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Rudolph's Shiny New Year (1976)

TV Movie  |   |  Animation, Family, Fantasy  |  10 December 1976 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.8/10 from 1,698 users  
Reviews: 17 user | 6 critic

Rudolph must find for Happy, the baby New Year, before midnight, New Year's Eve.


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Complete credited cast:
Sir 1023 (voice)
Harold Peary ...
Big Ben (voice)
Paul Frees ...
Billie Mae Richards ...
Rudolph (voice)
Don Messick ...
Papa Bear (voice)


Father Time sends Santa a message telling him that the baby new year, Happy, is missing! And without the baby new year, it'll remain the old year forever. But it's foggy and snowing, so Rudolph's the only reindeer for the job. Rudolph learns that Eon (ugly buzzard) is also searching for Happy, so that eon life will never end. With the help of 1 Million B.C. and Sir 1023, and 1776, Rudolph searches through the islands of the Archipelago of Last Year and races against eon to ensure a Happy New Year. Written by Kathy Li

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


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Release Date:

10 December 1976 (USA)  »

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Did You Know?


Red Skelton recreated his popular radio character "Junior" for the voice of the Baby Bear on Fairy Tale Island. See more »


The calendar page sail on the boat with which Rudolph sails through the Archipelago of Last Years is labeled as "August 1928," but the calendar page is November 1928. See more »


[first lines]
Father Time: [singing to the tune of Rudolph the Red-Nose Reindeer] You know Rudolph who guided and pulled Santa's sleigh / and who saved Christmas by lighting the way. But there's more to tell / Rudolph saved the New Year as well.
[shifting to spoken dialog]
Father Time: And it all began that same foggy night.
See more »


Follows Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964) See more »


Have a Little Faith in Me
Performed by Rudolph
See more »

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User Reviews

Happy New Year with Rankin/Bass
2 February 2013 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Rankin/Bass have been responsible for some of my favourites. Of their specials my favourites are Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer and Santa Claus is Comin' To Town. On the most part I did like Rudolph's Shiny New Year. Of course it is not as good as Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer, but considering how timeless that is I wasn't expecting the same kind of quality. I do think that some parts did feel stretched out and Rudolph's Shiny New Year could have been told quite easily in half the running time. It does look great though, a lot of detail went into the visuals and stop-motion animation and it really shows, managing to be both enchanting and wonderfully twisted. The score is fitting and whimsical, and while the songs are not among the most inspired or memorable from the Rankin/Bass specials- I personally did find Raining Sun Shine instantly forgettable- there are some pleasantly upbeat ones, the best being Hap-Hap-Happy New Year. The writing has its charm and fun, if not as fresh, witty or touching as some of the best Rankin/Bass specials. The story is interesting, the scenes with Happy are very sweet and what initially seems mean-spirited(I'm talking about Happy having big ears) comes across as touching in the end(I can also see a lot of people relating to Happy for this). There are some strange moments that can lose you first time, but the more times you see it the quicker you feel that it's part of the charm. Of the characters, all of which are engaging with some endearingly quirky names, my favourites are Rudolph, Father Time and Big Ben, though it is difficult not to love adorable little Happy and Aeon is a decent enough villain(even if there are better Rankin/Bass villains around, namely Burgermeister). The voice acting is terrific, Red Skelton being the standout. Overall, not one of the best Rankin/Bass specials but has a lot of good things. 8/10 Bethany Cox

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Message Boards

Recent Posts
When Happy falls off Eon... StephG72
Which New Year? bgrubb
First Post! Sixteencandles77
Rudolph is no hero... carniveroushamster
Eon just 'hangs out' jolly_mon7
OM (One Million) kinda looks like..... mr_yoshi_man
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