No matter what is going on in the world there is always a time of year that you can count on one thing being true: Holiday-themed episodes coming from your favorite TV shows. From October until January there will inevitably be a slew of shows jumping on the festive spirit, having the characters that we know and love celebrating many of the same things we do every year. While almost every show will try some holiday theme at least once, it takes a decent set of writers to pull off the ones we’d consider truly special. For every Thanksgiving spent at Monica’s there are ten others with too much singing and a lot less feel-good vibes. Whether the show goes for heartfelt or tearjerking, the line is not an easy one to walk. But when they nail it, that episode becomes unforgettable everytime the holidays come around. And who knows, maybe it will be such a success that it will stem its own religion. Festivus anyone?
20. Friends: ‘The One With All The Thanksgivings’
How do you pick just one Friends Holiday episode? Between ‘The One with the Football,’ and ‘The One Where Rachel Quits,’ the show has had many rememberable holiday moments over the years. Even still, ‘The One With All The Thanksgivings’ is easily at the top of them all. Between Joe and Monica wearing turkeys on their heads, to Ross and Chandlers impressive Wham outfits from college, this episode has it all. With a host of flashbacks, the crew reminisces about some of the worst Thanksgivings they have ever had, something most of us can relate to deeply. It’s also the first time Chandler tells Monica he loves her, an iconic moment for the future husband and wife.
19. Peanuts: ‘A Charlie Brown Christmas’
For some families, the Charlie Brown Christmas short isn’t just a holiday special, it’s a family tradition. First airing in 1965, it’s been broadcast every single year since it’s release, spreading the Christmas spirit to multiple generations along the way. It may be a Christmas-themed movie but it’s actually quite dark, especially for its era. Charlie Brown finds himself going into the Christmas seasons depressed and looking for meaning. But thanks to his good friend Linus, the entire Peanuts gang is reminded just what Christmas is about, ending with everyone singing in solidarity. Merry Christmas, Charlie Brown!