"Little House on the Prairie" A Christmas They Never Forgot (TV Episode 1981) Poster

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9/10
All in the Family!
ExplorerDS67895 December 2010
Warning: Spoilers
Christmas Eve, 1886- It's going to be a fun, old fashion Ingalls family Christmas. Technically, it's Ingalls/Kendall/Wilder and Terhune, but what's in a name? They're all family and all together and that's what counts. Well, sir, Charles and Caroline get the surprise of their lives when Hester Sue arrives in a wagon, baring tidings of good cheer, in the forms of Adam and Mary. With them at the table with Charles, Caroline, Laura, Almanzo, Carrie, Albert, Grace, James and Cassandra, they gave thanks and dug right in, then after dinner Charles played the violin and Almanzo strummed the guitar. It was indeed a happy time. But then, the snow fall outside turned into a blinding blizzard. Needless to say, nobody would be going anywhere, so it looks as though the little house on the prairie is going to be packed to the rafters. Well, since they're all spending the night together, what could they do to pass the time? Well, after Hester Sue sings a hymn, Caroline regales everyone in the story behind her pretty Christmas necklace, which she didn't wear in past Christmases, but anyway, it all began when Caroline was a little girl. Her father just died and she took an instant disliking to her stepfather, Frederick Holbrook, who was actually a nice man. Seems he had lost his old man at young Caroline's age and so he bestowed upon her a gift given to him, converted into a necklace. Caroline loved it and instantly excepted Frederick. It's a goldurn Christmas miracle!

Now it's Almanzo's turn. He regales us with a tale from his youth: about his own good but strict family and their Christmas rituals. It all started when young Almanzo's belief in Santa Claus was torn asunder by his older brother Royal showing him the presents their folks thought they'd kept well hidden, giving Almanzo a crisis of faith, but thankfully his Pa put things in much better perspective to keep little Manly's belief alive and well, and ol' Royal sure got his comeuppance come Christmas morning; Storytime was rudely interrupted by the barn door blowing off in the storm, and once Charles and Almanzo fix it, Laura regales everybody with the story of their first Christmas in Kansas and how Mr. Edwards braved a terrible storm to spend Christmas with the Ingallses, from the pilot episode; There's time for one more fond Christmas memory: Hester Sue, you're up. She tells of a Christmas when she was little, during the Civil War. It seems that because Santa Claus was white, he might not cater to the needs of the black children, or so Hester Sue thought. Her parents told her otherwise. Nobody knows what the REAL Santa Claus looks like. But the girl seemed convinced the rumors were true, but that night, Hester Sue happened to look out her bedroom door and sure enough, a black man was putting presents under her tree. Debunking the rumors and restoring Hester Sue's faith. Of course the Santa turned out to be her Pa, but she didn't find that out until years later; Well, sir, Christmas morning was a hit. Sure the little house was nearly buried in snow, but Charles braved the weather to get to the barn and get the presents. It was truly a merry Christmas for all.

Fantastic episode and a great Christmas story, and many other great stories within it. My favorite had to be Almanzo's story and how his father helped to undo Royal's lies and taught that boy a lesson by taking away his presents. Second favorite is Hester Sue's. What wonderful, loving parents they all had. Even Hester Sue's father's boss was a nice man; If only there was more time, we could have heard stories from Adam and Charles. Well, this episode marks the final appearances of Adam and Mary, who I must say was given a very raw deal at this point in the series. Incidentally, I wonder if anybody else noticed that Linwood Boomer was listed in the beginning as a special guest star, and Melissa Sue Anderson was listed during the end credits as an "also starring". She was right there from the beginning of the series and now, returning for a cameo after a year-long absence, she's tucked away in the end credits. Methinks she and the producers didn't get along, and they only coaxed her back so we could all see the entire (living) Ingalls family together one last time. Probably just as well, I heard she was a real pain in the ass to work with, but that's just speculation. I wasn't there. But anyway, despite all the tragedy that seems to strike the people on this show, their Christmases are always merry, and this is one of them. A chorus sings carols throughout, to truly give it that holiday feel. No real drama, no dilemma, no tragedy, just happiness and cheer. This Christmas, check it out.
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7/10
The Whole Family!
mitchrmp16 November 2013
This is the only time in of of Little House's showings that we see the entire Ingalls family - natural and adopted - together! It's an amazing site to see them all sitting around the table for supper. It's nice to see Mary and Adam home for a visit from the city. And to think there were only a family of five when the show began...

Various members tell the Christmas they never forgot: 1. Caroline talks about the Christmas she had after her mother remarried and her step-father tried to get into her heart. 2. Almanzo talks about the Christmas he found out there was no Santa Clause. 3. Laura talks about the Christmas in Kansas when Mr. Edwards played Santa Clause (this was actually a clip from the premiere movie) 4. Hester Sue talks about the Christmas when she learned that Santa Clause was indeed black.

All these stories tug at your heartstrings and give you a smile. Though the "snowed in" at the end is pretty silly, it adds to the adventure of the episode.
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1/10
Little House of Horrors on the Prairie: 'The Christmas They Ought To Forget'
tracywinters-4433227 March 2017
Warning: Spoilers
The entire Ingalls family, along with a couple of party-crashers, sits around during a blizzard exchanging boring stories about.... you got it.... The Christmas They Never Forgot! Yay!! Unfortunately, their little recollections are so putridly sentimental, you might want to barf.

Carolyn tells of when she decided to 'love' her foster father, but only AFTER he gave her a Christmas gift. Great story, Carolyn, you gold-diggin'.......

Hester Sue tortures us with her tale about how she saw Santa Claus and learned that he is actually BLACK! Until she found out years later that it was only her drunken father.

Half-Pint, Half-Gallon, whatever, makes everyone's ears bleed as she refers to the Christmas when Mr. Edwards visited with gifts for all, including a couple of rotten yams for Carolyn.

The Golden Cowpie for the best - and most psychotic - story goes to Almanzo for his remembrance of the Christmas when his father punished his brother for snooping around the hidden presents in the barn. Almanzo's evil Dad gathered up the family to enjoy Christmas morning surrounded by cakes, candies, presents, and each other while Al's brother sits lonely and ostracized in a corner of the room. It's lucky for all of them that the kid didn't hang himself from the big tree in the front yard the next morning. And THIS is the Christmas Almanzo thinks of most fondly? Thanks for that tale of 'love', Al, you sadomasochistic nutbag.

Tune in, not to view a wonderful program, but to have a great time by making fun of this stupid show.
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