Turkey Time on the Tube: Classic TV Thanksgiving Episodes for Which We Give Thanks

One of the best parts of watching a TV series is developing closeness and connection to the characters: laughing with their comedic moments, rejoicing in their triumphs, crying in their sad times. Just as the holidays bring out the best (and sometimes, worst) in each of us, TV characters go through very similar situations. As Turkey Day approaches, I thought I’d give thanks for some of the best television episodes with a Thanksgiving theme:


Cheers: Thanksgiving Orphans (1986: Season 5, Episode 9)

This memorable Cheers episode culminates in one heck of a Thanksgiving food fight. Carla hosts, while Frasier is grumpy, Norm has turkey issues, and Diane is, well, Diane. Dressed as a Pilgrim, no less. It’s a true classic.




Will & Grace: Moveable Feast (2001: Season 4, Episode 9)

Will & Grace tackled Thanksgiving several times, but this one’s my personal favorite. A “progressive” Thanksgiving dinner, so to speak, has Will, Grace, Jack and Karen schlepping from one house to another with only an hour at each home.




The West Wing: Shibboleth (2000: Season 2, Episode 8)

From light-hearted moments such as pardoning a turkey to a deeper message regarding the freedom of religion, this West Wing episode truly shines, topped with a poignant scene in which the President gives Charlie a gift.





Dexter: Hungry Man (2009: Season 4, Episode 9)


Dexter fans will likely agree that this is one of the series’ true high points. While not a traditionally happy Thanksgiving episode, the performances given by each member of the unfortunate Mitchell family are unforgettable.



And last but not least…

Friends: All of them!

No Thanksgiving TV list would be complete without Friends. From “The One With the Rumor” (and Brad Pitt!) to “The One With All the Thanksgivings,” nobody quite did Thanksgiving like the Friends. And we’re thankful for that.




There are so many Thanksgiving-themed TV episodes that it was hard to list just a few. What do you think? What are your favorites?

Jason is Email Marketing Coordinator at Half Price Books Corporate.

You can follow him on Twitter at @jasonapermenter.

One thought on “Turkey Time on the Tube: Classic TV Thanksgiving Episodes for Which We Give Thanks

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