A ChristmasEpisode Bart accidentally destroys the family's Christmas presents and blames the disaster on a burglar, resulting in the rest of the town opening its hearts and wallets for them, but when Santa's Little Helper finds the melted wreckage and Bart confesses that he lied, the town turns on The Simpsons and shuns them.
!! Tropes:
* AsHimself: Creator/AlexTrebek, who doesn't take kindly to Marge's -$5200 loss, and later joins Springfieldians in repossessing the Simpsons' possessions.
* BaitAndSwitchComment: When Marge and Lisa decorate their family's Christmas tree, Lisa comments that she's glad about not using a tree made of aluminum like in the past, suggesting they're using a real tree this time. Marge then reveals that they're using a plastic tree.
* BorrowedCatchPhrase: When Bart confesses that he's the one who ruined Christmas, Lisa strangles him, complete with a "Why you little--!"
* CassandraTruth: Homer tries to warn his coworkers of a poison leak, but they think he's lying to steal their snacks.
* ChristmasEpisode: Probably the most depressing one outside of "Marge Be Not Proud".
* CrappyHolidays: And how. The family's Christmas tree and presents burning down is only the beginning of their misfortunes.
* CruelTwistEnding: Just when it seems the town has forgiven the Simpsons, we see the actual reason why the Springfieldians are at their house: They're repossessing the Simpsons' belongings.
* DownerEnding: The townspeople make off with all of the Simpson family's possessions (including the cat and dog) just so they can repay the debt, but the part where The Simpsons play with a lone washcloth and the show's penchant for resetting their continuity (unless it's a character dying) prevented this from being too depressing.
* EpicFail: Marge losing so bad on ''Jeopardy'' that she now owes $5200 to Alex Trebek.
* GameShowAppearance: Marge goes on ''Series/{{Jeopardy}}'' to try to repay Springfield, [[EpicFail but ends up with -$5200 instead]].
* HypocriticalHumour: Homer pulling Lisa away from strangling Bart...so he can do a better job.
-->'''Homer''': Lisa, no! Your hands are too weak!
* IllKillYou: "No, I'm killing him first! You wait your turn!"
* {{Irony}}: Bart sets fire to the Christmas tree with a toy fire truck.
* ItsAllAboutMe: Bart ''really'' wanted to open his presents before everybody else, which [[DisasterDominoes kicks off the rest of the story]].
* LeadIn: Homer and Marge going to Try-n-Save, where Homer tricks the crowd by pretending to be a cashier and stealing gifts from other shoppers.
* NightmareSequence: Bart has a water-based one when he engineers a PottyEmergency in order to wake up earlier than the rest of the family.
* PresentPeeking: Bart intentionally drinks lots of water to wake up early (but not before going to the bathroom). He goes peeking at the presents before everybody else, and he ends up destroying the tree and the gifts in a fire.
* SameContentDifferentRating: This episode aired with a G-rating, but it features Bart calling Homer's Christmas display craptacular, the seniors on pharmaceutical drugs, the Simpsons' prescriptions being looted, and Lisa giving Bart a GroinAttack.
* TheScrooge: When the townsfolk were donating money to the Simpsons, Mr. Burns asked if somebody had change for a ''button''.
* {{Trope 2000}}: Bart's fire truck is called the "Inferno Buster 3000".
* YankTheDogsChain: This episode is not kind to the Simpsons family. First the town gives them a generous donation of $15,000 to make up for the presents the family lost. It becomes AllForNothing when the family blows it all on a new car and loses it immediately. Then the truth behind the missing presents comes out, and Springfield as a whole turns against the Simpsons. And just when it seems like the city has finally forgiven them, it's because they've decided to just rob the family of everything they're worth.