DAVID BIANCULLI

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YULE TUBE: Christmas in August!
July 31, 2008  | By Diane Werts
 

Call me crazy, because in this respect I am. Can't ever get enough Christmas TV -- even in August. And it just so happens a bunch of cool yule episodes are airing over the next few days.

frasier jesus niles.jpgOne of them is among the funniest sitcom episodes ever made at any time -- the Frasier episode in which Kelsey Grammer's character pretends to be Jewish to please his new girlfriend's mother but has his ruse ruined in myriad ways, most notably by David Hyde Pierce, caught in the bathroom with a Christmas tree using nasal spray while costumed as Jesus for a neighborhood pageant. The description doesn't nearly do it justice, so tune in to this memorable Frasier(Friday night at 12:30 a.m. ET on Lifetime) to see just how hysterically farcical this show could go. How much do we miss it?


Ditto Everybody Loves Raymond, which repeats its classic disaster "The Christmas Picture," in which Ray finally gives his mother exactly what she wants -- a family portrait -- and she rejects it anyhow, sending him completely over the edge. It encores on New York's WWOR/9 Wednesday at 6:30 p.m., while viewers in other areas family guy frosty.jpgshould be able to find it on their local affiliates around the same day/time. Another syndicated treat on an even more demented plane: Family Guy, which repeats its Stewie-in-the-nativity catastrophe on New York's WPIX/11 Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. ET. Look for it on other local affiliates, too, to savor mom Lois's alcohol-fueled streetcorner meltdown of Frosty the Snowman.

Christmas soap suds are coming, too, on Beverly Hills 90210 (Saturday at 9 a.m., Sunday at 7 a.m. ET, SOAPnet), and then there's the ever popular holiday murder mystery on Tru Calling (Tuesday at 11 a.m. ET, Sci Fi).

If all this puts you in a warm yule mood, stay there by perusing my book Christmas on Television, which details hundreds of episodes over a 60-year-span, from Jack Benny and Jackie Gleason to Pee-wee Herman, from The Flintstones to South Park. Plus holiday-themed specials, TV movies, soaps, kiddie shows, commercials and more. Just click on the title for the Amazon link.

And -- Merry Christmas!

(Right on time. Five months early.)

 
 
 
 
 
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