Holding a nontraditional Thanksgiving means that you get to watch whatever you want while the turkey is cooking, not to mention later when you’re in a tryptophan coma. And if the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade just doesn’t do it for you, then check out some of these classic Thanksgiving episodes from shows like How I Met Your Mother, Friends, and Gilmore Girls!
Friends, ”The One with All the Thanksgivings”
It being 2011, I’m tempted to make an “ALL the things” joke, but this 1995 episode came long before Internet memes. And long before How I Met Your Mother modeled most of its episodes after the gang telling stories, you had this, where Ross proclaiming he’s having the worst Thanksgiving ever prompts each character to share an awful story.
It’s a really nuanced flashback episode, as the overlapping stories track Chandler and Monica’s early friendship, back when he called her fat and then later as he grew more attracted to her. The episode ends with Monica wearing a turkey on her head — a classic Friends moment — and Chandler saying “I love you” for the first time. (Aww!)
Every clip related to this episode on YouTube is disabled for embedding, so you’ll have to search them out yourself.
Gilmore Girls, “A Deep Fried Korean Thanksgiving”
Lorelai and Rory often seem to corner themselves into impossible food situations; consider her multiple birthday parties in season 1. This season 3 episode is no exception, as they accept four separate invitations for Thanksgiving with Sookie and Jackson (who wants to deep-fry the turkey), Lane (the Korean element, with tofurkey), Luke, and Lorelai’s parents. As if that isn’t bad enough, then Rory reveals at her grandparents’ celebration that after years of wanting to go to Harvard, she’s applied to Yale.