You know Santa's reindeer, right? Try naming them -- even four of them. You're all too familiar with a certain shiny-faced snowflake, but how much time have you really spent considering the rich lived experience of the other eight? We're going to fix that today by shouting out each of the reindeer individually, but before we get to it, let's understand the origins of these Christmas critters of burden.
The image of reindeer pulling Santa's sleigh goes way back, but the OG squad of eight arrived in 1823 in the poem "A Visit From St. Nicholas" -- which you probably know as "The Night Before Christmas." The poem is generally attributed to Clement C. Moore but was published anonymously in the Troy Sentinel. Rudolph didn't join the delivery squad for over 100 years.
In 1939, department store copywriter Robert L. May wrote a small booklet about a ninth reindeer to promote the store that employed him. He then collaborated with his brother-in-law to pen that delightful Christmas ode, which by the way totally undercut all of the other reindeer. This whole origin story smacks of the consumerism that all-too-often overshadows the holiday's true message, whereas the original poem was published anonymously in a pure outpouring Christmas spirit. (The movie is, however, objectively heartwarming.)
With this in mind, let's get to know these reindeer (and rank them, because that's the cruel world we live in, folks).