Christmas Episodes: Bergen & McCarthy and Great Gildersleeve

Christmas is too special of a holiday to be restricted to just one or two days. Yes, the Big Guy in Red coming down the Chimney and filling the stockings, followed by the kids ripping into all those beautifully wrapped boxes, is the high point of the season, but the anticipation of Christmas really is the best part.

Back to Christmas on the radio, Charlie McCarthy faces a little competition when Edgar Bergen’s 9 year old daughter Candice appears on the 1955 Christmas edition of the Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy Show. Bergen does a marvelous job of being the straight man for both Charlie and Candy as the two youngsters present their version of Twas the Night Before Christmas.

The Great Gildersleeve lasted for 13 Christmases, and the writers loved every one of them. From the very first season, 1941, when Gildy “graduated” from Fibber McGee and Molly to his own show, the Gildersleeve household was making the adjustment to having their own show in the weeks following Pearl Harbor. Gildy had two Christmas shows that year, both of which were seasoned with War news. In the middle of the month, Leroy and Gildy have to deal with Iron Reindeer, and just before Christmas the Great Man tries to find an inexpensive gift for his pal Fibber, only to get caught in a cycle of “gift inflation”.

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