Murder, She Wrote: A Christmas Secret

This episode opens with a Christmas party in which the host introduces his future son-in-law, a NEW Cabot Cove Resident. Has this man seen the violent crime rate in the otherwise sleepy town? RUN!! Get out while you still can! There’s something toxic in the water! This town should be a case study for the lead-crime hypothesis!

But no, it’s just so charming here in Cabot Cove. This guy is going to stick around, work for his father-in-law, and be a tax accountant. Ugh have I ever written a more depressing sentence? Well, maybe it’s not depressing for people who love math (not me).

Anyway, Jess has a heart to heart with the bride-to-be, Beth, who cannot understand why her fiancee, Charlie, seems a little bummed out after the Gulf War. Jess explains how post traumatic stress works and we cut to Mort inviting Charlie to go shooting. Charlie’s like cool, my gun is at the hotel. Ugh. This feels like a real Chekov’s gun moment. Why can’t we have anything nice in Cabot Cove?

Before things get too heavy, we move on to Jess and Seth arguing over whether or not they will have a white Christmas. Ah the yin and yang of Cabot Cove. One moment, you’re worried that your friends and acquaintances might not survive the week because every one of your neighbors could be a cold blooded killer. The next moment you’re overwhelmed by the hygge.

As the party wraps up, Charlie heads to his car and finds a mysterious, wrapped gift on the passengers seat. He unwraps what appears to be a Willie Nelson cassette tape. But when he pops it into the player, he discovers that it’s really a mysterious message from “a friend” asking him to meet at Sally’s Landing for some holiday blackmail.

And before you’re like “oh my! how dark!” can I interest you in a Christmas store front?

Or a great shot of Mrs. Fletcher buying some holiday wrapping?

I mean this town goes ALL out. They even decorate the life preserver. Oh and before I forget to mention this crucial plot point, Charlie recognizes the woman waiting for him as Wanda, from the Christmas party, and he proceeds to drive away from the landing without even speaking to her.

In the next scene, we see Wanda helping with decorations at the community center. Everyone is incredibly hostile to her because she’s apparently screwing everyone’s husband. A fact we learn from Beth while she and Jess make cute little paper chains.

Jess, now decked out in tinsel herself, seems to be the only one who can be cordial to Wanda. She requests four red balloons from Wanda and Wanda is like cool but can you bring me my lunch? Um, she’s not your maid, Wanda!

Anyway, Jess is like I think I see it in that locker behind you. And Wanda abruptly shuts the locker and is like no, that’s not my lunch.

She then tries to hand Jess four green balloons, which is how we learn that Wanda is colorblind. Something tells me this fact will be important later.

Anyway, Beth heads over to Charlie’s hotel because she’s not buying the whole stressed from the war thing and she thinks something else is up. He isn’t in his room, but she plays the mysterious tape and finds an appointment in his planner for a meeting at the Light House Motel. Beth books it over there and finds Charlie greeting another woman with a kiss.

Now at this point, we’ve been seeing a lot of heavy kissing from Beth and Charlie. This looks way more like a friendly greeting to me. My hunch is that this woman is Charlie’s sister, but of course Beth does not see it that way. Hold on a second. You’re not getting sad in this Christmas episode are you? Here’s a glimpse of a happy couple with a Christmas package just behind Beth’s car as she tearfully drives away.

As Beth cries upstairs at her parents’ house, her mother tells Charlie that Beth is feeling sick. She seems to genuinely believe Beth’s fake food poisoning and begs Charlie to still attend the party at the community center with Beth’s father and her.

At the community center, Jess and Seth watch Mort lead a chorus of carolers. Too bad Adele can’t be there. She’s busy delivering baskets of food to the poor in another town. She’s missing Seth play Santa!

Meanwhile, Charlie follows Wanda into the women’s locker room to a soundtrack of a very ominous riff on Good King Wenceslas. We hear a shot (that makes Seth flinch outside of the locker room but of course he doesn’t check it out even though this is Cabot Cove). Charlie passes another Santa in the locker room and (presuming its Seth), he asks what the shot was. The Santa (not Seth, obvious) dashes away without responding. And just as Charlie happens upon Wanda’s motionless body, J.Fletch appears — presumably to check out the noise but if this arrival isn’t an easy win for the “she killed them all” camp then I don’t know what is.

Luckily, she is wearing an excellent Christmas tree broach.

The real Seth examines Wanda, and declaring her close to death, accompanies her to the hospital. Jess and Mort then seem to imply that Seth has been such a Scrooge that they fear even Christmas is not safe from toxic negativity — toxic enough for MURDER. I’m not even kidding: Mort says “doc stacked the deck against us.” Although, given that this is the ONE Christmas episode in the show’s run he might have a point. Perhaps even a town full of nosey people with poor impulse control decides not to go murdering on a day meant for peace and goodwill.

Beth then chooses this very moment to confront Charlie. He’s like do you know what just happened? And she’s like yeah but I still want to talk about you and that strange woman from earlier at right this very moment. I know cheating is bad but the dude literally just found a nearly lifeless woman’s body. Can Beth please show him a little grace? We can talk about cheating tomorrow.

Luckily, the next morning we learn that Wanda will live because, according to Seth’s medical description, the bullet “was deflected in some sort of flukey fashion” and for this reason didn’t do any major damage that couldn’t be corrected with emergency surgery.

Beth then shows up at Jessica’s house to say that Charlie’s gun was used to shoot Wanda. The cops found Wanda’s blackmail tape and Charlie confessed to going to the landing. He’s been arrested for murder and Beth wants Jess’s help. Wow, that’s stressful isn’t it! Good thing we get a great glimpse at Jess’s awesome Christmas decorations.

Jess gives Seth the signal to get lost so that Beth will open up to her. As soon as Seth is out the door, Beth says she’s worried that Charlie got the money for her ring in nefarious ways. She also confesses that she’s worried he’s cheating.

Jess goes to see Mort and asks if Wanda had any time to go to California within the past year and he’s like no way. You want to know why? One time when Jess was away, a group of delegates from Cabot Cove went to Tokyo because they wanted to build trade relations. Mort then makes a joke about opening a chain of CABOT BURGERS in Japan. What is this Cabot Burgers? I haven’t heard of it. I need an establishing shot stat!

Floyd Bigelow went on the trip so Wanda handled the books. When Floyd returned, the pension accounts and short-term CD accounts were a freaking mess. And he thinks that Wanda was behind it and that she was embezzling funds! Oh by the way, here’s Floyd Bigelow. We also met him at the Christmas party earlier:

With absolutely no connection between Wanda and Charlie, Jess and Mort start to wonder if maybe the tape was left in Charlie’s car by mistake. And then they’re like hey, Beth had access to that room too. But Jess doesn’t think Beth is a murderer — which is weird because like everyone in that town is a murderer. Maybe Jess has rose colored glasses and that’s the whole reason she’s able to even live there. Maybe it’s genuinely shocking to her that people die on the regular in that town.

Anyway, Jess goes to the Light House Motel to see what’s up with that strange woman and it turns out that she is his sister! But also…he has a toddler..he’s a dad! He was afraid to tell Beth that he had a child out of wedlock. I mean. It really seems like this is something that you would mention before proposing…but…Jess can’t figure out why this would be grounds for blackmail since Charlie was going to have to mention the kid at some point anyway.

And that’s when Jess remembers that Wanda is colorblind. She calls down to the hardware store that Floyd owns and asks him to bring the master keys for the community center, so that they can access Wanda’s locker. Floyd heads to the community center with a revolver.

When Floyd starts to open the locker (early and without Jess), his eavesdropping assistant Amy confronts him and tells him that she framed Charlie. And that she’s the only one who knows the truth and she looooves him. THAT IS NOT THE CHRISTMAS SPIRIT. Anyway, Mort and Jess show up right at this moment. And in a true Murder, She Wrote anomaly, NO ONE DIES. And that, for Cabot Cove, is a Christmas miracle.

Very Special Holiday Lesson: If you’re colorblind and you’re going to leave a wrapped gift in someone’ s car — make sure to note the correct license plate.

P.S. In a very sweet moment, Jess gives Seth the toy train he always wanted as a child because they are in loooove.

And WAIT is that blond woman caroling with Mort ADELE???

A Very Special Shopping List for Your Holiday Season

Happy Cyber Monday! Have you already been shopping all weekend? Do you already have a robust list for all of your loved ones holiday gift needs? Are you wondering what niche gifts you can purchase for the pop culture fan in your life? Why check out Oprah’s Favorite Things when you can check out this fully curated list of random things that I think are cool for the holiday season?

To wear:

Duckie and Andie pins, $16, Mondo

To read:

Pop Culture Trash, $24.99, ModCloth


To write:

HiFi Greeting Cards, $12.95, Chronicle Books

To decorate:

Stranger Things Funko Pop Ornament, $4.95, Barnes & Noble

Cheers: The Spy Who Came In For A Cold One

the_spy_who_came_in_for_a_cold_oneA mysterious man arrives at Cheers on Christmas Eve. He reveals to Carla that he is a spy and she of course tells everyone in the Cheers crew. He’s quite taken with Carla, which flatters her to no end. As she brags to Diane about her new friend, Diane begins to poke holes in his story. He doesn’t know the right currency for Norway and misidentifies a city to Turkey as a city in Bulgaria.

Diane has to be right, of course, so she confronts the man. Sam tells her to chill out and stop ruining their good time. And in that moment, he explains the magic of Cheers (and why it’s exactly the place where you want everyone to know your name).

Of course, Diane just can’t let it go. She ends up humiliating the poor guy, who leaves the bar in such a pitiful way that she cannot help but feel utterly ashamed. After his departure, Diane quits Cheers. Carla is totally excited and tries to hurry her out the door. But Sam and Coach talk her into to sticking around and making this right. Diane decides to search the city until she finds him.

Luckily, she doesn’t have to look far. She barely has her coat on when he returns to explain his actions. He says he is just a lonely writer and makes up stories due to his loneliness. Diane, as we know, LOVES literature, so she urges him to share some of his writing. Since Diane is an acquaintance of an editor at The Atlantic, she decides to call him and share one of the man’s poems.


Sam urges her not to make the call, stating that the man could have simply memorized a poem and passed it off as his own. But Diane doesn’t listen because of course she couldn’t possible be wrong about poetry. Maybe about determining who is and who is not a legitimate spy, but NOT about poetry.

Surprise! The poem turns out to be plagiarized. Everyone has a good laugh (except Diane) and Sam thanks the pathological liar for giving them good entertainment. He then explains he’s simply an eccentric millionaire and makes up stories for his own amusement. He offers to buy the bar from Sam. He even lets him name the price.

Everyone has a good laugh when this guy writes Sam a check for two million dollars. Diane doesn’t find any of this funny (she’s still pissed about being bested) so she rips up the check. As the check pieces fall to the floor, a footman enters the bar and lets the eccentric millionaire/pathological liar know that some important papers have arrived for him from Geneva and he’s got the car all ready to go.

I mean…I still think this guy could be full of crap and have another person playing along, but this sends Carla et all scrambling to pick up the pieces of the check. Sam’s not worried though because he didn’t really want to sell Cheers anyway.


Very Special Christmas Lesson: Honestly, the only thing Christmas-y about this episode was the decorations. Plus, Carla and Diane worse some Christmas corsages. Maybe it’s a message of being kind to strangers? And also maybe not calling acquaintances at The Atlantic? Take from this what you will and be on your merry way.

Sabrina, the Teenage Witch: Christmas Amnesia

Sabrina’s aunts are like ridiculously into Christmas. They’re wearing some pretty intense Christmas garb and acting even more peculiar than normal. But Sabrina’s cranky about Christmas. She gets frustrated with the lights and would rather use magic than deal with decorating by hand.tumblr_mxvld8zhm71rijmvyo1_400

Sabrina’s aunts decide to engage her in a myriad of Christmas activities in an effort to make Sabrina more festive. But with each thing they try, she only gets less and less spirited. So finally they let her go to a party at the coolest club in the other realm on Christmas Eve. She’s such a grouch they decide to just spend Christmas Eve dinner without her.

But it turns out the other realm party is really creepy and awful. The only reason Sabrina was invited is that she is anti-Christmas spirit. The people at the party are throwing darts at a board with Santa’s face on it and watching a TV showing people celebrating Christmas.

That’s when things get really creepy. They zero in on Sabrina’s aunts eating without her and decide to make it even “more pathetic” by tricking them into thinking Sabrina came home for dinner, but then she of course doesn’t show. Like how creepy is that if witches can just watch each other? Like do they watch each other in the shower? Ick.

Sabrina is so disgusted that she rushes home to celebrate with her aunts. But when she gets there, she finds that she has erased Christmas entirely. (She turned off the TV and accidentally hit “erase” prior to leaving the other realm party.) Side note: Salem once destroyed the holiday “Bobunk” in much the same manner. What’s Bobunk? Exactly.

Screen Shot 2015-12-06 at 1.42.03 PM

Sabrina tries to save Christmas by spreading Christmas cheer to everyone. And it turns out that Christmas is actually pretty creepy if you don’t know the traditions.

For example, Sabrina gets arrested when she dresses up as Santa and yes all a random child in a department store when she doesn’t sit on her lap. She also sounds like a nut because she keeps walking around singing Christmas carols but like they just sound like jibberish to everyone else…

But when she and her aunts get snowed in, Sabrina realizes “all the hoopla of Christmas isn’t as important as spending time with your family.” Whoops, the spell is reversed!


Very Special Lesson: Actually, I’m not sure what they were going for her. Sabrina didn’t like “the hoopla of Christmas” so it’s not like she was overly materialistic and needed to learn the “true” meaning of Christmas. She already spends a ton of time with her aunts and obviously never wanted them to suffer…oh wait yeah I guess she wasn’t supposed to skip Christmas Eve Dinner. So yeah. Have dinner with your loved ones and skip the crappy party instead.


The Facts of Life: Christmas in the Big House

Okay, so for those of you who missed out on The Facts of Life, it’s a show about a group of girls who live together at boarding school and for whatever reason continue to living together well after boarding school with their dorm-mother and it’s not weird. It’s not even weird at all. And no one wants to move out. Ever. Even though there are like four twenty year-old women sharing a room. facts-of-life-christmas-in-the-big-house-01_0

Anyway, basically the girls end up volunteering on Christmas eve at a prison and everyone is super into it except for the snooty rich girl, Blair. Jo (whose particularly close to this situation because her dad is an ex-con) says that Blair is just a socialite do-gooder who only helps as long as she doesn’t have to actually interact with them. You know, she throws money at stuff.

So anyway, Blair refuses to participate in this show, but she goes with them anyway and sits “backstage” at the prison theater. Yep, this prison has a theater. It’s like the USO! Kind of…

These prisoners are like so clean cut and I don’t just mean like they look clean, I mean whoever is doing their hair in the prison barber shop is pretty great.

It’s kinda nice that the girls can’t sing very well.facts-of-life-christmas-in-the-big-house-20_0

Mrs. Garret holds a prisoner’s hand. Is that allowed? Isn’t there a no touching rule?

But the warden has promised them more and no one knows what to do! They have done the entire show! The girls want to runaway, but Mrs. Garret tells them that they are the inmates entire Christmas. Finally, Blair decides to participate after the very special speech from Mrs. Garret. Blair can sing and she’s doing it a capella because she was a mouseketeer. Then all of the inmates sing too and like agh I know they are fake inmates and this fake prison is abnormally nice, but it still makes me tear up. Then she repeats the song like seven times until the credits end. LIKE SEVEN TIMES. Does this song not have other verses??? Talk about ruining the moment.

Very Special Lesson: It’s important not to make their ears bleed when you have a captive audience.

Boy Meets World: A Very Topanga Christmas

Topanga spends Christmas with the Matthews and is basically the worst houseguest ever. I know she’s known Cory since like birth, but doesn’t she even want to try a little bit to not totally piss off his parents? Isn’t she like looking to one day marry this guy? She brazenly changes out all of their Christmas traditions with her own. She makes them drive six hundred miles to Vermont to get an evergreen instead of the aluminum tree that they have used for the past twenty years. She scorns their eggnog and sends them on a mission to get hot mulled cider. She even brings her own tree topper, a snowy white angel, instead of their cardboard macaroni noodle star. BMWXMAS1

Meanwhile, Shawn and long lost brother Jack are trying to figure out what they have in common. They accidentally discover that they both like iceskating and everything is just fine. They leave Cory sitting on their couch alone, and he falls asleep to dram A Christmas Carol-style. He has left Topanga on Christmas Eve (which is a douche move even though she was being insufferable). She says she will be waiting for him at his parents’ house, but Cory remains at Shawn’s nevertheless.

Here’s what happens in Cory’s dream:

  • He and Eric live in Shawn and Jack’s old apartment. He’s very fat because all he eats now is the last meal that Topanga ever made for him: Christmas tree pancakes, no syrup, dusted with powdered sugar. Eric is bald (sad).
  • Topanga and Jack are happily married in suburbia. They have three kids, open presents on Christmas Eve (not like Cory’s family), but they do have an aluminum tree. (She is capable of compromise!)

BMWXMAS2Cory wakes up from his dream and delivers the promise ring to Topanga. OMG she also gives him a promise ring for Christmas! I feel like in real life Cory’s parents would have been like don’t come to our home and ruin our traditions way before things ever got to this point.

Very Special Christmas Lesson: When you love someone, you start to make your own traditions. And sometimes that means having an aluminum tree.

The Partridge Family: Don’t Bring Your Guns to Town Santa

partridge fmailyWhat’s the dirty little secret of someone who already watches all of the cheesiest TV ever? I love The Partridge Family. I once saw Danny Bonaduce in an Amtrak Cafe car and I geeked out about it (from a distance), which means I ran back to my seat and texted my dad because he was one of the only people I knew old enough to care. He responded that Danny Bonaduce was “pretty rough” and I had to agree. Anyway, I wish him all the best because the whole former child star thing really does seem to suck. But Danny seemed to be having a lively conversation with the cafe car guy, so I hope that’s a good sign.

So anyway, this Very Special Christmas episode is pretty trippy. It opens with Shirley Jones/David Cassidy singing “Walking in a Winter Wonderland” and it is so great. It’s also great because you know it’s really their voices and that can’t be said of anyone else in this entire cast.

Oh no! The bus breaks down on the way home from the Christmas concert! Even worse, they have broken down in a ghost town!

So while Keith and (father figure/manager) Reuben try to fix the bus, a nice old man tells the rest of the family a story about what the town was like before it was a ghost town. And all of the partridge family are the characters in the story. The entire town is pastel colored. Apparently, the town has a large silver bell so that Santa can find the children because that is how far out in the boonies they are. Also, they have latex balloons in a rainbow of colors and I know that shouldn’t bug me as an anachronism with everything els that is going on, but it does. Otherwise, things seem great until a newcomer comes to town and steals the bell for no reason other than that he is mean.Screen Shot 2014-12-07 at 9.00.28 PM

Then The Partridge family mom/saloon owner convinces her daughter/schoolmarm to try to “charm” the mean bell-stealer into returning the bell. That doesn’t work and her hair is all messed up when she returns, which I find concerning. She says he is mean and I hope he just decided to pull her hair like a schoolboy instead of something sketchy.

Screen Shot 2014-12-07 at 8.56.36 PMDavid Cassidy, as the sheriff, walks around town singing something that sounds like the Partridge family version of the Brave Sir Robin song from Monty Python.

Then Danny Bonaduce almost saves the day as “Little the Kid,” who tries to win the bell back in a game of poker. But the mean man pulls a gun on him, and manages to keep Christmas from happening (so Grinch like). Except then Alvin and the Chipmunks start singing “We Wish You a Marry Christmas.” What? But it is not the chipmunks because Shirley Jones informs everyone that those are the sounds of eight tiny reindeer. Santa did not need the bell to find the town!

Also, it turns out that the mean man stole the bell because he was feeling left out of Christmas. Santa never visited him and that made him cranky. Then the town gives him the silver bell. But he’s so moved by the spirit of Christmas that he gives it back to them. Then they make friends.

By this time, Reuben and Keith have fixed the bus, so the family leaves but we stay in the ghost town with the old man. Then we have to witness his poor old man totally alone in a ghost town for Christmas and like it’s the most depressing thing I’ve ever seen on a sitcom. And just when you’re like the Partridges are the douchiest people ever, the dulcet tones of a fake family band caroling in a ghost town caress your ears. storytime

They’re so obviously lip syncing but it’s heartwarming either way. Also, my favorite part of this fake family band is how there’s only one adult male and yet there’s always like three adult male voices in their “live” performances.

Very Special Lesson: Don’t leave the elderly alone on Christmas, especially not when they live in a ghost town and their only means of transportation is a donkey. That’s just horrible.

GIrl Meets World: The Shawn Episode

Agh where do I even start? This is the 3rd episode of this show that I have ever watched While it was way better than the other two, it once again demonstrated that it totally fails at having organic heartfelt moments. It seems like Girl Meets World is all about WE ARE HAVING A BIG HEARTFELT MOMENT RIGHT NOW whereas Boy Meets World was just awesome and that is frankly all that I can say about this in terms of a critical in-depth analysis. This show is just so obviously forced and superficial that there is nothing else to say about it. Screen Shot 2014-12-07 at 3.53.10 PM

Except that Rider Strong has made a guest appearance and we need to talk about that. It’s Christmas Eve and Amy, Alan, and their son Josh are visiting, but Corey is most excited about Shawn coming over. Josh is the ridiculous fourth child that Amy and Alan produced in what was (I think) the last season of the original show. The writers clearly had nothing else to do with their characters, so they used a plot tool…ugh. But they did cast a cute actor to portray older Josh and his entire job is just to be “cool.” That makes sense to me continuity wise because two older parents raising a fourth surprise baby are probably pretty chill.

Screen Shot 2014-12-07 at 4.34.31 PMBut something that does feel like a bit of a failure to me is that Amy is a total jerk to Topanga form the get-go of this episode. I know that Boy Meets World has committed some egregious character continuity errors over the years, but Amy was always like the best boyfriend’s mom/mother-in-law I could possibly imagine. Even when Topanaga stayed with them in high school and virtually destroyed all of their Christmas traditions, Amy was incredibly cool about it. But in the present day, all she can do it criticize Topanga’s cooking. Like come on people, why can’t we see Amy being cool Grandma with the kids? Why does she have to be a jerk? (Eventually, we learn that Amy is being awful because she misses having Christmas in Philly and feels useless or something like that but whatever.)

So I’ve hated the “girl Shawn character” from the first moment she showed up. But now I extra-super-mega-hate her because she’s so clearly a plot device and also because she is obnoxious. Shawn shows up and like doesn’t know how to talk to children. He talks to Josh who is like only four years older than Corey’s daughter, but apparently those four years are the difference between Shawn being able to form a sentence and well…being rude I guess. But like Shawn isn’t actually rude. You know what he is? He’s your dad’s friend who comes over for dinner and is clearly into hanging out with your dad. And that is totally okay because he is your dad’s friend. Like what thirteen year old girl is offended that a thirty-five year old man won’t hang out with her? That’s messed up. Screen Shot 2014-12-07 at 4.11.53 PM

But anyway obnoxious friend gets all plot device-y and accuses Shawn of hurting Riley (the daughter) with his lack of interaction. Then they dramatically leave the room all very special moment like and Shawn is left sitting on a window seat with Cory, thinking about his actions. Then in another scene they wake Shawn up from a nap (rude) and demand to know why he doesn’t like Riley. He’s all like what is wrong with you weird kids? I like Riley just fine. And then Riley demands that he tell her when her birthday is and what her favorite color is as if he is some bad middle school boyfriend. Like when would you ever talk to your dad’s friend like this? And what kind of parent would allow this level of disrespect? But like Cory is all calm and don’t worry Riley, Shawn knows your b-day. And then Riley gets all like offended and doesn’t believe him, so Shawn takes her and the obnoxious friend to a bakery where he tells them about Riley’s birthday. (December 8th. Tomorrow. I won’t be celebrating.) Riley’s birthday was also the day that Shawn left NYC for good.

Screen Shot 2014-12-07 at 4.25.33 PMThen Riley and her obnoxious friend proceed to armchair analyze Shawn in front of his face, and then Riley forces him to look at her. (Ugh this girl would be like the worst girl to date in middle school because look at how she behaves with grown men! Can you imagine if you forgot to cover her locker with wrapping paper for her birthday?) Then she says, “Every time you see me, does it remind you of what you don’t have?” SO OUT OF LINE, MAN! I imagine this is supposed to be some “from the mouth of babes” shit but like no way dude. This is so inappropriate.

After this ridiculousness, they go back home where Riley proceeds to force a bunch of heart to heart chats first between her father and Shawn and then between her obnoxious friend and Shawn (since they’re the same person or whatever). No actual kid has this much authority. And kids that do have an inappropriate amount of authority end up being drug addicts or assholes.

Very Special Lesson: Do not ever watch this show. Except for when WIll Friedle makes his guest appearance. We should all watch the Will Friedle episode.

The producers wanted you to see this.
The producers wanted you to see this.

Home Improvement: I’m Scheming of a White Christmas

This is a very special episode in which nothing happens. I’ve never seen anything quite like this. We have to learn a very important lesson and yet we see nothing at all about the consequence of our actions! Okay, wait let me back up.homeimprovementXMAS1

Randy and Brad are canvassing the neighborhood in support of something that we only know as “the charity.” They are raising so much money for “the charity” that they realize how much stuff they could buy for themselves if they keep 50% of what they are supposed to be giving to “the charity.” Things go great and they end up buying a ton of stuff, while also getting their mom’s approval for working so hard to raise money for “the charity.” Not even when Jill finds the loot in Brad’s book bag do we learn the true name of “the charity.” Finally, when she and Tim confront Brad and Randy with they evidence, we learn they were supposed to be raising money to donate to the “Oak Lane Children’s Center” for children who have “next to nothing.”

HomeImprovementXMAS2Okay, so time to go down and meet some friendly orphans in order to learn the true meaning of Christmas, right? Nope. Brad and Randy come home from apologizing (off camera) and Randy is mad at Brad because Brad didn’t talk at all and Randy had to apologize for the both of them. But then Brad saves the day by pointing out some toys that he and Randy no longer play with and can donate to the center. Problem solved! In other news, Tim’s Christmas lights are blinding, and Al gets stuck in a fake chimney as Santa Claus while The Manhattan Transfer performs on Tool Time.

Very Special Christmas Lesson: If you steal money from charity, be sure to make up for it by giving the kids some of your old crappy toys for the holidays.