Olive, The Other Reindeer (1999)

olive the other reindeer dvd cover
6.0 Overall Score
Story: 5/10
Acting: 6/10
Visuals: 4/10

Some good jokes

Not a fan of the art or story

TV Show Info

TV Show Name:  Olive, The Other Reindeer

Studio:  The Curiosity Company

Genre(s):  Animated/Comedy/Seasonal

Release Date(s):  December 17, 1999

MPAA Rating:  Not Rated


Martini with an Olive!

Olive is a Jack Russell terrier who doesn’t feel like a dog…she dreams that she is something more.  When Santa Claus announces that he might cancel Christmas due to Blitzen’s illness, Olive believes that he is speaking to her when he speaks about “all of the other reindeer”.  Now, Olive and a cynical penguin named Martini are headed to the North Pole to help save Christmas.  Unfortunately, Olive is being pursued by an evil mailman who will do anything to stop Christmas from happening.

Directed by Oscar Moore, Olive, the Other Reindeer adapts the 1997 children’s book by Vivian Walsh and was produced by The Simpsons’ creator Matt Groening.  It first aired on December 17, 1999 on Fox and has since become a bit of a holiday classic.


Die, Postman, Die!!!

Olive, the Other Reindeer is one of those cartoons that tries to appeal to adults and children and succeeds to some extent.  With a great vocal cast, Olive, the Other Reindeer makes for an interesting holiday special.

Olive, the Other Reindeer almost feels on the verge of being something like Ren and Stimpy.  It very much feels like a Nickelodeon film that is a bit too clever for its own good.  Loaded with jokes, it is pretty obvious where the story will go…that is the part for kids.  The jokes however often are more for adults (are kids going to laugh about a Rolexxx knock off watch or the fact that the heroes are named Olive and Martini?).  As an adult, I couldn’t handle the rather weak story or the art.


You are a dog…not a deer!

The cast is great.  With Drew Barrymore anchoring the show as Olive, she has great backup from Joe Pantoliano as Martini.  Dan Castellaneta (aka Homer Simpson himself) plays the evil postman with no scruples about stopping Santa to prevent carrying cards.  Other voice actors include Jay Mohr, Peter MacNicol, Ed Asner, Tim Meadows, Michael Stipe, and Matt Groening making a vocal cameo.

The art for Olive, the Other Reindeer rather turns me off.  I don’t mind simplistic art, but the show almost takes on a look like South Park, but not as good.  There is some fun music in the special including songs by Michael Stipe and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy (plus songs by Drew Barrymore and Dan Castellaneta).


Olive learns the ugly truth that Santa beats the reindeer!

Olive, the Other Reindeer is a one trick pony.  Yeah, the title is funny, but I don’t like the rest of the story or its presentation.  With weird animation but some decent songs, I just think there are too many fun holiday specials that both are cheesy and/or classic to be bothered by an average one like Olive, the Other Reindeer.  Just pop in Rudolph or Charlie Brown again rather than calling on Olive.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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