There are many great pieces in the TTAK archive. With the growth of the blog and so many new readers it is worth sharing some of them again. During his tenure as Editor, Chris published a reader-piece by David Whitsell, Yukon Cornelius: Tool-using problem solver. In it David makes the case that the prevalence of weapons and tools represent the high-water mark for the normalization of the EDC mindset. Especially as it sets an example for children.
“This might not seem like a lot, but in today’s politically correct world kids often do not see programming where good (and at least somewhat realistic) men rightly keep and use weapons. Yukon can do this because he is not a product of our times, but of a more enlightened era in America–1964. That is the year Rudolph made his debut on American TV screens. It was a different country and a different world then; a time when a prospector could be depicted using weapons and tools and no one would bat an eyelash.”
How very different from today, where a picture of a Star Wars blaster on a t-shirt had hoplophobic school administrators in Texas clutching their pearls and banning the dangerous assault t-shirt from campus.
Lest today’s post be completely devoid of original content, I offer this “Today I Learned”:
One thing that always seemed odd in the cartoon was the scene where Cornelius keeps licking his axe. A friend shared this with me and I thought it makes a good compliment to the archive piece.
Apparently, there is a deleted scene, cut to cram in another commercial, where Cornelius uses his axe to mine peppermint. The omission of this important context makes his later behavior seem quite odd.
In an article for TVparty, Goldschmidt wrote that he considers a moment called “The Peppermint Mine Scene” to be “the most significant deleted scene.” It comes right after Rudolph guides Santa through the air to the Island of Misfit Toys. Rudolph’s parents, Donner and Mrs. Donner, Rudolph’s girlfriend, Clarice, and Cornelius are featured, while Donner says, “That’s my buck!” finally confirming Rudolph’s dad is no longer ashamed, as Goldschmidt points out.
But more illuminating is that the scene finally gives an answer as to why Cornelius kept licking his pickax throughout the special. In this deleted scene, Cornelius throws his ax in the air, lets it strike the ground and then, after licking it as he has been wont to do, declares, “Peppermint! What I’ve been searching for all my life! I’ve struck it rich. I’ve got me a peppermint mine … Wahoooo!”
Huh. Who knew?