My 5 Fave Thanksgiving TV Episodes

Going home for Thanksgiving means it’s time to go home, sit with your favorite blanket on your lap, and binge-watch! IT’S BINGE-GIVING!

 

You KNOW I’ll be checking out some newer shows. My goal over this Thanksgiving is to finish The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, deepen the crush on Hasan Minhaj that I’ve developed watching his show Patriot Act, and go through the Jeopardy episodes that are now on Netflix. (You’re welcome.)

 

But I also love the Thanksgiving episodes of some of my favorite shows! My sister and I make it a point to watch some of these every year. While the Thanksgiving spirit might not be as potent and branded as the Christmas spirit or Halloween spirit, I think it has its place. Make sure to check these out before you fall into your turkey coma.

 

-New Girl, “Bangsgiving” (Season 4, Episode 9)

University of Iowa’s HC chapter is right on the money with this ranking this episode as one of New Girl’s best. Some of the best Thanksgiving episodes involve the “friend group Thanksgiving tradition” plot, and in this one “Bangsgiving” is Schmidt’s idea: the gang brings dates for each other. We get to see the best Jessica Day boyfriend (besides Nick, of course)- the delightful and adorable and British Ryan Geauxinue (pronounced “Goes-in-you”), and Nick brings along Tran, who I would be obsessed with too, if I knew him. Everyone ends up with a perfect match in some way, and Winston even confronts his fear of lunch ladies.

 

-Brooklyn Nine-Nine, “Thanksgiving” (Season 1, Episode 10)

Jake is his most avoid-human-affection. Amy is her most impress-Holt-at-all-costs. Terry Crews/Jeffords is hangrier than anyone I’ve ever seen, and his overacting is hilarious. Holt calls his judge mother “your honor” AND finally complies with Jake’s alter ego suggestions, Barley and Jimes (“My wife was murdered by a man in a yellow sweater!”) Boyle is at his most predictable and his most heroic (“Happy Turkey Day!”). All in all, every character does what they do best and comes together as a happy chosen family. Nine-Nine!

 

-Bob’s Burgers, “An Indecent Thanksgiving Proposal” (Season 3, Episode 5)

“Pass the cranberry sauce, we’re having mashed potatoes!” Every Bob’s Burgers Thanksgiving episode is great (as Thanksgiving is Bob’s favorite holiday), but I have a special place in my heart for this one. Not only does Linda deliver the anthem upon all anthems “Kill the Turkey,” but there’s something that will always make me laugh about the Belchers pretend to be Mr. Fischoeder’s kids “Gina, Tene, and Lucy.” Also, Bob drinks absinthe and has *a moment* with Lance the turkey. This whole thing is straight up iconic.

 

-How I Met Your Mother, “Slapsgiving 2: Revenge of the Slap” (Season 5, Episode 9)

Okay, I have to admit. I love How I Met Your Mother. I didn’t like the ending, and I admit to thinking that Ted is a complete and total dick, but the writing is really good and the relationships are compelling. Especially in this episode. Lilly deals with the issues she has with her dad Mickey (inventor of board games like “Diseases!”) and Marshall is the defensive, wholesome husband I can only dream of. Meanwhile, Ted and Robin debate on who gets to slap Barney. Barney is terrified, and it is hilarious. They end with a piano rendition of “You Just Got Slapped.” I have seen this episode so many times. It is perfect.

 

-Friends, “The One With All the Thanksgivings” (Season 5, Episode 8)

Friends has so many iconic Thanksgiving episodes. But I have to hand it to this one. It’s one of the most popular Friends episodes of all time, and despite having some problematic bits (very unpleasant feelings toward the fat Monica storyline) it’s a genuinely good turning point in the Monica/Chandler love story. Plus, we get to see Ross’s perm and mustache, Phoebe’s exploration of her past life, and Monica’s turkey head dance. But above all, it gave us the line my sister and I repeat every single year without fail…

 

 

Happy tryptophan comas, friends!