Throughout its nine-season run, The Office offered viewers a lot. From “She’s gonna be screaming her own last name” to “That’s what she said”, the show never failed to make us bust our guts, and many of its jokes are still relevant today. One of the highlights, though, is the Dunder Mifflin annual Christmas party.
We could always rely on the Party Planning Committee to come up with some extraordinary themes, decorations, and special treats to make sure that it would be a memorable night. Michael Scott would always bring some drama to the table, Jim never forgot to plan Secret Santa gift for Pam, and Meredith got drunk literally every year – those are the traditions. Yet, The Office fans know that each episode is unique and enjoyable in its own way. While some of them might be more hilarious than others, they have become irreplaceable spiritual foods for us every holiday season.
Here, let’s take a look back at all seven The Office Christmas episodes! Season one began in March and only lasted for six episodes, while season four didn’t have a holiday-inspired episode due to the interruption of the 2007-2008 Writers Guild of America.
The Office Christmas Episodes- Source: Giphy
If you are new to The Office, you may want to check this post out first!
All Of The Office Christmas Episodes
Below is the list of seven glorious The Office Christmas Episode, ranked from worst (meaning not as good, but still good) to best:
- Christmas Wishes (Season 8, 2011)
- Secret Santa (Season 6, 2009)
- Dwight Christmas (Season 9, 2012)
- Classy Christmas (Season 7, 2010)
- Moroccan Christmas (Season 5, 2008)
- Christmas Party (Season 2, 2005)
- A Benihana Christmas (Season 3, 2006)
Christmas Wishes (Season 8, 2021)
Bringing myself to watch season 8’s Christmas episode was difficult because I knew Michael’s absence would be more obvious than ever. I was right. Dressing like Santa, Andy, the new regional manager, desperately wanted to make everyone like him. He went around and tried to fulfill his employees’ holiday wishes, even though errrm… most of them didn’t sound so good. Andy got Dwight an acre of land on the moon and agreed to be Meredith’s personal driver (which allowed her to drink as much as she could). And what did Erin want for Christmas, you may ask? Well, to stay from Andy’s girlfriend, Jessica, at all cost!
Christmas Wishes – Source: BuzzFeed
James Spader’s Robert California offered Erin a ride home when she was too tipsy to drive herself. Though he said he wasn’t going to do anything with her, his intentions did seem a bit suspicious.
Meanwhile, Jim and Dwight were framing each other for the pranks they committed. According to user Viviania on IMDb, “this is a perfect metaphor for how much of a lackluster they have become”, and I totally agreed with this comment. Cathy was tired of them, so did the audience. Because after 8 seasons, this duo seemed to run out of jokes. At this point, we preferred to see them coordinate than to fight against each other.
Overall, the comedy in Christmas Wishes seemed a bit off. Instead of delivering a cheerful holiday spirit, the tone of this episode was rather dull. Sure, it was not gonna be a Christmas party if someone didn’t get drunk, but things weren’t funny anymore when it touched #MeToo territory. Andy addressed the problem directly, saying Mistletoe was not an excuse for sexual assault. It was a joke, but the realism in it could not make me laugh.
The Office Christmas Episodes – Secret Santa (Season 6, 2009)
“Secret Santa” was the 13th episode, followed by The Office season 6 episode 14 “The Banker”. We all know Michael had his childish side, and usually, it was fun to watch, but not this time. When Jim and Dwight, leaders of the Party Planning Committee, gave Phyllis the opportunity to be the Santa for the night, Michael cracked up. He showed his jealousy by dressing up as a Santa, attempting to get people to sit on his lap, and ended up throwing the hat in the punch bowl.
Secret Santa – Source: Product Placement Blog
The whole idea wasn’t bad, but the way The Office’s scriptwriters executed it was. Michael’s lines were mostly body-shaming jokes, sexist comments, and other awkward things that I found more embarrassing than hilarious. At least he did have this priceless punch line “When you need my help because I ruin everything, don’t look at me”.
The highlight of Secret Santa only came when David announced that their company was safe although they fell short on the sale goal. However, at that point, the overall atmosphere was already quite negative for a Christmas episode. Andy and Erin’s interaction was cute and funny, but it was not enough to give the episode a higher rank.
Dwight Christmas (Season 9, 2012)
Just as the title indicates, the MVP of this episode was Dwight. Angela was having an affair with Dwight, which made Phyllis upset. Hence, the latter purposely ignore the annual Christmas party to blackmail them. Meanwhile, Darryl drank too much to the point that he collapsed into the food table, and Nellie made out with Toby just to stop him from blabbing about the Scranton Strangler.
Dwight then started his own plan to save the office from being partyless. He went ahead to decorate everything in Pennsylvania – Dutch style and dressed up like Belsnicker, who is a Christmas gift-bringer in German culture and not a character the scriptwriters just imagined. The ideal menu, according to Dwight, would consist of German wine, traditional German dishes, and stuffed pig stomachs.
So you know what’s a Belsnicker now
There, audiences got to see the nicest side of Dwight. At the same time, though, we also had to witness our dearest couple, Jim and Pam, at their worst. Jim got a new position in Philadelphia and was about to move while moving was the last thing Pam ever desired. Once again, Dwight proved himself useful by bringing the two back together. As Jim left the party, Dwight was dismayed and called it off earlier than he was supposed to. When Jim was back to join the fun, both Dwight and Pam were excited. Dwight, unable to control his emotion, gave his former poe a tight hug. It was perfect timing to plan this moment for season 9 because if it came earlier, the scene would turn out to be awkward and out of character.
Long-term The Office fans might not expect Dwight Christmas to be placed here. However, with the absence of half the original casts, those who left handled it pretty well, which I think deserves recognition. Season 9’s Christmas episode was certainly not flawless, but it was fun and heartwarming enough to wrap up the series.
Classy Christmas (Season 7, 2010)
Season 7’s Christmas episode was a high note for Holly’s fans as she temporarily returned to the office. Everything started peacefully: The decorations were ready, Gabe was handling Christmas presents, and Michael was in his Santa outfit. As usual, Michael couldn’t maintain this perfect state for long: He was craving drama.
Seemed like the Holiday spirits had heard him because drama came soon after: Toby announced his temporary absence, and he sent Holly to his place as a replacement.
Of course, nothing could be more astonishing for Michael. To welcome Holly, he immediately canceled Pam’s Christmas party plan, asking her to re-schedule so the party would match with Holly’s arrival instead. He did everything to make the special day as classy as possible, such as planning for a live bassist instead of CDs and replacing colorful decorations with elegant ones.
Classy Christmas – Source: IMDb
Every piece fell into places when Holly arrived, except for one thing: She was still dating AJ. Audiences soon realized that Holly wanted a deeper commitment, but AJ couldn’t give her that. Kelly suggested a way out: If he didn’t propose before the new year, she should just cut off the relationship.
Pam, who always rooted for Michael and Holly, comforted the devastating Michael and told him about the ultimatum. She told him to be patient. Michael had always been a little boy in love: When he was with Holly, he did crazy silly things, and when he wasn’t, he was small, defeated, and lost all of his self-confidence. Seemed like a perfect recipe for disaster, but things turned out well. Even if you are not a Michael – Holly fan, I challenge you to watch this episode without hoping that they will end up together!
Moroccan Christmas (Season 5, 2008)
Many fans of The Office agree that Moroccan Christmas holds the best Christmas cold open and best Christmas high jinks. It also featured one of the best B-stories in the whole series: Dwight distributed the holiday season’s hottest toys, Princess Unicorn dolls, to desperate parents who couldn’t get the right Christmas gifts.
A Moroccan Christmas
Thanks to Meredith’s alcoholism, Moroccan Christmas was also the most disruptive The Office Christmas episode. A “One of Everything” with Scotch, Absinthe, Rum, Gin, Vermouth, plus two packs of Splenda got her started drinking like a maniac. In the end, Meredith became so drunk that she sets her hair on fire while dancing. Meredith tried to persuade everyone that she was not an alcoholic, but whatever she said, the Moroccan-themed Christmas party turned into an intervention.
Overall, everything was messy, in a hilarious way, until Phyllis put an end to everything: She announced that Angela was cheating on her husband with Dwight. The jokes in Moroccan Christmas might not be easy to catch, but once you notice them, you will love them forever.
The Office Christmas Episode – Christmas Party (Season 2, 2005)
Being the first-holiday episode of the show, Christmas Party might be the first one fans think of when you mention Christmas episodes. The whole idea of it was simple but charming: Everyone was excited about the Secret Santa celebration.
Jim spent most of his time preparing a gift for Pan, and he couldn’t wait to see her reaction. Michael was dying to give Ryan a brand-new video iPod, despite the price far exceed the $20 limit. Even though Michael’s self-confidence was skyward, he was deflated when he received Phyllis’s gift: A homemade oven mitt.
Michael was horrified by Phyllis’ gift
Every bit and beat of Christmas Party was made from classic Christmas jokes: a strange present exchange game, somebody got a bit too drunk, Angela took her role as the leader of the Christmas Party Committee too seriously, and Michael lost control when things didn’t go out as planned. This episode set up a high standard for the next Christmas episodes, and fans couldn’t ask for a better start.
A Benihana Christmas (Season 3, 2006)
If season 2 set the standard, then season 3 made everything perfect. By the time Benihana Christmas was aired, the show had reached its peak. The episode began in Benihana where Michael, Jim, Andy, and Dwight headed out for lunch. Andy helped Michael forget about his breakup with Carol by getting him drunk and encourage him to flirt with the waitress.
Lunch at Benihana
As soon as Michael and Andy got back to the office, they invited their “new girlfriends” to the Christmas party — none of whom were actually their waitresses in the previous scenes.
This episode was memorable thanks to its little moments, most of which were distributed by Michael: Michael dressed as Dunder Mifflin and marched around the office, Michael photoshopped his head onto Carol’s husband body and sent it as his Christmas card, Michael kept replaying the iTunes preview of “Goodbye my love” by James Blunt but never actually bought it, Michael drew a mark on his “girlfriend”’s arm so he could tell her apart from Andy’s.
Even though Michael was no doubt the MVP here, we couldn’t forget Jim’s face when he saw Pam and Karen became friends. What’s more, the director of A Benihana Christmas was the late Harold Ramis. It was flawless, wasn’t it?
The Office Christmas Episodes – Final Thoughts
Perhaps you have watched them over and over again, but in the holiday season, nothing feels better than curling up on the couch and watch these classic The Office Christmas episodes. Even though some episodes stood out more, each and every one of them is a hallmark in our ride with this show that we can never forget.
Just so you know, this year, you can watch Office Christmas Party and other Christmas episodes on the NBC streaming service Peacock for free!
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