Can You Name the Holiday TV Special From an Image?


By: Beth Hendricks

7 Min Quiz

Image: NBC

About This Quiz

Popcorn? Check. Footed pajamas? Check. Hot chocolate and Christmas specials on TV? Check and CHECK! Listen, we love the Christmas season. There's nothing better than slightly colder (but not too cold, please!) temperatures, a fire in the fireplace, and snacks while everyone piles on the couch to watch the best holiday shows on TV.

Christmas classics made specifically for television have been going on for a long time. It was 1964 when we first met "Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer." Just a year later, we got "A Charlie Brown Christmas." "Mickey's Christmas Carol" came along in the early 1980s, and we've gotten new classics along the way: "Shrek The Halls," "Kung Fu Panda Holiday" and, one of the newest editions, "Trolls Holiday." We'd dare say that the holiday season isn't complete without checking out a few, as time permits between caroling, ice skating and wrapping gifts.

But how well does your memory serve you regarding these Christmas classics? Who exactly "stole Christmas?" What kind of Christmas did Emmet Otter have? Who was the "Other Reindeer?" And, did anybody finally convince Virginia that there is, in fact, a Santa Claus? 
This quiz is a veritable walk down Candy Cane Lane, with a holiday "must-watch" list that will surely add to your own. Can you identify these Christmas TV features? Pair the screenshot and a short clue with the title and be prepared to have a "Berry Merry Christmas!"

No Christmas is complete without at least one viewing of this "cool" favorite. Which one involves a heatwave and a magic hat?

"Frosty the Snowman," which first aired in 1969, created an animated version of the beloved Christmas song where children bring a snowman to life with a magic cap but must learn to let go when the weather heats up.


It's another retelling of the life of Ebenezer Scrooge and the first-ever cartoon Christmas special made expressly for television. What is it?

Even Mr. Magoo got in the act with the retelling of the story of Ebenezer Scrooge in "Mr. Magoo's Christmas Carol." It aired for the first time in 1962 and has the honor of being the first animated Christmas special produced specifically for television.


More than 200 artists have recorded this popular song, which spawned a television special first released in 1970. What is its name?

You better not pout, you better not cry if you got the answer to this one wrong! "Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town" became a television special in 1970, based on the popular Christmas tune. The special itself used technology known at the time as stop motion animation.


Alvin, Simon and Theodore star in this animated Christmas feature that involves a Golden Echo harmonica. What is the name of the program?

"A Chipmunk Christmas" first aired on television in 1981, nearly a decade after the death of the man who created the characters. In the story, Alvin is chasing his elusive Golden Echo harmonica, which he finally gets thanks to a mysterious stranger.


Everyone's favorite fat cat returns in this holiday special where he learns what Christmas is really all about. What was this Emmy winner called?

"A Garfield Christmas" stars the lasagna-loving Garfield and Odie as they spend Christmas with the Arbuckles on the family farm. This holiday special earned an Emmy and was shown nearly every year from its first broadcast in 1987 to its last in 2000.


This fan favorite involves someone who'd been "drinking too much eggnog," just like the lyrics from the song of the same name. Which one is it?

"Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer" is both a popular children's Christmas song and a TV special by the same name. The program aired for the first time not at Christmas, but on October 31, at Halloween.


You know Dasher and Dancer ... have we said too much? Which TV special would you associate with this duo?

"Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" may be the most recognizable, quintessential Christmastime TV special ever made. Of course, any movie about a reindeer with a glowing nose who saves Christmas is bound to draw a lot of interest.


"Here Comes Christmas Candy Cane" gets broken in this Christmas special, and Santa's arrival is in jeopardy. What is this animated show called?

All is going as planned for Santa's arrival until Minty breaks the beacon known as "Here Comes Christmas Candy Cane," which guides Santa's way to Ponyville. This special was named "My Little Pony: A Very Minty Christmas."


Ben Stiller, Chris Rock, David Schwimmer and Jada Pinkett Smith reprise their roles in this holiday hit as they try to get back to New York City in time for Christmas. What TV special are we talking about?

"Merry Madagascar" falls between the initial "Madagascar" movie and its sequel, but gets the gang back together as they attempt to fly into New York City. The only problem is, they're mistaken for a goblin, and hilarity ensues.


Santa on vacation? Which of these specials has Mrs. Claus trying to get him back on track?

"The Year Without a Santa Claus" was based on a book of the same name and first aired in 1974. Mrs. Claus has to recruit two elves to help her convince Santa to return to his regular duties instead of taking the year off.


You just know a Christmas special with "jerktonium-laced fruitcake" is going to be special. Which one is it?

Admit it; if you could turn everyone around you into jerks, you might do it, too. In this special, Plankton tries to entice SpongeBob to feed everyone "jerktonium-laced fruitcake," which we're guessing is no better than regular fruitcake.


A living snowman with a vengeance sounds terrifying. Which of these Christmas special combines elements of another holiday?

Scooby-Doo and the gang are on the case of a living snowman wreaking havoc on the holidays in "Scooby-Doo! Haunted Holidays." This special appeared on DVD first, later turning up on Cartoon Network.


After Geppetto gets a "real boy," he must figure out how to buy gifts for him during his first Christmas. What is the special called?

"Pinocchio's Christmas" first aired on television during the 1980 holiday season and is still shown today on some channels. It chronicles Pinocchio's first Christmas as a real boy with Geppetto.


He promised he'd "be back again someday" in the lyrics of a popular Christmas tune, but he finally returned in which of these specials?

Frosty finally returns in the special named "Frosty's Winter Wonderland." The famous promise comes in the Christmas tune, "Frosty the Snowman." This TV special follows Frosty when he returns to see his friends with the first snowfall of the season.


"Isn't there anyone who knows what Christmas is all about?" Which TV special features this famous line, followed by an explanation of the real reason for the season?

It took a bunch of "Peanuts" to get to the real meaning of the Christmas season, and it's a story that has been resonating with audiences for years. It first aired in 1965 and has been a yearly tradition ever since.


This movie is the perfect explanation for why you don't wait until the last minute to decorate. Which of these is based on a popular children's book series?

The Berenstain Bears are desperate to track down a Christmas tree in "The Berenstain Bears' Christmas Tree," but run into problems at every turn. That is until some woodland friends pitch in to help out.


This sequel to a Christmas classic finds one of Santa's helpers using his abilities to track down Happy the Baby New Year. What was it called?

In "Rudolph's Shiny New Year," Rudolph sets off to find Happy the Baby New Year to help the New Year come. Without Rudolph's help, it will remain December 31 forever. The sequel came a dozen years after the popular, "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer."


Aaron is friends with a donkey, camel and lamb in which of these choices based on a Christmas song?

"The Little Drummer Boy" tells the story of Aaron, who likes to entertain his animal friends with his drum-playing. This is another Christmas special originally rooted in a song of the same name.


One of the stars of this animated Christmas special is known for shouting, "I have the power!" Which show is it?

If you were a child of the 1980s, you lived through that magical period when He-Man and She-Ra were a thing. Thankfully, you can relive it with their very own Christmas special, shown periodically during the holiday season.


Almost six million people watched the premiere of this holiday special, featuring voiceover work by Jack Black. Which one showcased the Winter Feast at the Jade Palace?

"Kung Fu Panda Holiday" followed up on the success of the "Kung Fu Panda" franchise, which involved voice work from the likes of Jack Black, Dustin Hoffman and Angelina Jolie. The holiday story centers on the Winter Feast at Jade Palace.


This holiday classic is "green" in more ways than one. Which is it?

Everyone's favorite giant green ogre is back for a Christmas special in "Shrek the Halls." In this made-for-TV classic, Shrek struggles with how to make the holidays special for Fiona.


If they can base a Christmas special on a book, they can certainly base one on a poem. Which of these involves "A Visit from St. Nicholas?"

"'Twas the Night Before Christmas" first aired in 1977, a Christmas TV special based on the popular Christmas poem, "A Visit from St. Nicholas," authored by Clement Clarke Moore. Only one airing of the program was ever done.


So that's the groundhog's story! Which of these specials tells the story of a groundhog who gets a winter extension so he can nap longer?

Apparently, the groundhog is a rather sleepy sort. "Jack Frost" tells the story of the groundhog getting a winter extension to eke out a few more weeks of nap time. Freeform shows this 1979 original just about every year.


Can they spend one Christmas without "trying to take over the world?" Which of these do you need to watch to find out?

"Pinky and the Brain" was a television series that ran from 1995 to 1998. In the show's first season, producers developed "A Pinky and the Brain Christmas," where, of course, the duo continue their plan to try to take over the world.


Boris Karloff goes "green" every Christmas, entering our homes in this perennial holiday classic. What is it called?

Boris Karloff was the iconic voice behind both the Grinch in "How the Grinch Stole Christmas" and the narrator. The animated version of this story has been told multiple times in various ways, but this version is a perennial classic.


This Christmas special was our last interaction with Buzz and Woody for five years before the release of a new movie in summer 2019. What is this dinosaur-themed short?

When "Toy Story That Time Forgot" was released in 2014, we had no idea it would be five years before our next adventure with Buzz and Woody. This 22-minute special featured many of the franchise's original voices, including Tom Hanks and Tim Allen.


Jim Henson directed a cast of music-making Muppets in which of these movies?

The popularity of the Muppet-based "Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas" appears to grow each year, despite being more than 40 years old now. The storyline follows a similar one to O. Henry's "The Gift of the Magi."


Patrick Stewart stars as Ebenezer in the 1999 edition of the classic retelling of which of these stories?

"A Christmas Carol" has been done in many ways by many actors, but the 1999 version featuring Patrick Stewart nears the top of our list. Stewart plays Ebenezer Scrooge, who goes through a complete change in opinion about the holiday season and his miserly ways.


Rudolph isn't the only reindeer who deserves attention at Christmas. This special was based on a book and some "misheard" Christmas lyrics. Which of these is it?

You know that part in "Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer," when it says, "all of the other reindeer?" This book is based on that lyric, misheard to be "Olive, the Other Reindeer." So, meet Olive!


With characters like Barnaby Barnicle, Jack-be-Nimble, Mary Contrary and Georgie Porgie, the title of this Christmas special could only be this. What is it?

The fantastically-named "Babes in Toyland" was a Christmas season staple on television between 1950 and 1986. It tells the story of a child who is transported to Toyland in her holiday dreams.


One of the newer editions to the holiday TV lineup, this feature follows Poppy, Branch and Bridget, voiced by Anna Kendrick, Justin Timberlake and Zooey Deschanel. What is its name?

"Trolls Holiday" finds the cast of the successful "Trolls" franchise getting together for a made-for-TV holiday special. Together, Poppy, Branch and Bridget work to bring the holidays back to the Bergens.


If you've ever had Christmas decorations short out your electricity, this is the holiday special for you. What is it called?

"A Goof Troop Christmas: Have Yourself a Goofy Little Christmas" follows Goofy and Max as they attempt to decorate for the holiday season. True to Goofy's nature, nothing goes as planned.


A bitter widower comes to terms with his emotions at Christmastime in this 1970s made-for-TV movie. What was it called?

Poor Addie; all she wants is a Christmas tree. But her father, still mourning the loss of his wife, refuses. As the movie progresses, he learns to embrace the season and even springs for a tree!


Think your job is hard? What if you had to get millions of homes ready for Santa every year? Which of these TV specials tells the story?

"Prep & Landing" doesn't immediately sound like a Christmas special, until you realize it's elves "prepping" homes for Santa Claus' imminent "landing." In this movie, a lack of effort almost costs a young boy Christmas altogether.


Only Disney could weave a Christmas tale in with a story about the migration of fowl. What was it called?

As you might have guessed, "Duck the Halls: A Mickey Mouse Christmas Special" centers on Donald Duck and his challenge of wanting to have a real Christmas versus needing to fly south to avoid the cold weather.


A TV short released in 1974, which of these was based on an editorial in "The New York Sun?"

It's hard to believe that a newspaper editorial could give birth to a popular Christmas special. "Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus" was not only an answer to a question asked by eight-year-old Virginia but became an animated short that won an Emmy Award.


A smell-good, er, feel-good holiday special involving Honey Pie Pony and a trip to Holidayland. What was this Christmas feature called?

If you grew up in the 1980s, you surely remember Strawberry Shortcake. This Christmas special, released in 2003, is a nostalgic trip down memory lane with "Strawberry Shortcake's Berry Merry Christmas."


Snoopy might have something to say about this one! Which TV special tells the story of Rerun van Pelt and his Christmas wish?

Lucy and Linus' lesser-known brother, Rerun van Pelt, just wants one thing for Christmas — a furry friend. "I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown" aired for the first time in 2003, but has not enjoyed the same success as "A Charlie Brown Christmas."


This classic retelling of the story of the Magi was the first opera ever composed specifically for a TV viewing audience. What was it called?

"Amahl and the Night Visitors" is a Christmas opera about the Three Wise Men told from the perspective of a young boy named Amahl. It aired multiple times on NBC from the 1950s to the 1970s and holds the title of being the first opera written specifically for television.


The title character in this Christmas special is being evicted on Christmas Eve. How rude! Which show is it?

"Casper's First Christmas" finds Casper and a friend looking for a new place to live during the Christmas season. Airing in 1979, this TV special is the only time you'll find Casper and another character, Yogi Bear, sharing the same screen.


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