COVER STORY | MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL! In celebration of Christmas Day, Zumble takes a look back at one of the 90’s forgotten holiday specials that is sure to brighten your throwback spirit. A Cool Like That Christmas premiered December 23, 1993 on FOX, directed by David Feiss and Swinton O. Scott III; executive produced by Quincy Jones.
The animated special told the story of Orlando (voiced by Tommy Davidson) a teen in Chicago’s inner city who seeks to find the perfect Christmas gift for his father (voiced by Reginald VelJohnson), which is no east feat. Blessed with an incredible singing voice, Orlando is being courted by the community Reverend to join the church’s Christmas choir, but he is not interested. Orlando has different dreams for his falsetto – to join R&B group Boyz II Men.
Navigating adolescence isn’t easy, especially with his annoying little brother Javis (voiced by Dawnn Lewis); but friends Harlan (Phil Lamarr) and Dead Boy (T.K. Carter) are down for the ride. When Orlando’s friend Marvin (voiced by Tone Loc) finds a brown paper bag full of money that belongs to the neighborhood drug kingpin, Irwin (voiced by Whoopi Goldberg) they find themselves in hot water that only the spirit of the season can deliver them from.
Faced with the tough decision between Pittman Walker comfort shoes for his father and brand-new tennis shoes for himself, temptation gets the best of Orlando. With the guilt of buyer’s remorse, he chooses to buy his father a pair of $1.00 tube socks from a street griot salesman who offers a story about the value of putting others before yourself, especially at Christmastime. When the cheap gift literally unravels on Christmas morning, Orlando decides the best gift he can give to his family is his gift of song.
As fate would have it, Boyz II Men’s tour bus happens to be passing by the church with a stop that will make Orlando’s Christmas solo truly unforgettable.
Additional voice talents include T’Keyah Crystal Keymah, Orlando Jones, Patrick Ewing, Ed Love and Doctor Dre).
HelloZumble invites you to enjoy this obscure classic below and share with your family!