Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Thanksgiving Countdown: Garfield Thanksgiving!

I've come to the realization that doing a Thanksgiving week countdown and not touching on the amazing Garfield Thanksgiving Special would be an absolute crime. One that I would deserve a severe beatdown for excluding...


Released today in 1989 on CBS, this classic has gone forgotten by many people, mainly due to it's lack of reruns over the years. Now I'm gonna tell you something you may not like and owning it as MY opinion alone, but I actually believe this to be even better than A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving. Make no bones about it, I'm the biggest Peanuts fanatic in the world and I love watching Snoopy's insane junkfood dinner, but just in terms of fun and Thanksgiving-ness, Garfield takes the pumpkin pie here. But that's a very close call to make. Now why would I make such a bold claim and make up a term such as "Thanksgiving-ness"? Well, let's take a look at this beloved holiday special and hopefully we're on the same page by the end.


Things start off simple enough: Jon Arbuckle is in bed and woken up by Garfield and Odie, who demand food. Jon's not exactly the most popular guy in the world, so I can't imagine him doing anything of note the night before other than watching Just The 10 Of Us and eating Chinese takeout. Actually, I'd say that's a victory for any single guy who can't get a date and lives with animals with apparent telepathic powers. If I were still single, I'd accept that as a victorious Tuesday night. Who am I to judge?


Garfield, after inhaling a breakfast fit for a king, comes to the realization that he's heading the vet which can't be good news considering all the pancakes and coffee he brags about having. I mean, I've seen animals who are fussy eaters but a cat that only demands lasagna, pancakes and french fries? That's not what you feed a domestic house cat, that's what you feed a stoner. Come to think of it, what if Garfield and Odie are just hallucinations of Jon? It would make sense. How else can you explain feeding MicroMagic products to pets and not having guilt?


Well, well, well. Lookie here. Jon's using his animals as means to speak to that sexy vet, Dr. Liz, who almost always seems to be more interested in swallowing glass than ever considering an evening with Arbuckle The Stud. Not that I blame her of course, Jon's about as smooth with the ladies as he is with ensuring his pets a healthy diet, but after refusal and refusal, Jon pulls out a card that is ALWAYS a guaranteed victory when scoring a date. HE HOLDS HIS BREATH.

Say what you want about him causing potential brain damage and self harm, but Jon finally scored a date with his dream woman. On Thanksgiving of all days. One small problem, despite Garfield always being impressed with his ability to warm up a Stoufer's meal, Jon's no cook. No sir. She's a vet for crying out loud! I'm guessing for a lady that high class, you gotta go with homemade cranberry sauce. Although, I could be wrong. Sometimes the canned stuff does the trick. But will it do the trick tonight? Only time will tell.


Wellll...it didn't take long for Jon to screw this up. Jon's pretty hopeless and he's gotta bring his best for this one. Otherwise he'll be made the biggest joke in whatever weird town they live in where it's ok to feed cats and dogs McDonalds. I mean, I'm sure he's already a big joke, but turning this date into a flop? Social suicide. It seems to be a lost cause for tonight. Liz has already arrived and the turkey is still frozen. So how does he ensure nothing but the most flawless of victories? He calls on his best gal, his ace in the hole, his number one fan. He calls on the coolest woman to ever exist. He calls on the legend herself. He calls on...

Insert Bill Goldberg's theme here.

GRANDMA ARBUCKLE.






The motorcylin' and fast talkin', Thanksgiving savin' Grandma Arbuckle, the coolest character in that entire family tree (maybe even the history of the world), is back for her finest performance. She brings the goods to the table and makes sure Jon will eventually get some that night. With her finest recipes in tow and Garfield as her personal taste tester, Grandma knows it's up to her to save the evening the only she knows how...


..by carving up the turkey with a chainsaw and making everything else with lightning speed. I'm starting to think all grandma's have some magical powers that we just don't understand.


Grandma Arbuckle must be the highest ranked wizard-grandma ever because, holy crap, she just fixed Jon's biggest blunder and managed to create the most mouth watering Thanksgiving meal you'd ever see. Candles too? I didn't even Jon had spare Thanksgiving decorative candles laying around and I'm pretty sure he didn't know either. The Power Of Grandma, I'm tellin' ya.








It must be good, because Liz actually sticks around even after Jon bores her with some long and drawn out history about Thanksgiving and putting her to sleep in the process. But, Jon knows the secret as to why their first date together went so well and will be none the wiser. If they end up married and this monumental day is brought up in the future, it's gonna be awkward. Unless Liz knows Jon can't cook to save his life and is just playing along. That's my bet.



Well, it's time for Liz to call it an evening but she must be very grateful because she gives Jon a kiss on her way out. Either that or she just wants to be polite and get the hell out of there. No doubt, Jon's confidence is at an all time high so he better find a way to outdo himself for Christmas and New Years. Or he better just make sure Grandma is not busy that evening. For now though, Liz and Jon are off to a good start here and I guess that's all that matters.

This was our last Garfield Holiday special and probably one of the best Thanksgiving specials of all time. Personally, it's not Thanksgiving until I pop this in.


It was first released on DVD in 2004 alongside the Halloween and Christmas specials and also received a rereleased in 2014 but both DVD's are sadly out of print. For those who don't want to spend higher prices on eBay, you can find it on YouTube!

-Chad

3 comments:

  1. Great post! It brought in the nostalgia waves hard. I was obsessed with Garfield as a kid and watched this on a taped-from-TV VHS several times, if I remember correctly. Though the Halloween special got more play, admittedly.

    I love Garfield now as an adult, too (though in a slightly more ironic way, possibly), and I'd love to watch this again.

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  2. It's also available on the Boomerang subscription app via Roku...

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    1. Yes, I noticed that! There's also a new dvd available featuring botht he Thanksgiving and Christmas special!

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