Christmas TV

by MinaGrentham | created - 04 Nov 2013 | updated - 5 months ago | Public

Formats: Anything that originally aired on television is eligible to be included this list, e.g.:

  • TV episodes
  • TV specials
  • TV movies
  • TV shorts
  • TV series (if the entire run of the series was Christmas-related)
Additionally, other formats might be included if they're directly related to a TV show (videos, the rare feature film), or if their origin is questionable/unclear (shorts not labeled as TV shorts, documentaries).

Content: Really trying to contain this to just TV titles directly about Christmas or clearly set at Christmastime. Fictional holidays which are obviously designed to be Christmas-esque or Christmas-adjacent without actually being called Christmas (Life Day, Festivus, Yaksmas, Snoggletog, Refrigerator Day, etc.) are included. Titles that feature New Year's Eve, Hannukah, Kwanzaa, etc. without also featuring Christmas -- as well as generic "winter"/"snow"-featuring titles -- are not included.

Completeness:
  • This is (perpetually) a work in progress. I've covered episodes of TV shows pretty well but still have a lot of specials and movies to add. If you notice something is missing, feel free to let me know.
  • US TV information is generally more readily available than info from other countries (and I'm American so I'm more familiar with it as well), so this list understandably has a US bent. However, I welcome suggestions of titles to add from other countries.
  • Obviously I have not watched every item on this list. If you think I've included something in error, please let me know.
  • When suggesting additions or deletions, keep in mind that this is ultimately my list, and so I can choose not to implement your suggestion. Please don't take it personally. :)

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1. A Christmas Carol (1943 TV Movie)

60 min | Drama, Family, Fantasy

An early experimental television broadcast of Dickens's famous novel.

Director: George Lowther | Stars: Lon Clark, Roger De Koven, Noah Julian, Consuela Lembke

Votes: 18

2. The Ruggles (1949–1952)
Episode: Christmas Eve (1949)

Comedy, Family

The Ruggles clan decides to do something nice for Sharon's classmate, Elaine, whose father recently died. They prepare a lavish meal and take to her house on Christmas Eve, but discover that she's quite happy and a great singer, to boot.

Stars: Charles Ruggles, Erin O'Brien-Moore, Margaret Kerry, Tom Bernard

Votes: 12

3. The Robert Q. Lewis Christmas Show (1949 TV Movie)

60 min | Comedy, Music

Robert Q. Lewis hosts a holiday special full of comedy and song.

Stars: Robert Q. Lewis, The DeMarco Sisters, Jane Marshall, Doretta Morrow

4. Gruen Guild Theater (1951–1953)
Episode: Joe Santa Claus (1951)

30 min | Drama

Disgusted that he's been moved from the hardware department to duties as a department store Santa Claus and angry that his wife wants to go to work and earn money, young father Joe Peters ... See full summary »

Director: Alex Gruenberg | Stars: Maria Palmer, Ray Montgomery, Houseley Stevenson, Peter Brocco

Votes: 26

5. The George Burns and Gracie Allen Show (1950–1958)
Episode: Christmas with Mamie Kelly (1951)

Comedy

Mamie is back with the girls to visit for the holidays.

Director: Ralph Levy | Stars: George Burns, Gracie Allen, Harry von Zell, Bea Benaderet

Votes: 15

6. Amahl and the Night Visitors (1951 TV Movie)

55 min | Music

One night in Judea, a disabled shepherd boy-turned-beggar and his mother are visited by three strangers. They are the Three Kings, and they are on their way to Bethlehem to visit the Christ Child, who has just been born.

Directors: Kirk Browning, Gian Carlo Menotti | Stars: Chet Allen, Rosemary Kuhlmann, Andrew McKinley, David Aiken

Votes: 55

8. Kraft Theatre (1947–1958)
Episode: A Christmas Carol (1952)

60 min | Drama

An old bitter miser who makes excuses for his uncaring nature learns real compassion when three ghosts visit him on Christmas Eve.

Stars: Eric Berry, Phillip Brady, Eva Condon, Melville Cooper

9. Racket Squad (1950– )
Episode: The Christmas Caper (1952)

Not Rated | 30 min | Crime, Drama

Braddock and his men investigate several con artists who use phony street corner Santa Clauses to collect money for poor children and distribute it among themselves.

Director: Erle C. Kenton | Stars: Reed Hadley, Lloyd Corrigan, Jackie Coogan, Alan Dexter

Votes: 13

10. Dragnet (1951–1959)
Episode: The Big .22 Rifle for Christmas (1952)

Not Rated | 26 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

Friday and Smith search for a missing boy. The first sign that the case is serious is when blood is found. Further probing reveals the boy's parents had purchased him a .22-caliber rifle ... See full summary »

Director: Jack Webb | Stars: Jack Webb, Herbert Ellis, William Johnstone, June Whitley Taylor

Votes: 44

11. The Amos 'n Andy Show (1951–1953)
Episode: The Christmas Story (1952)

30 min | Comedy

Andy, broke as usual, is desperate to earn money so he can give his god-daughter a talking doll for Christmas. He convinces a manager to hire him as a department store Santa Claus on ... See full summary »

Director: Charles Barton | Stars: Alvin Childress, Spencer Williams, Tim Moore, Nick Stewart

Votes: 13

12. The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (1952–1966)
Episode: Boys' Christmas Money (1952)

TV-G | 30 min | Comedy, Family

The boys want to earn extra money for Christmas, so Ozzie gives them permission to look for work.

Director: Ozzie Nelson | Stars: Ozzie Nelson, Harriet Nelson, David Nelson, Ricky Nelson

Votes: 9

13. The Jackie Gleason Show (1952–1959)
Episode: Christmas Party (1952)

TV-G | 41 min | Comedy

The Honeymooners' first Christmas.

Stars: Jackie Gleason, Frankie Avalon, Jerry Bergen, Jimmy Blaine

14. The Doctor (1952–1953)
Episode: A Tale of Two Christmases (1952)

30 min | Drama

The life of a dysfunctional family between Christmas 1951 and Christmas 1952 is told.

Director: Robert Aldrich | Stars: Richard McMurray, Janie Alexander, Margaret Hayes, Harry Bannister

Votes: 8

15. The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (1952–1966)
Episode: Late Christmas Gift (1952)

TV-G | 30 min | Comedy, Family

Ozzie and David receive Christmas gifts after Christmas from Grandma Nelson.

Director: Ozzie Nelson | Stars: Ozzie Nelson, Harriet Nelson, David Nelson, Ricky Nelson

Votes: 13

16. Dragnet (1951–1959)
Episode: The Big Little Jesus (1953)

Not Rated | 30 min | Crime, Drama, Mystery

It's Christmas Eve when Father Rojas at the Old Mission Plaza Church in Los Angeles discovers that the statue of the Infant Jesus is stolen from the crib. The statue's worth is only a few ... See full summary »

Director: Jack Webb | Stars: Jack Webb, Ben Alexander, Harry Bartell, Joe Carioca Jr.

Votes: 47

18. The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (1952–1966)
Episode: The Miracle (1953)

TV-G | 30 min | Comedy, Family

Ozzie tells his family a story from his childhood of when he wished for a white Christmas.

Director: Ozzie Nelson | Stars: Ozzie Nelson, Harriet Nelson, David Nelson, Ricky Nelson

Votes: 7

19. The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (1952–1966)
Episode: Lost Christmas Gift (1954)

TV-G | 30 min | Comedy, Family

After the Christmas gifts have been opened, one exception is noticed: Ricky's catcher's mitt. Ozzie guesses it might have been delivered to another Nelson family across town, as a package ... See full summary »

Director: Ozzie Nelson | Stars: Ozzie Nelson, Harriet Nelson, David Nelson, Ricky Nelson

Votes: 10

21. The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (1952–1966)
Episode: The Fruitcake (1955)

TV-G | 30 min | Comedy, Family

When Harriet insists that everyone write thank you notes, Ozzie struggles to write his to Thorny.

Director: Ozzie Nelson | Stars: Ozzie Nelson, Harriet Nelson, David Nelson, Ricky Nelson

Votes: 10

22. The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin (1954–1959)
Episode: Rin Tin Tin and the Christmas Story (1955)

30 min | Adventure, Family, Western

While searching for a Christmas tree Lt. Rip, Rusty & Rinty encounter an Indian couple who need their assistance.

Director: Douglas Heyes | Stars: Lee Aaker, James Brown, Joe Sawyer, Rand Brooks

Votes: 8

23. The Lone Ranger (1949–1957)
Episode: Christmas Story (1956)

TV-G | 30 min | Western

The Lone Ranger meets a young boy who's Christmas wish is to be re-united with his father. The Lone Ranger and Tonto go on a quest to find the boy's father and grant the boy his wish.

Director: Earl Bellamy | Stars: Clayton Moore, Jay Silverheels, William Henry, Aline Towne

Votes: 14

24. The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (1952–1966)
Episode: The Busy Christmas (1956)

Not Rated | 30 min | Comedy, Family

Ozzie volunteers for so many Christmas committees that he has little time to do his Christmas shopping, hang the Christmas lights or buy a Christmas tree.

Director: Ozzie Nelson | Stars: Ozzie Nelson, Harriet Nelson, David Nelson, Ricky Nelson

Votes: 24

25. The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (1952–1966)
Episode: The Day After Christmas (1956)

Not Rated | 30 min | Comedy, Family

Feeling nostalgic on the day after Christmas, Ozzie is determined to take the family ice skating up at the lake.

Director: Ozzie Nelson | Stars: Ozzie Nelson, Harriet Nelson, David Nelson, Ricky Nelson

Votes: 9

26. The Scarlet Pimpernel (1955– )
Episode: The Christmas Present (1956)

30 min | Adventure, Family

When Chauvelin captures an several important members of the French royalty, Sir Percy must forsake a quiet Christmas at home and attempt a rescue.

Director: David MacDonald | Stars: Marius Goring, Anthony Newlands, Stanley Van Beers, Patrick Troughton

Votes: 8

27. The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (1952–1966)
Episode: Christmas Tree Lot (1957)

TV-G | 30 min | Comedy, Family

David and Rick decide to earn some extra cash to buy Christmas presents by opening up a Christmas tree lot, but soon discover that being a small-time entrepreneurs is a lot more involved than they had realized.

Director: Ozzie Nelson | Stars: Ozzie Nelson, Harriet Nelson, David Nelson, Ricky Nelson

Votes: 20

28. The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (1952–1966)
Episode: A Piano for the Fraternity (1960)

TV-G | 26 min | Comedy, Family

David and Rick's fraternity tries to find an affordable piano to use for their upcoming Christmas party. The brothers are just about to give up when they meet the Stewarts who offer them ... See full summary »

Director: Ozzie Nelson | Stars: Ozzie Nelson, Harriet Nelson, David Nelson, Ricky Nelson

Votes: 12

29. The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet (1952–1966)
Episode: Girl in the Emporium (1960)

Not Rated | 30 min | Comedy, Family

Ricky and Wally notice a pretty sales clerk in a store and try to get jobs for the Christmas shopping rush in the same department.

Director: Ozzie Nelson | Stars: Ozzie Nelson, Harriet Nelson, David Nelson, Ricky Nelson

Votes: 13

30. The Jack Benny Program (1950–1965)
Episode: Christmas Party (1961)

Not Rated | 30 min | Comedy

Jack and Rochester give gifts to the cast. First TV appearance of Mel Blanc following his near fatal car accident in January of 1961.

Stars: Jack Benny, Eddie 'Rochester' Anderson, Don Wilson, Dennis Day

Votes: 8

31. Make Room for Daddy (1953–1965)
Episode: Christmas Story (1963)

30 min | Comedy, Family

Danny is disheartened because his family is so caught up in the material aspects of Christmas that they seem to have forgotten its real meaning. He comes up with a plan he hopes will remedy this.

Director: Danny Thomas | Stars: Danny Thomas, Marjorie Lord, Rusty Hamer, Angela Cartwright

33. ABC Stage 67 (1966– )
Episode: A Christmas Memory (1966)

51 min | Comedy, Drama, Musical

Its the last Christmas together in Depression era Alabama of a sensitive boy and his elderly cousin who was his closest friend. The two raise enough money to buy the ingredients for 30 ... See full summary »

Director: Frank Perry | Stars: Geraldine Page, Donnie Melvin, Lavinia Cassels, Christine Marler

Votes: 159

34. Annie Oakley (1954–1957)
Episode: Santa Claus Wears a Gun (1956)

Not Rated | 26 min | Western

A elderly sharpshooter, Snowy Kringle, arrives in town for show where he will demonstrate his skill with a flintlock rifle and cap-and-ball pistol. The man who is charged with delivering ... See full summary »

Director: Ray Nazarro | Stars: Gail Davis, Jimmy Hawkins, Brad Johnson, Stanley Andrews

Votes: 9

35. Topper (1953–1955)
Episode: Christmas Carol (1953)

30 min | Fantasy, Comedy

Henrietta reads a Christmas Carol to Topper and their guests. Topper falls asleep during the reading and dreams he is Scrooge.

Director: Paul Landres | Stars: Anne Jeffreys, Robert Sterling, Leo G. Carroll, Lee Patrick

Votes: 5

36. Father Knows Best (1954–1960)
Episode: The Christmas Story (1954)

TV-G | 30 min | Comedy, Family