Horror TV Shows We Miss: Christmas Episodes

The latest episode of the Horror TV Shows We Miss video series looks at Christmas episodes of horror shows… with a nod to Batman

This episode of the Horror TV Shows We Miss video series was Written and Narrated by Niki Minter, Edited by Lance Vlcek, Produced by John Fallon, and Executive Produced by Berge Garabedian.

Horror for Christmas? Yes, I’m here to holly your jolly, deck your halls, and sacrifice your children to Krampus. What a merry holiday season indeed! Since our October vid focused on Halloween Specials, I figured the Spooky Christmas crossovers deserved some attention as well.

As a kid, my family did have Christmas watching traditions like most. We did Scrooged, A Christmas Story, Frosty, Charlie Brown, Garfield, Home Alone, Gremlins (AHHHH it’s controversial), Nightmare Before Christmas, Edward Scissorhands…and my mom may have snuck in Black Christmas. She was and is a fan of Holiday-based Horror. Her favorite being My Bloody Valentine. All of this is totally normal. So, as you can probably guess, the tradition has continued. Mitchell‘s a Christmas movie, right?

I have to start with Joe Bob’s Family Reunion Christmas Special aka A Very Joe Bob Christmas. Also for anyone who wants to debate it, Joe Bob said in this special that Gremlins was a Christmas movie so there. Rusty getting the girls together to create the Joe Bob Briggs Tabernacle Choir amuses me. They have not at all rehearsed any of these songs. “Prepare his bed?” This is probably one of my favorite episodes. Joe Bob is waiting this whole time for his family, giving viewers some background on his kinfolk, and as the episode goes on it becomes evident that none of them are joining. Does anyone want any beanie weenies? All I want for Christmas is my old school TNT Monstervision t-shirt.

Can I also mention the Pee-Wee Christmas Special? Pee Wee’s Playhouse was my comfort show as a kid. The show made me feel like it was okay for me to be weird and different. Charro singing Feliz Navidad while Pee Wee is waving around a bat is deep in my core memories. But so is Pee Wee walking away from his phone while Dinah Shore is singing 12 Days of Christmas. Well, there’s also Grace Jones and Cher. OH, what about Annette and Frankie making Christmas cards for Pee Wee? Pee Wee kills me because he doesn’t want to give his toys up so all the kids around the world can have a Merry Christmas. He’s so put out by the whole thing in true Pee Wee fashion even though like 5 minutes before that he was giving Randy guff about not knowing the true meaning of Christmas. Pee Wee exuded a distinct only child energy that naturally struck a chord with me.

The Crypt Keeper got in on the fun as well. He’s so into the holidays that he recorded an album full of Christmas song parodies…well, John Kassir did. Why did this have to happen? As of the Crypt Keeper’s rap wasn’t enough. The whole album is entertaining since it’s full of those puns you’d expect. The way Horror characters were marketed in the 80s/90s is wild to me. Can you imagine a bunch of folks sitting at one of those boardroom 80s tables that felt like they went on forever spitballing ideas to sell Crypt Keeper merch? The CD was pretty cool though. It had that green jewel case and the insert was a reprint of the EC Comic version of And All Through the House. Ugh. I should just buy it. SEE IT WORKED.

Horror TV Shows We Miss: Christmas Episodes


Tales from the Darkside: Season of Belief– This one starts off kind of weird and just continues to become more and more unsettling as the episode goes on. I’d like to mention up front that this is written and directed by one of my all time favorites, Michael McDowell which is why it’s so dang good. For whatever reason, a Father, who is more like a grandfather, tells his kids about the Grither on Christmas Eve. This isn’t like Frosty or Rudolph though. The husband and wife sort of make the tale up as they go along and the kids aren’t entirely sure if they should buy into it. However, some weird occurrences in the house assist with making the kids believers. You can likely guess what the episode will bring, but you won’t guess it entirely. If the end of this doesn’t have a hold on you then I guess our next one will…

Tales from the Crypt: And All Through the House– I’m going to make a wild guess here, but I’d wager that most folks who saw this column immediately thought of this episode. I wouldn’t blame you if you did. THE Robert Zemekis directing a script from THE Fred Dekker and it’s one of the most low down diabolical pieces of Christmas filth we’ve ever witnessed. We come immediately into the episode and our leading lady, Mary Ellen Trainor has already taken an axe to her second husband. Oh, also there’s a crazed escape mental patient who is running around in a Santa outfit so no time to think or plan. Larry Drake, no stranger to the role of escapee from the mental institution, comes out fucking swinging. Drake absolutely delivers, as always, on giving us a creepy as all get out version of Santa. Trainor’s blood curdling scream will make the little hairs on your arms perk up. The episode paces exceptionally well and by the end of it you know there’s no hope for a white Christmas.

Supernatural: A Very Supernatural Christmas– What kind of person would I be if I didn’t bring the Winchesters into our holiday special? HORRID. I would be horrid. Santa has gone full murder hobo and who else but Sam and Dean to be on the case! Dean’s Christmas fate looms over Sam who isn’t as jazzed to celebrate the season with his little bro. How does one get in the Christmas spirit? You remember when your dad didn’t show up for Christmas (a lot), your brother ruined your joy, and you get to spend the holiday season trying to escape Pagan Gods. No, it’s fine. These things will be the things that bring the spark back. There’s little moments here I enjoy like Sam accidentally saying that he’s at Santa’s Wonderland to watch, Dean and Sam busting into Silent Night, and Dean being asked by one of the Pagan Gods to say fudge instead of cursing which he does.

Amazing Stories: Santa 85– This one is kind of wholesome. We’ve gotta have some kind of palette cleanser. Amazing Stories is a show I am hoping we can cover in the New Year so I’ve snuck this one in rather selfishly. Santa played by Douglas Seale goes out into a world that may be too sophisticated for him. Full of confidence, egg nog, and kisses from Happy Gilmore’s Grandma, Santa stops at a home you would think would be all for a surprise visit from Santa. They aren’t. They trap Santa in their state of the art burglary system. It’s the 80s. I REALLY need you to think about this. Santa goes to jail and tries to convince a very humbug Sheriff, played by Pat Hingle, that he’s the real deal. Is the tale as old as time? Sure, but the performances really sell this one. Marvin J. McIntyre as the all too nice deputy has got to be my favorite. Steven Spielberg as one of the writers doesn’t hurt either. Also, I’d like to note that this episode just feels like how Christmas should feel. I don’t know if I’m just getting older, or if Christmas isn’t nearly as comfy and cozy as it used to be.

X-Files: How the Ghosts Stole Christmas– This has absolutely got to be my favorite of all our episodes. It’s got a little bit of everything. It’s the holiday season and Mulder has nothing better to do than to investigate something spooky. He’s Spooky Mulder, it’s what he does. What’s better to investigate than a murder house? Mulder pulls a reluctant Scully into his journey because the power of the unknown compels her. Scully does that thing where she has to talk herself into believing that everything is going to be totally normal and not supernatural in the least. Inside the house they discover that two corpses are in the floor and they look oddly like our favorite pair. A ghost couple played by Ed Asner and Lily Tomlin spend their evening trying to dig in to the psyche of Mulder & Scully in an effort to get them to commit double murder. The banter between the actors is off the charts and everything down to the set and music are near perfect. Chris Carter not only does something fun with this episode, but also manages to still make it the right amount of creepy. The ending also makes me insanely happy. I will always be in deep smit with Mulder & Scully.

Horror TV Shows We Miss: Christmas Episodes

The New Batman Adventures: Holiday Knights– BONUS! I had to give you something outside of the Horror realm. Let’s call it an extra little present from me to you. When Christmas comes around, this is one of the first things I think of to watch when I’m running down my list. There’s nothing more exciting than watching Harley and Ivy charging Brucey’s cards to the max out of boredom. Harvey Bullock getting a gig as the department store Santa is more than laughable. The Joker is plotting to kill a bunch of folks during the season because he always does. Batman gets together with tiny Tim Drake Robin and foils his plans. In the end, Commissioner Gordon and Batman honor their tradition of getting together after midnight on January 1 at the diner. It’s a nice little moment and even though Batman is a dine and dash kinda guy, you still get the warm and fuzzies. This episode was interesting for several reasons, no we will not be getting into the change of art style for the New Batman shift. It was a fun episode. While there was already a Christmas episode of The Animated Series, this one actually owns the title.

It must be a good Christmas if I have mentioned both Ed Asner and Pat Hingle. Both of which have played Santa at one point in their careers. All of these episodes you should be able to locate even the specials. You are also welcome to blast the Crypt Keeper’s holiday hits every morning at 8AM until your whole family completely loses their sanity. Someone will crack. You can blame me.

For most of us, Horror is a year round kinda thing. I may have snuck an evil gingerbread man in my tree. He’s cuter than the Gingerdead Man. Well, I hope you all were good this year and got everything you wanted from the Sears and Toys R Us catalog! If you were naughty, remember that Freddy sees you when you’re sleeping. Until next year my creepy companions.

A couple previous episodes of Horror TV Shows We Miss can be seen below. If you’d like to see more, and check out the other shows we have to offer, head over to the JoBlo Horror Originals YouTube channel – and subscribe while you’re there!

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