A Roy Orbison Christmas

Roy Orbison ... Randy Quaid
Clamdigger ... Terry Sweeney
Clamdigger ... Robert Downey, Jr.
Connie Stevens ... Teri Garr
Leslie Uggams ... Danitra Vance
Don Adams ... Jon Lovitz
Edd "Kookie" Byrnes ... Anthony Michael Hall

[Announcer Don Pardo reads a text that rolls by on a dark screen.]

Don Pardo V/O: Ten days ago, the General Electric Company bought RCA, the parent company of NBC. We at Saturday Night Live applaud this bold, wily, tactical maneuver, which places us under the grip of an even more efficient managerial team. In an effort to bring down production costs, GE has ordered the network to broadcast all previously unaired programming by the end of the fiscal year. The following is from a 1965 Christmas special which was pre-empted by network reports of Hurricane Louise. So we now join the last six minutes of "A Roy Orbison Christmas."

[Before Pardo can finish, we hear Roy Orbison's classic growl and hear the singer's signature tune "Pretty Woman." We dissolve to the set of the Christmas special where Roy, in his usual black suit and sunglasses, and his band perform the end of the song:]

Roy Orbison and his band: [singing]
Pretty woman, don't walk on by
Pretty woman, don't make me cry
Pretty woman, don't walk away, hey
I guess I'll go on home, it's late.
We'll meet tomorrow night, but wait!
What do I see?
Is she walking back to me?
Yeah, she's walking back to me
Oh, oh, pretty woman

[Cheers and applause as the song ends.]

Roy Orbison: [Southern accent] Mercy! Mercy! Thank you. Merry Christmas! You know, as I said about fifty-four minutes ago when I opened this Christmas special, Christmas is for family and friends and here are some good friends of the entire Orbison family -- Connie Stevens and the Clamdiggers!

[Applause. The band plays. The Clamdiggers, four surfer dudes in psychedelic beach attire, run in and sing "Santa's Little Surfer Girl" as '60s pop starlet Connie Stevens, an energetic blonde in fur-trimmed red bikini top, gold lame hula skirt and white boots, joins them and go-go dances to the beat, occasionally chiming in on a line or two:]

There's a cat up north they call Saint Nick
He's got some crazy little helpers and one of them's a chick
She rides his sleigh only once a year
Spreading Christmas cheer

She's surfside and yuletide
Come on everybody and watch her ride
Whoo hoo, Santa's little surfer girl
Whoo hoo, Santa's little surfer girl
Whoo hoo, Santa's little surfer girl

Guys and gals come from miles around
Come to hear her surfin' Santa sound
Well, she can hang a stocking but she's hanging ten
She's hipper than the Three Wise Men

She's surfside and yuletide
Come on everybody and watch her ride
Whoo hoo, Santa's little surfer girl
Whoo hoo, Santa's little surfer girl
Whoo hoo, Santa's little surfer girl

[As the band's saxophonist solos, the Clamdiggers groove in the background and sing Beach Boy-style falsetto harmonies as Connie brings out a surfboard and pretends to go surfing -- a cheesy Chroma-Key screen lowers from above with stock footage of a boat's wake to give the unconvincing illusion that she's really out on the water.]

Surfside and yuletide
Come on everybody and watch her ride
Whoo hoo, Santa's little surfer girl
Whoo hoo, Santa's little surfer girl
Whoo hoo, Santa's little surfer girl

[Cheers and applause as the song ends, the screen is raised, and Roy joins his guests on stage.]

Roy Orbison: Mercy! Thank you, Connie. [Connie and the Clamdiggers exit, Roy growls at her as she goes, then turns to the camera] You know, when our original sponsor found out that my next guest, Leslie Uggams, is a Negro, they pulled out. So I really wanna express my gratitude to the good people at Lucky Strikes for steppin' in at the last minute. Here, with a dramatic reading, Miss Leslie Uggams.

[Cheers and applause as we dissolve to the elegant young singer-actress Leslie Uggams, seated in a spotlight, holding a letter.]

Leslie Uggams: Christmas is a time when we should think of those who cannot be with their families. I have a letter here from a young man in a mental institution. ... He writes: [reads, somber music under] "What is insanity? Is it dreaming dreams that others dare not dream to dream? Is it wanting a world so rich in love that your heart despairs when others call your dreams madness? ... Is it believing that you are the conduit through which the ghosts of slaughtered soldiers ... [must rotate the letter in order to follow the deranged scribblings of the author] ... scream out from their graves seeking revenge on the tiny little men who sent them there? 'Bow-wow,' says Blinky the Space Dog." ... [folds up the letter] Then it becomes totally unintelligible. ...

[Cheers and applause as we dissolve to Roy and the band.]

Roy Orbison: Mercy! Thank you, Leslie! Merry Christmas! And that's the end of our show. [band plays "Jingle Bell Rock" under] I'd like to thank my guests, Miss Connie Stevens. [applause for Connie who enters and kisses Roy] Ah, merry Christmas. And also Get Smart's Don Adams!

Don Adams: [enters, dressed as Maxwell Smart] Roy, would you believe I had a great time? Merry Christmas, Roy!

Roy Orbison: Thank you, Don. Also, Miss Leslie Uggams, my special guest!

Leslie Uggams: [enters, careful not to touch any white boys] Merry Christmas, Roy!

Roy Orbison: Thank you, thank you. Merry Christmas! And Edd "Kookie" Byrnes! Thank you, Edd!

Edd "Kookie" Byrnes: [the teen idol star of TV's "77 Sunset Strip" enters] Merry Christmas, Roy! [combs his hair as teen girls scream]

Roy Orbison: Thank you. And merry Christmas to each and everyone of you. Let's take it on home.

[The Clamdiggers join Roy and his guests as everyone lines up across the stage and sings a shortened version of "Jingle Bell Rock":]

All: [singing]
Jingle bell, jingle bell, jingle bell rock
Jingle bells chime in jingle bell time
Dancing and prancing in Jingle Bell Square
In the frosty air

What a bright time
It's the right time
To dance the night away
Jingle bell time is a swell time
To go ridin' in a one-horse sleigh
Giddy-up, jingle horse
Pick up your feet
Jingle around--

[Over the song, the credits roll:

Produced by

Directed by


Written by

Musical Director

Art Director

All of these names, incidentally, are of real people who worked on similar TV music-variety specials in the 1960s and '70s. Fade.]

Submitted Anonymously

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