WHAT'S THEIR NAME? IS IT "PREP" AND "LANDING?" @ 2 December 2011 07:38 PM
Have you ever heard someone refer to Remy as "Ratatouille?" I haven't but I've overheard it. But I must confess that I have had trouble remembering that "Prep and Landing" is the name of this recent addition to the holiday TV season, but the lead characters are named "Lanny" and "Wayne." (Maybe I get it from my Mom, who calls one of her favorite TV shows "Bad Men" starring "Don Hamm."

John Lasseter and the Pixar artists have often expressed their fondness for the work of the Rankin/Bass production company, who still hold the record for the highest number of holiday specials, and the highest-rated ones, too. Prep and Landing is inspired by the perennial joy of seeing favorite specials every Christmas season, yet it wisely does not try, as others have with varied success, to emulate the Rankin/Bass model. There are loads of little nods -- including the distinctive lettering that has become ubiquitous yet began with Anthony Peters' work for Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer and Paul Coker, Jr.'s designs for other Rankin/Bass shows and numerous greeting cards.

Thought it was created through Walt Disney Animation, Prep and Landing is bears the fruit of collaboration with Pixar. The half hour show even seems like a Pixar short film,or Monsters, Inc.  The amusing extra features are much in the style of Pixar, with cute training films (though without the spot-on acerbic edge of the Krusty Krab Training Film episode of Spongebob Squarepants), news reports and commercials. I love this kind of clever stuff and I hope they keep doing it.

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