Page Type: trope
Seasons happen at different times per year in different parts of the world. Add in the various different Time Zones, and chances are episodes of various different shows can come out at different times per year.
This occurs when the episode that airs at a time that is different than the time of year in Real Life.
- Advertisements are known for starting early when it comes to major holidays. For example, Christmas themed advertisements in America usually begin popping up before Thanksigiving (which is in late November) or sometimes even before Halloween (which is in late October).
- Toradora!'s OVA released in 2011 (3 years after the anime was emitted) is about Ryuuji trying to challenge Kitamura's grandmother in cooking skills without success. This episode is placed between the episodes 12 and 13 (after the summer vacation), but apart of the misplaced season (anime episodes occur in summer and the OVA is in spring), the OVA itself was released on December, being winter in Japan.
- Die Hard & Die Hard 2 were released in July and June respectively. While neither seem to have been designed as Christmas movies, the plots of both take place in the build up to Christmas, and the first film in particular has a fair few festive reminders. Over the years, they have become Christmas movies in the eyes of many.
- Gremlins features a Mogwai Christmas present as the Inciting Incident, the titular monsters wrecking havoc over a snowy town filled with Christmas iconography, opens with 'Christmas (Baby Please Come Home)'... and was released in June. Critics at the time thought this was odd.
- Despite starring a man who may or may not be Santa Claus, Miracle on 34th Street was originally released in June. This was because the summer was seen as a more profitable time of year, and resulted in the marketing focusing on the romance sub-plot rather than the main off-season festive story.
- Surviving Christmas, starring Ben Affleck, a movie that takes place during Christmas, was released on October 22, 2004. It originally was slated for a Christmas 2003 release, but it was pushed back to avoid competing with another Ben Affleck film, Paycheck.
- When Community's fourth Season was delayed, that year's Thanksgiving (Cooperative Escapism In Familial Relations) and Christmas (Intro To Knots) episodes aired in March and April respectively.
- The special Merry Christmas, Drake & Josh was Adored by the Network for a while by Nickelodeon, airing even when it was no longer Christmas.
- In Doctor Who:
- There's the 1996 TV Movie, intended to be a pilot for the revival of the series. Here, the Doctor went into 1999 New Year's Eve being dead and regenerated from his seventh incarnation to his eighth one. Apart of being exhibed in May, the year wasn't 1999 and even the place isn't Great Britain In-Universe (New York, USA) nor the filmation place (Vancouver, Canada).
- For the revival series, starting from the Ninth Doctor, every year the will be an annual Christmas episode that airs separate from the rest of the season. Even when the series takes a hiatus the Christmas episode is still present.
- Invoked in an episode of Haven. A Christmas episode, released around Christmas in Real Life but taking place in July in-universe. Someone's trouble was creating Christmas in Haven by trapping the town in a snowglobe, and only Audrey, who is immune to the Troubles, knew something was wrong. Everyone else just assumes she's a Grinch for not liking Christmas (and thinks she's crazy when she says Christmas is not in July).
- Averted with Friends. They don't show any Christmas, Thanksgiving or Halloween episodes unless it's the actual month of those holidays. This actually cause a bit of a continuity problem because two Thanksgiving episodes were plot important; one dealing with Chandler being able to date Joey's ex girlfriend and another having Monica and Chandler being able to adopt.
- Sherlock fitted a 2016 New Year's Special called "The Abominable Bride" between season 3 and 4.
- A uniqueness of their mutual seasons means that while Kamen Rider and Super Sentai normally do feature a Christmas Episode, the tone of each episode is completely different. Kamen Rider seaons premiere in mid-October and Super Sentai premir in Mid-Feburary. Given the serial nature of each show, Kamen Rider's Christmas episodes tend to fall right around the time of a much needed breather episode and typically feature some light hearted plot (in fact, the dark twist at the end of Kamen Rider Ex-Aid's plot was exceptionally notable and had a more than a few complaints). Conversely, while Super Sentai tries to get a breather in if it can be worked, the Christmas Episode falls right around the final 10 episodes of the season, whit the results typically being darker as they are now in the build up phase to the finale.
- Mystery Science Theater 3000: Since the show moved to Netflix for season 11, all the episodes of that season went live on April 14, 2017—including The Christmas That Almost Wasn't. Kinga Forrester even lampshades that Netflix programs are made for binge-watching, so hardly anyone is going to watch this episode near Christmas.
- Legends of Tomorrow episode Turncoats was set on Christmas Eve, even though the episode aired in February.
- Pretty Little Liars has Halloween episodes during October, while its seasons air between January-March and June-August.
- The Bob Newhart Show bicentennial episode, "Caged Fury", aired two months after Independence Day on October 2, 1976.
- Sweet Bro and Hella Jeff does this as part of its Stylistic Suck, deliberately releasing all holiday-specific comics on the wrong day. For example, the Christmas comic going up on May 1, the Halloween comic on December 26... and even a comic that had as punchline "It's Tuesday, you fat nasty trash!" came out on Monday.
- American Dad!:
Roger: Merry Christmas from our family to yours! Wait a minute, is this our Christmas episode? What month is this?
- Parodied in the episode "Gifted me Liberty", aired on June 13, 2016. It begins much like a Christmas Episode but the rest of the episode takes place after Christmas, and ends during Christmas again. Lampshaded by Roger when he breaks the fourth wall at the end:
- The Season 14 premiere, "Father Daze", is treated as a Father's Day episode but the episode aired on November 7, 2016. Within the episode, Stan keep erasing his family's memories everyday until they give him the perfect Father's Day and he's been doing this for six months.
Stan: You know what, guys, this is easily one of my favorite Father's Days. And Christmases. Did you guys know it was Christmas.
- Tiny Toon Adventures: Night Ghoulery was originally intended to premiere in October of 1994, but ended up premiering on Fox on May 28, 1995.
- In the Aqua Teen Hunger Force season 1 episode "Cybernetic Ghost of Christmas Past from the Future", the titular character breaks into Carl's home claiming he's the Ghost of Christmas Past and comes to show Carl what Christmas was like for him in 1968. Carl reminds the Ghost that it's not Christmas at all, but in fact February. Hilariously enough, the episode actually aired four days after Christmas.
- Inverted in Gravity Falls. The episode Summerween aired in October where Halloween is, but In-Universe it's in the middle of the summer. Justified since the people of Gravity Falls like Halloween so much that they celebrate it twice a year.
- The Simpsons
- For a while would air their "Treehouse of Horror" episodes around the first week of November, which got Lampshaded in later years. Generally averted on syndication, where they are usually only shown on October, although FXX will often include one as part of their themed blocks if it somehow fits the theme.
- Subverted with "Dude, Where's My Ranch?", an episode that first aired on April 27, 2003. It begins during Christmas, but after about three minutes, all the trappings that indicate that it's Christmas (up to and including the presence of snow) disappear.
- Part of episode "Summer of 4 Ft. 2" took place during the Fourth of July. It first aired on May 19, 1996 which is more than six weeks before the holiday.
- Sonic Boom had the episode "New Years Retribution", which aired in August, 2015, four months before New Years 2016.
- While most holiday episodes of SpongeBob SquarePants avert this, one in particular, "Fools in April", airs with its sister episode "Neptune's Spatula" throughout the year, even when it's nowhere near April Fools Day.
- Steven Universe aired the episode "Horror Club", clearly treated like a Halloween Episode, on February 12, 2015. (It has to be noted that, according to Word of God, some festivities don't exist within the show's Verse, Halloween included).
- As the Adored By The Network page states, the holiday themed episodes of Teen Titans Go! are played even when it's not said holiday. For example, "Thanksgiving" was frequently played in early 2015 due to being paired with "Serious Business", one of the show's most popular episodes, "How 'Bout Some Effort" played even after Valentine's Day passed, and "The True Meaning of Christmas" will often play every two weeks.
- My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic
- Averted with the fifth season, as many people believe the reason that there was a mid-season hiatus was to air an Halloween Episode close to Halloween.
- Played straight with the season 2 episode "Hearts and Hooves Day", as despite being a Valentine's Day Episode, it is frequently aired outside Valentine's Day.
- The episode "Hearthbreakers" aired one week before Halloween, despite being a Christmas Episode.
- The third Christmas Episode (which is also Yet Another Christmas Carol), "A Hearth's Warming Tail", aired in May.
- The Season 8 episode, "The Break Up Break Down", which is another Valentine's Day Episodes, aired on May 19, 2018.
- Phineas and Ferb: The brothers intentionally had a Christmas episode in mid summer, and televised it in-universe.
- In The Fairly OddParents!, the April Fools' Day episode, "Fools Day Out", premiered on October 11, 2002 and it only had a Halloween moment for a few seconds.
- The Batman: The Animated Series Christmas Episode "Christmas with the Joker" originally aired on November 13, 1992—weeks before the Christmas season even started.
- The Recess episode "Yes, Mikey, Santa Does Shave" aired the day after Christmas. It was supposed to air the previous week, but ABC's entire Saturday morning lineup was preempted for Bill Clinton's impeachment trial.
- Downplayed in Batman: The Brave and the Bold Season 1 "Trials of the Demon!", the episode starts with a Batman Cold Open that takes place during Halloween, but the episode first aired during March. The main plot doesn't actually take place during Halloween, but it might as well have been considering the dark atmosphere of the episode.
- The The Powerpuff Girls (2016) episode "Snow Month" was held back several months in America because it was themed around winter. In the UK, it aired in July.
Index: Episodes (Significant Date folder)
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