Christmas in Tattertown

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Christmas in Tattertown
Created byRalph Bakshi
StarringCharles Adler (voice)
Country of originUnited States
No. of episodes1
Running time30 minutes
Original networkNickelodeon
Original releaseDecember 21, 1988

Christmas in Tattertown is a 1988 television special created and directed by Ralph Bakshi about a place where everything discarded in the world came alive. It aired on the cable television network Nickelodeon.


A young girl named Debbie, her doll named Miss Muffet and a stuffed dog are sucked into the realm of Tattertown, where discarded items come to life. While the stuffed dog maintains his loyalty to Debbie, Miss Muffet, who has long felt oppressed by the wear and tear of being a child's plaything, quickly runs off and transforms herself into Muffet the Merciless, set on conquering Tattertown by organizing Tattertown's seedier underground figures into an army.

Completely oblivious to Muffet's intentions, Debbie decides to introduce the concept of Christmas to Tattertown, where it is apparently a foreign notion despite some of the items in Tattertown being an old Christmas wreath and an evergreen tree. Tattertown's residents are consistently unable to grasp the concept of Christmas, and in desperation, Debbie plays the original recording of Bing Crosby's "White Christmas" as Muffet attempts an air raid on Tattertown; the raid fails when Muffet's henchmen are distracted by the song, and Muffet lands in jail.

While the residents did consider "White Christmas" to be a beautiful song, it is never resolved whether anyone ever grasped the true meaning of Christmas.


Bakshi originated the idea for Tattertown in high school, where it was originally a comic strip called Junk Town; the strip made light of the human condition by showing the value of things we throw away.[1]

Bakshi worked with Nickelodeon to bring his strip to life as a regular television series, which would have served as Nickelodeon's first original animated series. In 1988, they commissioned him to create a pilot for the series, it aired on December 21, 1988 during the network's Nick at Nite block of programming.

Originally the series was to be picked up in 1989 for 39 episodes, but the project was abandoned. Nickelodeon renamed the pilot Christmas in Tattertown and aired it annually as a special until 1992. Bakshi has retained rights to the pilot and in an interview on his official website conducted on August 2, 2007, he confirmed a DVD release, however, no such release has happened.[citation needed]

Nickelodeon would not add original animated series (Nicktoons) until August 1991, when Rugrats, The Ren & Stimpy Show and Doug aired their first episodes.


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