Television has blessed us with a wide array of bomb-ass holiday television specials throughout the years. The best ones typically have some musical elements to them. The most awkward ones do, too–and those are way more fun to talk about.
From Lady Gaga singing with the Muppets to Mariah Carey’s unfortunate “All I Want for Christmas Is You” performance in 2014, here are eight holiday musical moments from TV that will stand the test of time as the awkwardest of the awkward. The weirdest of the weird. And–let’s be real–the greatest of the great. Sound off on them in the comments.
When this little girl was off the entire time lip-syncing “Oh Santa” in Mariah Carey’s A Christmas Melody.
Mariah’s Hallmark film is all kinds of iconic, and this scene is a major reason why. In it, Kristen’s (Lacey Chabert) daughter Emily (Fina Strazza) sings an “original song” at her Christmas pageant, only–surprise–it’s actually Mariah’s “Oh Santa” with a few tweaked lyrics. That’s amazing enough, but what puts this moment over the edge is the fact Emily is literally off the entire time lip-syncing. What happened here, MiMi? Not enough time for a second take? An editing gaffe? Either way, thank you for blessing us with this Emmy and Grammy-worthy scene.
Chris Brown’s White Hot Holidays performance.
If you watched Terrence Howard and Taraji P. Henson’s Fox special White Hot Holidays, then you know something about Chris’ renditions of “Back to Sleep” and “This Christmas” felt a little, erm, off. He sounded pitchy, looked a tad manic and seemed to struggle throughout the whole performance. Fans noticed. Twitter noticed. We all noticed. Breezy is normally proficient, so we’ll cut him some slack here…buuut he still makes our list.
The time Lady Gaga sang “Gypsy” with Kermit the Frog.
Awkward in the best way possible. What is better than Gaga–who at one point wore a Kermit-themed outfit–singing a duet with IRL Kermit the Frog?! Nothing. Everything about this is adorably cringe-worthy: Gaga’s hair, Kermit’s singing, the weird set. We only wish we were smushed smack dab in between them.
When Aaron Carter showed up on Lizzie McGuire and sang a holiday-themed version of “I Want Candy.”
This bizarre pop moment is without a doubt the greatest holiday-themed romp to come out of Disney Channel. That being said, it’s also more awkward than a middle school boy’s first kiss. Lizzie and Miranda’s groupie dancing! Gordo trolling with a video camera as per usual! Matt randomly THOTting in the background! It’s literally 2001 Christmas personified in a clip.
Mariah Carey’s Rockefeller Center performance of “All I Want for Christmas Is You” in 2014.
Oh, Mariah. We had high hopes for your 2014 performance of your seasonal staple. Sadly, though, you left us disappointed and–more importantly–confused. Were you sick? Tired? Not feeling it? If you say her talent is dwindling, then go bite your tongue! That’s not what went down here, but something did–something, well, awkward.
Bill Murray and Miley Cyrus singing “Let It Snow” in A Very Murray Christmas (2015).
Bill’s Netflix special is a magnificent clusterf–ck, and it reaches epic proportions during his ear-screeching duet with Lady Cyrus. They decide to dust off “Let It Snow,” but they really should have kept it in mothballs. The gleaming set, random George Clooney cameo and struggle-bus Miley lift at the end all make this number a cheese-fest.
David Bowie and Bing Crosby’s holiday duet.
The King of Glam and King of Christmas joined forces way back in the day for a medley of “Peace on Earth” and “Little Drummer Boy.” Yes, this ish is whack as hell, but there is something amazing watching two legends–two very different legends–come together for some Yuletide realness.
The Star Wars Holiday Special (1978) in its entirety.
Nothing will ever top the time Star Wars and Santa united for a holiday special in the ’70s. It took Christmas merriment into another universe–literally. Remember that particularly head-scratching Jefferson Starship number? What was that? Why do I still have nightmares from it? …Why am I watching it again to write this post? ???