by Amy K. Bredemeyer
So I took a week off last week, and hope that you guys were able to catch up on all of the clips I've included lately, and maybe caught a couple of the episodes in full as well. What did you like the best?
Today we start in on the Christmas/Hanukkah/etc.-themed episodes. Now, since these are much more popular with mainstream television than the other holidays, this will be a very tough list to narrow down. As with the previous holidays (Halloween and Thanksgiving), I'll be doing five each Monday until Christmas arrives. There is no set order, so I'm not "saving the best for last" or anything like that.
Okay, here we go!
Frasier: "Merry Christmas, Mrs. Moskowitz." It starts out with a kindly gesture by a stranger. That leads to Frasier dating a Jewish woman and getting the whole family to play Jews while the woman's mother visits. It's rather hilarious when Niles is dressed as Jesus and there's a Christmas tree in the bathroom (oh, that's because Daphne is putting on the funniest Christmas musical pageant ever). I chose the middle segment here (all three parts can be found on Youtube), it gets most of the "let's try to be Jewish" quirks.
Boy Meets World: "Santa's Little Helpers." (1998) This is the Christmas where Eric, Jack, and Rachel dress up and work as Santa and his helpers. But Eric (as always) takes it too far, and decides to make sure every needy kid gets a gift. He steals stuff from the house and maxes out his dad's credit card getting stuff for the kids. And then one asks for parents, and Eric doesn't know what to do. Meanwhile, Angela and Shawn are having issues, and end up both invited to the Matthews' for the holiday, but all doesn't go so well there, either. The clip below is the Eric storyline spliced together.
Rugrats: "Chanukah." (1996) Kinda self-explanatory, but Grandpa Boris tells the story of Chanukah and the kids imagine themselves acting it out. Boris is also dealing with an age-old rivalry for the lead in the Chanukah pageant. What makes it special (besides the fact that there are very few Jewish holiday specials for young kids in general) are all of the puns that come out, like Lil calling Phil "Philistine" haha. I could not find a clip (Rugrats gets taken down a lot on Youtube), but here is an image.
Full House: "A Very Tanner Christmas." (1992) This is the one where DJ and Steve break up because he's chosen to go to college out-of-state. Stephanie and Michelle are greedy little monsters so Uncle Jesse takes them to a homeless shelter. Becky is homesick for Nebraska's white Christmases, so Jesse makes it snow in the backyard. Here we have the second half (both halves are on Youtube), where the ends are wrapped up and three Santas are surprising.
7th Heaven: "X-Mas." (2005) I love all of the different plots in this one. There's Kevin & Lucy, who have different ideas about a pet for Christmas. There's Rose and Sandy, who know nothing about how Jesus fits in with commercialism and Christmas. There's Annie taking the twins to talk with Sudanese students, Ruthie working at the hospital and reuniting with an old friend, and Eric spending time at the retirement home. I couldn't find a single clip or even part of the script, which is sad. I imagine that is partly because the 10th season has not come to DVD yet, so the only possibilities would be people taping it off ABCFamily or Hallmark or whoever is showing it these days.