9 classic Thanksgiving episodes that you can relive on Netflix
The turkey’s in the oven, the sides are simmering and the pies are cooling. What else could possibly make Thanksgiving any more perfect? Thanksgiving-themed episodes of your favorite TV shows. Gather ‘round with family and gear up Netflix, because here are some of our faves you can watch RIGHT now!
How I Met Your Mother, “Slapsgiving”
Come one, come all to Marshall and Lily’s first Thanksgiving as a married couple! This episode gave us the wonderful gift of the military rank salute — remember Ted and Robin saluting obscure things like “major cleanup”? Yeah, that’s a regular part of my vocabulary now. This is also the episode with Barney’s third slap, one of the show’s best running gags. After the slap is delivered, Marshall delivers the greatest song ever, “You Just Got Slapped.” It’s the perfect Thanksgiving episode.
Gilmore Girls, “A Deep Fried Korean Thanksgiving”
You know the Reese Witherspoon/Vince Vaughn movie Four Christmases? This episode of Gilmore Girls is exactly that: Lorelai and Rory plan four Thanksgiving dinners. One at Luke’s, one at Lane’s, one at Sookie’s, and one at Richard and Emily’s. Can you IMAGINE Thanksgiving at Sookie’s?! The food would be divine. She deep fried a turkey, for goodness sake.
Friends, “The One with All the Thanksgivings”
First, let’s get one thing straight: if creating Thanksgiving episodes was a competition, Friends would absolutely crush it and win all of the awards. Like clockwork, there’s one Thanksgiving episode for every season—which are probably marathoning on TBS right now. But this episode is the winner, because it’s a flashback episode, and we love flashback episodes. Every friend gets their own story line to tell via flashback. Some are sweet, some are sad and some are downright bizarre (looking at you, Phoebe) but all are so perfectly Friends, and we love it.
Parenthood, “Happy Thanksgiving”
I know what you’re thinking: Every episode of Parenthood is basically a Thanksgiving episode. The show always ends with a family dinner, a full spread of food and 10+ people who are all related to each other. It’s even extra togetherness-y, if that’s even possible for a show like Parenthood. But yes, there is a true Thanksgiving episode, and it’s ripe with family football, forbidden boyfriends and absent fathers. You know, traditional turkey day stuff.
That ‘70s Show, “Thanksgiving”
I wasn’t around in the ‘70s, but That ‘70s Show makes me nostalgic like you wouldn’t believe. It reminds me of being in high school, reuniting with older friends coming back from college and makes me miss home, even though I’m not from Wisconsin. But this episode is also great because Eric! And Donna! Kissed! Each other! Once upon a time, I wanted nothing more than to see Topher Grace and Laura Prepon lock lips. (It was 1998, you guys.) And in this episode, they finally did it. Also, this episode has the hilarious b-plot of Red forgetting his mother at the airport.
Cheers, “Thanksgiving Orphans”
Fun fact: This episode actually aired on Thanksgiving night, which makes us love it even more. “Thanksgiving Orphans” is one of the most beloved episodes of the entire show’s run. Probably because it shows the Cheers gang at its finest: all together, arguing about nothing like one big family. Oh, and casually engaging in one of the biggest food fights of the century. The second Diane was hit with cranberries, it was all over.
Scrubs, “My Day Off”
This Thanksgiving episode isn’t so much about food and family, but about the bonding of a different kind of family — the friend family you form in adulthood. In this case, the bromance of J.D. and Turk. The gang bonds as Turk performs appendicitis surgery on J.D., and they all celebrate the holiday together.
New Girl, “Thanksgiving”
This episode is fantastic for so many reasons. For starters, it’s Thanksgiving themed. Then, Schmidt names the gang’s turkey Hank S. Giving—which Jess tries to thaw in the dryer. And then there’s Justin Long guest starring as Paul, the adorkable male version of Jess. New Girl Thanksgiving episodes are traditionally some of the funniest of the series. Not to mention we love seeing Jamie Lee Curtis as Jess’s mom.
It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, “The Gang Squashes Their Beefs”
Thanksgiving is a day of giving thanks and reflecting on what you’re grateful for. Why not pull double duty and squash beef with your haters, too? That’s what the It’s Always Sunny gang does in this Thanksgiving episode. Naturally, not much real beef is squashed, but there is a ton of chaos. Though Charlie does start a new tradition that doesn’t sound half bad: cooking squash and beef for dinner.
(Image via NBC)