“It’s Jingle Time!” -Magee
Ever wonder how Santa is able to travel all over the world and deliver presents in one night? Well, there have been a whole lot of theories and stories made to explain this part of the myth. Multiple stories say he can stop time, that he’s super fast, has magic powers, etc. In today’s special, we see Santa getting some help from his elf workers. In particular, we follow one elf that’s tired of his job. Furthermore, it’s a special made by Disney. Is this a good, original take on a popular story or is this special on the naughty list? Let’s find out. This is Prep & Landing.
Wayne is an elf that is ready for a promotion. Unfortunately, he gets passed up for his partner, whom he trained. Wayne is assigned a new partner, Lanny, for this year’s Christmas missions. But Wayne is deciding to slack off. Unfortunately, everything goes wrong and a child takes a photo of them at work. It’s up to the two elves to fix the situation before one little boy’s Christmas is ruined.
I really liked the idea of this special. I find the idea of elves going into a house and preparing the whole thing for Santa’s arrival really fun and creative. I especially loved the elves’ gadgets: the candy cane grappling hooks, the gingerbread man scanners, the tree trimmers, and such. They all looked really cool and interesting to me. As would be expected, there were Christmas puns galore and, for the most part, they were okay. Sure, there were one or two groaners and a few didn’t feel like they fit into the dialogue. Still, the other little Christmas-y touches were really well done.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t all fun and games. To be perfectly blunt, Wayne is kind of a jerk. When he didn’t get the promotion, he started basically not caring about anything. It made him seem selfish. He was such a jerk character that I didn’t even care when he actually made his eventual turn-around. He’s not a completely irredeemable jerk, but he’d have to do a lot more in order to win me back over. His partner, Lanny, was okay. He was the typical over-eager partner trying way too hard. He wasn’t annoying, but he wasn’t anything special either.
Bottom line, this special is great for the visuals and the ideas. The characters, however, are just sorta meh. I could see this becoming a franchise. In fact, I know that there’s a sequel I still need to see. I’m looking forward to it. I just hope the characters are a little more likable in the next one.