12 non-Christmas episodes for the rest of us

8 of 12

The Nanny: “The Hanukkah Story”

The more distance I get from Fran Drescher’s The Nanny, the more charmed I become with it. It wasn’t ground-breaking television back then, but it holds up and is consistently funny, albeit not so feminist.

The folks at The Nanny were open about Fran’s Jewishness, and it was often the good-natured punchline to a lot of the jokes. It was a constant theme throughout the six seasons, and became one of the defining themes of the series.  It’s strange, then, that it would take ten seasons for them to devote an entire episode to Hanukkah. In its sixth season, Fran the nanny went from an employee with an unrequited crush on her hunky employer, to the wife, mother and head of the household.

Since she’s the official boss at this point in the series, as opposed to the unofficial boss she’s been all along, she is excited to celebrate Hanukkah with her new family. As in every single episode of The Nanny preceding this one, things go awry, antics ensue, and Fran is wound comically tight.

Of course it’s all very endearing, and it’s really satisfying as the last holiday episode ever. “The Hanukkah Story” is the tenth episode of the sixth season, and you can watch it on YouTube.