Mowgli and Muppets top the charts

WITHOUT even the hint of a video nasty, the Christmas video charts are looking more wholesome than they have done for years.

Walt Disney has numbers one and two in the Music Week video charts. The Muppet Christmas Carol, made by the late Jim Henson but now owned and distributed by the Disney organisation, has just pipped The Jungle Book to number one, though The Jungle Book has been at the top for nearly a month and is expected to have sold more than 2 million copies by January.

With Beauty and The Beast at number four, and Peter Pan at number 12, not to mention Aladdin on general film release, Disney is probably more popular with children this year than it has been for two decades.

Teenybop idols Take That top the specialist music videos, with the Irish country singer Daniel O'Donnell keeping the better known Cliff Richard and Michael Jackson at bay.

A survey of W H Smith stores does, however, reveal some interesting regional variations, indicating that local passions can still challenge the big international blockbusters.

At W H Smith's biggest outlet, in Liverpool, a local history on video, Life And Times: Footage of Liverpool in the 30s and 40s, has been outstripping the Disney best- sellers with about 600 copies sold per week. In Birmingham the same is true of Balti, an Asian cookery video.

Sales of comedy tapes at W H Smith also show the power of regional favourites. Jethro, a West Country comedian, has sold so many tapes in Devon and Cornwall particularly that his A Portion of Jethro now tops the national comedy chart, with Rik Mayall and Adrian Edmondson's Bottom Live second, and Roy 'Chubby' Brown Exposed third.

Among the titles for children, Mr Blobby is kept in fourth place behind Beauty and The Beast, The Jungle Book and The Muppets.

Peter Smith, manager of W H Smith in Liverpool, said: 'Comedy and muscials always do well at Christmas. As well as the ones at the top of the charts, we have been selling loads of the Laurel and Hardy back-catalogue films - people are buying up to 12 at a time of those. And, believe it or not, we are selling hundreds of copies of Seven Brides For Seven Brothers.

'But Liverpudlians also seem to have this thing about local videos. We sell Merseyside At War all year round as we do a video about the Liverpool overhead railway. And the new one, Life And Times, is selling like hot cakes,' he said.

(Table omitted)

Life and Style
A teenager boy wakes up.
Arts and Entertainment
You could be in the Glastonbury crowd next summer if you follow our tips for bagging tickets this week
Life and Style
It is believed that historically rising rates of alcohol consumption have contributed to the increase
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Kylie performs during her Kiss Me Once tour
musicReview: 26 years on from her first single, the pop princess tries just a bit too hard at London's O2
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Life and Style
fashionEveryone, apparently
The erotic novel Fifty Shades of Grey has already been blamed for a rise in the number of callouts to the fire brigade for people trapped in handcuffs
voicesJustine Elyot: Since Fifty Shades there's no need to be secretive about it — everyone's at it
Arts and Entertainment
A new Banksy entitled 'Art Buff' has appeared in Folkestone, Kent
Life and Style
Playing to win: for Tanith Carey, pictured with Lily, right, and Clio, even simple games had to have an educational purpose
lifeTanith Carey explains what made her take her foot off the gas
Arts and Entertainment
The White Sails Hospital and Spa is to be built in the new Tunisia Economic City.
architectureRussian billionaire designs boat-shaped hospital for new Dubai-style Tunisia Economic City
Husain Abdullah returns an interception off Tom Brady for a touchdown
nflLeague has rules against 'sliding to ground on knees'
Arts and Entertainment
Critics say Kipling showed loathing for India's primitive villagers in The Jungle Book
filmChristopher Walken, Bill Murray, Scarlett Johanssen Idris Elba, Andy Serkis, Benedict Cumberbatch, Cate Blanchett and Christian Bale
Life and Style
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Maths Teacher

£21000 - £35000 per annum: Randstad Education Cambridge: Maths teacher require...

KS1 Teacher

£21500 - £31500 per day: Randstad Education Chelmsford: Would you like to work...

Java Developer - web services, XML and API

£330 - £350 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client based in Lond...

Maths Teacher

Negotiable: Randstad Education Reading: Maths Teacher required to teach Furthe...

Day In a Page

Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?
Royal Ballet star dubbed 'Charlize Theron in pointe shoes' takes on Manon

Homegrown ballerina is on the rise

Royal Ballet star Melissa Hamilton is about to tackle the role of Manon
Education, eduction, education? Our growing fascination with what really goes on in school

Education, education, education

TV documentaries filmed in classrooms are now a genre in their own right
It’s reasonable to negotiate with the likes of Isis, so why don’t we do it and save lives?

It’s perfectly reasonable to negotiate with villains like Isis

So why don’t we do it and save some lives?
This man just ran a marathon in under 2 hours 3 minutes. Is a 2-hour race in sight?

Is a sub-2-hour race now within sight?

Dennis Kimetto breaks marathon record
We shall not be moved, say Stratford's single parents fighting eviction

Inside the E15 'occupation'

We shall not be moved, say Stratford single parents
Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

Talks between all touched by the crisis in Syria and Iraq can achieve as much as the Tornadoes, says Patrick Cockburn
Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

The Tory MP speaks for the first time about the devastating effect of his father's bankruptcy
Witches: A history of misogyny

Witches: A history of misogyny

The sexist abuse that haunts modern life is nothing new: women have been 'trolled' in art for 500 years
Shona Rhimes interview: Meet the most powerful woman in US television

Meet the most powerful woman in US television

Writer and producer of shows like Grey's Anatomy, Shonda Rhimes now has her own evening of primetime TV – but she’s taking it in her stride
'Before They Pass Away': Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

Jimmy Nelson travelled the world to photograph 35 threatened tribes in an unashamedly glamorous style