Last fall, I decided to stop living under a rock and finally watch The Office. Let’s just say I wasn’t underwhelmed. During its nine season run, it gave us some great Christmas episodes in almost every season, and I couldn’t resist going back and ranking them to determine which ones are truly worth watching.
Warning: There are plenty of spoilers in this article.
- “Classy Christmas” (Season 7)
Each subplot is depressing in a way the show’s unique brand of comedy couldn’t save. Michael pines (no pun intended) over Holly for too much of the episode, Darryl’s daughter doesn’t want to spend Christmas with him, and Jim and Dwight take a prank war a little too far to the point where it’s just mean. At least this was the episode where Dwight reveals that he has a wig for each person in the office.
- “Dwight Christmas” (Season 9)
Dwight Christmas had a good nostalgia factor and Dwight hugging Jim when he came back to his party at the end was proof of how far their friendship had come, but there was something overall that just felt flat and like the show truly was at the end of its run. I just hope Darryl was okay at the end after falling on and crushing the table…
- “Secret Santa” (Season 6)
I liked Phyllis and Michael battling it out over who could be the office Santa and Andy’s Twelve Days of Christmas gift to Erin, but this episode wasn’t particularly noteworthy until the end where we find out Dunder Mifflin will be bought out for Sabre. My main takeaway was more confusion about why no one felt bad for David Wallace losing his job than holiday spirit.
- “Moroccan Christmas” (Season 5)
The combination of Dwight trying to make a profit from Princess Unicorn dolls and Angela and Phyllis’s reversed party planning committee dynamics were amazing. Honorable mention goes to Andy’s sitar playing. Although I think Meredith is a very underrated character, Michael taking her to rehab against her will felt a little heavy for a one episode subplot.
- “Christmas Wishes” (Season 8)
Honestly an underrated Christmas episode. Michael and Pam are missed, but otherwise we have a great Dwight/Jim pranking storyline, Oscar taking his temporary bartending role incredibly seriously, an added twist as Andy attempts to grant everyone’s Christmas wish, and a montage of everyone celebrating, set to Dwight’s Christmas music that gives the season 7 lip dub a run for its money. What more can we ask for in an episode?
- “A Benihana Christmas” (Season 3)
An early episode filled with cringeworthy moments that feel so right for the show’s comedic timing. Michael, Jim, Andy, and Dwight go to Benihana’s after Carol breaks up with Michael, Karen and Pam team up to throw a better party than Angela, and Dwight and Angela sing “The Little Drummer Boy” together. It even ends with a twist and ties up loose ends when someone finally agrees to go to Jamaica with Michael on the phone…but, who?
- “Christmas Party” (Season 2)
Nothing ever beats the episode that started it all. It feels the most authentic, funny, and truly Christmas-y to me with a dose of classic early Jim and Pam, Michael dissing Phylis by scrapping Secret Santa for a white elephant party when he isn’t impressed by her knitted gift, and Creed being Creed, and giving Jim his old shirt as a gift. It introduces us to the Party Planning Committee’s Christmastime dynamics in a way the later episodes only parody, and it’s definitely worth a watch if you only have time for one episode. After watching this episode last December, and not knowing what a White Elephant swap was, I found out we were going to do one at our Christmas party for Her Campus, which I went to right after watching it. Very strange coincidence.
Ranking these episodes was harder than I thought since I really did enjoy at least the majority of each episode. Have a good holiday season (and winter break)!
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