Identifying Garfield’s Christmas Presents.


Yeah, I’m really doing this. It’s too late to stop me.

A Garfield Christmas is one of my favorite holiday specials. During its run on CBS, I watched it every year. To me, it was every bit as important as Charlie Brown’s thing, and for a time, I liked it even more.

The bulk of the special is set on the old Arbuckle farm, where Jon reconnects with his little-seen family. (Most notably Grandma Arbuckle, in a breakthrough performance!) It’s 22 minutes of pure holiday happiness, and it kills me that nobody airs it anymore. A Garfield Christmas just isn’t the same on DVD. I need commercial breaks with special messages from McDonald’s and Radio Shack.

Of course, pitching you the special isn’t why I’m here. Frankly, only those who are already fans have any shot of making it through this post. I mean it. This one is NOT going viral.

Now let’s get down to business. Remember Garfield’s dream sequence from the start of the special? The one with the ROBOT SANTA GIFT-GIVING MACHINE?

I’ll refresh your memory. During the opening minutes, Garfield dreams of a perfect holiday, starring an especially gracious Jon and an especially gratuitous amount of lasagna. Jon wastes no time in fetching Garfield’s gift, which at first glance appears to be a Christmasized electric chair.

An enormous Robo-Santa chair is present enough, but this thing had magical powers. After putting on its attached metal cap, Garfield could wish any present imaginable into existence! Jon demonstrates by conjuring a goofy hat, but Garfield quickly claims the throne for himself.

This kicks off the opening credits, set to the unforgettable “Gimme, Gimme, Gimme, Gimme” song. For thirty seconds, Garfield summons more than fifty gifts, and I know I’m not exaggerating, because I fucking counted.

I’m sure I’m not the only one who imagined what it would’ve been like to own such a chair. So many times have I lost myself in visions of action figures and Nintendo games being viciously spat to life. This thing was a genie lamp with no restrictions and no catches. And hell, even if it had those, it’d still be better, because a giant, Santa-themed electric chair is way cooler than a brass lamp.

I’m also sure that I’m not the only one who tried to keep track of Garfield’s many presents. It wasn’t easy to do! Actually, in real time, I don’t think it was possible. I spent decades trying to, after all.

And that brings us to today. You see, I have a mission.

I am determined to identify every present Garfield wished for in A Garfield Christmas.

To accomplish this, I went through the scene frame-by-frame. Even when being that meticulous, it still wasn’t easy, and I had to leave off a few gifts that were just plain indecipherable. But I think I nailed everything that could conceivably be recognized.

I counted 55 in all. Actually, I counted 53… everything beyond that came from reader assistance. If you’re brave, you can follow the entire process below. Or you can just skip to the bottom. (Protip: Skip to the bottom.)

Off we go!


+1 Pile of Jewels!


+1 Cat Bed!


+1 Yellow Wrapped Gift!
+1 Camcorder!
+1 Guitar!
+1 Red Wrapped Gift!
+1 White Wrapped Gift!
+1 Suitcase!


+1 Television Set!


+1 Boombox!


+1 Microwave Oven!


+1 Ham!


+1 Toy Train!


+1 Oscillating Fan!


+1 Toaster!


+1 Yellow Wrapped Gift!


+1 Whole Cooked Chicken!


+1 Toy Plane!


+1 Green Wrapped Gift! (magically appeared in the lower right)


+1 Toy Drum!


+1 Bowling Ball!


+1 Basketball!


+1 Set of Golf Clubs!


+1 Basketball! (yes, another one)


+1 Yellow Wrapped Gift!


+1 Stereo Set!


+1 Toy Train!


+1 Oscillating Fan! (Or maybe it doesn’t oscillate. Why else would Garfield need two?)


+1 Toaster!


+1 Yellow Wrapped Gift!


+1 Whole Cooked Chicken!


+1 Bowling Ball!


+1 Stereo Set! (Garfield is seriously blowing it with these duplicates!)


+1 Toy Plane!


+1 Stuffed Teddy Bear! (A relative of Pooky’s?)


+1 Purple Basketball!


+1 Toy Trumpet!


+1 Red Wrapped Gift!


+1 Tripod! (Presumably for the camcorder?)


+1 Blue Wrapped Gift!


Uh oh — a new pile of junk. I’ll be conservative and only count the things we definitely haven’t seen before. I’m also ignoring one or two things that are impossible to identify.

+1 Giant Stereo Speaker!
+1 Bird Feeder!
+1 Fish Tank! (With goldfish!)
+1 Soccer Ball!
+1 Birthday Cake!
+1 Orange Wrapped Gift!
+1 Electric Guitar!
+1 Toaster Oven!
+1 Television Set! (Clearly different from the one previously seen.)
+1 Boombox! (Again, clearly different from the previous one!)
+1 Toy Boat? (The thing on the far right.)
+1 Baseball Bat!
+1 Slide Projector!


+1 Clown Doll!


+1 Red Wrapped Gift! (Magically popped up after Garfield dived in.)

WHEW. I think that covers it!


That was a chore, but it was so worth it! After more than 25 years, I’ve finally identified all of Garfield’s imaginary Christmas presents!

Ready? Here we go:

– 1 Pile of Jewels!
– 1 Cat Bed!
– 4 Yellow Wrapped Gifts!
– 1 Camcorder!
– 1 Guitar!
– 3 Red Wrapped Gifts!
– 1 White Wrapped Gift!
– 1 Suitcase!
– 2 Television Sets!
– 2 Boomboxes!
– 1 Microwave Oven!
-1  Ham!
– 2 Toy Trains!
– 2 Oscillating Fans!
– 2 Toasters!
– 2 Whole Cooked Chickens!
– 2 Toy Planes!
– 1 Green Wrapped Gift!
– 1 Toy Drum!
– 2 Bowling Balls!
– 3 Basketballs! (One in purple!)
– 1 Set of Golf Clubs!
– 2 Stereo Sets!
– 1 Stuffed Teddy Bear!
– 1 Toy Trumpet!
– 1 Tripod!
– 1 Blue Wrapped Gift!
– 1 Giant Stereo Speaker!
– 1 Bird Feeder!
– 1 Fish Tank w/ Goldfish!
– 1 Soccer Ball!
– 1 Birthday Cake!
– 1 Orange Wrapped Gift!
– 1 Electric Guitar!
– 1 Baseball Bat!
– 1 Slide Projector!
– 1 Toaster Oven!
– 1 Toy Boat!
– 1 Clown Doll!

Total: 55 gifts!!!

(Well, 55, plus a few unknowns, and probably a few more wrapped presents.)

For a cat who owed his fame to laziness, it’s strange that Garfield would wish for three basketballs. Even stranger that he’d want one of those basketballs in purple.

His choices were madness, really. Whole cooked chickens mixed with pet goldfish mixed with oversized toy trains! I suppose we shouldn’t be too surprised, though. Imagine having a dream where you had to wish for 55 awesome things in exactly 32 seconds. You’d fry your brain. If a purple basketball is the weirdest thing Garfield came up with, he was of sounder mind than most of us.

When it’s time to add things to Dino Drac, I normally only consider topics that would potentially have some value to the site’s audience. Other times, I don’t care about you at all. This is one of those times. I did this for me. I needed to know everything Garfield wished for.

help me