The Heat Miser

Album: The Year Without A Santa Claus (1974)

Songfacts®:

  • In the popular 1974 Rankin/Bass holiday special A Year Without A Santa Claus, Kris Kringle is sick with a cold and considers skipping his Christmas Eve delivery, thanks to his cynical doctor convincing him no one believes in Santa anymore. Mrs. Claus sends elves Jingle and Jangle on a journey to prove there is still Christmas spirit in the world. Unfortunately, the elves land in a town controlled by the Heat Miser, a grumpy hothead who calls himself "Mr. Green Christmas" and prefers temperatures that soar to 101 degrees. The flame-haired crank is the exact opposite of his stepbrother, The Snow Miser, who loves all things cold and frosty. The only way the people of Southtown will believe in Santa is if Heat Miser agrees to allow snow to fall on the town for Christmas.
  • The song, written by Jules Bass and Maury Laws, is the same as "The Snow Miser Song" except it replaces the winter-themed lyrics with sun-scorched alternatives. Snow Miser freezes everything in his grasp, while Heat Miser melts objects with the slightest touch.
  • The Heat Miser quips, "some like it hot, but I like it really hot." The phrase "some like it hot" showed up frequently in pop culture. Inspired by the nursery rhyme "Pease Porridge Hot," it was the name of a 1939 big band number from Gene Krupa and the popular 1959 comedy starring Marilyn Monroe.
  • The Heat Miser was played by George S. Irving, a popular Broadway actor who lent his voice to another Rankin/Bass special, Pinocchio's Christmas (1980), as Mr. Geppetto. He reprised his Heat Miser role in 2008 for A Miser Brothers' Christmas, the sequel to The Year Without A Santa Claus.
  • Arthur Rankin Jr. and Jules Bass produced several hit holiday specials, many using the stop-motion animation technique dubbed "Animagic," including Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Frosty The Snowman, The Little Drummer Boy, and Santa Claus is Comin' to Town. In The Year Without A Santa Claus, the traditional Christmas characters were joined by a charismatic duo. Rankin recalled to Media Mikes: "We had to invent new characters. We had these two brothers, Heat Miser and Cold Miser. They just jumped off the screen and became cult figures. And we just came up with them one afternoon while designing the picture…'let's do this…Mother Nature has two sons and they don't get along…one's in charge of heat…OK, put that in (laughs)."

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