About Christmas TV History

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Animation Celebration: A Garfield Christmas

Welcome back to Christmas in July: Animation Celebration!  July is the special time of the year that I turn the blog over to my readers.  All month long I'm posting essays written by people eager to share their passion and memories for animated Christmas entertainments.

Today's essay is about the 1987 holiday animated favorite A Garfield Christmas Special.  Drew Flowers, the co-moderator for the Yahoo Group ChristmasMoviesandMusic and blogger at the website Tis the Seasons, wrote this essay for us today.  Thanks for sharing.  Merry Christmas in July, everyone!

The orange cat Garfield, his owner Jon and the slobbering dog Odie head out to the country to spend Christmas with Jon’s family on the farm. Garfield is a Scrooge about the whole Christmas season until he bonds with Jon’s grandmother while coming across a heartfelt gift for her, a forgotten but special item from her past. This holiday season, the fat cat learns the true meaning of Christmas.

It may be the '80’s child in me but I am not sure how A Garfield Christmas has been overlooked as a holiday classic among the likes of A Charlie Brown Christmas and Frosty the Snowman. A Garfield Christmas Special was aired on CBS right after A Charlie Brown Christmas all through the late '80’s and early 1990’s and was just as highly anticipated as any holiday classic being aired.  My holiday season is not complete without a viewing of A Garfield Christmas Special. It has become part of my holiday tradition just as much as hanging the stockings or decorating the tree.

Garfield’s Christmas special has such a wonderful message about learning the true spirit of Christmas.  Garfield’s sly humor and bond with Jon’s grandmother add great moments to this cartoon. The heartwarming story also includes a terrific carol “Christmas is here,” a song Jon’s mother plays on the piano Christmas Eve night. This holiday special’s message is not about the giving or receiving of gifts but it’s about the love one person or cat can give to another.

A holiday special with a meaningful message such as this, A Garfield Christmas Special not only is a classic to share with family and children but deserves the right to stand with the classic holiday animated specials that are aired year after year. I loved this cartoon as a child and my two young boys look forward to watching this classic each holiday as well. Don’t ignore the opportunity to enjoy this holiday special with your family.


  1. Andrew, I agree...I don't know why this isn't a classic either. Like you, I grew up watching this back to back with A Charlie Brown Christmas, so I still put them on that way every year when I watch them on DVD. Same goes for the Halloween specials as well. I'm glad to know there are others who remember this wonderful little special and will pass it on to their children. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I always get choked up seeing Garfield on Jon's grandmother's lap

  3. This special always hits the right (emotional) spot. Thanks for the reminder.