In the 1960's Rankin/Bass animated Christmas Special Frosty the Snowman, would Frosty have come to life if he had not been made of the special "Christmas Snow?"

I know it's supposed to be the magic in the hat that brings him to life, and he even goes back to a normal snowman when the hat is taken off of his head... but, the characters (The Narrator, Santa Claus) emphasize how special and magical Christmas snow is, and what it can really do.

Would the hat have done the same thing to a regular snowman that had been made out of run-of-the-mill snow?

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    I'm going to say that while the hat was magical, if Frosty wasn't made from "Christmas snow" then he would not have come to life. I have no proof to say with any certainty, but looking around I see various bits of info that lead me to believe this to be the correct conclusion. Commented Jun 5, 2014 at 22:53
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    I tempted to post as an answer, "No. I never wondered that." I hate to say this, but this question seems like a bad fit for the site. It's too subjective and any answer is probably primarily opinion-based. Commented Jun 5, 2014 at 23:00
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    Sorry for the confusion. I've revised my original question. Hope this helps. Commented Jun 6, 2014 at 1:20
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    As one of the earlier comments mentioned, it does appear that without the help of the Christmas snow, Frosty would have remained a regular snowman. After reviewing my own copy of the movie, I can see a few clues that would lead you in that direction anyway. It's an interesting question you've posed here. I'm just not sure that it has a definitive answer.
    – DMC
    Commented Jun 6, 2014 at 1:48
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    Good edit and a good answer followed. VTC retracted. : ) Commented Jun 6, 2014 at 9:33

2 Answers 2


Yes, the hat would have animated any snowman.

The original song was written and recorded by the Cass boys and Gene Autry in 1950, which predates the Rankin/Bass animation by 19 years (The animated show debuted in December 1969). In the song, the sole animator of the snowman is the hat. There is no mention of Christmas snow being a part of it.

Secondly, in the show, when Frosty gets trapped in the greenhouse and melted by Hinkle trying to get his hat back, Santa appears and tells Karen that he is made of special Christmas snow, and that prevents him from melting away entirely, which enables him to come back every year.

So the magic of the snow enables his yearly reincarnation, and the magic of the hat is what animates him. You could have one without the other, but not necessarily vice versa.

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    Excellent point about the Christmas snow. Commented Jun 6, 2014 at 4:05

In the film, after Santa restores the snowman from the puddle, there is a whole dialogue between the Professor, Karen and Santa, during which the snowman is not alive, it's not until Santa proclaims "come on Frosty we are all waiting for you" and places the hat on the Frosty's head does Frosty come back to life.

So it's the hat that brings Frosty to life. Now if it would work with ordinary snow... The hat was magic so I guess it's possible, but there is definitely a sense in the film that the special Christmas snow was the key to everything.

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