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"Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true."
Alfred, Lord Tennyson, "Ring Out, Wild Bells"

As sure as taxes, it comes at the end of every calendar: the New Year. Time for looking back, looking forward, and just going crazy. Time to celebrate and do all the things that for obvious reasons couldn't be done during the Christmas Episode.

Manga and anime love the New Year; in Japan, it's essentially the biggest holiday of the year (Christmas, which is the biggest holiday of the year in North America, being celebrated a bit differently there). This is where you can show all the girls and some of the boys looking good in kimono while making the traditional visit to the local shrine. Of course you can also dress some of them up as Miko (yes, some of the boys, too!) to manage the crowds and sell charms and fortunes to visitors. Or you can just let them stay up late to see the first sunrise of the new year—if they can stay awake, of course!

In Western media, New Year's Eve is often a source of date anxiety (to be hopefully relieved by a New Year's Kiss). Common things include big fireworks, lots of champagne, and the making (and inevitable breaking) of New Year's resolutions. And, of course, the sharing of a toast and singing of "Auld Lang Syne" When the Clock Strikes Twelve. Provided that the characters can agree on whether it's the first or the last stroke which marks the change (it's the first). And that everybody can stay awake. In fact, both young and old characters might fall asleep before midnight, indicating immaturity for the former and fatigue for the latter. In action-adventure shows, the plot will often involve a bomb that's set to go off exactly at midnight local time (often at the ball-drop in New York City's Times Square or the show's equivalent).

Some works use the new year as a natural starting and/or ending point for their stories. In series, it may be used as an excuse for a Clip Show.

Since the whole point of New Year's is the date turnover, it can be weird when this trope meets a work in which the year is never given. If that's the case, expect the words "old year"/"last year" and "new year" to appear where the actual years would normally be mentioned.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • ARIA: Both adaptations feature an installment covering Neo Venezia's New Year celebrations: the 12th episode of The Animation (occurring during Akari's second year as an Undine), and Chapter 9 in the manga (during her first year).
  • Digimon Adventure 02: The final battle against BelialVamdemon (MaloMyotismon in the dub) takes place during New Year for symbolic purposes. All the heroic characters make statements about their resolutions for the future.
  • In Fruits Basket, Yuki and Kyo make a pivotal decision to stay with Tohru for New Year's rather than go to the annual Sohma New Year's Banquet, since it is her first New Year's without her mother. Both anime adaptations dedicated an episode to this plot point.
  • Mega Man: Upon a Star has Mega Man join Yuuta and Akane Kobayashi in the New Years greetings, as well as learning about otoshidama.
  • Kokoro Library: The three sisters, Iina, Aruto and Kokoro, pray for good things to happen in the new year - however not exactly the same things.
  • Hayate the Combat Butler: Nagi wants to see the first sunrise of the new year in Kujukurihama. Guess which butler-in-debt has to take her the 100 km (62 miles) there - on bike!
  • Kedamono Damono: Haruki gets a night job as a miko in his female form to earn some money so he can buy a gift to Konatsu. But his partner as miko is also in love with him, and since she does not know the facts she wonders if the good looking girl she is working together with really is the cousin of Haruki as she was told.
    • Mangaka Haruka Fukushima noticed in the afterword that one could say that she only made this story to draw Haruki as a miko.
  • Mao-chan: Alien spies Yuriko and Chinami have disguised themselves as mikos to get people at the shrine to get people to touch one of their cute animals (a big sheep in this case) promising them that their first dream of the year will come true. But touching the sheep in reality puts people to sleep. Which soon leaves Kagome with her hands full since she is the only one of the defence forces not to touch the sheep.
  • W Juliet: Makoto celebrates New Year's Eve at Ito's family. Problems however quickly ensue when Ito gets her beloved Wholesome Crossdresser to dress as the boy he is.
  • Sgt. Frog
    • In one manga chapter, the platoon decides to hold an all night party whilst the Sarge builds one of his Gundam models... except he uses solvent based glue which won't dry fast enough and makes obnoxious fumes when you try to hair dry it, so with the plan of watching the sun rise over his new model nixed they all engage in drinking alcohol and making wishes for the new year. It does not end well.
    • The anime adaptation of the episode had the characters (including the Narrator) wish everyone a happy new year. We then saw the Platoon playing various games (abusing Giroro in the process) and have an evening party... which also does not go well (to the extent Dororo is grateful he has been forgotten).
    • A later manga chapter has the Sarge learn that he has been asleep for nearly a week, has missed New Year's and finds the house completely deserted (or so he thinks, it's revealed in a bonus chapter Kururu was hiding where the Sarge couldn't see him and didn't want to "babysit" him). He comes to the conclusion the Earth was invaded whilst he was asleep, puts on a Pekoponian disguise battlesuit and goes out to fight, only to find the Hinatas went to the temple to get their good luck messages for the year, and the others went home to be with their families.
  • 20th Century Boys has New Year's Eve as the climax (kind of) of the first plot arc.
  • K-On!: The seventh episode and the ova has everyone celebrating the New Year while practicing for a performance.
  • Toradora! takes up the plot on New Year's after a short Time Skip from the Christmas Episode/Wham Episode. It contains evidence that Nothing Is the Same Anymore because Taiga can talk to Yuusaku without stuttering and becoming a Cute Clumsy Girl. It turns out to be because she's over him and has realized she's in love with Ryuuji. A new beginning, of sorts.
  • Cardcaptor Sakura has an episode where she goes to the temple with Tomoyo and gets an odd fortune from Eriol (i.e. one lacking in good luck that he magicked).
  • In Future War 198X, Laura and Wataru are enjoying drinks on the balcony while Watching the Sunset on New Year's Eve, talking about their hopes for the future, right before hearing news that World War III has broken out in Europe.
  • In Kill Me Baby, Yasuna, Sonya, and Agiri use the first school day after New Year to hold a combined New Year, Christmas and Halloween Party.
  • In Lucky Star Konata and her father visit the shrine of the Hiiragi family on New Year's Eve. Kagami and Tsukasa still have to do their miko duties despite being exhausted from going to Comiket with Konata earlier that day (Winter Comiket is held on New Year's Eve in real life).
  • Kimi ni Todoke's first season ends with a New Year. We have another one in later manga chapters, a year later.
  • Episode 11 of Miss Kobayashi's Dragon Maid, which covers all the basics; making mochi, shrine and festival visits in kimonos, watching the first sunrise, hatsuyume, hanging out under the kotatsu for days at a time eating oranges, New Year's cards, giving money to children, and complaining about all the anime being on break.
  • Hajime and Kaoru go over to Hajime's parents' house in I Can't Understand What My Husband Is Saying (they actually go a little early, since Kaoru wanted Kyoko to scold Hajime into getting a job).
  • The first season of High School Star Musical ends with the shrine visit - though not with kimono - and a "See you next year!" greeting exchange between the characters that promises a sequel.
  • In the second season of Yuki Yuna is a Hero, The Hero Club celebrates their new year by traveling to various places. Although, Yuna is desperately trying to hide the curse she's been inflicted is slowly eating her life away.
  • Laid-Back Camp has the cast setting off to see the first sunrise of the new year.
  • Mira, Ao and Ino from Asteroid in Love visits a shrine per the Japanese tradition in the eighth episode. This scene is Played for Drama, however, as Ino finds Ao's off-character behaviour concerning—Ao runs away as Mira loudly prays for their common Goal in Life. It is at this point Ao drops the bombshell that she has bottled up for two months: due to her father's job transfer, she may have to move away from the town by the end of March.
  • In the Ranma ½ manga, the storyline where Shampoo is abducted by the phantom cat and held hostage at a temple is set on New Year’s Eve. The annual Japanese tradition of ringing a temple bell 108 times is an important plot point, but otherwise, the holiday itself doesn’t factor much into the story, and wasn’t even alluded to in the Animated Adaptation.
  • Kaguya-sama: Love Is War very briefly covers New Year's at the end of the "New Game" arc, showing Kaguya's birthday and a shrine visit by Tsubame and Fujiwara.
  • The final episode of Oh, Suddenly Egyptian God has the cast preparing and holding a banquet party to celebrate the New Year, with a talent show and a special idol concert to wrap it up.
  • Yamada-kun and the Seven Witches: Chapter 119 is about the Yamada family's main celebration on New Years' Eve, and chapter 120 is about the Supernatural Studies Club visiting a shrine one of the following days and later hanging out in Itou's apartment.
  • Skip and Loafer: In Chapter 29, Mitsumi returns home to celebrate the new year with her family; they stay up to wait for the turnover. It also focuses on Nao and sheds some light on why she doesn't like coming back home as much.

    Comic Books 
  • Gargoyles: Bad Guys: Issue #4's plot has the team handling an attempt to prevent a coming attack on Time Squares on New Years.
  • Mega Man (Archie Comics): Issue #21 revolves around Mega Man stopping Xander's Emerald Spears from setting off a time-bomb on New Years midnight stroke.
  • The New York Four goes out with a bang! A countdown to be exact.
  • In Reid Fleming, World's Toughest Milkman, in an early strip, Reid and the gang attend a New Year's Eve party. Reid meets a bore, smokes some dope, and shouts out "Big Deal" at the stroke of midnight.
  • Superman:
    • A Bronze Age story featuring Jon Hudson, the Superman of the then-future year 2020, was set during New Year's Eve. Instead of a ball drop, an orbital habitat descended to Earth. The story also featured Guy Lombardo's Royal Canadian Android Orchestra. The character continued to be referred to as "Superman 2020" in the titles of subsequent stories, even though it was now 2021.
    • Issue 3 of the 1990 Superman/Batman: World's Finest miniseries is set at New Year, a week after the Christmas-based previous issue. Luthor and Joker take advantage of the festivities to take revenge on each others' cities.
  • Zot!: A New Year's party reveals a major plot point when the year ticks over from 1965... to 1965. The visitors from Jenny's Earth are the only ones who notice anything wrong; everyone from Zot's Earth says before midnight that next year will be 1966, and after midnight says that last year was of course 1964. This kicks off a storyline that starts to suggest that Zot's Earth may not be entirely real.

    Fan Works 
  • "New Year, New Disasters" from Calvin & Hobbes: The Series is centered around this.
  • "Days Of Auld Lang Smurf" from Empath: The Luckiest Smurf takes place over four days leading to New Year's Day, during which the Smurfs experience the "resurrection" of Papa Smurf's generation of Smurfs, which turns out to be a spell cast on them by the witch Chlorhydris.
  • "Happy New Year Guy" from Family Guy Fanon takes place over a week leading to New Year's Day, during which the residents of Quahog take extra precautions to make sure that 2022 doesn't turn out the same way like 2021.
  • New Year's celebrations on the Harvey Girls Forever Fanon Wiki are really unforgettable. When it is New Year's on Harvey Street, kids can be allowed to drink champagne as stated by Bobby the Elder, then they'll want to light off fireworks when it is midnight. Also, they can be involved with the television for an event called the Harvey Ball Drop!

    Films — Animation 

    Films — Live-Action 
  • The ensemble comedy 200 Cigarettes is set on New Year's Eve in 1981.
  • The Apartment: Fran finally abandons her loathsome married boyfriend at a New Year's party, and rushes over to Baxter's apartment, finding him popping a bottle of champagne just after midnight.
  • Bitter Moon has a rather dark take on this, near the end.
  • Carnival Night: A Russian rec center putting on a big New Year's bash has to thwart the newly installed director, who hates fun and wants to make things dry and boring.
  • Cavalcade opens with the family celebrating New Year 1900 and ends with them celebrating New Year 1933.
  • In The Divorcee Ted stalks out of a New Year's party after seeing his ex-wife Jerry canoodling with another man. At a different New Year's party, Ted and Jerry get back together, embracing as the balloons fall at midnight.
  • The main heist of Entrapment takes place on New Year's Eve.
  • Forrest Gump: In New Year's Eve 1971-72, Forrest encounters Lt. Dan after appearing on Dick Cavett's show. They see the ball drop on TV together at a crowded bar (via the very first edition of New Year's Rockin' Eve), but Forrest spends his time thinking about Jenny (who leaves his rock drummer boyfriend in the meantime) and the Lieutenant stares blankly while everybody else celebrates (made more heart-breaking since he had joked about Forrest owning a shrimp boat the minute before), with only Forrest wishing him a happy new year. After an incident with some hookers who insulted Forrest, Lt. Dan wishes him a happy new year as well.
  • Four Rooms is an anthology film following a loopy bellboy working a very memorable shift On New Year's Eve as the only employee on staff.
  • The Godfather Part II: A key scene revolves around Fidel Castro's takeover of Cuba, which took place on January 1, 1959. On New Year's Eve 1958-1959, Michael discovers Fredo was the one who sold him out to Hyman Roth. Michael confronts him at the New Year's Eve party and gives him a symbolic Kiss of Death. The Cuban Revolution then forces Fredo and Michael to flee back to America.
  • The Gold Rush includes a scene where Charlie Chaplin sets up a New Year's party for the girl he has an unrequited crush on. She doesn't show up. A downcast Charlie then wanders to the local tavern to watch through the window as all the prospectors and prostitutes have a raucous New Year's celebration.
  • Ghostbusters II: the New Year (1989/1990) is a major plot point.
  • Holiday has its first act set on Christmas, its second act on New Year's Eve (with a big party as a centerpiece), and a third act a couple of days later.
  • The Holiday ends on New Year's, as Iris returns to England with Miles to celebrate with her brother's family and Amanda, with the promise of a better future.
  • The Hudsucker Proxy has Book Ends at New Year's Eve 1958 and 1959 (supposedly), and a clock motif that's conspicuous throughout the movie.
  • The Irony of Fate is a Russian romantic dramedy classic set on New Year's Eve and early New Year's Day, involving various celebrations and romantic entanglements.
  • Kolberg: Joachim, the mayor of Kolberg, is in no mood to celebrate New Year's 1807, as he knows the French army is approaching and will be attacking Kolberg soon. His niece Maria still lights the candles on the Christmas tree, though.
  • More American Graffiti intersperses events from New Year's Eve 1964, 1965, 1966, and 1967.
  • New Year's Eve is a romantic comedy following the intersecting events of various characters, all taking place on the titular day.
  • New Year's Evil is a Slasher Movie whose villain kills each time it strikes midnight in a different time zone, with his final designated victim located in LA.
  • Ocean's 11: The 1960 original — Ocean and his gang rob 5 casinos at once on New Year's.
  • Peter's Friends takes place during New Year's weekend-long reunion between old involving friends from university.
  • The Phantom Carriage: The protagonist David Holm almost dies on New Year's Eve, which would mean that as the last sinner to die in the year, he would be tasked with taking up The Grim Reaper's job. However, he sees how evil he has been in his life and is filled with regret, so he is allowed to resuscitate and go make amends for it for the rest of his life.
  • The Poseidon Adventure, as well as its remake Poseidon, are disaster films set on New Year's Eve.
  • At the end of the film Radio Days, Joe's family celebrates New Year's Eve together at home while Sally spends the night at a lavish ball with other radio personalities.
  • The final scene of the gangster film, Shanghai Grand, is set in the new year of 1934. It's also at this very moment where the protagonist gets shot dead by his best friend, in the cover of fireworks going off and a cheering crowd in a background.
  • In School Waltz, Gosha's decision to abandon his wife Dina on New Year's Eve and go out, instead of staying home to celebrate, is what finally convinces her that their marriage is a failure.
  • San Francisco opens with the good folks of the Barbary Coast celebrating New Year's 1905-6. The revels are interrupted by a fire that breaks out an apartment building, which sets up some of the plot and foreshadows the great earthquake and fire at the end.
  • Strange Days: The whole film is set on December 30 and 31 of 1999, with the conclusion taking place at a huge New Year's Eve street party.
  • Sunset Boulevard has Norma Desmond inviting Joe to a New Year's Eve "party" at which he turns out to be the only guest.
  • Terror Train is a Slasher Movie set aboard a train where a bunch of students have come together to celebrate New Year's Eve, not knowing that there's a killer among them.
  • Trading Places had the train party on New Year's Eve, where the group attempts to steal Beeks' reports. The actual climax where Valentine and Winthrope use the report to get rich and ruin the Duke Brothers is close enough, as it takes place January 2.
  • When Harry Met Sally...: Its New Year's scene is so iconic that someone on Twitter suggested starting the film at 10:30:28 pm local time if one wanted to count down to the new year with the movie instead of the ball drop.

  • Around the World in Seventy-Two Days: Bly and her fellow travelers toast the New Year and sing "Auld Lang Syne" while en route from Hong Kong to Yokohama.
  • Ben Snow: "The Edge of the Year 1900" takes place on New Year's Eve 1899, with Ben getting mixed up with a Cult that believes that the world is going to end, and Ben having to solve a murder that occurs on the stroke of midnight.
  • City of Bones opens on New Year's Day as LAPD detective Harry Bosch, at the scene of a suicide, reflects on how the holidays always lead to an increase in suicides. Later that day, Bosch gets the call about the bones in the hills which starts the main plot.
  • Discworld's Hogfather: Since Hogswatchnight, in addition to being the Discworld's You Mean "Xmas" festival, is also its New Year's Eve (the name plays on "Hogmanay" and "Watchnight"), this book ends with the Canting Crew hearing the strike of midnight and wishing each other a happy new year.
  • In a case of Real Life Writes the Plot, The Golden Demon started publication on New Year 1897 and thus the story begins on a New Year night complete with traditional Japanese New Year customs like kadomatsu and a karuta game.
  • Hans Christian Andersen's "The Little Match Girl" takes place on New Year's Eve.
  • Make Room! Make Room! takes place in a future 1999, and ends just after midnight on January 1, 2000.
  • In Mary Poppins Opens the Door, the second-to-last chapter, "Happily Ever After", begins on New Year's Eve, and ends on New Year's Day. During "the crack" in between the first and last strokes of midnight, Mary Poppins and the Banks children attend a party with characters from fairy tales and nursery rhymes.
  • Murder for the Modern Girl: The first five chapters of the book take place on New Year's Eve 1927, where in chapter 1 specifically, Ruby poisons Francis Mather's drink as she was determined to not let him live to see 1928.
  • The Night of Wishes: The story took place on New Year's Eve and it was about an evil wizard and an evil witch having difficulties fulfilling their evil quota that year. Their only hope was a wish-granting potion that could only be brewed on New Year's Eve.
  • The entirety of Pippa Passes takes place on New Year's Day. It's the only day off all year for Pippa the silk weaver, who spends it taking a walk through town.
  • Isaac Asimov's "What If— (1952)": The first New Year's celebration after their wedding, Norman accidentally spilled his drink on Liwy and they had to leave early. When they see what might've happened in the timeline where he marries Georgette, he still spills it on Liwy.
  • A Yellow Raft in Blue Water: In Christine's story, she feared The End of the World as We Know It that would come on New Year's Eve when she as a teenager had heard from a Catholic teacher that either Russia was going to convert or else the whole world is doomed. Christine stays up waiting until she falls asleep, New Year's Eve passes, and nothing cosmic happens. This incident is told in all three stories in the book (the final account being Ida's, which closes out the story with Father Hurlburt watching her braid her hair), with Christine telling it to her daughter Rayona as the reason she gave up on religion.

    Live-Action TV 
  • From 1929 to 1976, bandleader Guy Lombardo had an annual New Year's Eve broadcast featuring his band the Royal Canadians, initially from the Roosevelt Hotel's Roosevelt Grill in New York City (where they were the resident band), and later the Waldorf-Astoria. Originally broadcast on CBS radio, the program moved to their television network in 1956, and began covering the festivities in Times Square as well. The band's performance of "Auld Lang Syne" at midnight was their Signature Song, and made it irreversibly associated with the holiday in North America. Lombardo died in November 1977, resulting in his brother Victor Lombardo taking the helm for 1978 and 1979. However, the special's popularity was largely tied to Guy, and the Royal Canadians had a falling out with Victor in 1979 over attempts to change their musical direction. That, and the competition from Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve (which premiered for 1972–73 on NBC, before moving to ABC – where it still airs to this day – two years later), which appealed better to contemporary audiences than Lombardo's increasingly antiquated big band, led CBS to finally dump them for good to welcome 1980.
  • Until 2006 (when a combination of New Year's Eve falling on the weekend, the writers' strike, and the premiere of Carson Daly's own New Year's show ended this practice), NBC aired live episodes of The Tonight Show and Late Night on New Year's Eve. Tonight historically featured a segment (dating back to the 1950s with Ben Grauer) covering festivities from Times Square. Conan, on the other hand – both due to his later time slot and for Rule of Funny – celebrated for Central Time instead, usually preceded by jokes specific to the region, "tributes" to obscure celebrities who had "died" in the past year, and an equally bizarre countdown. One year even featured a subplot with correspondents who'd accidentally traveled to South Bend, Indiana (a city in Eastern Time) and got caught in a police chase racing to Hudson Lake, Indiana (a town on the border of Central Time) so that they could celebrate "correctly".
  • The 7 Yüz episode "Büyük Günahlar" is set against the backdrop of a New Year's Eve party.
  • Acapulco: The first season finale is set at the 1984-1985 New Year's Eve party at Las Colinas and accordingly involves several major changes to the status quo.
  • Austin & Ally and Jessie did a Crossover called "Austin & Jessie & Ally All Star New Year", where Austin gets to fulfill his dream of performing in Time's Square on New Year's Eve, and they visit the Rosses where a song Zuri wrote becomes viral.
  • Each season of Babylon 5 lined up with a calendar year in the show's universe, but only the first season finale had the New Year's celebration as a backdrop. This being one of the show's famous Wham Episodes, by the time the ball dropped, quite a few major changes had happened.
  • The Brittas Empire: Although it was released as a Christmas Episode, the plot of “In The Beginning...” is closer to this. It features the former staff of Whitbury Leisure Centre coming together to celebrate New Year's Eve 2019 whilst flashing back to the time when they spent New Year's Eve 1989 snowed in the centre.
  • El Chavo del ocho: When the residents of La Vencidad had a New Year's party, Don Ramón invited everyone to celebrate at his house because, unlike the others, he wasn't able to contribute in any other way.
  • The Checkmate episode "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Game" takes place at a New Year's Eve party and New Year's Day parade and college football bowl game. In the episode, Jack Benny plays a comedian who is targeted for murder.
  • Designing Women had two of these: "New Year's Daze" in season 1 and the more memorable season 4 two-parter "The First Day of the Last Decade of the Entire Twentieth Century", when a pregnant Charlene gets a visit from none other than Dolly Parton, who is her "Guardian Movie Star" who guides through her birth and even tell Charlene that she'll give birth to a daughter.
  • Not New Year-related as such but always shown on New Year's Eve in half of Europe: Dinner for One.
  • Doctor Who:
    • "Volcano", the eighth episode of "The Daleks' Master Plan", aired on New Year's Day and ended with the TARDIS dropping in on the New Year festivities in Trafalgar Square.
    • The 1996 TV movie had its main action set around New Year's Eve 1999-2000.
    • "The End of Time Part 2", aired on New Year's Day 2010, featured a scene where the regenerating Tenth Doctor encounters Rose Tyler on January 1, 2005, just months before she would meet the Ninth Doctor. He tells her, "I bet you're going to have a really great year."
    • During the Thirteenth Doctor's run, the show traded its annual Christmas Episode for a New Year's Day episode, partly due to one of the companions, Yaz, being Muslim. In a running theme, they all feature some form of the Daleks. note 
      • "Resolution" (2019), fittingly, is actually set on New Year's Day (2019).
      • "Revolution of the Daleks" (2021) only mentions the holiday in passing, as Graham and Ryan wish Yaz a happy new year. Yaz, who has lost track of time, is unaware New Years had passed.
      • "Eve of the Daleks" (2022) takes place in a time loop just before midnight on New Year's Eve 2021-2022. Making it to New Year's Day is the real challenge!
  • Downton Abbey ends at midnight on January 1, 1927 with all the main characters wishing one another a happy new year.
  • The episode "Sylvesterpunsch" ("New Year's Eve Punch"note ) of the German sitcom Ein Herz und eine Seele.
  • Engine Sentai Go-onger had a New Year's episode where the characters were dressed in kimonos. They also broke the Fourth Wall at the start to wish the audience a happy new year. And there were clips of the exploits of the characters over the past year (unfortuantely for Gaiark, they were all of their defeats).
  • Frasier In season seven's "RDWRER", Frasier and Niles are horrified when the restaurant where they'd planned to spend the 1999-2000 New Year burns down just after Christmas and everywhere else is booked solid. They eventually decide to drive to the Wine Club's gathering in California but shenanigans along the way mean Frasier, Niles, Martin and Eddie spend midnight standing on the side of the road in their tuxedos. Even that's cut short when they hear a coyote howling which sends them running back to the winnebago.
  • Friends had a couple of New Year's episodes, the most notable one being where Joey kissed Chandler.
    • "The One with the Resolutions" has a fairly standard plot of the gang making various resolutions, almost all of which fail miserably, but is more noteable as the point where Rachel inadvertantly learns about Chandler and Monica's secret romance.
    • "The One With the Routine" has Janine invite Joey, Monica, and Ross to the studio taping of Dick Clark's New Year's Rockin' Eve, where Monica and Ross try to attract attention to themselves (and get on-camera) by performing an old dance routine from high school.note .
  • The Full House episode "Happy New Year", where Joey meets the girl of his dreams during a New Year's celebration.
  • The How I Met Your Mother episodes "The Limo" and "Tailgate" both feature the characters celebrating New Year's.
    • In "The Limo", taking place on New Year's Eve 2005, Ted rents a limo for the gang in order to hit as many New Year's parties in New York as possible. Hilarity Ensues.
    • In "Tailgate", taking place on New Year's Day 2012, Marshall visits his father's grave in order to continue their tailgating tradition, telling him about what happened on New Year's Eve the night before.
  • Inspector George Gently: "Son of a Gun" has the killer apprehended just before midnight on 31 December 1969. The episode then ends with the team celebrating on 1 January 1970, which is also the day that Rachel Coles' promotion to Detective Sergeant becomes official.
  • The Jessie & Austin & Ally crossover "Austin, Jessie, & Ally's All Star New Years".
  • Kamen Rider Den-O also had one where the characters dressed in kimonos and received fortunes from the temple.
  • The Liv and Maddie season 2 episode, "New Years Eve-a-Rooney".
  • The Louie third-season finale takes place on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day.
  • The Mad Men episode "The Doorway" ends with Dec. 31-Jan. 1, 1967-68. Don and Megan have some neighbors over for a New Year's party.
  • The M*A*S*H episode "A War for All Seasons" encompasses a year in the life of the 4077th, bracketed by a pair of New Year's celebrations.
  • The New Year's Eve episodes of the well-known 1970's version of Match Game (which had the year in its name, i.e. Match Game '74) ceremonially updated the logo sign (and title) used in the opening to reflect the new year.
  • Mr. Bean also celebrates New Year's and has invited a pair of friends for it. However, he's such a lousy host they fast forwarded his clock to leave early and join another party.
  • My So-Called Life had a New Year's Episode called, appropriately enough, "Resolutions", which starts with most of the characters (except Jordan, who's in his car) watching the ball drop in Times Square on TV, and all making resolutions - Angela wants to stop being self-obsessed (and stop doing Jordan's homework), Brian wants to stop obsessing about Angela, Rayanne wants to stop drinking once and for all, Rickie wants to find somewhere he belongs, Patti wants to stop nagging Graham, Graham wants to keep Hallie from persuading him to get involved in the restaurant she wants to open, Danielle wants to persuade her parents to let her wear makeup, Sharon wants to stop sleeping with her on-again off-again boyfriend Kyle (who wants to spend more time with Sharon), and Mr. Katimski wants to give up coffee. The rest of the episode deals with how the characters try to keep those resolutions.
  • Nightwatch (2015): S1 E9 is set on New Year's Eve.
  • "The Countdown" episode of The O.C. (Season 1). Date anxiety, check!
  • The series finale of Pyros (a reality show following a Quebec-based pyrotechnics company) has their crew split between New Year's celebrations in Quebec City and Rio de Janeiro, dealing with local celebrations and contributing to Copacabana Beach's famously huge fireworks display.
  • Revenge: The flashback episode "Legacy" in season 1, all about how Emily/Amanda first got started on her revenge scheme, is set on New Year's Eve 2002.
  • A Rhoda episode has Rhoda throwing a New Year's party, with the twist that everyone dons a Halloween mask. (Including, naturally, Carlton the doorman.)
  • Sesame Street had the 1993 TV special Sesame Street Stays Up Late!, which would be renamed Sesame Street Celebrates Around the World for home media. Among the occurrences are Baby Bear learning what it means when the new year comes, Telly being scared by Oscar into thinking the end of the year means time will stop and the world will end, and Big Bird trying to wake a sleeping Snuffy so he doesn't miss the big moment. The special also features six segments showing New Year's Eve celebrations from around the world, which are cross overs with international versions of the show.
  • Veronica Mars: In the second season episode "One Angry Veronica", near the end, Veronica and Keith are watching the New Year's Eve celebration on TV, but Keith decides to go to bed early instead of watching it, and with all of the stuff Veronica's been dealing with (she had to do Jury Duty, which was not a good experience, and Meg died), she's not feeling it. However, there's a knock at the door, and it turns out to be Wallace, her best friend, who's come back after they had a fight. She hugs him while crying Tears of Joy, and the episode ends with the two of them watching the celebration, and Veronica admitting she's willing to give "this New Year's thing" another shot.
  • The X-Files had "Millennium" as its New Year's episode. As suggested by the name, it aired in 1999 and is about superstition surrounding the new millenium. Perhaps surprisingly, it doesn't have to do with Y2K.note  It does have to do with religious fanatics using zombies to bring about the end of the world. In true X-Files style. "Millennium" pulls double duty as not only an X-Files episode, but the series finale to Millennium (1996), another Chris Carter show. It also marks the first kiss between Mulder and Scully, just as the clock strikes midnight.
  • The Season 7 ER episode "Piece Of Mind'' takes place on New Year's Eve, despite actually airing a few days later. It ends with fireworks going off as the new year is rung in.

  • "Happy New Year" by ABBA. If you just listen to the chorus, it appears to be a celebration of better times to come, but the verses are about how New Year optimism always turns to disappointment in the end.
  • "New Year's Day" by U2, with the refrain "nothing changes on New Year's Day", with its lyrics being about the Polish Solidarity movement around that time.
  • "New Year's Day" by Taylor Swift, about being with somebody she cares about after the party celebrating the New Year is over.
  • "New Year's Day" by Bon Jovi.
  • "It's Just Another New Year's Eve" by Barry Manilow.
  • "Maybe Baby (New Year's Day)" by Sugarland.
  • "My Dear Acquaintance (Happy New Year)" by Regina Spektor.
  • "Let's Start The New Year Right" by Bing Crosby.
  • "New Year's Resolution" by Otis Redding and Carla Thomas.
  • "Funky New Year" by the Eagles.
  • "The New Year" by Death Cab For Cutie.
  • "New Year's Day" by Pentatonix.
  • "What Are You Doing New Year's Eve" by Ella Fitzgerald.
  • "New Year's Eve" by Tom Waits.
  • "11:59 (It's January)" by Scrawl.
  • "Bringing In A Brand New Year" by Charles Brown.
  • "New Year's Eve" by Snoop Dogg.

    Pro Wrestling 
  • The Japanese Wrestling Association had the JWA New Year International Competitions in the 1960s. After splitting off, All Japan Pro Wrestling had the New Year Giant Series, to which New Japan Pro-Wrestling responded with the New Year Golden Series. AJPW used to have the New Year NWA Series but that stopped after both it and NJPW split off from the NWA.
  • Dragon Gate had the Primal Gate series at the start of every year until it was replaced with Open The New Years Gate series.
  • CZW New Year New Opportunities
  • TNA iMPACT! 287: New Year's Eve Knockout Special (which wasn't an all women's show for those of you familiar with TNA terminology, but they were the ones predominately featured)
  • ZERO1 Wrestler's 8 - New Year Gigs
  • Great Canadian Wrestling has its New Years Evil events.
  • Fight The World's New Years Nightmare.
  • Ganko Pro's New Years Manly Battle
  • Coastal Championship Wrestling's Homicidal New Year (yes Sabu was prominently featured, why do you ask?)
  • DDT New Year's Gift Special
  • NOAH New Year Navigation
  • Dramatic Dream Team: The New Year's Gift Special...specials, they celebrate it.

  • You'll Have Had Your Tea: The Doings of Hamish and Dougal had a Hogmanay Special, notable in that the guests at the Laird's Hogmanay party were played by people other than the four main actors. (The other regulars on I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue, newsreader Jim Naughtie as Mrs Naughtie's son, and Sandi Toksvig as a very tall golfer.)
    Hamish: Och, we never celebrate Hogmanay.
    Dougal: No, we do not. It clashes with New Year's Eve.

  • Alison's House takes place on the afternoon and evening of December 31, 1899. Much thought is given to the changing times that are symbolized by the dawn of a new century.
  • The first couple of songs in the second act of RENT deal with the new year and how the characters succeed or fail in changing their lives: Maureen trying to win back Joanne, Roger choosing to believe in The Power of Love, Mimi failing to quit heroin.

    Video Games 
  • Ace Combat Zero: The Belkan War: The final mission takes place on December 31. Specifically, 15 years before the Final Boss of the last game... To signify the coming of a new era.
  • In Animal Crossing, The Villager and the other residents gather together to count down for the new year with a timer and festivities; from New Leaf onward, the celebrations are hosted by Isabelle and Redd, and in New Horizons, Redd is replaced with Tom Nook.
  • Hotel Mario: Starting the game on New Years has the "Here We Go" screen instead says "Happy New Year" on January 1.
  • Magia Record: Puella Magi Madoka Magica Side Story: The 2018 New Year Event introduces a special holiday-themed version of Madoka, as well as plots where the characters say their New Year's wishes and participate in contests.
  • Averted in Melody. Even though the story references both Christmastime and a Valentine's Day knockoff, New Year’s Day is not mentioned once.
  • Persona:
  • The Cold Cold Heart DLC for Batman: Arkham Origins takes place around New Year's Eve.
  • The pre-titles level of James Bond 007: NightFire is a way-cool rail-shooter/driving level through the streets of Paris on New Year's Eve.
  • In R4: Ridge Racer Type 4, the final race of the Real Racing Roots '99 championship takes place at 11:45 PM on New Year's Eve 1999. Fireworks signaling the start of a new millennium begin on the final lap.
  • Every New Year in Dragalia Lost, emissaries from Hinomoto travel across the world to spread good fortune at the behest of Amaterasu. There are three such events related to these visits.
    • Fortune From Afar, involving Ieyasu of the Boar Clan and his merry band of adventurers.
    • A Clawful Caper, where Mitsuhide of the Mouse Clan and her band pursue blessings stolen by the cat dragon Ebisu.
    • Cursed Connections, where the villainous Doman impersonates a member of the Ox Clan and infiltrates the Halidom to elude pursuit by a band led by the onmyoji Seimei, who also leads the Ox Clan. This is immediately followed by Fortune's Fray, where a tournament of fighters all gather to spread knowledge of Hinomoto's culture.
  • Yakuza: Like a Dragon; most of Chapter 1 takes place on New Year's Eve, and Ichiban himself was born and Switched at Birth on New Years.

    Web Animation 
  • AstroLOLogy: In "A Flaming New Year", Capricorn goes through hell just to get a fire to light some fireworks for New Year's Eve, first running out of matches, trying fruitlessly to start a fire in other ways, and then getting his pants set ablaze trying to get a fire from a torch that Aries was carrying.
  • SMG4's Mario Bloopers, starting from 2013, has a New Year's episode at the end of each year. So far there has been Ssenmodnar 6 (New Year's Edition) (2013), SM64: The Retardness of 2014 (2014) and SM64: Retarded Recap 2015 (2015).

    Web Comics 

    Web Original 
  • Sanders Sides: In "A New Year of Lying to Myself... In Song!", Thomas and the Sides discuss how to make reasonable New Years resolutions.
  • Stupid Mario Brothers: In one episode which Mario & Luigi celebrate the New Year and Wario is desperate to join them (noting the episode is non canon as a reason to join them) but is left with a hobo.
  • Tsukiuta's twitter short stories show the characters' daily lives, including how they spend holidays like New Years. Of note is the January representative Hajime, who comes from an important (essentially aristocratic) family that has large-scale formal ceremonies for the new year, which he, as the young heir, must attend.

    Western Animation 
  • 6teen has "Midnight Madness" in which nobody in the gang has plans for New Years Eve so they all beg Jen to have a party at her house.
  • In 2003, [adult swim] made a New Years Special with The Brak Show inviting the cast from Aqua Teen Hunger Force, Space Ghost Coast to Coast, Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law, and Sealab 2021 for the new year celebration. It ended with The Brak Show being officially canceled, which left Brak rather upset.
  • An advertisement for Aqua Teen Hunger Force shows Carl celebrating New Years 2002 with Brak from Space Ghost Coast to Coast. Brak asks Carl what were his best times during 2002, which shows a Clip Show of Carl's not-so pleasant moments.
  • Arthur: In "Arthur's New Year's Eve", Arthur has never stayed up on New Year's Eve until he hears wild stories from his friends about what happens at midnight. Prunella claims there's a big green flash in the sky, Francine claims the New Years Police show up to arrest anyone who didn't throw away last year's calendar, Binky claims there's a wresting match on TV between an old man and a baby, and Buster claims all the parents going out on New Year's are really attending a big meeting where they come up with new ways to be rotten to kids. In the end, Arthur ends up missing the midnight strike anyway.
  • The Big City Greens episode "Big Resolution" revolves around the Greens celebrating New Year's Eve and Cricket helping Gloria fulfill her resolution of confessing her love to her longtime crush Kevin.
  • Batman: The Animated Series: The New Batman Adventures episode "Holiday Knights" includes a segment where The Joker threatens to gas all the revelers in Gotham Square precisely at midnight. Batman, naturally, saves the day and afterwards meets Commissioner Gordon for coffee (a New Year's tradition carried over from the comics).
  • In an episode of The Batman, the Bat-team hurry to stop a criminal who can invoke Save Scumming from setting off a poison-gas bomb on New Year's Day. Even though they failed in stopping the bomb, they got the criminal sent into a traumatic shock so heavily, he sent himself back in time before he was a criminal, making him do a Heel–Face Turn and saving the New Year celebration.
  • Bojack Horseman: The episode "Old Acquaintance" is set around New Year's.
  • Captain Planet and the Planeteers: Right at the end of "Two Futures, Part 2". Linka brings out a small electronic keyboard and sings out "Auld Lang Syne", and in a few moments the Planeteers join in the song for the new year.
  • City Island (2022): "Celebration" is about the Island preparing to celebrate the new year.
  • Doug: In "Doug's Midnight Kiss", Doug's getting ready to steal a kiss from Patti at Beebee's New Year's eve party.
  • Family Guy has the second season episode Da Boom where Lois has her New Year's Eve party interrupted by a paranoid Peter, who fears the end of the world at the stroke of midnight on New Year's Eve 1999. After it does indeed happen, the Griffins must now survive in a post-nuclear town of Quahog, that is until the episode ends and it was All Just a Dream.
  • On Fancy Nancy, the episode "New Year's Nancy" takes place on New Year's Eve. Nancy tries staying up until midnight on New Year's Eve, but she finds it difficult. In the end, she falls asleep, and is initially disappointed, but comes to realize that she at least has fun.
  • The very first episode of Futurama ("Space Pilot 3000") initially takes place on December 31, 1999; Fry — a Loser Protagonist facing various struggles in his life — gets sent on a pizza delivery to the offices of a company named Applied Cyrogenics. After realizing it was likely a prank (given that it was addressed to "I. C. Wiener"), Fry ends up staying and having a toast to "another lousy millennium" ... until an accident with a noisemaker causes him to fall into a cryogenic chamber and be frozen for 1000 years, emerging on the verge of the 31st century. In a later episode, it's revealed this was meant to happen.
  • The Grojband episode "Curse of the Metrognome" is set on New Year's Eve (or rather a second one ordered by the mayor due to a misprint in the town's official calendar). Grojband prepares to perform at the midnight countdown until Trina awakens the magical Metrognome to steal their timing so she can get her New Year's Kiss with Nick Mallory without Grojband's presence ruining her moment. There does end up being a kiss, but it's between Corey and Laney. The Once per Episode song is even a rock n' roll rendition of "Auld Lang Syne".
  • There is a season 4 episode of Harvey Girls Forever called "Crush 4U, Where RU?", it takes place on New Year's Eve, and premiered nine days after New Year's Day 2020. The ending has fireworks exploding along with the new year ringing in. Also, the holiday is mentioned by nobody for this episode.
  • The Heckle and Jeckle cartoon "Sappy New Year" (1961) had the two birds swearing off practical jokes as a New Year's resolution. But when their attempts to do good deeds are misinterpreted as mischief, Heckle starts to revert back.
  • Little Bear has the episode "Dance Steps" in which the titular character and all his friends and family assemble in Grandfather Bear's house for a New Year's party. Little Bear provides them with homemade paper hats and everyone vows to stay awake until midnight. Following a feast, they all dance the waltz to pass the time and count off as the clock strikes its hours. But at midnight, only Little Bear and his friends are awake to see the new year, while the grownups all sleep.
  • In the classic Looney Tunes short "The Wabbit Who Came to Supper", there is a scene where Bugs Bunny makes Elmer think it's New Year's when his grandfather clock strikes 12, but while they sing "Auld Lang Syne", Elmer notices that his calendar and realizes that it's July.
  • Max and Ruby: On "Max's New Year", Max, Ruby and Grandma are getting ready for the New Year. Max wants to eat the special cookies before midnight, and Ruby must stop him.
  • Though not focusing on New Year's Eve entirely, Ned's Newt has "New Year's Ned", which is about Ned attempting to give up his Baby New Year position to someone else.
  • The Peanuts special Happy New Year, Charlie Brown centered around a New Year's party that Charlie Brown couldn't enjoy because he was assigned to write a comprehensive book report on War and Peace over Christmas Vacation. He ends up missing the midnight strike and a dance with the Little Red-Haired Girl, and to top it all off, he gets an 'F' on his report. He does get a kiss from Marcie, however.
  • Phineas and Ferb has the season 4 episode "Happy New Year!", where the titular duo engineers their own ball drop, Candace attempts not to bust her brothers before midnight until a Loophole Abuse causes her to relapse, and Dr. Doofenshmirtz attempts to employ his Resolution-Changer-Inator to force people to make him ruler of the Tri-State Area.
  • The PJs has the third season episode entitled "Scarthroat". When Sanchez is the only resident of the Projects to prepare for Y2K, Thurgood and the other residents render him the outcast, that is until the strike of midnight brings a power outage and food shortage to the Projects and he is now the one to lord over the distribution of his rations.
  • Regular Show has such an episode; "New Year's Kiss", where Rigby (on the advice of his future self) has to stop Mordecai from kissing a girl that he's not supposed to. It ends up a Wham Episode as CJ kisses Mordecai, setting her up as a new love interest for him.
  • Rudolph's Shiny New Year focuses on Rudolph finding and retrieving the Baby New Year, who needs to be back by New Year's Eve in order for time to move forward. The antagonist, Eon, wants New Year for himself so he won't have to age.
  • The Spectacular Spider-Man: "Shear Strength" occurs on New Year's. Featuring plenty of date anxiety as Mary Jane schemes for Peter and Gwen to be together at midnight.
  • Sonic Boom: The episode "New Year's Retribution" is about New Year's Eve, which Eggman is trying to fulfill his resolution from the previous year; to beat Sonic.
  • In the South Park episode "Are You There God? It's Me, Jesus", Jesus Christ and the entire town await the arrival of God on New Year's Eve 1999, as a way of making his dad proud of Him Jesus invites everyone to spend New Year's Eve in Las Vegas, meanwhile Cartman and the other boys are convinced that they just got their periods which later turns out to be a colon infection. God does finally arrive (looking quite unlike normal depictions of God) and allows the townspeople to ask one question, which is asked by Stan who asks why he's the only one who isn't getting his period, God points out to Stan that biological males can't have periods, only females can.
  • Steven Universe:
    • "Maximum Capacity", while focusing on the past relationship between Greg and Amethyst, takes place on New Year's Eve. Incidentally, New Year's is the only real-life holiday known to exist In-Universe.
    • Similarly, "Together Alone", which actually aired on New Year's Eve, focuses on the prospect of a new Era for Homeworld.
  • The Simpsons: A Treehouse of Horror storyline, "Life's a Glitch Then you Die", centered on the then-upcoming Millennium Bug doomsday scenario. True to form, the world ends on New Year’s Day because of Homer’s incompetence, and in a Cruel Twist Ending, he and Bart die of Explosive Decompression trying to escape Earth. And Dick Clark was actually a cyborg all along.
  • Vampirina has a variant of this with "New Century's Eve". The titular holiday has all the makings of New Year's Eve, but just done every century. The episode has Vee trying to be a helpful monster and making sure that everyone keeps their resolutions.
  • WordGirl: "Hello New Year, Goodbye Moon". While the Botsfords celebrate New Years Eve with the greatest party ever, Dr. Two Brains plans to turn the moon into cheese.
  • Wunschpunsch: The episode "Night of Wishes", directly adapted from the book the series is based on, takes place on New Year's Eve.
  • Young Justice had a couple: the season 1 finale "Auld Acquaintance", featuring some new year's kisses, followed by the season 2 premiere "Happy New Year!", though it takes place on January 1st, five years later.
  • The ZhuZhus: "Zhu Year's Eve" has Frankie, her parents and the Zhus celebrating New Year's Eve and she tries to stay up until midnight, when she finds difficult. She ends up falling asleep, but her parents and the Zhus wake her up just in time for the countdown.


New Year's 1990

The Staff at Whitbury New Town Leisure Centre bring in the New Year.

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Main / NewYearHasCome

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