Monday, December 25, 2023


For this final installment in the salute to the televersion of the classic holiday film "It's A Wonderful Life", here are the flotsam and jetsam of TV show episodes which confirm the movie's existence in Earth Prime-Time....



"Fame" - Relationships (TV Episode 1983)
Doris Schwartz

"Tales from the Darkside" - Slippage (TV Episode 1984)
Richard Hall 

"Newhart" - The Prodigal Darryl (TV Episode 1985)
One of the two Darryls

"Family Ties" - Keaton vs. Keaton (TV Episode 1987)
Steven and Elyse Keaton

"Days of Our Lives" Episode #1.7167 (TV Episode 1993)
Sami Brady

"Dawson's Creek" - Hurricane (TV Episode 1998)
Mrs. Ryan

"Chilling Adventures of Sabrina" Chapter Eleven: A Midwinter's Tale (TV Episode 2018)
Sabrina Spellman

"2 Broke Girls" - And the Very Christmas Thanksgiving (TV Episode 2011)
Caroline Channing and Mary (Actually, it’s their second favorite)


(Phil Noir's report on colorization of old movies)

  • "Amazing Stories" - Welcome to My Nightmare (TV Episode 1986)
  • “Tales from the Crypt" - Loved to Death (TV Episode 1991)
  • "Friends" - The One with the Butt (TV Episode 1994)
  • "Yellowjackets" Old Wounds (TV Episode 2023)

  • "Melrose Place" - A Melrose Place Christmas (TV Episode 1992)
  • "Friends" - The One Where Old Yeller Dies (TV Episode 1996)
  • “King of Queens” – Food Fight (TV Episode 2002)
  • "The O.C." - The Best Chrismukkah Ever (TV Episode 2003)
  • "Mike & Molly" - Karaoke Christmas (TV Episode 2012)
  • "Grace Under Fire" - The Holidays (TV Episode 1994)
  • "How I Met Your Mother" False Positive (TV Episode 2010)

Basically, this last category was really just references and could have been added to the second post in the series.  But I just like the imagery it summoned, reminiscent of the old movie house seen in Bedford Falls.

Which reminds me....  Did you know that Bedford Falls does exist in Earth Prime-Time?

"Not Necessarily the News" Not Necessarily the Year in Review (TV Episode 1990)
Annabelle Gurwitch reports on Christmas in Bedford Falls in connection to the S&L scandal.

And with that, we wrap up this salute to "It's A Wonderful Life" and welcome it to the TV Crossover Hall of Fame.


And on a personal note, I just want to wish my baby sister, Leah, the Merriest of Merries and a Happy Krimble.  These three blog posts have been dedicated to her as it's her favorite movie....





These TV characters citing the "Lasso the Moon" quote are just two visuals of such lines from the film.  (I have to believe that variations on Zuzu's quote that an angel gets its wings whenever a bell rings must be the most-used reference to the movie overall.)

Here are just some of the other TV shows which make reference to "It's A Wonderful Life":
  • "Rumpole of the Bailey" - Rumpole and the Case of Identity (TV Episode 1979)
  • ‘St. Elsewhere’ - Santa Claus Is Dead (TV Episode 1985)
  • "Remington Steele" - Small Town Steele (TV Episode 1984)
  • "St. Elsewhere" - Schwarzwald (TV Episode 1987)
  • "Perfect Strangers" - Couch Potato (TV Episode 1987)
  • "Cheers" - Take My Shirt... Please? (TV Episode 1986)
  • "Cheers" - Christmas Cheers (TV Episode 1987)
  • "Newhart" - Shoe Business Is My Life (TV Episode 1989)
  • "Murphy Brown" Phil's Not So Silent Partner (TV Episode 1992)
  • "Quantum Leap" - It's a Wonderful Leap: May 10, 1958 (TV Episode 1992)
  • "Roseanne" - It's No Place Like Home for the Holidays (TV Episode 1992)
  • "Roseanne" - The Parenting Trap (TV Episode 1994)
  • "Wings" - The Customer's Usually Right (TV Episode 1992)
  • "Wings" Happy Holidays (TV Episode 1993)
  • "Nurses" - Jumpin' Jack Flash (TV Episode 1993)
  • "Married... with Children" - The Worst Noel (TV Episode 1993)
  • "The Nanny" - Christmas Episode (TV Episode 1993)
  • "The Nanny" - Ode to Barbra Joan (TV Episode 1994)
  • "Baywatch" - The Life You Save (TV Episode 1994)
  • "Due South" - One Good Man (TV Episode 1996)
  • "Everybody Loves Raymond" - Look Don't Touch (TV Episode 1996)
  • "Caroline in the City" - Caroline and the Monkeys (TV Episode 1997)
  • "Caroline in the City" - Caroline and the Decanter (TV Episode 1997)
  • "Caroline in the City" - Caroline and the Fright Before Christmas (TV Episode 1998)
  • "Millennium" - Midnight of the Century (TV Episode 1997)
  • "Melrose Place" - A Tree Talks in Melrose (TV Episode 1997)
  • "Team Knight Rider" - Home Away from Home (TV Episode 1998)
  • "Sabrina the Teenage Witch" - Christmas Amnesia (TV Episode 1998)
  • "Sabrina the Teenage Witch" - Dream a Little Dreama Me (TV Episode 1999)
  • "Jonathan Creek" - The Curious Tale of Mr. Spearfish (TV Episode 1999)
  • "Dawson's Creek" - Weekend in the Country (TV Episode 2000)
  • "Dawson's Creek" - ...Must Come to an End (TV Episode 2003)
  • "Farscape" - Won't Get Fooled Again (TV Episode 2000
  • "The Zack Files" - It's a Wonderful School (TV Episode 2000)
  • "The Wonderful World of Disney" - Santa Who? (TV Episode 2000)
  • "Twice in a Lifetime" - The Night Before Christmas (TV Episode 2000)
  • "Angel" - Epiphany (TV Episode 2001)
  • "The Drew Carey Show" - What's Wrong with This Episode IV (TV Episode 2001)
  • "Just Shoot Me!" - The Two Faces of Finch: Part 2 (TV Episode 2001)
  • "Friends" - The One with Ross's Step Forward (TV Episode 2001)
  • "Gilmore Girls" - Richard in Stars Hollow (TV Episode 2002)
  • "Teachers" - Episode #2.10 (TV Episode 2002)
  • "Everwood" - Friendly Fire (TV Episode 2002)
  • "The West Wing" - Game On (TV Episode 2002)
  • "Scrubs" - My Big Brother (TV Episode 2002)
  • "8 Simple Rules" All I Want for Christmas (TV Episode 2002)
  • "JAG" All Ye Faithful (TV Episode 2002)
  • "The Practice" - Choirboys (TV Episode 2003)
  • "That '70s Show" - Winter (TV Episode 2004)
  • "EastEnders" - Episode #1.2941 & Episode #1.2944 (TV Episode 2005)
  • "Bewegte Männer" - Das Wunder von Köln (TV Episode 2005)
  • "Smallville" - Lexmas (TV Episode 2005)
  • "One Tree Hill" - Pictures of You (TV Episode 2007)
  • "Reaper" - Charged (TV Episode 2007)
  • "Nip/Tuck" Duke Collins (TV Episode 2007)
  • "House" Joy to the World (TV Episode 2008)
  • "30 Rock" Christmas Special (TV Episode 2008)
  • "How I Met Your Mother" The Front Porch (TV Episode 2009)
  • "Sonny with a Chance" Sonny with a Chance of Dating (TV Episode 2009)
  • "Parks and Recreation" Ron and Tammy (TV Episode 2009)
  • "Californication" The Apartment (TV Episode 2009)
  • "Supernatural" Abandon All Hope (TV Episode 2009)
  • "Supernatural" Caged Heat (TV Episode 2010)
  • "Supernatural" I'm No Angel (TV Episode 2013)
  • "Psych" The Polarizing Express (TV Episode 2010)
  • "iCarly" iPity the Nevel (TV Episode 2011)
  • "General Hospital" Episode #1.12275 (TV Episode 2011)
  • "General Hospital" Episode #1.12637 (TV Episode 2012)
  • "General Hospital" Episode #1.13981 (TV Episode 2017)
  • "Bones" The Finder (TV Episode 2011)
  • "Gossip Girl" Petty in Pink (TV Episode 2011)
  • "90210" O Holly Night (TV Episode 2011)
  • "Warehouse 13" The Greatest Gift (TV Episode 2011)
  • "The Closer" Relative Matters (TV Episode 2011)
  • "Glee" Extraordinary Merry Christmas (TV Episode 2011)
  • "Rules of Engagement" Audrey's Shower (TV Episode 2012)
  • "The Newsroom" Amen (TV Episode 2012)
  • "Sparkling Girls" Episode #1.98 (TV Episode 2012)
  • "Castle" Secret Santa (TV Episode 2012)
  • "Castle" The Time of Our Lives (TV Episode 2014)
  • "The Office" Dwight Christmas (TV Episode 2012)
  • "Glee" Glee, Actually (TV Episode 2012)
  • "Holliston" The Christmas Special (TV Episode 2012)
  • "NCIS" You Better Watch Out (TV Episode 2012)
  • "Arrested Development" Colony Collapse (TV Episode 2013)
  • "Modern Family" The Big Game (TV Episode 2013)
  • "Raising Hope" Murder, She Hoped & The Chance Who Stole Christmas (Both TV Episodes 2013)
  • "The Big Bang Theory" The Cooper Extraction (TV Episode 2013)
  • "Anger Management" Charlie and the Christmas Hooker (TV Episode 2013)
  • Veronica Mars (2014) (The movie sequel to the series, but absorbed into the TV Universe)
  • "Mom" Forged Resumes and the Recommended Dosage (TV Episode 2014)
  • "Mom" Higgledy-Piggledy and a Cat Show (TV Episode 2019)
  • "Hot in Cleveland" Cold in Cleveland: The Christmas Episode (TV Episode 2014)
  • "The Hotwives of Las Vegas" You Make Me Wanna Drought (TV Episode 2015)
  • "Scandal" Baby, It's Cold Outside (TV Episode 2015)
  • "The Originals" Savior (TV Episode 2015)
  • "Person of Interest" .exe (TV Episode 2016)
  • "The Flash" Flashpoint (TV Episode 2016)
  • "Arrow" What We Leave Behind (TV Episode 2016)
  • "Snowfall" Baby Teeth (TV Episode 2017)
  • "Absentia" The Emily Show (TV Episode 2017)
  • "Ash vs Evil Dead" Unfinished Business (TV Episode 2018)
  • "Maniac" Larger Structural Issues (TV Episode 2018)
  • "Fresh Off the Boat" Cousin Eddie (TV Episode 2018)
  • "Criminal Minds" Night Lights (TV Episode 2019)
  • "Riverdale" Chapter Fifty-Eight: In Memoriam (TV Episode 2019)
  • "Mr. Robot" 404 Not Found (TV Episode 2019)
  • "Fuller House" Ready Player Fuller (TV Episode 2019)
  • "Young Sheldon" Contracts, Rules and a Little Bit of Pig Brains (TV Episode 2020)
  • "Coronation Street" Episode #1.10000 (TV Episode 2020)
  • "Amazing Stories" The Heat (TV Episode 2020)
  • "DC's Legends of Tomorrow" The One Where We're Trapped on TV (TV Episode 2020)
  • "Euphoria" Trouble Don't Last Always (TV Episode 2020)
  • "Last Man Standing" Meatless Mike (TV Episode 2021)
  • "NCIS: New Orleans" Once Upon a Time & Choices (Both TV Episodes 2021)
  • "Dynasty" Everything Looks Wonderful, Joseph (TV Episode 2021)
  • Days of Our Lives: A Very Salem Christmas (2021)
  • "9-1-1" In Another Life (TV Episode 2023)
As ingrained as the movie is in most people’s minds, not everybody can remember the details exactly….

"Lou Grant" - Libel (TV Episode 1980)
Lou recalled Janet Hart starring in "It's a Wonderful Town" with James Stewart. Donovan tells him that the film was called "It's a Wonderful Life" and starred Donna Reed.

“Beverly Hills 90210” – It’s A Totally Happening Life (TV Episode 1992)
I don’t know who the blonde girl was in this scene – I didn’t watch this show.  But she must have been the cliché of a true blonde – she thought the star of ‘It’s A Wonderful Life’ was Cary Grant.

We've got one last post for this celebration of the latest member of the TVXOHOF.

And as with the first post, I'm dedicating this to my sister Leah.  (She's also my goddaughter.)  "It's A Wonderful Life" is her favorite movie....


A few years ago, the Television Crossover Hall of Fame inducted at least 12 televersions of the TV shows we watch here in the Trueniverse, but which definitely existed in Toobworld.  (As is the case with the huma-# er, the living members of the TVXOHOF, all they needed were three other TV series verifying their existence in Earth Prime-Time.)

But we’ve never inducted a movie into the Hall before… and that ends this month.  And considering it’s December, with its holiday season, there was only one movie which was the perfect choice to be the first film to be granted the “honor”….


From Wikipedia:
"It's a Wonderful Life" is a 1946 American Christmas supernatural drama film produced and directed by Frank Capra. It is based on the short story and booklet "The Greatest Gift" self-published by Philip Van Doren Stern in 1943, which itself is loosely based on the 1843 Charles Dickens novella "A Christmas Carol". The film stars James Stewart as George Bailey, a man who has given up his personal dreams in order to help others in his community and whose thoughts of suicide on Christmas Eve bring about the intervention of his guardian angel, Clarence Oddbody (Henry Travers). Clarence shows George all the lives he touched and what the world would be like if he did not exist.

Theatrically, the film's break-even point was $6.3 million, about twice the production cost, a figure it did not come close to achieving on its initial release. Because of the film's disappointing sales, Capra was seen by some studios as having lost his ability to produce popular, financially successful films. Although "It's a Wonderful Life" initially received mixed reviews and was unsuccessful at the box office, it became a Christmas classic after its copyright expired in 1974 following a lack of renewal and it entered the public domain, which allowed it to be broadcast without licensing or royalty fees.

Today, "It's a Wonderful Life" is considered to be one of the greatest films of all time and among the best Christmas films. It was nominated for five Academy Awards, including Best Picture, and has been recognized by the American Film Institute as one of the 100 best American films ever made. It was No. 11 on the American Film Institute's 1998 greatest movie list, No. 20 on its 2007 greatest movie list, and No. 1 on its list of the most inspirational American films of all time.

Capra revealed that it was his favorite among the films he directed and that he screened it for his family every Christmas season. It was one of Stewart's favorite films.

In 1990, "It's a Wonderful Life" was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress for being deemed as "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".

An interesting bit of trivia regarding those TV series which were inducted into the Hall – Due to script references, usually delivered as punchlines, they could be radically different from the shows which we saw here on Earth Prime.  Perhaps the most famous of these would be the casting of Joey Tribbiani as Dr. Drake Ramoray in ‘Days Of Our Lives’ for an extended story arc on ‘Friends’.  It’s a shrug-worthy splainin that the televersion of those shows had episodes which were just not available to us on the other side of the Fourth Wall.

But I don’t think that can be applicable to the televersions of movies, as their finished prints should be locked in without alterations… unless George Lucas gets his mitts on them and changes them for the worse.  The only place to find such alterations to movies in the mutliverse of the TV Universe would be in the alternate dimension of Skitlandia, the sketch comedy Toobworld.  (Probably the best example of that ties into our December inductee – the lost ending to “It’s A Wonderful Life” as seen in the December 20, 1986 edition of ‘Saturday Night Live’ hosted by William Shatner.)

I can’t confirm this, but I think “It’s A Wonderful Life” could be the most cited movie in all of Toobworld; not too shabby for something which usually only gets trotted out for seasonal references.  Maybe one of the few flicks which could rival that claim might be the original “Star Wars” or at least the entire franchise.

Here are the most important qualifications for “It’s A Wonderful Life” to be eligible for inclusion – scenes of the movie actually being watched by fictional (to us) TV characters.  (I have included inserts of the scenes being watched when the image is not too clear.)

"The Twilight Zone" Button, Button (TV Episode 1986)

The film is playing on television but Norma Lewis turns it off.

O'Bservation - This was my favorite story in the first TV reboot of 'The Twilight Zone'.

"Cheers" Christmas Cheers (TV Episode 1987)

Everyone watches the final scene on the bar's TV.

O’Bservation – They all claim it’s sappy hokum.  Of course, moments later they’re all reaching for the tissues.

"Hard Time on Planet Earth" Stranger in a Strange Land (TV Episode 1989)

Jesse watches the movie on TV. The scene where Jimmy returns to his family is shown.

O’Bservation – This time, Jesse and his robotic Jiminy Cricket - known as Control - are the insert.

"Parker Lewis Can't Lose" Lewis and Son (TV Episode 1992)

It plays on a TV in the video store.

O’Bservation – This was the most inventive use of the movie I’ve found so far, which had nothing to do with the Christmas season.  As his customers are preparing to flee Mondo Video for the competition, Mr. Lewis mirrors the action in that scene as it plays out on the store TV.

"Roseanne" It's No Place Like Home for the Holidays (TV Episode 1992)

Darlene and David watch the movie on TV.

"Beverly Hills, 90210" It's a Totally Happening Life (TV Episode 1992)

The Walsh family is watching the film on TV.

O’Bservation – The following two episodes of ‘Beverly Hills 90210’ are not available in their streaming options, probably because the music rights could not be secured.  This was not an issue with the 1992 episode, which had a distinct IAWL resonance with two angels reviewing the lives of the characters and eventually taking action to alter the course of their futures a la Clarence.

"Beverly Hills, 90210" Somewhere in the World It's Christmas (TV Episode 1993)

Erica watches the film on television.

"Beverly Hills, 90210" Nine Yolks Whipped Lightly (TV Episode 1999)

Dylan watches the ending at the After Dark.

"Men Behaving Badly" Gift of Jami (TV Episode 1997)

Brenda and the guys are watching It's a Wonderful Life on TV.

O’Bservation – Too cheap probably to use an actual clip; the music we hear was most likely generic and had no relation to the movie.  Of course, I could be wrong.  It's not unheard of.

"The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air" The Alma Matter (TV Episode 1993)

A fragment of this film is shown in this episode

"Melrose Place" Oy! to the World (TV Episode 1995)

Allison is watching the movie on TV….

Allison, you are in no condition to watch ‘It’s A Wonderful Life’!” 

O'Bservation - I don't know who that is in the picture.  She said that line.

Sesame Street: Elmo Saves Christmas (Video 1996)

1] Elmo is watching the movie as he tries to stay awake to see Santa.
2] Ernie and Bert are surprised to hear their names are used by characters in the movie when they see it on a tiny TV at the electronics shop.

"JAG" Answered Prayers (TV Episode 2001)

Featured on the TV while Bud and Mikey are talking.

"One Tree Hill" Songs to Love and Die By (TV Episode 2006)

“It's a Wonderful Life” is playing on the TV set in Haley's hospital room.

O'Bservation - Not that she was in any condition to watch it....

"MacGyver" Bullet + Pen (TV Episode 2017)

This movie is playing in the police station.

"Happy!" When Christmas Was Christmas (TV Episode 2017)

Clips are shown.

"EastEnders" Episode dated 23 December 2019 (TV Episode 2019)

Mo, Kat, Kush, and Tommy watch the film while they're barricaded in the house.

O’Bservation - At a critical moment in the film, the power gets cut to drive them out of the house.

"Ted Lasso" Carol of the Bells (TV Episode 2021)

Ted watches it on TV Christmas morning as he drinks because he misses his son Henry back in the States.

"Hawkeye" Partners, Am I Right? (TV Episode 2021)

It’s playing on the TV at a safe house, after "the Blip".

"Designing Women" The First Day of the Last Decade of the Entire Twentieth Century: Part 1 (TV Episode 1990)

Charlene watches it on TV.

O’Bservation – Yet another TV series episode missing from the roster at Amazon!  I don’t know whether it’s because of music rights or they just don’t want to lock in to a holiday….

"The King of Queens" Food Fight (TV Episode 2002)

Arthur is watching this classic and says he wishes George Bailey would have never been born.

O'Bservation - We never see the movie, but at least in this case, we hear the soundtrack.  Everybody is gathered at the Bailey house to help George and they all start singing a Christmas carol.

"EastEnders" - Episode #1.2944 (TV Episode 2005)

The Slaters watch the film. Little Mo mentions the film to Alfie.

O'Bservation - I was lucky I found that other 'EastEnders' clip.  But that was part of a major plot development.  Couldn't expect lightning to strike twice.

"My So-Called Life" Pilot (TV Episode 1994)

A clip from the film is shown.

"The Sopranos" To Save Us All from Satan's Power (TV Episode 2001)

It comes on when Tony turns the TV on after coming home from dinner.

As I find screen grabs for those missing examples, I will add them in.

This won’t be the only blog post today celebrating the gift of having “It’s A Wonderful Life” in the Television Crossover Hall of Fame.  What kind of a Christmas would it be with just one present?

Merry Christmas, you old movie featuring a Building & Loan!

And welcome to the Hall!

These posts are dedicated to my sister, Leah.  It’s her favorite movie.  It’s taken her years, but she’s won me over into enjoying it as well.

“Miracle On 34th Street” is still my favorite Christmas movie though….