Home Improvement: Season 1, Episode 12

Yule Better Watch Out (17 Dec. 1991)

TV Episode  |  TV-G  |   |  Comedy, Family
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 105 users  
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On "Tool Time": Tim gives a Yuletime tip - never plug in a frayed wire - and grunts "Jingle Bells". He also demonstrates his great invention, a rotating Christmas tree, with the usual ... See full summary »



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Title: Yule Better Watch Out (17 Dec 1991)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Wilson Wilson, Jr. / Santa Claus
Lisa (as Pamela Denise Anderson)
Fireman #1
Gary Bayer ...
Fireman #2


On "Tool Time": Tim gives a Yuletime tip - never plug in a frayed wire - and grunts "Jingle Bells". He also demonstrates his great invention, a rotating Christmas tree, with the usual results. At home: Tim has decided to beat Doc Johnson in the neighborhood Christmas decoration contest. The competition soon gets out of control. Jill is upset that Randy did not get the part of Joseph but rather the inn-keeper in the school Christmas pageant, and decides to make Randy stand out by making him an outstanding costume. Mark learns a shocking secret from his brothers: There is no Santa Claus... Or is there? Written by Toni Tapola, Finland

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Family





Release Date:

17 December 1991 (USA)  »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


The title is a play on a line from the classic Christmas song "Santa Claus is Coming to Town", written by J. Fred Coots and Haven Gillespie in 1934: "You better watch out, you better not cry." See more »


Tim Taylor: Mark is startin' to ask us questions about Santa Claus.
Wilson: Mmm-hm, mmm-hm.
Tim Taylor: Well, should we tell him he doesn't exist?
Wilson: Well, who says he doesn't exist, Tim? I believe it was Hamlet who put it best when he said, "There are more things in heaven and earth, good neighbor, than are dreamt of in your philosophy."
Tim Taylor: But Brad and Randy already said he was dead.
Wilson: Technically, that's true; he died in the year 342.
Tim Taylor: Well, then, who's at the mall?
Wilson: No, Tim; I'm talking about the original Santa Claus - Saint ...
See more »


The Twelve Days of Christmas
Sung by Earl Hindman
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User Reviews

Santa Claus is Coming to Detroit.
24 December 2012 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

It's yule time on Tool Time, and expect that line to be a recurring joke in years to come. Tim grunts along to Jingle Bells and then demonstrates how he rigged a turntable to properly rotate a Christmas tree. Naturally, he wired it incorrectly and the tree spins out of the control, tossing ornaments everywhere. At home, Mark continues to write an overly long list for Santa, while Tim gets into the spirit of competition with neighbor Doc Johnson. It seems every year they try to outdo each other in the neighborhood lighting competition and every year, the good doctor has won. Tim intends to break that record. Brad and Randy will be in the church pageant, as a shepherd and the inn keeper respectively, which they find just cause to complain about and take it out on Mark by telling him there was no Santa Claus. Or rather, they go one better and tell him that there was a Santa, but he died when Blitzen fell on him. The two jerks walk away and leave Mark with a crisis of faith, just as a Santa sleigh model defies physics.

So while Jill makes Randy try on an embarrassing inn keeper costume, Tim hits the roof (literally) to fight Doc Johnson tooth and nail. He sets up a rotating Santa on a turntable, only this time he wired it correctly. However, he gets a hammer frozen to his tongue (musta been a triple dog dare) and the rotating Santa repeatedly pounds him into submission. Fire fighters rescue him and admit they're both Tool Time fans, but they prefer Al over Tim. So they leave and Jill makes Tim promise to cut out this competition. He promises, but then calls the electric company, pretending to be Doc Johnson and requests his power be shut off... didn't work last year either. But he and Jill now have another problem on their hands: what to do about Mark and Santa Claus. Do they tell him he doesn't exist... or does he? The following night, after the pageant in which Randy gets demoted to sheep, the Taylors receive a visit from a jolly man in a red suit, who looks and sounds remarkably like Wilson. He came just in the "Nick" of time, as Tim and Jill were just about tell Mark the perceived truth about Santa. Reaching into his pack, Santa gives Mark the gift he wanted, apparently, a remote controlled Godzilla, and unlike with the toy companies, with Santa, batteries are included. For Brad and Randy, a rubber band and a button respectively. He gives Tim and Jill some mistletoe and bids them adieu, just as Jill happens to see Wilson from behind the fence, so that means... yup, it was the big guy himself. Mark's faith had been restored, and hopefully the Taylors' power will as well after Tim starts up his lights.

The first Home Improvement Christmas episode, and it indeed captures the spirit of the season. It is also the first of many times Tim will try to compete with Doc Johnson in the lighting contest, as this premise is repeated in every season, except Season 6. And in Season 7, he's competing with Al of all people. However, the lighting contest is mentioned in the sixth season Thanksgiving episode, but that's another story. Wonderfully acted, directed, written and shot, I recommend this episode for fans of Home Improvement, first time fans, and even those looking for some holiday cheer. Merry Christmas and more power...to you.

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