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Your Guide to 30 Rock's Holiday Episodes and Best Christmas Moments

"I'm trying to produce a Christmas special that makes It's a Wonderful Life look like Pulp Fiction!

By Jessica White

While every episode of 30 Rock is a grand slam, the holiday episodes are jam-packed with hysterical gags and seasonal cheer, which make for a hilarious annual rewatch.

Tina Fey starred in the show as the Liz Lemon, the creator of the fictional sketch series TGS who worked closely with network executive Jack Donaghy (Alec Baldwin). Heavily inspired by Fey's time working at Saturday Night Live, the Emmy-winning comedy series was never short on misadventures, which tended to get even wilder around the holidays. Running for seven beloved seasons, 30 Rock has dozens of cherished episodes, but many agree the holiday episodes were in a league of their own as they poked fun at the many hallmarks of the season.

RELATED: Tina Fey's Movie and TV Roles, from 30 Rock to A Haunting in Venice

Whether it was Jenna Maroney's iconic Christmas carols or a visit from the late Elaine Stritch as the legendary Colleen Donaghy, 30 Rock's holiday episodes always packed the punchlines. Relive some of 30 Rock's holiday magic to make this season extra merry and bright.

30 Rock Season 2, Episode 9 ("Ludachristmas")

the cast of 30 rock sit together at a table looking at menus during episode 209

As the TGS staff prepared for the annual "Ludachristmas" holiday party, Liz received a visit from her eccentric family. They seemed sweet on the outside but, when Jack's mother Colleen arrived, she became determined to discover what inner demons the Lemons might be hiding. The family trauma came out: Liz's brother had Groundhog's Day-reminiscent amnesia from the 1980s, which led him to believe Ronald Reagan is still president.

RELATED: Every Star Who Played Liz Lemon's Boyfriend on 30 Rock

"You lucky bastard," Jack told him.

On top of that, Tracy felt like he missing out on all of the reasons for the season after receiving a court-ordered alcohol-monitoring bracelet. His newfound sobriety led to several shocking revelations. "The holidays without drinking is rough," Tracy quipped. "Turns out, football is boring, my wife's sister ain't as cute as I thought she was, and I cannot play the guitar!"

30 Rock Season 3, Episode 6 ("Christmas Special")

Jenna Maroney leans on a piano during Episode 306 of 30 Rock

After Liz's family bailed on their holiday plans, she leveraged her free time to help a charity for underprivileged children. In the meantime, Jack's Florida vacation plans were also tossed out the window after he accidentally hit his mother with his car. However, the question lingered after Jack waited 8 minutes to call 9-1-1 for help: Was it truly an accident? (Stritch scored a 2009 Emmy nomination for this episode, in which Colleen took full advantage of Jack's inner guilt.)

After Jack's mommy issues led him to suddenly demand a live Christmas special from TGS, chaos ensued as Liz worked to make the last-minute magic happen. With their argument eventually squashed, Jack and his mother performed a heartfelt rendition of "The Christmas Song" together at the piano, a feel-good conclusion to 30 Rock's sophomore holiday episode.

Season 4, Episode 8 ("Secret Santa")

Danny and Jenna look at each other during Episode 408 of 30 rock

In 30 Rock's Season 4 holiday episode, Jack and Liz found themselves at the center of a competitive gift exchange after agreeing to get each other gifts that cost no money. Meanwhile, Jack reconnected with his high school sweetheart, Nancy Donovan (played by Boston-accent-bearing Julianne Moore) after learning Nancy's marriage was disintegrating. 

Pete also chose to get revenge against Jenna for not donating money to the cleaning staff by giving her annual Christmas solo to TGS newbie Danny, a shockingly impressive vocalist. Wanting to keep the peace during the holidays (and prevent another one of Jenna's nosebleed-inducing "rage strokes"), Danny sang the song as a duet with Jenna in the wrong key to make sure she still looked good for the audience. 

As Liz and Jack's gift swap approached, Liz wracked her brain for a gift that could compete with whatever Jack might procure from his endless network of connections. In the end, Jack gifted Liz with a program from her high school performance of The Crucible, framed in wood from the stage where she portrayed John Proctor. Despite Jack being "the best gift-giver ever," Liz successfully impressed Jack with her present after she called in a bomb threat to Penn Station, thus keeping Nancy in New York and providing more time for romance. 

Need to watch these episodes now? Stream all of them (and more) on Peacock.