'Tis the Fifteenth Season

"'Tis the Fifteenth Season"
The Simpsons episode
Tis the Fifteenth Season.png
Promotional artwork featuring Homer, in a parody of Dr. Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas!
Episode no.Season 15
Episode 7 (320th overall)
Directed bySteven Dean Moore
Written byMichael Price
Production codeFABF02
Original air dateDecember 14, 2003
Episode features
Couch gagThe family members fly in dressed as popular anime characters (Bart as Astro Boy, Homer as Ultraman, Lisa as Sailor Moon, Marge as Jun from Science Ninja Team Gatchaman and Maggie as Pikachu from Pokémon).
CommentaryAl Jean
Michael Price
Matt Selman
John Frink
Don Payne
Dana Gould
Tom Gammill
Max Pross
Steven Dean Moore
Episode chronology
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"Today I Am a Clown"
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The Simpsons (season 15)
List of episodes

"'Tis the Fifteenth Season" is the seventh episode of the fifteenth season of the American animated television series The Simpsons, and the seventh Christmas-themed episode overall. It first aired on the Fox network in the United States on December 14, 2003.

This episode is notable as being the first to make reference to Lisa's Buddhism since she converted in an earlier Christmas episode, "She of Little Faith".


Instead of a Christmas bonus, Mr. Burns gives Homer a baseball card. He sells it to Comic Book Guy and earns a small fortune, then takes the family Christmas shopping. Homer promises to buy a large Christmas tree, but instead spends the money on a talking astrolabe for himself; the family are disappointed by his selfish behavior. That night, Homer watches Mr. McGrew's Christmas Carol and realizes that he must change his ways.

Now more charitable, Homer apologizes for his mistakes, donates his old clothes to the homeless shelter, and builds a public skating rink in his backyard. Ned Flanders becomes jealous of Homer's position as the new nicest person in town, and sets out to buy gifts for everyone. Meanwhile, Lisa tells Homer about her Buddhist beliefs that people would be happier without material goods. For his next good deed, on Christmas Eve night, Homer sneaks into the citizens' houses and steals their presents. In the morning, an angry mob confront Homer and Flanders. Flanders calms them by reciting a Bible verse, while Homer gives everyone back their presents.


The episode was written by Michael Price, who has cited "Homer's summation of what Christmas means" as his favorite contribution to the show. He has said that the speech "pretty much stayed that way through all drafts of the episode."[1]

Cultural references[]


On November 2, 2004, the episode was released in the United States on a DVD collection titled The Simpsons Christmas 2, along with the season twelve episodes "Homer vs. Dignity" and "Skinner's Sense of Snow" and the season fourteen episode "Dude, Where's My Ranch?".[2]

While reviewing the DVD, Brian James of PopMatters wrote that "'Tis the Fifteenth Season" is "hardly a masterpiece, but it does feature a talking astrolabe and the phrase 'double-bacon genius-burger,' two elements that deserve a spot in Simpson Valhalla. It's a shame that such entries don't come as fast and furious as they did a decade ago, but that The Simpsons does offer a few belly laughs now and then, rather than being a complete embarrassment this late in the game is a bigger accomplishment than anyone gives it cr for. It's still just a cartoon, and still a pretty good one."[2]

Kyle Ryan of The A.V. Club praised the episode for "strik[ing] a nice balance between sharp satire and real heart."[3]


  1. ^ "Best 'Simpsons' Moments: Castmembers Share Their Favorite Contributions to Celebrate the 500th Episode". OC Weekly. 2012-02-14. Archived from the original on 2012-02-25. Retrieved 2012-02-14.
  2. ^ a b James, Brian (2004-12-28). "The Simpsons Christmas 2". PopMatters. Retrieved 2011-10-07.
  3. ^ Ryan, Kyle (2011-12-16). "The Simpsons: 'Tis The Fifteenth Season'". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 2011-12-17.

External links[]