Monday, December 23, 2013

My Top 10+1 TV Show Christmas Specials

As I have done for the Halloween specials I would like to tell you about the Christmas TV specials as well as there are some real gems among them. Each Christmas special either re-uses the A Christmas Carol of the story-line of It's A Wonderful Life. Some do it brilliantly and others have specials that have nothing to do with classics and yet have such an original story with the magic of Christmas included that I cannot help but re-watch them year after year!

+1) Hawaii Five-O
Season 1, Episode 12 - Hana 'a'a Makehewa

I actually remembered this episode while writing the list, so instead of having a best 11 list, I just thought I would add it to the end. For many people Christmas equals snow. Growing up in southern Italy, snow is no issue to me, so I enjoyed this episode a lot, no matter the sand and the sunshine. In it Danny tries to build up the best Christmas for his daughter Gracie but he encounters several bumps on the road... The others help Steve in his investigation to find the man who killed his father. In the end it is only with the help of the whole team that Danny reaches his goal and surprises his daughter! Mele Kalikimaka!

10) Suburgatory
Season 2, Episode 7 - Krampus

The main story is about a girl who moves to the suburbs with her dad. In this episode she goes back to the city to spend Christmas with her mother, but in the end realizes that she wants to be in silly suburbia with her friends.This special is unlike everything I have ever seen! The characters are hilarious and there are two simultaneous stories that made me laugh so hard I started to cry.

9) The Neighbours
Season 1, Episode 9 - Merry Crap-mas

This show is amazing. I love these families so much! When the Zabrovians ruin the Weavers' Christmas plans, they go out of their way to set things right. It is a great and hilarious story about how the meaning of Christmas really is about the presents and nothing else! Make sure you check this one out :D

8) Regular Show
Season 4, Episode 9 - The Christmas Special
This is freaking insane. Santa has a lead elf who created a weapon to destroy Christmas forever. During his fights with the elf, Santa falls into a garage in the park where Mordecai (a blue jay) and Rigby (a raccoon) work. Santa gives them the weapon and they have to destroy it, but can they before encountering the elf? I don't want to spoil it, you really need to see this one! It's just wonderful in every expect of the word :D Also wonderful use of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra's Carol Of The Bells!

7) The Office
 Season 9, Episode 9 - Dwight Christmas

The Office was known for having Christmas parties that always got a little bit out of hand... I actually like many of them but in the last season it just-- Oh my, it was wonderful! The Christmas party wasn't planned and everyone votes for Dwight's interpretation which has no Santa Claus and no real presents. Sounds wonderful, huh? The emotions go sky high when Dwight admits that he is sad about losing Jim as a co-worker and Christmas is a great occasion to solve their problems. It is by far the funniest, if not the awkwardest of all the specials!

6) American Dad
Season 3, Episode 8 - The Most Adequate Christmas Ever

Stan dies while trying to get the perfect Christmas tree. After he dies, he petitions for a second chance at life, which leads to a trial where he must prove that he deserves it. Stan is crazy and the only thing that I like about him is how much he loves Christmas. There were several specials in the series and some are quite weird... But this was a really festive one and I always enjoy it! I also thoroughly believe in what Roger said:

"- Wow, great sweater, Roger.
- Thanks, I totally sniped it from a guy on eBay. I not only stole the sweater, I stole his holiday spirit. And that made my holiday spirit grow stronger. Because th-that's how it works, right? Like Highlander? There can be only one? I've, I've had like eight cups of eggnog. And this makes 12."

5) Married With Children
Season 2, Episode 13 - You Better Watch Out

The Bundys' Christmas is rudely interrupted when a parachuting mall Santa crash-lands into their backyard, attracting the neighborhood kids. Again, more than one special, but this one is my favorite - especially the twist at the end! Merry Bundys Christmas to you :D

4) The Looney Tunes Show
Season 2, Episode 10 - A Christmas Carol 

Coming to this one, I realize that I have chosen specials that have nothing to do with the classics :D Except for number 1, but that is still far away! This episode is about Lola Bunny trying to put on Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol - by completely changing the story and leaving out everything that is well known and loved about it. What could possibly go wrong? Everything does, but you have to see it go down!

3) Ally McBeal
Season 4, Episode 8 - The Man with the Bag

I actually had trouble with this one. Ally McBeal is one of my favorite series of all time an they made sure they had a Christmas special every single year! Twice, it even ran for more than just one episode. It was really awesome of them and each year when I watch them for the songs and the stories my heart melts with sadness.
Each story has such deep plots and well if I learned anything from Christmas is that it is not a happy holiday from everyone. Feelings run sky high and emotions are all over the place. In the end, the episode I chose to talk about the one from season 4.
Nelle hires John to defend her father when he's been fired for believing he's Santa Claus. The case is going to need some magic since he really does believe he's Santa. Larry's ex-girlfriend and the mother of his child, Jamie, shows up in his office, and Ally tries to deny that she's jealous. When Jamie then gets invited to the office Christmas party, Ally no longer feels like partaking in the festivities.

2) ER
Season 12, Episode 10 - All About Christmas Eve

Not only is this my favorite holiday special from the series, but it is also my favorite episode in the running of the fifteen season of ER. I don't only re-watch this during the holiday season, but also anytime I am stuck writing.
If you read my blog, you must know that Dr. Abby Lockhart was by favorite character and in the run of her character arc this episode was of monumental importance. Pratt and Weaver try to create a Christmas miracle when they work to save a girl wounded from gunfire. Also, Abby has a special gift for Luka. She reveals to him that she is pregnant with his child, just when they seem to have the grounds for a stable relationship. The music, the writing, and the cases in the ER? It is really one of the best episodes that ever aired on TV. (If you'd like to read about my favorite doctor from ER, click here!)

1) The O.C.
Season 4, Episode 7 - The Chrismukk-huh?

Season 1 was totally depressing. Season 2 portrayed step by step how someone's life can be ruined. Then, season 3 starred one of the most annoying characters in history. Despite it all, I still re-watch them every year because I just love them so much! Other than Ally McBeal and ER, only this one really captured what it is like to feel lonely even if you are surrounded by family and friends.
When Ryan and Taylor have an argument over where they stand with their whatever relationship they have, they both fall off a ladder while Ryan is putting up Christmas lights and both wake up in a alternate reality of what life is like had Ryan never came to Newport: Sandy is the uptight mayor of Newport Beach and married to Julie Cooper; Kirsten is married to Jimmy Cooper; Seth is still a socially awkward geek and Summer is a mindless, narcissistic party animal who is engaged to Chester "Che" Winchester, whom is having a fling with the sex-addict Julie. Ryan also learns from Kaitlin that Marissia in fact died from a drug overdose three years prior during the road trip to Tijuana, and Ryan was not there to save her. Back in the real world, Seth tries to arrange his annual Christmukka party and then tries to move it to the hospital where the comatose Ryan and Taylor are.
Out of the four, this is the only one that I have absolutely no problems with and it is therefore my favorite. This one reuses the great plot of It's A Wonderful Life!
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I hope that I have given you a list of series that really care about the holidays and if you do too, you should make sure to see them before or during the Christmas break.
For this list I used some of the plot summaries from imdb. Many of them were anonymous, so I would like to thank the authors here! You helped my work a lot this year!

Thank you for sticking with me throughout the year, happy holidays to you all and stay tuned until the next item on my list!

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