5 great music moments in Thanksgiving TV/streaming episodes

Try these songs in a round of musical chairs for the head of the Thanksgiving table? 

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Perhaps upon swiveling your head at the Thanksgiving table, you’d find your uncle with his 5 o’clock shadow beard, its fine hairs dusting the apple sauce shoveled into his mouth. Or twist the other way, and your grandmother sits on your right, flipping through a book of anecdote thank you notes, looking for the exactly right one to say. Thursday, November 23, is the perfect day to be around family and loved ones. 

However, what one may not be suspecting is the familial stature belonging to a comfort character etched out on the television, still blaring in the corner of the room. They’re the ones you catch when you’re looking directly ahead. It’s usually not in an ordinary sighting, too. They’re around their other fictional buddies partaking in Thanksgiving activities, from the Gilmore Girls clang surviving four turkey-stuffed dinners to Bart Simpson ruining that day in The Simpsons. It’s like looking into an autumn-stylized mirror and knowing they feel as bloated as you are!

However, it’s not just the food. If you’re a musical household, that’s usually present, too. And we’re not solely talking about the Billboard charts here, but if you’re grandpa somehow trains his ear to listen to Frank Sinatra! Those Thanksgiving television episodes are the same, with a perfectly timed music moment in the background. So, seeing as we’re a music blog, we’ve decided to lend ourselves to this holiday tradition by choosing our top five favorites! 

Gossip Girl

Hmm, ‘Whatcha Say?’ Usually, it’s Jason Derulo asking the question in his slinky voice, but this time around, in 'The Treasure of Serena Madre,' it's being ricocheted around a dinner table on the Upper East Side. It’s stuffed to the brim with all sorts of fancy treats. This Thanksgiving table has orange flowers and pinecones, and Rufus Humphrey and Lily Van Der Woodsen sat at its heads.

In a tirade, secret after secret is revealed! The first one is that Lily’s been playing with white lies; her mother actually hasn’t been in remission for cancer as long as she said she’s been. Little J, known as extension-wearing Jenny Humphrey, is spilling the beans, knowing that Eric was why her Contilian wouldn’t have gone to plan if Nate Archibald hadn’t stepped in. Blair Waldorf believes her mother is pregnant! And Serena’s having an affair with Tripp Vanderbilt, a congressional candidate. Gossip Girl herself didn’t even have to out these secrets via text message signed off with a xo. 

Bob's Burgers

We’re switching mediums here, going from an all-star young adult cast of leggy blondes and pretty boys to a cartoon family of slumped shoulders. We're, of course, talking about Bob’s Burgers, and taking a flashback to 2012, ‘An Indecent Thanksgiving Proposal’ ended with this number sung predominantly by Linda Belcher. Better yet, it wasn’t even scripted but improvised by the voice actor, John Roberts. It's so iconic that even The National covered it. 

Pretty Little Liars

Citizens of Rosewood can’t even catch a break at Thanksgiving and even have to carve out a few minutes of silence for the deceased. This time, they’re paying respects to Mona Vanderwaal, who ‘died’ at the end of ‘Taking This One to the Grave’ in season five. We’re air-quoting the word ‘die’ because, like those who can’t make the whisper motion over their lips to keep a secret in, obviously, we know that she’s still very much alive. The song that plays is ‘We Gotta Get out of This Place’ by Denmark & Winter, which is, uh, appropriate. 

Grey's Anatomy

It seems like we’re dipping ourselves into nostalgic Grey’s Anatomy, despite the release year of this episode being 2021. As Meredith Grey displays her best Jane Austen voice yet again, revealing insights into her little world through a monologue, she’s snowed in with Nick Marsh. Meanwhile, at Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital, five staff members are having Thanksgiving dinner amidst their shifts. Richard Webbers’ giving a little speech that Miranda Bailey nearly butts into, and they all list off something they’re grateful for off a note they’ve kept in their pockets—one of them says, “I wrote toast,” jokingly playing it off as thinking it was a to-do list rather than something of sentiment. It’s a little gloomy, knowing what they’ve all separately been through, but it’s going back to the rooting theme of friendship. The song that’s playing is Noah Gundersen’s ‘Magic Trick.’

Glee

What would a musical Thanksgiving list be if we didn’t mention Glee somewhere on there? Oh, and in addition to its unusual songbirds in Rachel Berry and Kurt Hummel, Sarah Jessica Parker also appears as Isabelle Wright. Wright’s acoustics sail through Berry’s apartment in a performance of ‘Let's Have a Kiki/Turkey Lurkey Time’ during the eighth episode of season four! And if it’s been a minute since you’ve used your Gleek brain, then this was the season where they all went their separate ways, with Berry migrating to New York. So it was one of those rare moments where the season truly shined, and it felt like you were back in that choir room, except, you know, with upping the ante on several dancing extras, most with extravagant puffy 80s hair. On that stylish point, too, one of them even has blue feather earrings, a cute turkey touch. 

Which of these episodes will you use so you don’t have to talk to that one relative? Let us know by tweeting us @AudioPhix_fs or hitting the like button on our Facebook page! Even if you're sans comfort characters and musical moments, we hope you enjoy your cranberry-garnished day nonetheless!

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