As demonstrated by other recent posts here at The Daily Geekette, our staff absolutely loves the holiday season and the nerdy treats that come with it! Among those are, of course, lots of wonderful holiday-themed episodes of our favorite TV shows. Nearly every show in existence has at least an episode or two, so narrowing down our favorites was a tough job but we still managed to come up with a list of a few favorites. Check it out below!
“The Man in the Fallout Shelter,” Bones (submitted by Brianna Murch)
Bones is home for quite a few Christmas-y episodes, but the first one will always remain nearest and dearest to my heart. When a body brought into the lab on December 23rd triggers the bio-hazard alarm, Booth, Bones, and all the Squints are forced to stay in the Jeffersonian because they’ve been exposed to Valley Fever. Angela refuses to let their situation ruin the holiday, and organizes a Secret Santa exchange since they’re stuck together. Everyone partakes except Brennan, whose distate for Christmas stems from her parents’ disappearance. A memorable episode for naked!Hodgins, Booth-on-drugs, Elf!Angela, our first encounters with Parker Booth and Angela’s rocker dad, plus a tragic murder case that warms Brennan’s grinchy heart. It’s the episode many Bones fans cite as when they first fell in love with the show. But it’s also home to my favorite quote, which I repeat every December 24th: “Christmas Eve Day! Both an eve and a day, it’s a Christmas miracle!”
“Chuck vs. Santa Clause,” Chuck (submitted by Meg Roy)
Chuck Bartowski: Buy More/Best Buy techie by day, super spy by night. Unlikely though it seems, my favorite episode of this alternately zany and heartfelt hour-long comedy was the Christmas episode of its second season. The episode starts out on a lighthearted note, with the entire cast getting stuck in an accidental hostage crisis in the Buy More. The show’s humor is at its peak, and Chuck gets a chance to tell Sarah, his cover girlfriend/CIA protector, just how deep his feelings are for her by way of a special charm bracelet. After this midpoint, the episode completely switches gears and Chuck and his family are actually put in danger. The events culminate in forcing Chuck to witness Sarah doing the unthinkable in order to save his life, but changing his perception of her forever.
“The Ho, Ho, Ho Job,” Leverage (submitted by Brianna Murch)
This Christmas episode is a rare but excellent blend of humor, holiday spirit, and…crime? The Leverage team is a group of modern-day Robin Hoods: thieves of varying specialties who unite under the guidance of former insurance agent, Nate Ford. The Ho, Ho, Ho Job is a standalone episode that provides a welcome break from the plotline of the third season. The team investigates when mall owner Eben (short for Ebenezer) Dooley frames and fires his lead Santa Claus. Nate’s “bah-humbug”-ing the whole idea, but Parker, who has enough Christmas spirit for the whole team, insists this is “the best job ever,” but that’s probably because she goes undercover as a mall elf. Dooley’s scam on the mall ends up being part of a larger plan concocted by former adversary, Colin “Chaos” Mason (WIL MOTHERFLIPPIN’ WHEATON). It ends on a warm and fuzzy note without being preachy or schmaltzy, just the tender simplicity of a family giving gifts. Although I probably love it mostly because, aside from hanging stolen jewels on the Christmas tree, Parker is me at Christmas.
“So-Called Angels,” My So-Called Life (submitted by Dalin Rowell)
Though only lasting a season, My So-Called Life was a show that broke traditions in every way possible, and their Christmas episode was no different. Telling the story of Rickie (one of the first adolescent gay characters in primetime TV) becoming a homeless kid during a Holiday special wasn’t exactly “Hallmark” family material. But no matter how many times you see it, you can’t help but be moved. Whether it be the song sung by the Angel character, or the scene with the Chase family in the church, it’s a classic of 90’s dramatic television, and always will be.
“How the Ghosts Stole Christmas,” The X-Files (submitted by Lexi Gurst)
The X-Files is a perennial favorite of mine, having hooked me at the tender age of twelve or thirteen. While I adore a lot about the series, I’ve always especially appreciated the one-off [and usually more comedic] episodes, and the Christmas offering “How the Ghosts Stole Christmas,” starring Lily Tomlin and Ed Asner as the title apparitions, is no exception. It starts with a stakeout at a seemingly abandoned house, and a very harried Agent Scully who’d interrupted her last-minute Christmas errands to join Agent Mulder, who claims that the last several tenants met their untimely demise under suspicious and purportedly supernatural conditions. In typical X-Files fashion, Scully has her doubts, but Mulder persists; they find a couple of (peculiarly familiar) dead bodies under the floor boards, get separated from one another, and each meet the ghosts, Lyda (Tomlin) and Maurice (Asner), the ‘star-crossed lovers’ who committed the first murder-suicide and who attempt to lure people to a similar fate come Christmas Eve every year. Without giving too much away, the ending is pretty happy. Well, as happy as it can be!
“…And Santa’s Midnight Run,” The Librarians (submitted by Brianna Murch)
The Librarians is a new series currently airing on TNT, and their fourth episode aired this past Sunday. While Eve Baird is grumpy about the impending Christmas for reasons unknown, her team of Librarians are keen to make the annex more home-y by celebrating the holiday. That is until Jenkins informs them that Christmas is canceled – Santa Claus has been kidnapped! While they’re processing that Santa is real, the Librarians have to rescue the immortal avatar of goodwill from the Serpent Brotherhood in time for Christmas. Not to deliver presents to boys and girls, but to deliver one single gift: humanity’s goodwill. Of course, nothing goes smoothly, and “Nick” (Bruce Campbell of Evil Dead and Burn Notice) rotates through several different incarnations of himself, all with vastly different personalities.
“A Christmas Carol,” Doctor Who (submitted by Caitlin Walsh)
There are quite a few Doctor Who Christmas episodes to choose from – they’ve been an annual tradition since 2005 when David Tennant was introduced. The best is perhaps A Christmas Carol which aired in 2010. It’s a retelling of the Charles Dickens story with a time travel twist. The Doctor is the ghost of Christmases past present and future, while Michael Gabon expertly plays the role of the Scrooge character.
So there you go! What holiday episodes are your favorites? Which will you be marathoning in the next few days?