We were all feeling tired when we turned out the light...
Forget it; there's no way I'm sleeping tonight!

— Yakko

"’Twas the Day Before Christmas" is the first featured segment of the 50th produced episode of the Warner Bros. animated series Animaniacs, and the first Christmas-themed segment of the series. It was aired with "Jingle Boo", "The Great Wakkorotti: The Holiday Concert", and "Toy Shop Terror". As the title suggests, it is a parody of the classic poem The Night Before Christmas.


Skippy wants Slappy to read The Day Before Christmas

Skippy wants Slappy to read the eponymous poem to him.

It is Christmas Eve at Slappy Squirrel's tree, and her nephew Skippy is looking outside his window at the sky. Slappy comes in, telling him that he is supposed to be asleep right now. Skippy says he cannot sleep because he thinks he keeps hearing Santa's sleigh outside. Slappy assures him "That's just the LAPD choppers," and brings him to his bed. Skippy is still too excited to sleep, and he asks his aunt to tell him a Christmas-themed bedtime story, handing her a nearby book - The Day Before Christmas.

In the story (which is told in rhyme), it is Christmas Eve at the Warner Bros. Studio in Burbank, California, and Yakko, Wakko and Dot are preparing the Water Tower for Santa's arrival tonight. Over in his office, CEO Thaddeus Plotz has gathered the Warner siblings' Christmas presents from the studio and needs someone to deliver it to them. He picks Dr. Scratchansniff for the job, but the doctor refuses, because he did it last year and does not want to go through the experience again. Hello Nurse asks why they have to do this, with Plotz replying that it is a clause in the Warner siblings' contract, and they can sue if they do not bring them the presents. Trying to figure out who else he could get to do the job, Plotz looks out the window and notices Ralph the Guard seeing some of the studio employees (including Mindy & Buttons and Flavio & Marita) as they're going home. Plotz decides that Ralph would be perfect to play Santa.

That night, the Warners (who take over the narration at this point) are awaiting Santa's arrival with great anticipation. During this, they notice the presence of The Brain and Pinky, who are respectively dressed as Santa and an elf as part of a plan to steal Santa's sleigh for Brain's current world domination plan. Yakko, Wakko and Dot promptly hang up their stockings and are just about to go to bed when they hear noise outside. They rush to look outside and find that the noise is Rita and Runt (who sneaked into the studio lot earlier) looking for food in the garbage cans.


Yakko, Wakko and Dot with "Santa" (Ralph).

Just then, Ralph, wearing the Santa suit, arrives in a sleigh drawn by a team of pigeons, three of which are the Goodfeathers. The pigeons land the sleigh on the roof of the Water Tower, crushing Pinky and the Brain in the process. While Pesto starts beating up Squit for complimenting his reindeer costume, Ralph falls through the roof. After the Warners help Ralph get back up on his feet, he leaves their presents under their tree and then climbs up the tree and out the hole he made in the roof. He gets back in his sleigh, but the pigeons fail to get the sleigh back into the air, and they all fall to the ground. Yakko, Wakko and Dot look up in the sky and see the real Santa and his reindeer flying by, having just left a fish and a bone for Rita and Runt, and wishing Merry Christmas to the Warners.

As the story ends, it is shown that Slappy fell asleep. Skippy wishes his aunt and the viewers a Merry Christmas and then seemingly starts to go to sleep himself, but instead rushes downstairs to open his toys.


  • This segment was adapted into comic book form as part of the Animaniacs Christmas Special comic book, along with another Animaniacs episode, "Taming of the Screwy".
  • Besides Mindy and Buttons and the Hip Hippos, Ralph addresses Kevin Costner and Michael Keaton, the latter of whom is depicted driving the Batmobile, in reference to his role as Batman in the films Batman and Batman Returns.
  • Two of the other pigeons pulling Ralph's sleigh are named Richard and Nixon, after Richard M. Nixon.


The segment made its home video debut on the Animaniacs: Helloooo, Holidays! VHS tape, released by Warner Home Video on August 24, 1994. The episode containing the segment was later included on the Animaniacs: Volume 2 DVD set, released on December 5, 2006.


Voice actor Character
Rob Paulsen Yakko Warner
Dr. Scratchansniff
Jess Harnell Wakko Warner
Tress MacNeille Dot Warner
Hello Nurse
Sherri Stoner Slappy Squirrel
Frank Welker Ralph T. Guard
Thaddeus Plotz
Maurice LaMarche The Brain
Nathan Ruegger Skippy Squirrel
John Mariano Bobby
Chick Vennera Pesto
Nancy Cartwright Mindy
Bernadette Peters Rita

External links

Warner Bros.
Warner Bros. Pictures Christmas in ConnecticutGremlinsNational Lampoon's Christmas VacationJack FrostNational Lampoon's Christmas Vacation 2: Cousin Eddie's Island AdventureThe Year Without a Santa ClausFred ClausA Christmas Story 2
New Line Cinema ElfThe Nativity StoryFour ChristmasesA Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas
Live-action television episodes
Friends and Joey "The One With Phoebe's Dad" • "The One Where Rachel Quits" • "The One With the Girl from Poughkeepsie" • "The One With the Inappropriate Sister" • "The One With the Routine" • "The One With the Holiday Armadillo" • "The One With the Creepy Holiday Card" • "The One With Christmas in Tulsa" • "Joey and the Plot Twist" • "Joey and the Christmas Party"
DC Comics "Season's Greedings" • "Home is Where the Hurt Is" • "Twas the Night Before Mxymas" • "Lexmas" • "Gemini" • "Year's End" • "Three Ghosts"
Other shows "A Semi-Merry Christmas" • "Mel, the Magi" • "Mel's Christmas Carol" • "'Tis the Season to Be Jealous" • "A Christmas Story" (Growing Pains) • "A Christmas Story" (Just the Ten of Us) • "Santa on the Lam" • "Miracle on Elm Street" • "The Christmas Show" • "Fa La La La Laagghh!" • "The Man Who Canceled Christmas" • "It Came Upon a Midnight Clear" • "Deck the Malls" • "Christmas Day-Ja Vu" • "A Country Christmas" • "How the Finch Stole Christmas" • "Meet the Cuban Parents" • "Christmas Punch" • "A Clear and Presentless Danger" • "George Is Being Elfish and Christ-Misses His Family" • "Santa's Secret Stuff" • "A Very Supernatural Christmas" • "The Bath Item Gift Hypothesis" • "Christmas" (The Middle) • "It's Beginning to Stink a Lot Like Christmas" • "The Maternal Congruence" • "Jolly Red Elf" • "The World Ain't Over 'Till It's Over" • "The Santa Simulation" • "Give Santa a Tail-Hole" • "Home for Christmas"
Animated productions
Looney Tunes and related shows The Shanty Where Santy Claus LivesBedtime for SnifflesGift WrappedBugs Bunny's Looney Christmas Tales • "It's a Wonderful Tiny Toons Christmas Special" • "'Twas the Day Before Christmas" • "Jingle Boo" • "The Great Wakkorotti: The Holiday Concert" • "A Christmas Plotz" • "Little Drummer Warners" • "No Time for Christmas" • "A Pinky and the Brain Christmas" • "It Happened One Night Before Christmas" • "In Arms Way" • "The Twelve Days of Christmas" • Christmas Eve with Yakko, Wakko & Dot • "Noel" • "The Christmas Tree" • "The Banks of the Delaware River" • "Feather Christmas" • "Yule Be Sorry" • "Christmas in July" • Bah, Humduck! A Looney Tunes Christmas • "A Christmas Carol" • "Tis the Seasoning"
DC Comics "Christmas With the Joker" • "Holiday Knights" • "Frozen Out" • "Comfort and Joy" • "Storybook Holiday" • "Invasion of the Secret Santas!" • "Second Christmas" • "The True Meaning of Christmas" • "Teen Titans Save Christmas"
Hanna-Barbera co-productions "A Dickens of a Christmas" • A Scooby-Doo! Christmas • "Ho Ho Horrors" • Tom and Jerry: A Nutcracker TaleScooby-Doo! Haunted HolidaysTom and Jerry: Santa's Little Helpers • "The Plight Before Christmas" • "Scary Christmas" • "Scroogey Doo" • "It's a Wacky Life" • "Dashing Thru the Snow"
Other cartoons "Yuletide and Redtide" • "The Match Before Xmas" • The Polar ExpressA Miser Brothers' Christmas • "Da Grinchy Code / Duck" • "FROST / Undercover Claus" • "Fantastic Four Christmases / Red and White Collar" • Elf: Buddy's Musical Christmas • "Top of the Naughty List"
Have Yourself a Looney Tunes ChristmasA Hip-Hopera ChristmasMerry Christmas: Animaniacs & Looney TunesThe Looney Tunes Kwazy ChristmasA Looney Tunes Sing-A-Long Christmas