The Simpsons/Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire

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Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire
Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire.png
Season 1, Episode 1
Airdate December 17, 1989
Production Number 7G08
Writer(s) Mimi Pond
Director(s) David Silverman

1x02 →
Bart the Genius
The SimpsonsSeason One

Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire is the first episode of the first season of The Simpsons, and the first episode overall.

Guest Stars:


Plot Overview

The episode starts of with Homer and Marge racing to get to Springfield Elementary for Bart and Lisa's Christmas pageant. They arrive just on time to watch Lisa perform and Bart sing.

The next scene shows the family sitting around the fireplace. Marge is writing a letter, while Bart and Lisa are writing up their Christmas lists. Lisa asks for a pony, Bart for a tattoo. The kids leave while Marge pulls out her Christmas savings, while her and Homer discuss what they are going to get the kids.

Marge takes the kids to the mall, where Bart promptly decides to take fate in his own hands, and walks into a tattoo parlor. Marge is forced to spend all their Christmas savings on a laser tattoo operation, banking on the fact that the family can use Homer's Christmas bonus to buy this years presents. At this same time Homer is working at the Nuclear Plant, where he finds out he is not going to get a bonus, but it doesn’t matter too much, since he plans on using Marge's savings.

Homer comes home, and finds out that they have no money, but decides not to ruin Christmas for everyone, by telling them that he did indeed receive his Christmas bonus.

Now Homer has the problem of trying to buy presents cheaply, so he picks pantyhose for Marge, Paper for Bart, and a dog chew toy for Maggie. He goes to sulk in Moe's Bar when Barney walks in, wearing a Santa costume. Barney gives Homer the idea of working as a mall Santa to make a little extra money.

Marge’s sisters, Patty and Selma arrive, and when Homer arrives home late from his Santa training, they start to insult him, saying he'll ruin Christmas for everyone.

The next day Bart discovers that Homer is working at the mall, and Homer confides in him about his lack of Christmas money, but that it will be all right when he goes to pick up his check later. Homer goes to pick up his check, while he tells Bart about the importance of a hard days work, only to find out that he made just 13 dollars for his efforts. Barney once again comes to save the day by telling Homer about Whirlwind, a shoe-in to win at the Greyhound Racing Tracks. Homer and Bart go to the tracks, ready to bet on Whirlwind, when an announcement comes over the P.A. system. The announcement is about a dog, Santa’s Little Helper, to be exact. Homer takes this as a sign, and puts his 13 dollars on Santa’s Little Helper to win, at 99 to 1 odds he could stand to make almost $1300. Sadly Santa’s Little Helper has a horrible race, so bad that his owner kicks him and tell him to never come back again.

The dog immediately runs to Homer, and jumps into his arms.

Just as Marge is about to call the police since she cant find her husband, Homer comes home. He starts telling everyone how he ruined Christmas when Santa’s Little Helper jumps into the living room. Everyone is thrilled with their new pet, Christmas is saved.


Title Sequence

This is the only Simpsons episode without the normal title sequence.

Arc Advancement




  • Lisa asks for a pony, a central plot point in later episodes.


The Show

Behind the Scenes

  • Many characters voices are surprisingly diffrent from later on in the series, most noticably Ralph Wiggum.

Allusions and References

Memorable Moments

  • At the end of the episode, a frame of Maggie is misplaced.



  • Overall Grade: A+ with 1 review
  • Review Breakdown: A+: 1 A: 0 A-: 0 B+: 0 B: 0 B-: 0 C+: 0 C: 0 C-: 0 D: 0 F: 0

The first episode of The Simpsons. A classic Christmas show, up there with Charlie Brown and the bizarre Star Wars Christmas Special. This wasn't going to be the first episode of more than 300; Some Enhanted Evening was going to be it, but the animation was terrible. (Who wants to see the bear cub rip off a head in a show inside a show anyway?) So the Simpsons look more developed, except for Barney's blonde hair that isn't in recent episodes. All in all, a great show. A+