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1983

Christmas Part 1

The store is beautifully decorated for Christmas, as Jodie sings about Christmas Eve in the Children's Department.  She sings about how she had worked on Christmas Eve, helping with the crowds of shoppers who practically cleaned out the store.  Muffy is in her house, singing about her plans for Christmas Eve, as she is planning to visit her family, where they will go out caroling.  Jeff, meanwhile, is walking around the store, imagining that all of the children are asleep and Santa Claus is bringing presents for everyone.  In the Computer Room, Sam has finished closing up the store, and is singing about joy and glad tidings.  Everyone then sings about Christmas Eve together, from their respective locations.  As the song ends, we see Sam's keys on the counter in the Computer Room.

Back in the Children's Department, Jodie hands Jeff a card with the phone numbers for Jodie's Aunt Margaret and for Sam's sister, where they will be staying for Christmas, respectively.  She advises Jeff to call them if anything goes wrong, or if there's anything that he doesn't understand.  She then asks him, "Are you sure you're going to be all right, Jeff?  I really don't like to leave you alone on Christmas Eve."

Jeff replies, "Oh, don't be silly.  Christmas is for families!  I mean, you see me every day.  You hardly ever see your Aunt Margaret."

Jodie agrees.  She tells Jeff that all of her relatives are going to be there, and that she is very excited.

Sam walks in, singing, "On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me... a plate full of macaroni!"  He then wishes Jeff and Jodie a merry Christmas Eve.  He then asks if he's late, as he does not want to miss his bus.  Jeff hopes he has fun at his sister's house.  Sam intends to, remarking about how they always make such a fuss over him there, giving him double helpings of cake and other things.

He then asks Jeff what he intends to do.  Jeff tells Sam that he plans to find the biggest tree in the store, bring it into the Children's Department, decorate it, and it will be ready when everyone comes back, giving them a place to put presents.

"That should keep you busy!" remarks Sam.

Muffy then arrives, singing, "On the second day of Christmas, my true love gave to me... hot cheesy sauce on my plate full of macaroni!"  Muffy wishes everyone merry Christmas and goodbye, and advises Jeff to keep an eye out for elves.  When Jodie questions Muffy's mention of elves, she explains that elves run free on Christmas Eve, but they are hard to see.  She further explains that if one catches an elf and then let it go, they get a wish.

"Next thing, you'll be wanting us to believe they're only that high or something, Muffy," says Sam, gesturing about the size of the elves.  Everyone gets a laugh.

Jodie then tells Sam that it's almost time for them to go.  She invites Muffy to leave with them, but Muffy declines, as she is leaving via her own private exit, and wishes everyone a merry Christmas as Sam and Jodie depart.

"Um, Jeff, do you have lots to do?" asks Muffy.  "If you like, I'll stay with you."

Jeff declines, telling her, "I don't want you to miss your brothers and sisters.  I'm fine!  Really, I'm just fine."

"Well, if you're sure that you're all right, then merry Christmas and good night," she says.

Jeff wishes Muffy a merry Christmas, and promises to keep a look out for the elves.  As Muffy departs, Jeff is left walking around in the Children's Department, alone.

Meanwhile, Sam and Jodie are heading towards the exit.  Jodie is worried about Jeff, fearing that he will be lonely.  Sam suggests that perhaps they should have taken his magic hat, since he can't be lonely if he's a mannequin.  Jodie agrees, but tells Sam that Jeff said that he didn't want to miss Christmas Eve, and so if he says that he's okay, then he is.  Jodie offers to walk Sam to the bus station, which he accepts.  They leave, singing, "On the third day of Christmas, my true love gave to me... sliced French bread, hot cheesy sauce, on a plate full of macaroni!"  As they leave, two elves come out of hiding and shake hands.

Back in the Children's Department, Jeff tells us, "I hope my friends have a wonderful time with their families.  Oh, they work so hard all year, and I, I know that the Christmas holidays are supposed to bring families and friends together, so you'll remember the people you know who really care about you.  And when they come back, they're gonna see the best decorated tree ever!  I'm going to start on it!  Well... as soon as I clean up some of this mess."  Jeff then clears a few objects off of the counter and leaves.

When Jeff leaves, the two elves emerge from hiding, singing about who they are and what they do.  They explain in song that they would never cause a lot of fuss because Santa would disapprove - thus why no one will ever catch them.  If anyone comes, they can drive off in a toy car on the counter, hide, or disappear.  They're not worried about being seen, and when people think they're caught, they're actually not.

After a quiz, Jeff explains to us that there are no real Christmas trees in the store, and that you have to go outside to see those.  He can't see them because his magic hat doesn't work outside the store.  However, he is not complaining, because he has so many things right in the store.  He then sings about his world as he wanders through the store, beautifully decorated for Christmas.  As he does, he takes a ride on a carousel.  The elves are close behind him on the carousel, but Jeff never sees them.  Jeff eventually finds himself on the roof, singing, "Oh, this is the end of my world, for out there beneath the stars, it's your world, I believe... by caring and sharing, be happy in your world is my wish on this Christmas Eve."

As he sings this, Jodie arrives at the door, and makes her presence known, singing, "Oh, this is the end of your world, for out there beneath the stars, it's my world, I believe..."

"What are you doing up here, Jodie?" asks Jeff.

"Oh," explains Jodie, "I just decided that this is where I really want to be on Christmas Eve."

Jeff is puzzled.  "Yeah, but, well... you're supposed to be with your family at Christmas."

"Well, I know that," continues Jodie, "but you're part of my family, too, Jeff.  And Christmas is a time for people who care about each other to be together.  Hey, come on, let's go down and decorate that Christmas tree."

As they leave the roof, they sing together, "By caring and sharing, be happy in your world is my wish on this Christmas Eve!"

On the street, Sam is returning to the store, commenting that at least they're going to have a white Christmas.  He discovers that the door is locked, and then realizes that he doesn't have his keys with him.  Locked out of the store, he begins calling for Jeff.  Not having any success in getting Jeff's attention, he goes around to the front of the store.

Upstairs, in the Children's Department, Jeff and Jodie are bringing in what they believe to be the biggest tree in the store.  Jeff then notices something red moving behind the counter.  Thinking that it's an elf, he runs up to it and grabs it, shouting, "Gotcha!  Now you have to give me a wish!"

"Please don't talk such gibberish," says the red figure.  "A mouse cannot give you a wish!"

"Muffy?" asks Jodie.  "Is that you?"

"I thought you were an elf!" explains Jeff.

Muffy explains that the elves don't look like her, being silly looking and small.  When Jodie and Jeff question why she's not at her family gathering, Muffy explains that she thought about it, and decided to be with Jeff instead.  When Jodie invites her to help decorate the tree, Muffy declines, as she is going out to catch an elf.

Jeff then looks in a box of Christmas ornaments, and comments about how beautiful they are.  Jodie tells him that after they hang those up, she's going to make some of her own.  When Jeff questions this, Jodie explains that making the decorations is half of the fun.  She then tells Jeff that every year, they would make their own decorations, and then at the end of the season, they would put them all in a box for the next year.

"Do people do that now?" asks Jeff.

"Uh huh," says Jodie.  "That's the good thing about Christmas.  It never really seems to change very much.  People still make their own decorations, have a big Christmas dinner, go for a sleigh ride, or sing Christmas carols in a choir.  Lots of people do that, Jeff.  You see, most people know the words to all of the carols, so it's easy to sing along."

We then see the gentlemen and boys of the St. James Cathedral choir, singing "Once in Royal David's City".  As the choir enters, we see various religious imagery found around the cathedral.

Back in the Children's Department, Jodie has made some decorations, showing Jeff a row of paper snowmen that she just finished.  Jeff suggests that they make one in the shape of an elf, for Muffy.

Muffy, meanwhile, is in her house and ready to hunt for an elf.  "Muffy's ready for the hunt.  If those elves just sigh or grunt, I'll be on them in a flash.  My net will sail down with a crash.  And then I'll say, 'Oh, pretty please!' and wish for lots and lots of cheese.  There's no escape for them today!  The great elf hunter's on her way!"  Then, failing to get through her door, she remarks, with a sigh, "Cancel that wish I made before.  Instead, I want a bigger door!" as she eventually makes her way out.

After she leaves, the elves come out of hiding, giggling over having tricked Muffy.

Outside the store, Sam is still calling for Jeff as a police officer walks by.  Sam's shouting that he will have to break in if Jeff doesn't respond attracts the police officer's attention.  When Sam notices the officer, he explains that he was just kidding about breaking in, explaining that he really meant that he just needed to get in.

"But it's Christmas Eve, sir," the officer replies.  "The store is closed."

"Well, yes, I know that," says Sam, "I'm the night watchman.  Sam Crenshaw's the name, but, you see, I forgot my keys inside."

"Do you have any identification, Mr. Crenshaw?" asks the officer.

"Oh, sure, sure, sure, I've got my..." says Sam, as he realizes that he left his wallet inside as well.  But he is not daunted.  "But don't worry.  Jeff will tell you who I am."

"This Jeff, he's a night watchman as well?" the officer asks.

"Oh, no, no, no, no, no.  I'm the night watchman.  Jeff's... Jeff's a mannequin."

The officer begins to laugh, asking, "A mannequin?"

Sam continues, "Oh, but not just any mannequin.  See, it's Christmas Eve, and he's all alone in the store, and I thought he might get lonely, you understand."

"Oh, I see," says the officer.  "Yes, yes, I think I do.  You need to go inside to spend Christmas Eve with a mannequin."

"Yeah, not just any mannequin," Sam continues to explain.  "I told you, Jeff's special.  See, he's got a magic hat, don't you know."

"A magic hat?"

"Yeah," says Sam.  "Doesn't help his hearing any, though.  JEFF!  JEFFY!  I wish Muffy was here.  See, she doesn't need keys to go in and out of the door, no, sir."

The officer, clearly not believing Sam, asks him, in a somewhat patronizing tone, "Oh, this Muffy person, I suppose she just walks through the walls?"

"No, heh, heh, heh, you know you can't do that?  No, sir!  In any way, she's not a person, she's a mouse!"

"A mouse?" asks the officer, still not believing Sam.

"Yep, yep, yep, a little mouse.  Kind of a funny critter.  You know she believes in elves.  Strange, huh?"

"Uh huh.  Yes, very," says the officer.  "Mr. Crenshaw, I think we'd better go to the police station."

"Police station?" asks Sam.  "What for?"

"Oh, yes," explains the officer, "maybe we can solve this whole thing out there.  And it will be warm inside!"

Sam is a little surprised, but goes along with the officer, remarking that it's a funny way to spend Christmas Eve.  The elves, hiding inside, witness the whole exchange, and express sadness over the whole affair.

Later, the elves are in the Computer Room to retrieve Sam's keys and wallet.  In the effort to move Sam's keys, one of the elves inadvertently hits one of TXL's keys.  TXL wakes up, and begins asking questions.  "Who's there?  Is someone there?  Is that you, Mr. Crenshaw?  Please answer me!  I demand to know why I have been activated."  TXL's voice quickly fades off as one of the elves hits another key, turning her back off.  The elves then put Sam's keys on top of his wallet, and fly off, using the wallet like a magic carpet.  As the elves fly through the store on top of the wallet, they fly past Muffy, who is playing with a toy racetrack, surprising her and making her duck her head, and leaving her in awe.

In the Children's Department, Jodie is telling Jeff about Christmas with her Aunt Margaret when she was a child as she cuts some paper.  She explains that after they finished having their turkey dinner, they would all argue over who would get the wishbone.  Aunt Margaret would put an end to it by taking the wishbone and putting it on the mantelpiece, telling them that no one touches it until they learned to not fight.  When Jeff questions whether it happened every year, Jodie explains that even though it happens year after year, but it never gets old.

Jodie then tells Jeff about the time that there was a big blizzard before Christmas.  The storm was worse than any in years, and Jodie was convinced that Santa would not be able to make it, which meant no presents.  Aunt Margaret wasn't worried, hanging stockings by the fireplace, decorating the tree, and leading the singing of Christmas carols.  However, the children felt that it wasn't the same, convinced that Santa was not coming.  Before bed, Aunt Margaret made hot chocolate and read everyone a Christmas story.  She also insisted that they leave milk and cookies for Santa.  Jodie questioned all of this, explaining that Santa wasn't coming because of the weather.  Aunt Margaret explained that she had never known Santa to disappoint people on Christmas, and that Santa would get there somehow.  The next morning, Santa had come, leaving presents under the tree.  On top of everything was a doll holding a sign that said, "To Jodie, love Santa."

Jodie tells Jeff that she still has the doll, and it always reminds her of that stormy Christmas.  Jeff, meanwhile, will remember this Christmas Eve with his friends, though he wishes that Sam were there.  Jodie agrees, but explains that Sam always spends Christmas Eve with his sisters.  Jeff expresses hope that Sam is having a good time.

Meanwhile, Sam is at the police station.  "Hm.  Some Christmas Eve.  I would have had more fun facing a force ten gale at sea!  Well, heh, heh, heh, maybe a nine and a half, anyway.  I should have caught my bus.  By now, I would have been enjoying that double helping of Christmas cake instead of just sitting here doing nothing like that."  As Sam is saying this, the elves fly in on his wallet, leaving it on the table, and go into hiding, unnoticed.  He soon notices his wallet and keys on the table, but it doesn't immediately register with him.  He remarks, in the same unhappy tone that he had been speaking in, "What's that?  Oh, my wallet and my keys.  I must have just taken them out of my pocket, and..."

Then he realizes what he is seeing, and his tone changes.  "My keys!  Heh!  And my wallet!  Heh heh heh!  Hey, look, everybody!  Look at this!  I found my wallet and my keys!"

"Mr. Crenshaw, you found them!" exclaims the officer.

Sam wonders how they got to the police station, and chalks it up to a Christmas miracle.  He then asks the officer to take him back to the store, so that he can wish Jeff a merry Christmas.  The officer obliges.  As they leave, the elves come out from their hiding place and wink at us.

Arriving back at the store, the officer helps Sam out of the police car.  Sam wishes the officer a merry Christmas and says goodbye.  The officer wishes Sam a merry Christmas back to him.  Meanwhile, Sam rushes in, talking to himself about his experience as he moves through the store.  However, he is soon attacked by a net that Muffy is carrying in her attempts to catch an elf.  He says hello to Muffy, and tells her what happened to him - all because he wanted to wish his friend a merry Christmas.  He then wishes Muffy a merry Christmas, and then turns to us and says, "Merry Christmas to you, everybody."

Back in the Children's Department, Jodie and Jeff are trimming the tree, singing "Deck the Halls".  Sam arrives singing, much to Jeff's delight.  The elves join in the singing, unnoticed by everyone else.  As the song ends, Muffy passes the star topper to Sam, who passes it to Jodie, who passes it to Jeff, who places it on top of the tree.


Quizzes:

  • 'Twas the night before Christmas, and terribly late.  But cookies and milk have been left on a plate.  They must be for someone.  Can you tell me who?  (Santa Claus)
  • Can you guess what's wrong with this picture?  (The toboggan is facing the wrong way.  After turning around, it slides up the hill, backwards.)
  • Here's someone special you should know who will make your Christmas bright. So listen for his ho, ho, ho when you're in bed tonight.  (Santa Claus)
  • Christmas stand, Christmas tree, Christmas star.  Christmas stand, Christmas tree... what comes next?  (Christmas star)
  • Somewhere in this picture is a face.  Can you find it?

Notes:

  • Christmas Part 1 and 2 are the only two episodes that do not use the regular opening. These two episodes begin with Santa Claus talking in part 1 to the elves, and in part 2 to us. After he wishes us a merry Christmas, the theme song begins, and we see an animated sequence involving the elves, until we rejoin the regular opening sequence at approximately this spot:

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