My Guide To Classic TV Christmas Episodes From 'Friends' To 'WKRP'

Dec 21, 2018

Want to spend Christmas with your old TV friends?

Here's my guide to classic Christmas episodes with Ross, Rachel, Monica, Joey, Phoebe, Lucy, Seinfeld, Sheldon and Dr. Bob Hartley and Dr. Johnny Fever.

From M*A*S*H to Mary Tyler Moore, from Family Guy to Family Affair, everybody loves a nostalgic Christmas with these shows on eight different channels (TBS, TVLAND, AMC, MeTV, Get TV, Decades, WLWT-TV and Heroes & Icons).

The 1977 'Bob Newhart Show' cast on CBS.
Credit Courtesy CBS

The 135 episodes on my list include Bob Newhart, Seinfeld, Hill Street Blues, House, Friends, The Big Bang Theory, The Twilight Zone, WKRP in Cincinnati, The Jeffersons, The Golden Girls, The Love Boat, All in the Family, King of Queens, JAG, Monk, McGyver, Matlock, Married… with Children, Mama's Family, Rawhide and Have Gun Will Travel.

It's a Christmas Bonanza!

Lucille Ball, Andy Griffith, Roseanne, Donna Reed, Ruth Lyons, Paul Dixon and Sanford and son are on the list too.

So don’t have a blue Christmas. Have a NYPD Blue Christmas.

PS: If you can't celebrate Christmas without A Christmas Carol, Miracle on 34th Street, A Christmas Story, Christmas Vacation, Polar Express or How The Grinch Stole Christmas, consult my Holiday Program Guide at wvxu.org.

Richard Dean Anderson starred as the original 'MacGyver' on ABC in 1985.
Credit Courtesy ABC

SATURDAY, DECEMBER 22

M*A*S*H (7 a.m., AMC): Officers and enlisted men switch jobs the day after Christmas.

MacGyver (11 a.m., Ch 20.4 Heroes & Icons): MacGyver and kids at the Challenge Center befriend a homeless woman.

Hill Street Blues (midnight, Ch 20.4 Heroes & Icons): Officers make last minute Christmas plans while tracking down four marauding youths.

Hill Street Blues (1 a.m., Ch 20.4 Heroes & Icons): Capt. Furillo goes home for Christmas for first time in five years.

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 23

Everybody Loves Raymond (6 a.m., TBS): Ray tells Ally the truth about Santa.

Everybody Loves Raymond (6:30 a.m., TBS): Romance on Christmas morning ends when Ray’s family drops in.

The 'Everybody Loves Raymond' cast for the third season in 1998.
Credit Courtesy CBS

Everybody Loves Raymond  (7 a.m., TBS): Frank and Marie exchange Ray’s Christmas gift, an engraved toaster.

Everybody Loves Raymond (7:30 a.m., TBS): Ray tries to organize a family photo shoot for a Christmas present to his parents.

Everybody Loves Raymond (8 a.m., TBS): Ray buys an elaborate Christmas gift for Debra so he can go on a golf weekend.

King of Queens (8:30 a.m., TBS): Doug wants a collectible toy for Christmas.

King of Queens (9 a.m., TBS): Doug's dad can't find anyone who wants to be in his Christmas card photo. 

Nash Bridges (noon, Ch 20.4 Heroes & Icons): The guys are stuck in the office Christmas Eve wrapping up a murder investigation.

Friends (12:30 p.m., TBS): Phoebe finds her dad at Christmas.

Friends (1 p.m., TBS): Monica rescues Christmas trees because Phoebe doesn't want them destroyed in a chipper.

House (1 p.m., Ch 20.4 Heroes & Icons): At Christmas, House's treatment of a nurse is questioned.

Friends (1:30 p.m., TBS): A guy dumps Rachel right before Christmas.

Friends (2 p.m., TBS): Phoebe dresses as Santa's elf to earn money for charity.

JAG (2 p.m. Ch 20.4 Heroes & Icons): Chaos at JAG HQ during a Washington snowstorm.

Friends (2:30 p.m., TBS): Rachel, Phoebe and Chandler search the apartment for hidden Christmas presents.

Friends (3 p.m., TBS): Monica makes candy for neighbors she doesn't know.

Monk (3 p.m., Ch 20.4 Heroes & Icons): Monk's estranged father visits at Christmas.

Friends (3:30 p.m., TBS): Ross invents the "Holiday Armadillo" to teach Ben about Hanukkah.

Friends (4 p.m., TBS): Monica's expensive boots hurt when she wears them to Chandler's office Christmas party.

Friends (4:30 p.m., TBS): Ross's girlfriend wants to do a holiday card together.

Friends (5 p.m., TBS): Chandler spends Christmas in Tulsa, setting up a clip show of past Christmases.

Seinfeld (5:30 p.m., TBS): George buys Elaine a $600 sweater marked down to $85.

The Love Boat (6 p.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV): A 1986 Christmas cruise with Marion Ross, Gina Lollobrigida and Peter Scolari.

'The Love Boat' 1978 cast: Lauren Tewes, Gavin MacLeod, Bernie Kopell, Ted Lange and Fred Grandy.
Credit Courtesy ABC

Seinfeld (6 p.m., TBS): Elaine shows a bit too much in her Christmas card photo shot by Kramer.

Seinfeld (6:30 p.m., TBS): Kramer works as a department store Santa.

M*A*S*H (7 p.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV): Hawkeye writes a Christmas letter to his dad after flying to the front line dressed as Santa to help a wounded soldier.

M*A*S*H (7:30 p.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV): Winchester fulfills a family Christmas tradition.

Jerry Seinfeld
Credit Courtesy NBC

Seinfeld (7:30 p.m., TBS): George and his father create a "Festivus" holiday for the rest of us.

Big Bang Theory (8 p.m., TBS): Penny impresses Sheldon with her gift.

Big Bang Theory (8:30 p.m., TBS): Before Leonard's mother visits for Christmas, he fails to tell her that he's dating Penny.

Big Bang Theory (9 p.m., TBS): While playing Dungeons and Dragons, Sheldon talks about his bad childhood Christmases.

Big Bang Theory (9:30 p.m., TBS): The gang imagines what life would be like if they had never met Sheldon.

Johnny Cash Show (10 p.m., Ch 25.3 Get TV): Christmas episode.

Big Bang Theory (10 p.m., TBS): Amy prepares a Victorian Christmas dinner while the guys let a bird into the "clean" lab.

Big Bang Theory (10:30 p.m., TBS): Leonard and Penny buy a Christmas tree; Sheldon and Amy spend Christmas in Texas.

Johnny Cash Christmas Show (11 p.m., Ch 25.3 Get TV): With Roy Orbison and Jerry Lee Lewis in 1977.

MONDAY, DECEMBER 24

The Facts of Life (6 a.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV): Blair plans a charity event in a jail, thinking it's an orphanage.

King of Queens (7 p.m., TBS): Doug thinks a midget stole his wallet while Christmas shopping.

King of Queens (7:30 a.m., TBS): Doug guards the church manger.

Friends (8 a.m., TBS): Phoebe finds her dad at Christmas.

Friends (8:30 a.m., TBS): Monica rescues Christmas trees because Phoebe doesn't want them destroyed in a chipper. 

Friends (9 a.m., TBS): A guy dumps Rachel right before Christmas.

Friends (9:30 a.m., TBS): Phoebe dresses as Santa's elf to earn money for charity.

Friends (10 a.m., TBS): Rachel, Phoebe and Chandler search the apartment for hidden Christmas presents.

Lucille Ball and old pal Vivian Vance starred in CBS' 'The Lucy Show' in 1962.
Credit Courtesy CBS

The Lucy Show (10 a.m., Ch 20.2, Decades): Lucy and Vivian can't agree on a Christmas tree.

The Lucy Show (10:30 a.m., Ch 20.2, Decades): Lucy wants Jerry home for Christmas.

Friends (10:30 a.m., TBS): Monica makes candy for neighbors she doesn't know.

Friends (11 a.m., TBS): Ross invents the "Holiday Armadillo" to teach Ben about Hanukkah.

Donna Reed (11 a.m., Ch 20.2, Decades): Donna frets over the family's lack of Christmas spirit.

Donna Reed (11:30 a.m., Ch 20.2, Decades):  The family accommodates a holiday visitor.

Friends (11:30 a.m., TBS): Monica's expensive boots hurt when she wears them to Chandler's office Christmas party.

Friends (noon, TBS): Ross's girlfriend wants to do a holiday card together.

Family Affair (noon, Ch 20.2, Decades): Buffy befriends a sick girl.

Family Affair (Ch 20.2, Decades):  The family gets stuck in a Vermont blizzard.

Friends (12:30 p.m., TBS): Chandler spends Christmas in Tulsa, which sets up a Christmas clip show.

Petticoat Junction (1 p.m., Ch 20.2, Decades): Christmas caroling on the Hootville Express.

Petticoat Junction (1:30 p.m., Ch 20.2, Decades) Kate gathers presents for Santa's train trip.

American Dad (1:30 p.m., TBS): Stan makes a Christmas wish to swap lives with Principal Lewis.

American Dad (2 p.m., TBS): Steve is kidnapped and taken to the North Pole, where Santa makes him mine for precious stones.

Ted Knight and Ed Asner with Mary Tyler Moore in the TV newsroom in 1977 on the 'Mary Tyler Moore Show.'
Credit Courtesy CBS

Mary Tyler Moore (2 p.m., Ch 20.2, Decades): Mary works Christmas Eve.

Mary Tyler Moore (2:30 p.m., Ch 20.2, Decades): Sue Ann invites the staff to a station feast.

American Dad (2:30 p.m., TBS): Roger becomes Jewish to make Hanukkah more popular than Christmas.

Bob's Burgers (3 p.m., TBS): The kids compete to give dad the best Christmas gift.

Bob Newhart Show (3 p.m., Ch 20.2, Decades): Carol spends Christmas Eve with Bob and Emily.

Bob Newhart Show (3:30 p.m., Ch 20.2, Decades): Bob gets his tonsils removed on Christmas Eve.

Bob's Burgers (3:30 p.m., TBS): A mall Santa threatens to put Gene, Tina and Louise on the naughty list.

Bob's Burgers (4 p.m., TBS): The kids go caroling while Bob enters a gingerbread house competition.

Bob Newhart as inn owner Dick Loudon in 1982 on CBS' 'Newhart.'
Credit Courtsesy Fox Home Entertainment

Newhart (4:30 p.m., Ch 20.2, Decades):  The town panics when there's no snow for the snow carnival.

Bob's Burgers (4:30 p.m., TBS): Linda's prized Christmas ornaments are stolen by the Bleaken, the anti-Santa.

Family Guy  (5:30 p.m., TBS): After Santa collapses, Stewie and Brian deliver his Christmas gifts.

Family Guy (6:30 p.m., TBS): Stewie goes back in time to help Brian, who has lost the Christmas spirit.

M*A*S*H  (7 p.m., TVLAND): Hawkeye writes a Christmas letter to his dad after flying to the front line dressed as Santa to help a wounded soldier.

M*A*S*H (7:30 p.m., TVLAND): Father Mulcahy writes a Christmas letter to his sister.

Family Guy (7:30 p.m., TBS): Santa tells Peter to give up his mall Santa job because he drinks too much.

Everybody Loves Raymond (8 p.m., TVLAND): Ray tells Ally the truth about Santa.

Everybody Loves Raymond (8:30 p.m., TVLAND): Romance on Christmas morning ends when Ray’s family drops in.

Everybody Loves Raymond (9 p.m., TVLAND): Frank and Marie exchange Ray’s Christmas gift, an engraved toaster, for a coffee maker.

'WKRP in Cincinnati' cast for 1978 premiere.
Credit Courtsey MeTV

WKRP in Cincinnati (9:30 p.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV): The gang makes sure Jennifer isn't lonely at Christmas.

Everybody Loves Raymond (9:30 p.m., TVLAND): Ray organizes a family photo shoot for a Christmas present to his parents.

Two and a Half Men (10 p.m., TVLAND): When Jake's girlfriend is out of town for Christmas, Charlie encourages him to hook up with a girl he meets on the beach.

Two and a Half Men (10:30 p.m., TVLAND):  Walden's mother visits for Christmas.

A Nashville Christmas (11 p.m., Ch 25.3 Get TV): With Wynonna Judd, Emmylou Harris, Lorrie Morgan, Pam Tillis.

King of Queens (11 p.m., TVLAND): Doug thinks a midget stole his wallet while Christmas shopping.

King of Queens (11:30 p.m., TVLAND): Doug guards the church manger.

King of Queens (midnight, TVLAND): Doug's Christmas bonus.

King of Queens (12:30 a.m., TVLAND): Doug buys Carrie a camera for Christmas.

Paul Dixon Show Chicken Wedding (1 a.m., WLWT-TV Ch 5): Rerun of the wedding ceremony for  two rubber chickens officiated by the Mayor of Kneesville (Dixon) in 1969.

Two and a Half Men (1 a.m., TVLAND): Walden takes a job selling Christmas trees.

Two and a Half Men (1:30 a.m., TVLAND): Walden wants the perfect Christmas for Louis.

Ruth Lyons Special (2 a.m., WLWT-TV Ch 5): WLWT-TV special about "50-50 Club" host Ruth Lyons, who retired 50 years ago.

The Goldbergs (2 a.m., TVLAND): Beverly celebrates "Super Hanukkah" with the family.

The Goldbergs (2:30 a.m., TVLAND): Erica writes a Hanukkah song for the holiday pageant.

Ruth Lyons, Living Legend (2:30 a.m., WLWT-TV Ch 5): Profile of former "50-50 Club" host Ruth Lyons.

Roseanne Barr in her 1988 ABC 'Roseanne' sitcom.
Credit Courtesy ABC

Roseanne  (3 a.m., TVLAND): Roseanne plays Santa at the mall.

Roseanne  (3:30 a.m., TVLAND): A Christmas Eve snowstorm scatters the Conners.

Roseanne (4 a.m., TVLAND): Roseanne and Dan annoy the neighborhood association by putting up gaudy Christmas decorations.

Roseanne (4:30 a.m., TVLAND): Roseanne and Dan are told D.J. might have a learning disability; Darlene discovers that David (Johnny Galecki) has feelings for Becky.

Golden Girls (5 a.m., TVLAND): A lonely Santa takes the roommates hostage.

Golden Girls (5:30 a.m., TVLAND):  The roommates work at a soup kitchen at Christmas.

CHRISTMAS

The Facts of Life (6 a.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV): Blair's mother goes into labor on Christmas Eve.

The Beverly Hillbillies (7 a.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV): The Clampetts spend a Christmas holiday in Hooterville in a crossover episode with Petticoat Junction.

Have Gun Will Travel (8 a.m., Ch 20.4 Heroes & Icons): Guitarist Duane Eddy plays a cowboy who arrives in town during Christmas with a pregnant wife.

Andy Griffith Show (9 a.m., TVLAND): Andy and Barney give a Christmas party in the jail for a prisoner and his family.

Clint Eastwood and Don Hight on CBS' 'Rawhide' in 1962.
Credit Courtesy CBS

Rawhide (9 a.m., Ch 20.4 Heroes & Icons): The guys provide Christmas for a sick Mexican boy.

Matlock (10 a.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV): Matlock defends a Santa charged with murder.

Diagnosis Murder (11 a.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV): Dr. Sloan (Dick Van Dyke) finds terminal cancer in the hospital janitor who plays Santa each year.

House (11 a.m., Ch 20.4 Heroes & Icons):  House gets removed from the team helping a sick young girl at Christmastime.

House (noon, Ch 20.4 Heroes & Icons): House interferes with the Secret Santa; a paralyzed woman withholds vital information.

House (1 p.m., Ch 20.4 Heroes & Icons): A teen becomes ill at a Christmas program.

Bonanza (2 p.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV): A singer (Wayne Newton) comes home for Christmas with his scheming uncle.

Dan Blocker, Michael Landon and Lorne Greene and Lorne's horse buck smile for the 'Bonanza' camera in 1968.
Credit Courtesy NBC

A Nashville Christmas (2 p.m., Ch 25.3 Get TV): Wynonna Judd, Emmylou Harris, Lorrie Morgan, Pam Tillis.

Andy Griffith and Don Knotts starred in the 'Andy Griffith Show' in 1960 on CBS.
Credit Courtesy CBS

Andy Griffith Show (3:30 p.m., TVLAND): Andy and Barney give a Christmas party in the jail for a prisoner and his family.

Mama's Family (4 p.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV): Mama is unhappy about being forced to play Santa at the mall.

Father Knows Best: Home For Christmas  (4 p.m., Ch 25.3 Get TV): Jim and Margaret (Robert Young, Jane Wyatt) decide to sell the house when the kids can't come home for Christmas in 1977.

Sanford and Son (5:30 p.m., Ch 25.3 Get TV): Christmas episode.

All In The Family (6 p.m., Ch 25.3 Get TV): First of four Christmas episodes.

CBS' "All In The Family" cast in 1976 with Archie's infant grandson.
Credit Courtesy CBS

The Jeffersons (6:30 p.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV):  George and Tom share stories about their fathers at Christmas.

M*A*S*H (7 p.m., TVLAND): Winchester fulfills a family Christmas tradition.

M*A*S*H (7:30 p.m., TVLAND): On the day after Christmas, officers and enlisted personnel change places.

Andy Griffith (8 p.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV): Andy and Barney give a Christmas party in the jail for a prisoner and his family.

Star Trek (8 p.m., Ch 20.4 Heroes & Icons): Kirk, Spock and McCoy flee a primitive planet with a pregnant woman after clashing with Kingons.

Everybody Loves Raymond (8 p.m., TVLAND): Ray buys an elaborate gift for Debra so he can go on a golf weekend.

Married... with Children (8 p.m., Ch 25.3 Get TV): First of four Christmas episodes.

Everybody Loves Raymond (8:30 p.m., TVLAND): Marie’s Christmas letter.

Everybody Loves Raymond (9 p.m., TVLAND): Debra feels slighted after Raymond buys his mom a very thoughtful gift.

WKRP In Cincinnati (9:30 p.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV): After eating one of Johnny Fever's brownies, Arthur Carlson has A Christmas Carol dream about being a Scrooge to his staff.

Everybody Loves Raymond (9:30 p.m., TVLAND): When the kids ruin Ray's dictionary, Frank tells how Ray ruined his prized jazz collection.

Two and a Half Men (10 p.m., TVLAND):  Christmas Eve visitors derail Charlie's efforts to have sex.

Two and a Half Men (9:30 p.m., TVLAND):  Alan's girlfriend Sandy makes a huge Christmas dinner.

King of Queens (11 p.m., TVLAND): Doug's Christmas bonus.

King of Queens (11:30 p.m., TVLAND): Doug buys Carrie a camera for Christmas.

The Twilight Zone (12:30 a.m., Ch 5.2 MeTV):  A professor, suicidal over his termination just before Christmas, is visited by past students who convince him to reconsider.

NYPD Blue (1 a.m., Ch 20.4 Heroes & Icons): Sipowicz reluctantly plays Santa at the precinct party; the station's cat eats the Christmas rabbit.