Rudolph, a Case of Cervidae Bullying?

Have you listened to the lyrics of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer?
I mean really listened, not just hummed along as you did your shopping and wondered just how many jars of olives you’ll need to see 2013 out.
It’s a clear tale of bullying.
Rudolph is defined by his glowing hooter; singled out for ridicule by the other reindeer because he is different:
“All of the other reindeer
used to laugh and call him names.
They never let poor Rudolph
join in any reindeer games.”
And does Father Christmas know about this and turn a blind eye? Certainly he is aware of the luminous qualities of Rudolph’s nose.
To give him the benefit of the doubt, he did offer Rudolph the opportunity to shine.
“Then one foggy Christmas Eve
Santa came to say:
“Rudolph with your nose so bright,
won’t you guide my sleigh tonight?”
The song ends with those fickle reindeer who have jeered and shunned poor Rudolph cheering him on:
“Then all the reindeer loved him
as they shouted out with glee,
Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer,
you’ll go down in history!”
What we don’t know is what Rudolph did later. I hope he pulled the sleigh with dignity but saw what shallow fellows Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen, Comet and Cupid and Donner and Blitzen really were, and went off to make friends with other, more staunchly loyal Cervidae friends.
With Bambi maybe. Ah, that could be a happy ever after tale.
I wonder if she wore glass slippers?

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24 thoughts on “Rudolph, a Case of Cervidae Bullying?

  1. Cute post, Isobel. When I was very young I was very confused about where Rudolph went when he went “down in history.” I wondered if that was another place like hell.

  2. i have often had similar thoughts about poor Rudolf. and if it hadn’t been foggy how that bullying would have continued. to give him the benefit of the doubt, i am sure Santa reprimanded them constantly although there wasn’t room in the verses to say so, for to tolerate would not at all have been in the Christmas spirit of joy to the world and good tidings of comfort and joy.
     
    also goes to show that they, like all of us, have a choice of our opinions when we see others who may be different from us.
     
    never thought to give voice to it, but am glad you did! it definitely needed to be said.

    • Another verse could be written surely, and Santa telling the other reindeer to treat Rudolph with respect and kindness would fit fine with Christmas, the season of peace and goodwill to all men and reindeer. Without the fog to raise his status Rudolph could have had a miserable Christmas. Poor boy.

  3. I’m ashamed to say that I never really THOUGHT about the lyrics and the way Rudy was treated by his fellow reindeer just because he had allergies or a terrible cold (haha)……but I do think Santa allowed him to shine (nose and all) by guiding the sleigh. I agree with Lucid Gypsy….I like the way you think…… πŸ˜‰

    Pam

  4. I agree with Gilly and Pam and love the way you think! And write.. : ) I always felt bad for Rudolph and then felt proud of him and never missed the Christmas special about him. I feel sure he continued to pull the sleigh with dignity.

    • Ah now I am blushing!
      You have a Christmas special starring Rudolph? Truly? How does that work? I am picturing a full grown reindeer welcoming guest stars into his lovely shelter, offering them mulled wine and special reindeer treats, while they sing, dance etc. I imagine some are regular hoofers? πŸ™‚

  5. Mrs Rudolf obviously WAS Bambi – you were right first time. Never heard of Robbie though…
    Have to confess, the despicable behaviour of the other reindeer had passed over my head too (haha, no pun intended). But then, I’ve always kind of fazed out with those songs! Amusing comments!

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