The 10 Best Nostalgic TV Christmas Specials From Your Childhood
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10 Nostalgic Christmas TV Specials To Bring Out Your Inner-Child

The holiday season is a time for giving and a time to be a child again.

10 Nostalgic Christmas TV Specials To Bring Out Your Inner-Child

The holiday season is upon us again. The weather is getting colder, people are rushing about to get their holiday shopping done, and the smell of peppermint and gingerbread is in the air. This is also the time of year when all of your favourite holiday specials are airing on television once again. Whenever I watch these specials, I feel a sense of childhood nostalgia and innocence and I can't help but feel like a kid again every time I watch these specials.

While there are the usual holiday specials that everyone looks forward to watching every year such as "A Charlie Brown Christmas," Dr. Seuss's "How the Grinch Stole Christmas," and any of the specials in the Rankin/Bass library, there are also the Christmas specials from my childhood that are more on the recent side and I can't help but feel a sense of childlike wonder every time I watch them even as an adult.

1. Sesame Street - "Elmo Saves Christmas" (1996)

"Sesame Street" was one of those shows that although it is aimed at younger children, it still has a lot of aspects that make it entertaining for adults as well and has touched the lives of so many children in the last five decades. As someone who lived without cable or satellite for the first third of my childhood, "Sesame Street" would always be there to teach me how to count and spell and Elmo was one of my favourite childhood characters. And while the "Christmas every day" plotline has been done to death in children's media (especially around the earlier time I was growing up), this PBS special has taught a valuable lesson to "keep Christmas with you all through the year."

2. "Arthur's Perfect Christmas" (2000)

And speaking of growing up without cable, another long-running PBS show, "Arthur," has touched many children's lives for two decades. Not only I watched "Arthur" religiously as a child, but their Christmas special touches on all aspects of the holiday season, including Haunnukah and Kwannza, and even "Baxter Day" (a holiday made up by Buster due to the stresses of Christmas getting to his mother). It's a special that's hard to hate from a show that's hard to hate.

3. "A Pinky and the Brain Christmas" (1995)

A spinoff of the animated variety series, "Animaniacs," "Pinky and the Brain" follows two lab mice that attempt to take over the world (and failing every time). In their Christmas special, the Brain invents a hypnotic doll, the Noodle Noggin, and tries to use Santa's Workshop to manufacture the doll. The ending is one of the most sentimental endings in a Christmas special and it leaves me crying every time.

4. SpongeBob SquarePants - "Christmas Who?" (2000)

What is a list of nostalgic holiday specials without everyone's favourite sea sponge who lives in a pineapple under the sea? When Spongebob tells the stories of Christmas to the Bikini Bottom residents, Squidward has no interest in partaking in the holiday traditions. He has a change of heart when Spongebob gives him a thoughtful gift and realizes how important the value of giving is.

5. Ed, Edd, n Eddy - "Jingle Jingle Jangle" (2004)

A lot of my favourite holiday specials as a child has combined its whacky sense of humour with sentimental messages of the holidays. While "Fa-La-La-La-Ed" was also a good Christmas special, "Jingle Jingle Jangle" was the special that I watched the most when I was a child. The special has a lesson on greed and giving that Eddy learns after getting greedy when he keeps getting cheap gifts every year, while also having the humour that "Ed, Edd, n Eddy" is known for.

6. "A Muppet Family Christmas" (1987)

There's nothing that connects the generation gap like the Muppets. But what can be better than the Muppets? A Muppets Christmas special that brings together some of Jim Henson's most famous properties, such as "Sesame Street" and "Fraggle Rock." While I did not own this one on VHS, I do remember it watching it on TV a few times and I was amazed that the muppets of "Sesame Street" and the Muppets themselves together for Christmas.

7. Veggie Tales - "The Toy that Saved Christmas" (1996)

"Veggie Tales" has gotten a reputation for shoving morals down children's throats, the morals still hold up today and should be applied to life, even if you do not follow the Christian faith (I'm Agnostic and I apply the morals every day). Their Christmas special is a great example of a moral that should be applied to everyone and teaches the true meaning of Christmas. Not to mention that it has one of my favourite Silly Songs in the series.

8. Adventure Time - "Holly Jolly Secrets Parts I and II" (2011)

This special is more recent than most of the entries on this list, but I will admit that I do get nostalgic about television from middle school, high school, and even early college (I'm weird like that). In this two-parter special, Finn and Jake attempt to find the hidden secrets in the Ice King's video diary, but the Ice King tries to stop them from doing so. The special reveals a lot of secrets about the Ice King that it would not be fair to spoil any of them (even if it is a seven-year-old special).

9. My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic - "Hearth's Warming Eve" (2011)

Another recent entry, this one is probably the most embarrassing to admit to on this website, being 16 years old when I first watched the show (and I wasn't even into "My Little Pony" as a child). The special is a play within the episode about the founding of Equestria and teaches how Christmas (or Hearth's Warming in this case) is a time for giving and friendship (a common theme in the show, having "Friendship" in the title). It really shows that "we are a circle of friends."

10. "Mickey's Christmas Carol" (1983)

The final entry on this list is also the oldest entry on this list, as well as the most nostalgic. This combines the two most wholesome things anyone can think of (Disney and Christmas) and combines them in this adaptation of Charles Dickens' iconic story, "A Christmas Carol," with Scrooge McDuck as Ebeneezer Scrooge. While almost every franchise has an adaptation of "A Christmas Carol," "Mickey's Christmas Carol" was the most memorable to me ("A Muppet Christmas Carol" is in a close second). I first watched this special when it was featured on "Mickey's Magical Christmas: Snowed in at the House of Mouse," and it is one of my favorite Christmas specials of my childhood.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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