On December 23, 1972, CBS aired “His Busiest Season,” an episode of “The Bob Newhart Show” that finds everyone feeling blue at Christmastime.
While Chicago psychologist Dr. Bob Hartley (Newhart) struggles to treat his sad-sack patients, his wife Emily (Suzanne Pleshette) makes her shopping list.
EMILY: What do you think I should buy your Uncle Harry and Aunt May? I can’t think of a thing.
BOB: What did we send them last year?
EMILY: A basket of fruit.
BOB: They should have eaten it by now.
To cheer his patients – and himself and Emily – Bob throws an impromptu Christmas Eve party. He tries to lead everyone in a round of carols, but each song brings back a bad memory for a member of the group.
Suddenly, things begin looking up.
“I just feel great because we’re all having such a rotten time together,” Emily declares as the room erupts in laughter.
Here’s the prime-time lineup for Saturday, December 23, 1972:
8: “Alias Smith and Jones”* (ABC), “All in the Family”* (CBS), “Ernie Ford’s White Christmas” (NBC)
8:30: “Bridget Loves Bernie” (CBS)
9: “Streets of San Francisco” (ABC), “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” (CBS), “Climb an Angry Mountain” (NBC)
9:30: “The Bob Newhart Show” (CBS)
10: “The Sixth Sense” (ABC), “The Carol Burnett Show” (CBS)
For the week of December 17, 1972:
Top novel: “Jonathan Livingston Seagull” by Richard Bach
Top song: “Me and Mrs. Jones” by Billy Paul
Top movie: “The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean”
In the news: U.N. Ambassador George Bush quit
Captions: “Bob Newhart Show” stars Bob Newhart and Suzanne Pleshette in scenes from “His Busiest Season.”