Well, another year has passed, and here we are, still together, my lovely friends.
We laughed; we cried; we shared our hopes and dreams and worries and sorrows. We grew closer in many ways – ways for which I cannot express my extreme joy and gratitude.
Many of us experienced great losses from family and friends to jobs and even our homes. Yet, we have our dreams and our friendships. How, you ask?
Through all of the muck and mire, sadness and woe, laughter and smiles, we have Kevin. Sounds corny, doesn’t it?
But, think about it. He drew and continues to draw us together. He has a way about him that envelops good people because he is a good person, and so are we all. Not a fan have I met via the internet or in real life who doesn’t possess great qualities; each of us has a special gift, whether it be art, vids, writing, conversation, jokes, or just being a Kevin fan… we all have him in common, and, so begins our journey to discover each other across the miles and continents.
I truly appreciate the many things about your lives that you share here and with me personally. I am constantly amazed by you and hope to one day accept your kind invitations to visit your lovely homes. Thank you so much!
And it’s because of you, boss. I hope you never tire of how much we appreciate you and your fine work, our heartfelt sentiments cheering you on with your career, hopes that your family remains healthy and happy, and wishes that everything you do goes well, especially your fine efforts with WFIT and other great charities.
Many sincere thanks, everyone. You made this year great!
Merry Christmas to you, my special Sorbo friends…
It’s a Wonderful Life!
Many thanks to our great artists! Merry Christmas!
My good friend, RI in Europe, sent this “The Santa Suit” review as a private commentary about Kevin’s Hallmark Original Movie, but, she wrote such compelling words that I wanted to post her story. She kindly gave permission. Thanks, RI! We appreciate your great insight and willingness to share with us.
Thanks to a friend, I got to see “The Santa Suit.”
I never was big on Dickens in general – or on Ebenezer Scrooge in particular. And I thought that A Christmas Carol has been done to death from each and every aspect it could possibly present that yet another version would only bring just more of the same. Well, it didn’t.
Sure, Shakespeare it ain’t, but the beauty of it is… it doesn’t have to be.
I found the concept of having Scrooge not visited by the Spirits of Christmas, but, turned into Santa both funny and highly original.
The dialogues flowed nicely, the scenes held well together, the characters were all of them… well, characters, each and everyone endowed with something to shine by with well-defined and fleshed-out personalities, well-balanced in themselves between black and white with many, many shades of grey (or rather many colors, really). And I liked the pace, since the movie tried to resume itself to the strictest necessary structure and had, thus, a lot of time to develop its atmosphere.
And yes, I tremendously liked Kevin Sorbo here. There never was too much in the delivery, whether he had to be funny, dismayed, touching, cold, sentimental… whatever – he always hit it right. There were so many scenes in which he was outstanding that I would be hard-pressed if I had to pick one. The (scene) checking the mirror and going, “Yep, still there!” is priceless, and the first encounter with “Darth Elf” (is) superb. But, then, in an entirely different way, so is the monologue/dialogue with the social worker when telling her the “hypothetical” story of someone not missed when disappearing. Out of the top of my head I think I can come up with maybe (maybe!) five actors worldwide (and taking into account all generations I’m familiar with) who can transport the exact nuance of a whole gamut of sentiments as precisely and as accurately dosed via expression only as he does here.
Then there is the “Dickens meets O. Henry” scene with the story of the silver frame, certainly another highlight. The encounters with Marge are, them, too, extremely rhythmed, all of them, as is the low-keyed gentleness in the scenes with the little girl.
Last, not least: I really loved the way he looked/they made him look in this. He was, is and will probably always be ruggedly handsome. But, there is also another dimension to his looks that has been ever since the “Hercules” days (in fact since the earlier “Herc” days) a bit neglected: In addition to being attractive and sexy and all of that, he can also be almost heartbreakingly beautiful in a surprising, touchingly straightforward way. It’s not something he uses (or allows to be used) very often. It happened in “Hercules” here and there. Already in “Andromeda” one got to see it, but, very seldom: Season 1, “Rose in the Ashes;” season 4, “Answers Given to Questions Never Asked;” and season 5, “The Test,” come to mind, but, I’d be hard-pressed to come up with much more in which he lets this… innocent beauty of his (for lack of a better description) shine through and determine the mood of the entire episodes.
It is there also in Last Chance Café to some extent, but, both Avenging Angel and Prairie Fever, as well as the Walking Tall movies don’t use it. Of course, it isn’t something that has to be used; as an actor he has got enough to offer even without it. And I realize that this kind of beauty can be just as much a trap for an actor as it can be a blessing. But, in “The Santa Suit” one can notice how powerful a tool it can also be. I hope they remember it more often in future movies of his.
I was impressed at how easily (and probably without a whole load of money, too) a really… crafty, well-made movie can still come together. I wish they would remember it more often. (Although I have to admit that Hallmark did a good job with Avenging Angel, as well.) And Kevin seems to have had a blast with it and certainly deserves every attention: He always manages to have at least one scene in each one of his works that he does in a completely unique way. This time, though, I noticed at least three.
It’s always such a joy to see talent being let run freely to really accomplish ALL it can.
(Photos courtesy of The Hallmark Channel)
Rhonda from Georgia sent us this great “The Santa Suit” review. Thanks, Rhonda!
This heart-warming holiday movie takes the classic story of A Christmas Carol and gives it a modern day twist. Kevin Sorbo plays Drake Hunter, the CEO (Chief Executive Officer) of Hunter Toys, who has a Scrooge-like attitude when it comes to Christmas… All it means to him is making money, and lots of it, and to that end he plans to dispatch Santas to malls with instructions to tell the kids to remind their parents that Hunter’s Toys are the best!
Unbeknownst to him, the real Santa is watching and is none too pleased with what he sees. So, he decides to teach this Scrooge a lesson, and at the same time, help him find the inner Santa within him. To do so, he turns Drake into his lookalike, complete with white beard and round belly. Thanks to some very creative editing, the T.V. viewers see Drake as he is, but, the characters around him see Santa.
I love the way Kevin played Drake as Santa-in-denial at first, but, then, accepting what has happened and making the best of it. He finds himself having to get a place at the local shelter where he meets a social worker (Jodie Dowdall) and strikes up a friendship with her. In order to stay there, he must get a job as a department store Santa… how ironic!
His first act of kindness comes when he saves the job of the store elf (Darrell Faria), but, the real turn begins when a little girl comes to the store where he is working. She comes every day, but, seems afraid to say anything to him. He begins to sense that the child needs him for some reason, but, he doesn’t know why until he follows her home one day and makes a stunning discovery: She and her mother live in the same house he and his parents lived in when he was a child!
That brings me to my favorite scene in the movie as an emotional Drake/Kriss tells the social worker about his childhood and the great sacrifice his dad made so he could have the bike he wanted so badly. I had to wonder if this memory had something to do with his hardened attitude later in life.
Kevin has always been able to pull off these scenes in the past, and he didn’t disappoint here. Believe me, it was all I could do to keep from shedding a few tears myself!
Something I’ve always admired about Kevin is the way his eyes express the feelings of the character he’s playing. In this movie, despite the amount of dialogue he had, his eyes said much more than words ever could, especially in the scenes with Gemma and the social worker. His facial expressions told the story in such a heart-warming way.
What can I say? I hope Hallmark does the right thing and releases this wonderful movie on DVD, so everyone can enjoy it and learn an important lesson: that there is more to life than making money.
(Photos courtesy of The Hallmark Channel)
Upcoming air times (many thanks to Kevin’s Official Website) U.S. Eastern Time:
Thursday, Dec. 23, 6:00 a.m.
Friday, Dec. 24, 2:00 a.m.
Friday, Dec. 31, 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 1, 4:00 a.m.
In Canada on the W Network:
Friday, Dec. 24, 4 p.m.
In the UK (courtesy of the OESKFC Website) on Sky Channel 327 & Virgin Media Channel 419:
Wednesday, Dec. 22, 7:00 p.m.
Thursday, Dec. 23, 1:00 p.m.
Monday, Dec. 27, 11:00 p.m.
Tuesday, Dec. 28, 5:00 p.m.
Wednesday, Dec. 29, 9:00 a.m.
Lori from Ohio sent Macabre Mansion’s CD audiodrama starring Kevin, “The Fall of the House of Usher,” to her sister, Jean, a middle school teacher in Ohio.
Here is Jean’s great story, including a few of her students’ responses! Thanks, Lori and Jean, and all of the participants. How fun! And remember: Christmas is coming… Hmmm… Stocking stuffer??
For the past 10 years I have been teaching 8th grade English at a public middle school. Trying to instill a love for literature in my students can sometimes be quite a challenge. Since they have been exposed to so many forms of media and entertainment I am always trying to find a unique way to present material.
Somewhere near the end of October or beginning of November I usually begin a unit that focuses on American literature. I usually begin the unit focusing on the works of Edgar Allen Poe as his work is perfect for the “haunting” time of the year. This year, however, I began the unit with another author, moving Poe back a few weeks. I’m ecstatic that I did.
My sister (Lori) lent me a copy of a new CD featuring one of Poe’s short stories, “The Fall of the House of Usher.” Looking at the CD case I wondered if my students would enjoy it. Yes, I knew the cast was comprised of some great acting talent, but, what reaction would a group of 13- and 14-year-olds be? Would they enjoy it? More to the point, would they come to understand the essence of Poe’s work?
After each of my five classes listened to the CD I asked them for written reactions. Here’s a smattering of what was said:
“I could close my eyes and see the actors as if they were in a movie.”
“I knew the voice of the narrator…It’s on one of my X-Box games.”
“Can we hear more stories like this? I loved it when each character has a different voice.”
“This story is much creepier listening to it like this.”
“It’s like hearing our own private movie!”
“I loved their voices. It really brought the story to life.”
Suffice it to say they all loved the story. Not only were they entertained, they were able to follow the story more easily and comprehend the part each character played.
I’ve asked Santa to put this CD in my stocking this year and have recommended it to many colleagues. I look forward to hearing more from Macabre Mansion.
Don’t forget: a portion of the proceeds benefit WFIT!
(Photos courtesy of Macabre Mansion)
Vapor Sky, LLC is a really cool company that creates custom Stellar Portraits of dates specified by customers. They donate to and support WFIT, and were a sponsor at Kevin’s 2nd Annual Celebrity Golf Tournament last June.
Co-owner/co-creator, David Inman, Director of Operations, kindly answered some questions for us about their incredible work and commitment to WFIT. Since he was so thorough, I defer to his information about this exciting art e-retailer. Suffice to say, one of their pieces would be a great Christmas gift!
Please see the interview here: http://tinyurl.com/2d66cso