This Was Television On December 6

1964: Rudolph joins in the reindeer games

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, based on the chipper holiday song of the same name, debuted on NBC. The special was produced by Rankin/Bass, the company famous for family holiday entertainments rendered in stop motion animation. Having aired at least once every year since 1964, Rudolph is one of the most popular and enduring Christmas programs in TV history. -A.D.

Today’s Birthdays: Judd Apatow, scribe (45); Wally Cox, Underdog (d. 1973); Sonia Manzano, Sesame Street resident (62); Lindsay Price, fashionista (36);Janine Turner, pilot (50); Steven Wright, comic (57).

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