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Thanksgiving Movies and TV Shows

Posted about 11 days ago by Eric P

Some holidays lend themselves to moviemaking: Halloween or Valentine’s Day. Christmas movies have become an entire cottage industry unto themselves, with whole television networks now dedicated to cranking out more Christmas movies every year than there are bells on bobtails.

If you’re feeling festive in November, however, finding a Thanksgiving movie can be a challenge. Here’s a list to help with that. They aren’t all classics by a long shot, but if some of them tend to induce a sleepy, tryptophan-like effect, well – at least when you wake up, you’ll be that much closer to peppermint latte season.

Cover of Home for the Holidays Home for the Holidays
Cover of Planes, Trains and Automobiles Planes, Trains and Automobiles
Cover of A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving
Cover of The Turkey Bowl The Turkey Bowl
Cover of Turkey Hollow Turkey Hollow
Cover of Cold Turkey Cold Turkey
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Cover of Our Father’s Keeper Our Father’s Keeper
Cover of Pieces of April Pieces of April
Cover of The Oath The Oath
Cover of Addams Family Values Addams Family Values
Cover of The Ice Storm The Ice Storm
Cover of Free Birds Free Birds
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Cover of Lez Bomb Lez Bomb
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Cover of Deadfall Deadfall
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Cover of Jack and Jill Jack and Jill
Cover of The Vicious Kind The Vicious Kind
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Cover of Krisha Krisha
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Cover of Son in Law Son in Law
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TV series have tended to be more successful than movies at immortalizing Thanksgiving’s mix of family togetherness and dining-table awkwardness. Maybe it’s because TV shows, with their ongoing serial structures, have the chance to acquaint you with the characters and their relationships over time before breaking out the gravy and giblets.

Television has given us some of American culture’s most classic examples of Thanksgiving storytelling, from Buffy the Vampire Slayer’s fraught non-family dinner to WKRP in Cincinnati’s doomed radio promotion to that episode of Friends where someone got a turkey stuck on their head. Here’s a list of some other seasons of television, all available on DVD from the library, that include a Thanksgiving episode in their line-up:

Cover of Father Knows Best, Season One Father Knows Best, Season One
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Cover of The Waltons, Season Two The Waltons, Season Two
Cover of Northern Exposure, Season Four Northern Exposure, Season Four
Cover of Frasier, Season Four Frasier, Season Four
Cover of Gilmore Girls, Season Three Gilmore Girls, Season Three
Cover of Boston Legal, Season Five Boston Legal, Season Five
Cover of Friday Night Lights, Season Four Friday Night Lights, Season Four
Cover of The Big C, Season Two The Big C, Season Two
Cover of Parenthood, Season Two Parenthood, Season Two
Cover of Glee, Season Four Glee, Season Four
Cover of Hawaii 5-0, Season Four Hawaii 5-0, Season Four
Cover of The Middle, Season Four The Middle, Season Four
Cover of The Middle, Season Eight The Middle, Season Eight
Cover of Modern Family, Season Eight Modern Family, Season Eight
Cover of Modern family, Season Eleven Modern family, Season Eleven
Cover of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Season One Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Season One
Cover of Baskets, Season Three Baskets, Season Three
Cover of Fuller House, Season Two Fuller House, Season Two
Cover of Speechless, Season One Speechless, Season One
Cover of Arrow, Season Six Arrow, Season Six
Cover of New Girl, Season Six New Girl, Season Six

I hope there’s something in these lists to amuse and divert you… because there’s no more time-honored Thanksgiving tradition than avoiding one’s family by falling asleep watching something on TV.

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