9. ''Somewhere in the World It's Christmas,'' season 4, originally aired Dec. 22, 1993
Dylan met his half-sister Erica, Donna and David broke up because David wanted to have sex, and the Walshes attempted to flee to Hawaii. Sounds like all the makings of a classic! Except…half the episode was a flashback to season 2’s Christmas episode. You can’t do a flashback to two years ago, show. You just can’t.
8. ''Gift Wrapped,'' season 7, originally aired Dec. 18, 1996
Is there anything icier than the Kelly Taylor glare of disdain? Nope! Just ask Valerie, who’s on the receiving end of some truly cold Kelly stares. (But things lighten up when they get each other the same Christmas gift. Awww!)
7. ''Nine Yolks Whipped Lightly,'' season 10, originally aired Dec. 22, 1998
The final Christmas episode had three main stories: Kelly and Matt and their sad engagement; Dylan punching a dude and putting his community center at risk; and Steve and Janet trying to make Janet’s parents give a crap about their baby. Eh? That was supposed to jingle our bells?
6. ''Marathon Man,'' season 9, originally aired Dec. 15, 1998
Jesus isn’t the only one born on Christmas. The Christ-like Donna Martin was also born on December 25, so each season we got the one-two punch of everyone in Santa hats (bleh) and Donna making some kind of sad, sad wish. This season, she wished for the Brian Setzer Orchestra and to still be dating the annoying Noah! And those wishes totally came true. Bonus points for Gina at her bitchiest, but minus points for David at his blah-est.
5. ''Angels We Have Heard on High,'' season 6, originally aired Dec. 20, 1995
Steve and Clare were, in their prime, one of the best couples everyone’s favorite zipcode ever produced. Sure, they were heavy on the shenanigans, but that was part of the magic! Contrast them with Kelly and, ugh, Colin, whose delightful nosecandy problem meant ”Angels” was a very white Christmas.
4. ''Walsh Family Christmas,'' season 2, originally aired Dec. 19, 1991
The episode that started it all. (Alas, there was no Christmas episode in season 1.) Steve headed to New Mexico to try to track down his birth mother, but the quest turned out to be in vain when he discovered that she died years before. Brandon nobly visited Emily Valentine in the mental hospital, and Cindy and Jim fretted over how sad a non-Minnesota holiday seemed. All was redeemed, though, when Brenda brought a hobo dressed as Santa to dinner, because that’s just the responsible Walsh thing to do.
3. ''Christmas Comes This Time Each Year,'' season 5, originally aired Dec. 21, 1994
Poor Kelly. So hung up on her totally invisible burns. Poor Andrea. So hung up on her constantly crying baby. Poor Ray. So hung up on the $10,000 Donna’s mom offered him to go away. (We’ll kick in another $10, dude.) Poor Donna and Clare. So hung up on wearing the ugliest sweaters known to man and beast, the better to match their crotch-dusting kilts and wet-looking hair. A true nadir for 90210 fashion, but a wonderful holiday outing.
2. ''Santa Knows,'' season 8, originally aired Dec. 17, 1997
Any episode where Donna Martin spits ”Get out of my face!” at Valerie Malone is a strong contender. Throw in the golden child Brandon being the bad guy — step away from the cheat-bait Emma! — and ”Santa” is up there with the classics. How did you know I wanted a man’s watch for Christmas?
1. ''It's A Totally Happening Life,'' season 3, originally aired Dec. 16, 1992
The It’s a Wonderful Life motif is in full effect, with two angels narrating the action of the episode. The gang has a bad case of the grumpies (hey, if you had to wear a massive silver belt buckle with every single outfit, you would too), with Kelly and Brenda still sparring over Dylan, Andrea and Brandon angry over their kiss, and David and Donna…being David and Donna. Oh, and Steve of course did something dumb. Classic! The pièce de résistance, though, comes at the very end of the episode, when the angels and, they suggest, God Himself prevent the teens from being killed in a schoolbus crash. Ah, the perfect combo of abject awfulness and wild awesomeness, rolled into one.