You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree

As we are told by narrator Kermit the Frog, everyone, from the tall to the small, is searching for the perfect tree. Mr. Willowby (an overly smirky Robert Downey Jr.) needs an evergreen for his party, as does the family of mice that lives under his house.

With:
Performers: Bill Barretta, Julianne Buescher, Kevin Clash, Bruce Lanoil, David Rudman, Steve Whitmire. The quest for the perfect Christmas tree drives this holiday spec, which combines Muppet mice with hammy humans in an admirable message of tolerance for others' holiday traditions. But "Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree" reaches for too wide an audience, mixing highfalutin language with cutesy characters, and ends up a mishmash.

As we are told by narrator Kermit the Frog, everyone, from the tall to the small, is searching for the perfect tree. Mr. Willowby (an overly smirky Robert Downey Jr.) needs an evergreen for his party, as does the family of mice that lives under his house.

As Pa Mouse introduces his family to the tree tradition, Mr. Willowby’s lumberjacks chop down their chosen conifer, carrying the mice off with them.

Then, the tree’s top gets progressively smaller as it travels from hand to hand. Everyone resizes it to make the perfect tree.

Kids should enjoy the Muppet mouse kids, who are spirited and curious. And Leslie Nielsen makes a good impression as Willowby’s crusty butler. But forgettable songs are a bit much for Downey and Stockard Channing, and Downey swallows his dialogue of invented words. Kermit adds a touch of class.

Tech credits are merely OK.

Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree

(Wed. (6), 8:30-9 p.m., CBS)

Production: Taped in Los Angeles by Jim Henson Prods. in association with TN Entertainment. Exec producer, Michael Frith; producer, Ritamaria Peruggi; director, Jon Stone; writer, Mitchell Kreigman, based on the book by Robert Barry.

Crew: Camera, Tony Cutrano; technical director, Tom Guadarama; editor, David Gumpel; production designer, Val Strazovec; choreographer, Diane Arnold; music and lyrics, Michael and Patty Silversher.

Cast: Performers: Bill Barretta, Julianne Buescher, Kevin Clash, Bruce Lanoil, David Rudman, Steve Whitmire. The quest for the perfect Christmas tree drives this holiday spec, which combines Muppet mice with hammy humans in an admirable message of tolerance for others' holiday traditions. But "Mr. Willowby's Christmas Tree" reaches for too wide an audience, mixing highfalutin language with cutesy characters, and ends up a mishmash.With: Robert Downey Jr., Leslie Nielsen, Stockard Channing, Kermit the Frog. Muppet

More TV

  • "A Solar Calculator, a Game Ball,

    Delayed Viewing Ratings: CBS Rules Thanksgiving Week

    As we are told by narrator Kermit the Frog, everyone, from the tall to the small, is searching for the perfect tree. Mr. Willowby (an overly smirky Robert Downey Jr.) needs an evergreen for his party, as does the family of mice that lives under his house. As Pa Mouse introduces his family to the […]

  • Frankie Shaw's 'SMILF' Scores Key Comedy

    Frankie Shaw's 'SMILF' Scores Key Comedy Golden Globe Nominations

    As we are told by narrator Kermit the Frog, everyone, from the tall to the small, is searching for the perfect tree. Mr. Willowby (an overly smirky Robert Downey Jr.) needs an evergreen for his party, as does the family of mice that lives under his house. As Pa Mouse introduces his family to the […]

  • Mario Batali

    Chef Mario Batali on Sexual Harassment: There Should Be 'Zero' Tolerance

    As we are told by narrator Kermit the Frog, everyone, from the tall to the small, is searching for the perfect tree. Mr. Willowby (an overly smirky Robert Downey Jr.) needs an evergreen for his party, as does the family of mice that lives under his house. As Pa Mouse introduces his family to the […]

  • Fox News Launches Marketing Salvo in

    Fox News Launches Campaign to Woo Morning Viewers

    As we are told by narrator Kermit the Frog, everyone, from the tall to the small, is searching for the perfect tree. Mr. Willowby (an overly smirky Robert Downey Jr.) needs an evergreen for his party, as does the family of mice that lives under his house. As Pa Mouse introduces his family to the […]

  • MR. ROBOT -- "eps3.5_kill-process.inc" Episode 306

    Our Staff Picks: TV Shows to Watch the Week of Dec. 11, 2017

    As we are told by narrator Kermit the Frog, everyone, from the tall to the small, is searching for the perfect tree. Mr. Willowby (an overly smirky Robert Downey Jr.) needs an evergreen for his party, as does the family of mice that lives under his house. As Pa Mouse introduces his family to the […]

  • TV Ratings: 'Sunday Night Football' Dips

    TV Ratings: 'Sunday Night Football' Dips From Last Week

    As we are told by narrator Kermit the Frog, everyone, from the tall to the small, is searching for the perfect tree. Mr. Willowby (an overly smirky Robert Downey Jr.) needs an evergreen for his party, as does the family of mice that lives under his house. As Pa Mouse introduces his family to the […]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content