"Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire", also known as "The Simpsons Christmas Special", is the series premiere episode of The Simpsons. It was the first episode to air despite originally being the eighth episode produced for season one. It is the only full-length episode to air during the 1980s. It originally aired on the Fox network in the United States on December 17, 1989. In the episode, Homer Simpson discovers that he will not be getting a Christmas bonus and thus his family has no money to buy Christmas presents after they had to waste money on getting his son Bart's tattoo removed. He decides to keep their financial troubles a secret and gets a job as a shopping mall Santa, but later discovers that the job does not pay enough. Desperate for a miracle, Homer and Bart go to the dog racing track on Christmas Eve in hopes of earning some money but end up adopting an abandoned greyhound, Santa's Little Helper.
Mimi Pond and directed by David Silverman. The title alludes to "The Christmas Song", also known as "Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire". "Simpsons Roasting on an Open Fire" was nominated for two Emmy Awards in 1990, and has received positive reviews from television critics. In 2014, current showrunner Al Jean selected it as one of five essential episodes in the show's history. It was viewed by approximately 13.4 million viewers in its original airing. Mimi Pond wrote only this episode of The Simpsons, saying in 2013: "It was not a great experience for me. I would rather focus on my comics!"