That '70s Show

Season 4 Episode 1

It's a Wonderful Life

Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Sep 25, 2001 on FOX
out of 10
User Rating
146 votes

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Episode Summary

It's a Wonderful Life
Eric is distraught after his break-up with Donna and wishes that they never kissed in the first place. As soon as he utters this wish, a guardian angel appears to teach Eric that it's better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all. The angel takes Eric on a journey to the future -- the '80s -- to show him how everyone's lives would've turned out if he and Donna never got together. Eric remains unconvinced that the pain of his break-up was worth it, until the angel shows him all the wonderful memories he would have never had.moreless

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  • perfect

    I'm starting to like this show more and more, and this, to me, was wonderful. What i liked- Kelso being fat at the reunion, Kelso running off with Jackie, Eric losing his virginity to that 'big' woman, the ending where Eric says he does not want to take back all the moments he's had with Donna, Eric's guardian angel as a whole had some good lines, amongst other things.

    good episode and i liked the emotional aspect to it, primarily in the first scene with eric laying in bed, and the ending of the episode with all the clips from past episodes between eric and donna. A+ episode, i thinkmoreless
  • A guardian angel (Wayne Knight) shows Eric how life would've been if Eric and Donna have never kissed and fell in love when Eric was depressed about his break-up with Donna and wished that he never kissed hermoreless

    I thought that this was a good episode of "That 70s Show". It wasn't great, superb, or perfect... it was just good. It's one of "That's 70s Show"'s weakest episodes in my opinion though. This episode is funny but the storyline wasn't that enjoyable to me. Wayne Knight guest starring in this episode as the guardian angel was funny and Wayne Knight is mainly made this episode funny. As you saw in the Season 3 finale episode, Eric broke up with Donna at the end of that episode. In the Season 4 premiere "It's a Wonderful Life", Eric becomes depressed after he broke up with Donna and wishes that he have never kissed her in the first place until a guardian angel (Wayne Knight) comes to show Eric how life would have been if Eric and Donna never kissed and never fell in love. A guardian angel showing Eric how different life would have been was funny. Some of the differences that we saw in this episode was weak though. Fez being a guitar player and singer was funny. The guardian angel getting high and saying "Man, I don't get to do this stuff anymore" (or something close to that) was absolutely hilarious. The little son that Red and Kitty have was also funny especially when Red taught that little son to call Eric a "dumb@$$". The ending of this episode was great and probably one of the best parts in this episode because the guardian angel was gonna take away Eric's memories of him and Donna together but the memories were too valuable to Eric so he decides to keep it. The flashbacks of Eric and Donna was the part of this episode and made me smile looking at that scene with all of the memories of them. Fez singing "Don't Worry, Be Happy" By Bob Marley at the very end of the episode was also hilarious. Overall, good episode of "That's 70s Show" but it's not favorite and it's one of the weakest episodes in my opinion though. 7.5/10moreless
  • Season 4 Premiere

    An amazing start to this show's best season. Even though this show did lose it's sense of realism here, which I never liked, this show made it work. In homage to "It's A Wonderful Life" An angel takes Eric on a journey to see what it would be like if Donna and him never kissed. It starts a hilarious and depressing chain of events.

    A look at these characters in the 80s is definitely one of the things that this show needed. This flash forward was one of the smartest of the writers, and it really puts things in perspective and surely it satisfies all fans with a perfect balance of humor and drama. Donna is married to Hyde? Kelso isn't good looking? Eric and Big Rhonda... together? That was the alternate universe, it's funny to know that one change in time could change everything, which was the moral of the story. The flashbacks of Eric & Donna were really great, and this was just the perfect premiere after that perfect finale.

    This premiere gave us a sense of nostalgia on the last three seasons with flashbacks, and gives us a look in the future with flash forwards. Perfect premiere.moreless
  • Eric goes on a trip with a spirit to uncover his future less with Donna.

    Eric wakes up to see a spirit that takes him first into the past to show him what if he never kissed Donna that night. I turns up that if he didn't then Donna would have just kissed hyde. Then Eric is took to his future were he is on a date with Big Ronnda. Ronnda Is really displeasing to the eye. Then Eric goes to his reunion and sees that Donna never stayed with him and he never stayed with now Hot Ronnda. He has the choice to eliminate all those times he spent with Donna but after seeing them he desides to keep them in hope of getting her back.moreless
  • How it would have been if Donna never kissed Eric

    Eric wishes he and Donna never got together in the first place so an "Angel" shows him what that would be like: Donna ends up with Hyde, Eric ends up all alone, Kelso's fat and still hooks up with Jackie, and Fez is a singer!lol. In the end, the angel shows Eric all he and Donna would never have had, making him realize that it's better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all.

    Overall, this was a pretty good (and kind of sad) episode. I liked when the angel was high in the basement with the others and when Fez sang "I ran" and "Don't worry, be happy" lol.

    And Fez was kinda hot in this episode!moreless

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Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (3)

    • The angel makes Eric see memories he's about to take away as a series of flashbacks. These scenes are supposed not to have happened after the concert in the reality where Eric and Donna didn't kiss, yet the first flashback happens before the concert and therefore would exist in both realities.

    • When the angel takes Eric Forman into the "future", Michael Kelso (played by Ashton Kutcher) refers to his new job as "Cedar Rapids' number one anchorman". This is an inside joke referring to Kutcher's real-life birthplace and home until 1997 - just a year before he got his big break with a role on That 70's Show.

    • The music used in this episode was:
      Thirteen (1972) by Big Star;
      Hello It's Me (1972) by Todd Rundgren;
      The Safety Dance (1982) by Men Without Hats;
      I Ran (1982) by A Flock Of Seagulls;
      Everybody Have Fun Tonight (1986) by Wang Chung;
      Careless Whisper (1984) by Wham;
      Don't Worry, Be Happy (1988) by Bobby McFerrin.

  • QUOTES (7)

    • (in the future)
      Kitty: Now, Jake, don't kick your older brother. He's not very strong!
      Eric: Wait, brother?
      Angel: Yep. Your parents finally had the son they always wanted.
      Red: Now, what do you say to Eric?
      Jake: Dumbass!
      Red: That's my boy!

    • Angel: Hey, let me do my job.... I'm gonna prove to you that it is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all, you Pansy.

    • (at the 10-year high school reunion)
      Angel: And there's Kelso.
      Eric: What happened to him?
      Angel: He thought he could do the weather drunk, so the network fired him.
      Eric: So, what's he doing now?
      Angel: He works for you selling waterbeds.
      Eric: Man, what a loser! Hey, wait. I sell waterbeds?

    • Eric: You don't look like an angel.
      Angel: Well I suppose I could have gone with something like this...
      (starts floating above the floor and glowing brightly)
      Angel: Eric Forman, God's favorite little cherub. Come with me, and thy pain shall be healed.
      Eric: Are you coming on to me?

    • Angel: Come on, we're going into the future. Yep, that's right, the '80s!
      ('80s music plays)
      Eric: Man, what the hell was that?
      Angel: Oh you'll find out.

    • Angel: No, wait we're gonna follow her [Donna]home and see what happens next.
      Eric: Are you an angel or a stalker?

    • Future Eric: Hey, so you're an angel right?
      Angel: Yes, I am
      Future Eric: So, can you help me?
      Angel: Listen very carefully........No!

  • NOTES (2)

    • To promote the upcoming season, 6 different covers, featuring the different cast members, ran in TV Guide.

    • This is the third time that the credits have changed in the opening sequence (first change: Season 2, episode 1; second change: Season 3, episode 11). This change adds Tommy Chong to the cast credits, although he doesn't actually appear in this episode, and Tanya Roberts has been removed from the cast credits.


    • In the scene in the circle, Fez's hair is styled like Mike Score's hair from A Flock Of Seagulls, and he sings the lyrics from their song I Ran (So Far Away), from 1982.

    • The title for this episode and the entire plot line of Eric being shown what his life would be like if he'd never kissed Donna are a parody of the 1946 Frank Capra movie, It's A Wonderful Life, in which the main character, George Bailey (played by Jimmy Stewart) is shown what would have happened to the town he was from and all his friends and family if he'd never been born.