(Welcome to DTV Descent, a series that explores the weird and wild world of direct-to-video sequels to theatrically released movies. In this edition, we go digging for leftover Christmas spirit the sequel to the Arnold Schwarzenegger-led holiday hit Jingle All the Way!)

It’s December, and you know what that means. Nothing. Absolutely nothing, as the calendar is an arbitrary construct meant solely to make us think we matter in the universe. It also means regular movie columns sometimes shift their attention towards a focus on holiday films, and we here at DTV Descent aren’t about to buck tradition. (And by we, I mean me.) So this week I’m stoking the fire, sipping some hot chocolate, and checking out the direct to video sequel to 1996’s Jingle All the Way.

The way it usually works here is that a good to great movie gets a poor to abysmal DTV sequel, but what Jingle All the Way 2 (2014) suggests is… what if the original is pretty bad too? Don’t get me wrong, it’s not a complete Christmas comedy dud like National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989) and instead actually delivers a couple fun sequences. It has a major weakness, especially with its lead character, and that’s an element that’s actually improved in the sequel. What I’m saying is, all things considered, the DTV sequel starring Larry the Cable Guy might just be on par with the big-screen Arnold Schwarzenegger movie. Honest.

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Jingle All the Way 2 trailer

I know, it’s too early to start throwing Christmas movies at you. But this only looks like a Christmas movie. In fact, I believe this trailer for Jingle All the Way 2, starring Larry the Cable Guy, is actually a bunch of footage dressed up as a real movie for Halloween. Sadly, Larry does not play the character originated by Arnold Schwarzenegger in the 1996 movie. That might be a pretty good trick. He’s just another dad trying to get a great gift for his kid. Hint: this Jingle All the Way 2 trailer is not the gift. Read More »

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Briefly: Almost 20 years after Howard Langston dove after Turbo Man, a sequel to Arnold Schwarzenegger’s 1996 holiday film Jingle All the Way is going into production, from Fox and WWE films. But this isn’t going to be an Arnie film, and for those late ’80s and ’90s kids who hold the original film in some holiday (or comedy) esteem, this probably isn’t going to be the sequel anyone wants.

Larry the Cable Guy will star in the direct to video sequel, along with WWE’s Santino Marella. The film shoots in March, and will be available this coming Christmas. Alex Zamm (Tooth Fairy 2) is directing. Merry Christmas? [Variety]