The Spirit of Christmas: Frosty Vs. Jesus (1992) and The Spirit of Christmas: Santa Vs. Jesus (1995)

I'm not sure whether the titles for these shorts were inspired by the 1950 Bell presentation, "The Spirit of Christmas," but given Parker and Stone's love of puppetry, I can't rule it out.

If you're not familiar with these shorts, you are familiar with their legacy: cut out of construction paper, these are the first two South Park shorts.

As a show, I have conflicted feelings about South Park.  On one hand, I've seen some episodes I absolutely love.  At its best, the show is clever, cunning, and subversive in a way that's both original and shocking.  The thing is, whenever I've tried getting into the series in any serious depth, I always stumble across an episode containing images or ideas I can't stomach.  The fact they manage to disturb or offend me using what amount to paper cutouts is something the show should be commended for.  Still, it limits my interest.

At any rate, while I've never gotten too involved with the series, I love these shorts.

Until now, I've never seen the first, Frosty Vs. Jesus, but I really enjoyed it.

I've seen the second, Santa Vs. Jesus, multiple times, but apparently I didn't remember it as well as I thought I did.  I made the regrettable mistake of trying to drink some water while watching, and managed to spit it all over myself laughing.

These aren't exactly kid-friendly, but they're absolutely genius.  Minute-per-minute, I think The Spirit of Christmas: Santa Vs. Jesus may be the funniest Christmas special ever made.  These aren't just something you should see once; these require an annual pilgrimage to YouTube every Christmas, so you can remind yourself what the true Spirit of Christmas is.