Crazy Random Happenstance

Billy: So good... Hey, this is weird. I ordered one frozen yogurt and they gave me two. You don't happen to like frozen yogurt, do you?
Penny: I love it!
Billy: You're kidding? What a crazy random happenstance!
-Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog

Friday, December 9, 2011

A Very Pop Culture Christmas

What's that you say? You're sick of hearing/seeing/reading things about Christmas?? Well, just because this Holiday has been thrown in our faces obsessively, since just before Halloween, that doesn't mean that we can't appreciate the season while it's here. After all, Christmas only comes around once a year, friends!

So, quit being a Grinch and an Ebenezer Scrooge and let's discuss our favorite Christmas movies, music and episodes of our favorite shows...

I'll start off with those "very special" Christmas episodes of my favorite shows. You know the ones... when your favorite comedy or drama take a bit of a break from the continuing drama of the usual storyline to deliver a heartwarming episode of yuletide cheer. I've decided I don't really have a favorite-favorite when it comes to these certain episodes, just the ones that immediately pop into my mind when I think of Christmas. In no particular order, these are my most memorable Christmas episodes:

  • Saved By The Bell- Home For Christmas (1991): This little gem was a two parter. Zach and the rest of the gang decide to get jobs at the mall during the holiday season. They end up befriending a homeless girl, named Laura (one of Kelly's co-workers) who is living in the shopping center. At some point, Laura's boss (Mr. Moody) accuses her of stealing a coat from their store and she runs away (not knowing that Kelly actually put the coat aside for Laura to buy for her father, to wear to a job interview). Zach ends up finding her and her dad and invites her to Christmas dinner, where they eat and sing Christmas Carols... And Mr. Moody ends up apologizing and giving the jacket to Laura's dad as a gift. I know, it sounds really bad... and it is. But, the memory of it has stuck with me all these years. Take a look at the cheesiness below:

  • Roswell- A Roswell Christmas (2000): Max (Jason Behr) witnesses a tragic accident and blames himself for the victim dying because he refused to save them by using his powers (he didn't want to reveal himself to any onlookers). I know, it sounds real depressing, but the episode focuses on all of the characters trying to find their Christmas spirit, with Isabel (a very young, pre-sassy Katherine Heigl) leading the way. In order to try to redeem himself, Max ends up going to the pediatric ward of a hospital and begins curing all the kids of their ailments. Other lighthearted things happen in the episode, with Michael (or "mullet boy" as I used to call him, played by Brendan Fehr) looking for the perfect gift for his girlfriend, Maria (Majandra Delfino) and Isabel going overboard with decorations and whatnot but the end is what I loved the most. It's been a very, very long time since I have seen this episode but I remember saying to Jeff after it aired "that might be the best Christmas episode of any tv show I have ever seen". I can't find any short clips of it, so if you are so inclined, watch the whole episode here...

  • Beverly Hills 90210- It's a Totally Happening Life (1992): In a nutshell, all of the characters are either fighting or grumpy in some way. Two guardian angels (Clarence and Miriam) watch over them, knowing that the bus they are on is about to collide with a garbage truck and cause a major accident. The episode focuses on the events that lead up to all of them being on the bus together and the guardian angels try preventing the accident from taking place.

  • Bones- The Man In The Fallout Shelter (2005)- Bones, Booth and the rest of the cast are all quarantined to the Jeffersonian during a case on Christmas Eve. Each of the characters gets to have a little moment where they reveal things about themselves and Hodgins and Zack contribute some laughs. The end is the best part, where each of their families are brought in, group by group to wish them a Merry Christmas (through glass, because you know, they are quarantined) and it's simple and sweet and one of the reasons why I fell in love with this show. (Sorry, no clips for this one... couldn't find any good ones).
  • Friends- The One With The Holiday Armadillo (2000): Ross wants to introduce Ben to Hanukkah and tries to show him that it's just as fun as Christmas and Santa by dressing up... As an armadillo. The whole ridiculousness of it is what makes it so funny. I laughed so hard at this episode when it first aired. I thought it was the best thing ever.  Click------> Armadillo
  • The Office- Christmas Party (2005): The office throws a Christmas party, complete with a Secret Santa exchange. Jim has Pam's name and reveals that he worked really hard on her gift, filling it with a bunch of inside jokes, that only she would get. Michael is annoyed that all he gets is a handmade oven mitt from Phyllis and buys a $400 Ipod for Ryan. He insists that they all do a "yankee swap" and makes everyone angry. Pam ends up with the Ipod, but in the end, decides to swap gifts for the one Jim had meant for her... Causing me to sigh and swoon over Jim Halpert. 

My favorite Christmas movies are probably the same as most of yours, so forgive me for not giving descriptions of them...

  • Scrooged (1988): Bill Murray is so fantastic in this rendition of A Christmas Carol. My Aunt took Dennis and I to the theater to see this when we were kids. I remember loving the end when he has each side of the movie theater sing different parts of "Put a little love in your heart".

  • Mickey's A Christmas Carol (1983): I love it to this day. You couldn't get it on DVD for a long time and I was absolutely ecstatic the day Jeff came home with it for me. It reminds me of being a kid and I love watching it with C now.
  • A Christmas Story (1983): I won't watch this movie before Christmas Eve/Christmas Day or after it. I either watch it on those days or it just doesn't feel right. 
  • National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation (1989): It's just a great movie. So many great scenes and quotes. I love it. 
  • Elf (2003): I can watch it over and over again and Zooey Deschanel's rendition of "Baby It's Cold Outside" is my most favorite.
  • Snow (2004): This was a made for tv movie with Tom Cavanagh. He's Santa Claus (Nicholas Snowden) and has to get back to the north pole in time for Christmas. It's cheesy and sappy and cute and I love it. 
  • Love Actually (2003): Funny thing about this movie is I used to hate it. How could I hate it with all of the amazing people in the cast?? The first time I watched it, it made me sad because not everyone got a happy ending. No worries though, because I completely appreciate it and love it today. LOVE it a lot, actually. Especially THIS scene. (Yeah, that's Rick Grimes being all romantic. No zombies chasing him there!)
My most favorite Christmas album of all time is the Holiday sing-along with Mitch Miller. It's what we used to listen to when we were kids and I absolutely adore it. The first Christmas Jeff and I spent together in our house, he bought the CD for me. It is one of my most favorite gifts of all time because it just reminds me of home. I also really love the Barenaked For The Holidays album by my beloved BNL. This year, I am most impressed with Christmas by Michael Buble'. It's classy and fun and I was pleasantly surprised by it.

My two most disliked Christmas songs of all time?
-The Christmas Shoes (I don't have to explain why, right?)
- Christmas Wrapping by the Waitresses. (Because there is nothing "Christmassy" about this song. Also, because they used to play it at Optim Eyes ALL. THE. TIME. when I worked there and it drove me craaaaazy!)

So that's that. Some of my most favorite Christmas pop culture items. Feel free to share yours along with me and have a very Merry Christmas, one and all!