The Simpsons (1989– )
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Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire 

Christmas seems doomed for the Simpson family when Homer receives no holiday bonus. Hoping to make extra money, he becomes a mall Santa Claus in an attempt to bring the family a happy holiday.



, (created by) | 3 more credits »

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Episode complete credited cast:
Homer Simpson / Barney Gumble / Elf Moldy / Grampa Simpson (voice)
Bart Simpson / Ralph Wiggum / SNPP employee / Radio singing voice / Boy / Lewis / Cashier / Elf Bubbles (voice)
Lisa Simpson (voice)
Moe Szyslak (voice)
Mr. Burns / Principal Seymour Skinner / Mr. Largo / Ned Flanders / Tattoo Guy / Waylon Smithers / Dr. Zitofsky / Loudspeaker Announcer in Shop / Santa Claus Manager / Santa Claus Teacher / Announcer / Clerk (voice)
Girl (voice)


During Christmas at the Simpsons, Bart asks for a tattoo. Marge takes them to the mall to buy presents. Bart sees a tattoo parlor and lies about his age to get a "Mother" tattoo. Marge catches Bart while the tattoo parlor is working on it. Marge runs in and drags Bart out. She spends all the Christmas money on removing Bart's tattoo, and Mr. Burns doesn't give out bonuses. Homer then gets a job at the mall as Santa Claus. Bart goes to the mall and pulls off Homer's beard. Homer is then left without a job, and only gets paid $13.00. Will Christmas get any better for the Simpsons? Written by

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Twas the Week Before Christmas and Fate Played a Joke. No Tree and No Presents, Homer was Broke!


Animation | Comedy


TV-G | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

17 December 1989 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The "Santas of many lands" portion of the Christmas pageant is based on Matt Groening's experience in the second grade when he did a report on Christmas in Russia. Groening also used that reference in his comic strip "Life in Hell" when he spoofed himself as a young man, being told that it is too bad his grandmother is from Russia, because Christmas is against the law there. See more »


Lewis changes skin color from dark to light, when Milhouse dares Bart to sit on Santa's lap. See more »


Manager: Do you like kids?
Homer: What? You mean all the time? Even when they're nuts?
[the interviewer gives him a suspicious look]
Homer: Uh, I sure do.
See more »

Crazy Credits

During the credits, the Simpsons sing "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer". See more »


Winter Wonderland
Music by Felix Bernard
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A beautiful, sweet episode
2 November 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

"Simpsons Roasting On An Open Fire" is one of the sweetest and greatest Simpsons episodes of all time, and this was the very first episode.

Even though the animation might be a little crude, but that's the fun of it! I actually thought the animation from "The Simpsons" back from Season 1 to Season 4 was actually really good.

This was the episode that we first fell in love with The Simpson family; Homer, Marge, Bart, Lisa, and Maggie. It also marked for characters like Mr. Burns, Grandpa Abe, Patty & Selma, and of course, Santa's Little Helper.

Overall, this is a sweet, beautiful, and heartwarming Christmas episode that's great to watch around Christmas time.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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