Arthur is an avid television and movie fan with horror being his favored genre. If you can name it, he has probably seen it. Twice.
Saturday Night Live has been an institution for over 40 years, and over that time they have had some great years and some not so good ones. One thing that has always stayed consistent is that SNL delivers when it comes to the holiday season. While humor may be in the eye of the beholder, I think most people can agree that these are some of the funniest holiday skits that they have ever seen.
1. Pete Schweddy's Balls
This may be not only one of the greatest Christmas skits of all time, but it may also be one of the greatest parodies of all time. If you ask anyone if they remember the Pete Shweddy Christmas skit on SNL, their eyes will light up, and a smile will draw across their face. This scene masters innuendo and the fact that the actors were able to keep a straight face throughout still baffles my mind. SNL did try to recapture this moment with a Betty White skit where she promoted her dusty muffin, and while it was funny, it didn't hold a candle to the magic that is Pete Schweddy's balls.
2. A Christmas Miracle
This is one of the newest entries into the long line of classic recurring SNL skits. This particular skit centers around a trio that was abducted by Santa and his helpers. The problem is that they did not all have the same experience. While two of them take a tour around Santa's Workshop, the third gets put to work, and the retelling of the story is nothing short of hilarious. The funny thing is that this isn't even the most entertaining version of this recurring skit. It is worthy of this list and one that I look forward to rewatching each Christmas.
3. The Christmas Candle
This is another newer one that I don't think gets the love it deserves. First of all, it's Emma Stone who can do no wrong in my opinion. Then, there is the White Elephant gift that is the candle. Maybe not everyone who is reading this has received a candle, but we've all been given something like the candle. Lastly, I love how it is done in the style of an early 90s music video; it makes this whole thing just a little funnier.
4. A Debbie Downer Christmas
Debbie Downer is not for everyone, but I love the surrealism of the character. Rachel Dratch takes subject matter that should never be funny and makes it hilarious in the most tongue-in-cheek way possible. This particular episode hits home because Debbie brings her particular brand of negativity to Santa Claus who has no idea what to do with her.
5. Mr. Robinson's Neighborhood Christmas
Though his star has wained in the last decade, it is undeniable that Eddie Murphy is a comedy great. Skits like this one remind us of the genius that was a young Mr. Murphy. Though these jokes are pretty dated, and some may even argue insensitive, they are a caricature of what Murphy saw in urban life at the time. From taking on the Salvation Army bell ringers to some shifty toy sales, this skit will bring a smile to your face.
6. A Christmas Wish
The idea behind this skit is so simple that Steve Martin is by himself on stage, yet it is one of the greatest SNL Christmas skits of all time. It starts innocent enough with Martin wishing for all of the children in the world to join hands and sing Christmas carols, but as more wishes get added to the list, then become increasingly darker and more self-indulgent. Though there are not a lot of theatrics, I'm not sure if anyone but Marin could have delivered a monologue like this. I'm glad he did because this is by far one of the funniest things you will watch this or any Christmas.
7. A Dysfunctional Family Christmas
Kids nowadays will never get to experience the half-hour infomercials peddling pre-made mixtapes. This skit may be outdated for the Gen Z-ers, but Millenials and older will appreciate this fake commercial. The main reason that this skit is so funny is that, though it is a parody, the lyrics hit a little too close to home. I have a real love-hate relationship with this skit because I think it is one of the funniest Christmas skits SNL has ever done, but when Dana Carvey starts singing, "Leave me alone, just go away!" I get irritated because I know it will be stuck in my head for the rest of the season.
8. Elf on the Shelf
This came as a surprise out of Saturday Night Live's 2018 season. What looked like a lame gag turned out to be one of the best skits of the season. Three Elves on the Shelf are meeting with Santa to report on their assigned children. One elf, played by host Jason Momoa, asks Santa for a new kid. Santa argues that the elf has been with the same kid for 13 years and Momoa argues that the kid's age is the problem. While the elf struggles to explain the issue to an oblivious Santa and other elves without being outright about the problem, hilarity ensues.
9. Stefon's Holiday Suggestions
In the past fifteen years, there has not been a funnier recurring character on Saturday Night Live than Stefon. This one is Christmas themed, but I would put anything with Stefon on any list because I love the character so much. Just watch this video and find out what fun things Stefon has to suggest for families looking for something to do in New York this holiday season.
10. D in the Box
This song put SNL back on the map for a while and even won a few awards. As long as you aren't so stuffy that you can't see why this song is hilarious, you will get a kick out of it. Though there is an uncensored version of the song, I think it's best for everyone that the censored version be offered above. I can't stress enough that this skit is far from safe for work, but it is one of the funniest things you will watch this holiday season. Let's just say that Justin Timberlake gets the lady in his life a present that only he can give.
Though these are some of the funniest Christmas skits SNL has ever done, there are a few that did not make the list. A couple that I wanted to add, but couldn't find legitimate videos for were, Hanukkah Harry Saves Christmas and Desert Island Christmas. I know there are still more than that as SNL has been putting out some quality content for more than 40 years. For now, enjoy this list to make your holiday a little brighter.
Keith Abt from The Garden State on December 11, 2018:
My two fave SNL holiday bits are "Hanukkah Harry Saves Christmas" and "Consumer Probe," with Candice Bergen interviewing Dan Aykroyd as "Mr. Mainway" of Mainway Toys ("We put a label on every bag that says "HEY KID! Be careful! Broken glass!").