Thanksgiving TV that makes me happy as pie


Thanksgiving is the perfect

lesbian holiday. It involves a potluck (with vegetarian options, of

course), eating too much and then sitting around with friends pretending

to watch football while we talk about the people who aren’t there. And

we have pie. I love pie.

T-Day also provides plenty

of fodder for seasonal episodes of television series, usually centered

on a chaotic family dinner or the Macy’s parade or turkeys that

aren’t done on time. (See TV writer Ken Levine‘s blog for his summary of Thanksgiving

.) Sounds

like a good excuse for a list — and some food for discussion. And so,

submitted for your approval, my five favorite Thanksgiving episodes.

5. Roseanne, “Home

Is Where the Afghan Is”


I’m not especially a Roseanne

fan, but this episode deserves mention because of its double dose of

gayness. Leon (Martin Mull) and Scott (Fred Willard) announce

that they are planning to adopt a child, leading to the revelation by

Roseanne’s mom

Bev (Estelle Parsons), that she is a lesbian. In 1996, no less.

4. The West Wing, “Indians

in the Lobby”


Although “Shibboleth”

is classic West Wing and on many Thanksgiving “best”

lists, I like this one better, mainly because of the interaction between

President Bartlett and his staff about how he will prepare the turkey

and stuffing. His call to the Butterball

is priceless,

but my favorite exchange is in the Oval Office with C.J. (of

course) after Bartlett has expounded on his basting style.

C.J.: When I came in here,

back in the late ’50s, there was a purpose to it, but then one thing

led to another and I blacked out. I mean, I can hang in there with the

best of them, Sir, but somewhere in the discussion of anise and coriander

and the other 15 spices you like to use to baste a turkey, I just lost


Bartlett: [scowling] You know that line you’re

not supposed to cross with the President?

C.J. I’m coming up on it?

Bartlett: No, no. Look behind you.

Damn, I miss that show.

3. WKRP in Cincinnati, “Turkeys


TV Squad names this “Best. Thanksgiving.

Sitcom. Scene. Ever.” In my book, it’s not necessarily the best,

but certainly is a classic. As a Thanksgiving promotion, station manager

Mr. Carlson decides to have turkeys dropped from a helicopter above

a shopping mall, not realizing that turkeys aren’t exactly world-class

fliers. You’ll find the video of Les Nessman reporting live from the

scene here. My favorite scene comes at the end

of the episode:



2. The Bob Newhart Show,

“Over the River and Through the Woods”

This is one of the best

of one

of the best shows ever. Emily goes to visit family for Thanksgiving,

leaving Bob to fend for himself. Jerry, Howard and Mr. Carlin come over

and get drunker and drunker as they watch football and try to cook a

turkey. The episode ends with a classic Newhart bit on the phone ordering

Chinese food (“Moo Goo Goo Goo”). I can’t describe how funny

it is; just watch it if you get the chance.

1. A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving

Although this is not technically a series

episode, I could not in good conscience leave out the ultimate Thanksgiving

classic. Especially since Peppermint Patty takes center stage. Rather

than describe it, though, I refer you to another Thanksgiving classic,

scribegrrrl’s post from last year, “Peppermint

Patty’s Personal Pilgrimage.”

Patty + Marcie forever!

On a related note, reported Tuesday that, based on a recent survey,

31 percent of adults want Clair Huxtable to cook their Thanksgiving dinner.

I suspect that 100 percent of lesbians agree.

To spend part of your Turkey

Day cookin’ with Clair, catch the Thanksgiving episode of The Cosby

Thursday at 12:30 ET on the CW.

What shows do you look forward

to this time of year? Do you have a favorite Thanksgiving episode? And

what kind of pie gives your holiday the happiest ending?

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