Once a day, until Dec. 25, we'll be highlighting a specific small, good thing that happened in popular culture this year. And we do mean small: a moment or image from a film or TV show, a panel from a comic, a brief exchange from a podcast, or a passage from a book.

SeparatorI know, Joyce, I know.

You've gone off your anxiety meds, you're working two shifts down at Melvald's just to scrape by, your phone keeps exploding, your older kid's suddenly started hanging out with that popular girl you don't trust, and your younger kid's trapped in another dimension being stalked by a malevolent creature with a face like a something Georgia O'Keeffe would paint on days she was really angry at Alfred.

It's a lot to deal with.

Plus, it's the holidays.

Sure, you could drag the old Christmas decorations out again. The manger scene. The ceramic Santa. The plastic wreath. You could wrap some silver garland around the stair banister. (There is no stair banister, Joyce, you live in a bungalow. Focus, Joyce.) You could wrap the Christmas lights around that giant hole you just put in the front of your house with an axe. You know, dress it up a bit.

Or .. OR! You could instead string those same Christmas lights in rows above the couch, paint the alphabet on the wall, and use it to communicate with your missing kid.

It's like Facetime, Joyce, remember that time Jonathan showed you Facetime?

It's like Facetime, but instead of talking to Nanna in Cedar Falls, it's Will, in the dark, cold interdimensional netherworld full of creepy slow-motion pollen that his nerdy friends call the Upside Down.

And, bonus: Seasonally festive!

Merry Christmas, Joyce!

(And that wall-hole's gonna wreck your heating bill, FYI. Have you thought about a tarp?)

SeparatorPrevious Pop Culture Advent Calendar Entries

Day 1

Day 2

Day 3

Day 4

Day 5

Day 6

Day 7

Day 8

Day 9

Day 10

Day 11

Day 12

Day 13

Day 14

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