Christmas," – the message of "The Grinch" is definitely very anti-commercialism.

As Dr. Seuss wrote about the Grinch:  

"Maybe Christmas," he thought, "doesn't come from a store.

"Maybe Christmas… perhaps… means a little bit more!"

"Dr. Seuss How The Grinch Stole Christmas"

Sunday, Nov. 20: 5:30 p.m. and 6:30 p.m., TBS.

Thanksgiving: 8 p.m., NBC.

Saturday, Dec. 10: 7:30 p.m., TBS.

Monday, Dec. 12: 8 p.m. and 8:30 p.m., TNT.

Wednesday, Dec. 14: 8 p.m. and 8:30 p.m., TBS.

Friday, Dec. 23: 8 p.m., NBC.

Watch for my annual Holiday Programming Guide to be posted Sunday, Nov. 27.

John Kiesewetter joined the WVXU news team as a TV/Media blogger on July 1 2015, after nearly 30 years covering local and national broadcasting for The Cincinnati Enquirer. He’ll be posting news about Greater Cincinnati TV, radio and movies; updating your favorite former local TV/radio personalities or stars who grew up here; and breaking news about national TV, radio and media trends. You’ll also learn about Cincinnati’s rich broadcasting history.