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"’Twas the Day Before Christmas" is the first featured segment of the 50th produced episode of the Warner Bros. animated series Animaniacs, and the first Christmas-themed segment of the series. It was aired with "Jingle Boo", "The Great Wakkorotti: The Holiday Concert", and "Toy Shop Terror". As the title suggests, it is a parody of the classic poem The Night Before Christmas.
It is Christmas Eve at Slappy Squirrel's tree, and her nephew Skippy is looking outside his window at the sky. Slappy comes in, telling him that he is supposed to be asleep right now. Skippy says he cannot sleep because he thinks he keeps hearing Santa's sleigh outside. Slappy assures him "That's just the LAPD choppers," and brings him to his bed. Skippy is still too excited to sleep, and he asks his aunt to tell him a Christmas-themed bedtime story, handing her a nearby book - The Day Before Christmas.
In the story (which is told in rhyme), it is Christmas Eve at the Warner Bros. Studio in Burbank, California, and Yakko, Wakko and Dot are preparing the Water Tower for Santa's arrival tonight. Over in his office, CEO Thaddeus Plotz has gathered the Warner siblings' Christmas presents from the studio and needs someone to deliver it to them. He picks Dr. Scratchansniff for the job, but the doctor refuses, because he did it last year and does not want to go through the experience again. Hello Nurse asks why they have to do this, with Plotz replying that it is a clause in the Warner siblings' contract, and they can sue if they do not bring them the presents. Trying to figure out who else he could get to do the job, Plotz looks out the window and notices Ralph the Guard seeing some of the studio employees (including Mindy & Buttons and Flavio & Marita) as they're going home. Plotz decides that Ralph would be perfect to play Santa.
That night, the Warners (who take over the narration at this point) are awaiting Santa's arrival with great anticipation. During this, they notice the presence of The Brain and Pinky, who are respectively dressed as Santa and an elf as part of a plan to steal Santa's sleigh for Brain's current world domination plan. Yakko, Wakko and Dot promptly hang up their stockings and are just about to go to bed when they hear noise outside. They rush to look outside and find that the noise is Rita and Runt (who sneaked into the studio lot earlier) looking for food in the garbage cans.
Just then, Ralph, wearing the Santa suit, arrives in a sleigh drawn by a team of pigeons, three of which are the Goodfeathers. The pigeons land the sleigh on the roof of the Water Tower, crushing Pinky and the Brain in the process. While Pesto starts beating up Squit for complimenting his reindeer costume, Ralph falls through the roof. After the Warners help Ralph get back up on his feet, he leaves their presents under their tree and then climbs up the tree and out the hole he made in the roof. He gets back in his sleigh, but the pigeons fail to get the sleigh back into the air, and they all fall to the ground. Yakko, Wakko and Dot look up in the sky and see the real Santa and his reindeer flying by, having just left a fish and a bone for Rita and Runt, and wishing Merry Christmas to the Warners.
As the story ends, it is shown that Slappy fell asleep. Skippy wishes his aunt and the viewers a Merry Christmas and then seemingly starts to go to sleep himself, but instead rushes downstairs to open his toys.
- This segment was adapted into comic book form as part of the Animaniacs Christmas Special comic book, along with another Animaniacs episode, "Taming of the Screwy".
- Besides Mindy and Buttons and the Hip Hippos, Ralph addresses Kevin Costner and Michael Keaton, the latter of whom is depicted driving the Batmobile, in reference to his role as Batman in the films Batman and Batman Returns.
- Two of the other pigeons pulling Ralph's sleigh are named Richard and Nixon, after Richard M. Nixon.
The segment made its home video debut on the Animaniacs: Helloooo, Holidays! VHS tape, released by Warner Home Video on August 24, 1994. The episode containing the segment was later included on the Animaniacs: Volume 2 DVD set, released on December 5, 2006.
|Rob Paulsen|| Yakko Warner|
|Jess Harnell||Wakko Warner|
|Tress MacNeille|| Dot Warner|
|Sherri Stoner||Slappy Squirrel|
|Frank Welker|| Ralph T. Guard|
|Maurice LaMarche|| The Brain|
|Nathan Ruegger||Skippy Squirrel|
- "'Twas the Day Before Christmas / Jingle Boo / The Great Wakkorotti: The Holiday Concert / Toy Shop Terror / Yakko's Universe" at TV.com
- "'Twas the Day Before Christmas" at the Big Cartoon DataBase