CBS/Paramount has released a few TV-on-DVD collections focused on Christmas. They include Fraiser, The Brady Bunch, Sabrina the Teenage Witch, and The Honeymooners. That last one is an odd choice considering that out of the classic 39 episodes, The Honeymooners only had one related story, "'Twas the Night Before Christmas" (#13). Knowing a single episode wouldn't be enough to sell many DVDs, the powers that be included five more, accessible under “Bonus Episodes.”
Originating as a comedy sketch on Cavalcade of Stars / The Jackie Gleason Show, The Honeymooners was about Brooklyn bus driver Ralph Kramden (Jackie Gleason), whose get-rich-quick schemes were usually only quick in the manner by which they failed. The show has long been considered a classic and helped establish the sitcom archetypes of the wife smarter than her husband with Alice (Audrey Meadows) and the goofy best friend/neighbor with Ed Norton (Art Carney) thanks to actors and writers.
"'Twas the Night Before Christmas" (#13) - Ralph get into a bind when a neighbor gets Alice the same gift he got her. The episode ends on a very sweet note about marriage because as often as Ralph is frustrated by her and wants to send her to the moon, he loves her dearly. Just as the curtains close, Gleason stops them and breaks the fourth wall by having the cast wish everyone a Merry Christmas.
The bonus episodes include:
"TV or Not TV" (#1) - Ralph and Norton go in on a TV together, but have trouble sharing it.
"The Golfer" (#3) - In order to impress his boss for a promotion, Ralph lies about knowing how to play golf. Norton addressing the ball (Hello, ball) is an iconic moment.
"Better Living Through TV" (#7) - Ralph figures he and Norton can make a killing buying a load of multipurpose kitchen gadgets and creating a TV commercial to sell them. But Ralph panics when they go live.
"The Man from Space" (#14) - This year, Ralph plans to win the $50 grand prize at the Raccoon Lodge's Halloween costume contest.
"The $99,000 Answer" (#18) - Ralph gets on a game show, but will all his studying pay off?
No denying that The Honeymooners: Christmas Laughter is entertaining, but I am not sure who the intended audience is for this release. Considering one can buy The Complete Series for not much more, I would certainly choose that. Christmas Laughter feels more like a last-minute purchase when you don't know or haven't bothered to know what to get someone.