This is classic 80s television...and it's a classic holiday entry for this series. Landon likes for episodes to focus on the resiliency of the human spirit, and he likes stories in particular that involve children. This episode, about a Santa on trial, has all that. It was written by Dan Gordon and borrows heavily from Fox's MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET. But instead of being a blatant ripoff, it is a tender, respectful homage. There are a few differences. First, the gender of the child who believes that the man really is Santa has been changed from a girl to a boy. There is also a bitter custody battle being waged between the attorneys, who just so happen to be recently divorced. Throughout these proceedings, there are some scenes that address domestic problems and family unity from a rather 80s point of view. Still, it's a very enjoyable episode. And while it's highly sentimental, it gives the viewer a lot to ponder: from little things like road rage to big things like the breakup of a marriage-- things that cause us to reflect on the true meaning of Christmas which should be held in our hearts all year long.
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