"'Twas the Night Before Christmas, You're Under Arrest" is the second Christmas episode of the 1960s sitcom That Girl.


On Christmas Eve, a scalper is trying to sell tickets and everything else under the sun in front of a theater, but can't seem to get a break, until he hears a young woman at the ticket window complaining about her inability to get tickets to a show. That young woman is none other than Ann. When she discovers the tickets are more expensive than expected, she realizes the man is a scalper. Since she's short on funds, she offers to pay him with a check. The scalper is reluctant to take the check, but Ann convinces her that she's legitimate by showing her address and mentions that her neighbors, Ruth and Jerry Bauman have been seeking tickets to the show for a long time.

Ann's present for Ruthie

Ann gives Ruth an early Christmas present she can share with Jerry.

As she helps Ruth decorate her apartment with cards, she hands her their gift, and since she herself is also anxiously awaiting a Christmas visit from her parents, and returns to her apartment. Later, when Donald visits, Ann boasts about her gift for the Baumans and casually mentions that she thought about slipping the tickets under their apartment door, but Don told her this was a trick by burglars to get victims out of their apartments in order to rob them. Suddenly she realizes that she may have set the Baumans up for a potential burglary, and dreading the notion that she might be responsible for the future burglary, she decides she has no other choice but to hide the presents at her apartment. Against his better judgement, Donald joins Ann. Along the way they also decide to hide their own presents as well.

A man in an apartment across an alley sees Ann and Donald in the Baumans' apartment with a small telescope, assumes that they're burglarizing the apartment and calls the police. Donald opens the door to find two uniformed NYPD police officers at the door. Realizing the situation is hopeless and that he has no way of talking the police out of it, he goes along with it and gives Ann subtle hints that they're busted. When she sees the cops, she tries to tell them she was hiding the presents in order to prevent them from being burglarized, but they're not convinced, and drag both of them down to the 98th Precinct. At the police station, Ann tries to convince Sgt. Fitzgerald of her innocence just as she did with the two arresting officers, but it doesn't work. She insists that all her neighbors, and her agent can prove she's not a criminal, as well as Donald's editor and publisher who can do the same for him. Still insisting on putting the young lovers in their jail cells, Sgt. Fitzgerald laments over their excessively romantic goodbyes with one another.

The Baumans returns to their apartment to find a detective named Wittle, taking fingerprints. He doesn't tell them who they think robbed them, but informs them that they have a call from Helen, informing them of Lou's potential arrival in town. As he goes to Ann's apartment, they both forget which precinct they have to go to. When the detective goes there, Lou comes over to visit, and notices that the door is open. Convinced he has walked in on a burglary, he attacks the man, not realizing that he's actually a detective, and is arrested on the spot as well. As Sgt. Fitzgerald retrieves Ann from her jail cell, he tells her that all her references as well as Donald's turn out to be people who are out of town and don't want to get involved. The Baumans finally arrive at the 89th Precinct just as Lou is nearly arrested, where they profess Ann and Donald's innocence as well as Lou's. The sergeant apologizes to the Maries and Donald, but on the way out Ann notices the very same scalper she bought the tickets from reporting a robbery. Ann, Donald, Lou, and the Baumans celebrate Christmas by exchanging gifts at her apartment, when suddenly she notices they also took some of the presents of the police officers at the 89th Precinct by mistake. Ann is just about to call the precinct in order to report the error, when a siren blares out the window, and they realize she has no reason to even bother with the phone call.


  • The episode was written by Ruth Brooks Flippen. Her late husband Jay C. Flippen plays Sergeant Fitzgerald in this episode.
  • The title is a pun on the Clement Clarke Moore poem A Visit from St. Nicholas.
  • This is the second episode of That Girl where Ann is arrested. The first one was "Time for Arrest".


Actor Character
Marlo Thomas Ann Marie
Ted Bessell Donald Hollinger
Lew Parker Lou Marie
Bernie Kopell Jerry Bauman
Carol Ann Daniels Ruthie Bauman
Herbie Faye Milton
Ed Peck Bert
William Bramley Tim
Paul Bryar Eppie
Jay C. Flippen Sgt. Fitzgerald

See also

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