Thanksgiving TV: Friends, Good Burger 2 and Yellowstone highlight Turkey day viewing

Matthew Perry and Courtney Cox as Chandler and Monica with a turkey on her head in Friends
Matthew Perry and Courtney Cox, Friends (Image credit: Warner Bros.)

In the great tradition of Thanksgiving, networks are offering a variety of special content for family and friends to tune into as meals are being prepared and subsequently devoured. While many TV watchers will spend their time viewing the NFL Thanksgiving games or college basketball matchups, we have a list of programming for those looking for something to view that doesn’t involve balls, whistles and diehard fans. 

From marathons of classic TV shows and movies to parades to new releases on streaming services, there are plenty of things to watch on the holiday. 

Before we jump into all of our recommendations of what to watch during Thanksgiving time here are just a few of our top picks. 

Friends marathon on TBS

Friends Thanksgiving

(Image credit: Warner Bros./Everett)

For a while now, TBS has truly been the home for "Friendsgiving," showing some of the funniest episodes of Friends (one of WTW's 100 best TV shows of all time) on Thanksgiving. In the wake of the untimely passing of Friends star Matthew Perry, this year more than ever is a great time to catch up with the New York group of characters and add some laughs to the belly to join all the turkey and candied yams. 

Back-to-back Friends episodes air on Thursday, November 23, from 6:30 am to 3:30 pm ET/PT on TBS. If your favorite episode doesn’t air during the marathon, you can watch any Friends episode on Max in the US (Netflix in the UK).  

National Lampoon's Vacation movie marathon on AMC

Key art for National Lampoon's Vacation

(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

While National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation is a staple for the holiday season, the movie that started it all is getting a special airing on Thanksgiving on AMC. As a matter of fact, National Lampoon's Vacation, National Lampoon's European Vacation and Vegas Vacation are all airing on AMC in back-to-back showings. 

The National Lampoon movie marathon starts on Thursday, November 23, at 1 pm ET/PT.   

The 97th Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on NBC

The lead turkey float in Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade (Image credit: NBC)

Watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade is a tradition for many households on Thanksgiving. Before a lot of families sit around a table eating and expressing gratitude, they first sit around a TV to watch the iconic balloon characters of the parade and special guest performers. Speaking of performers, this year’s lineup includes Cher, Pentatonix, Brandy and more. 

The 97th Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade airs on Thursday, November 23, from 8:30 am to noon ET/PT on NBC and simulcast live on Peacock. The New York City-based parade is also airing on CBS and Paramount Plus from 9 am to noon ET/PT in a special titled CBS presents The Thanksgiving Day Parade.  

Good Burger 2 on Paramount Plus

Keenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell in Good Burger 2

Keenan Thompson and Kel Mitchell, Good Burger 2 (Image credit: Paramount Plus)

For those 80s and 90s babies looking for a moment of nostalgia, Good Burger 2 premieres on Paramount Plus on Wednesday, November 22. The long-awaited sequel to the 1997 hit movie follows Dexter Reed (Kenan Thompson) and Ed (Kel Mitchell) as they reunite as employees of Good Burger. They’re joined by some familiar faces like Connie Muldoon (Lori Beth Denberg) and Fizz (Josh Server). 

Here is a full list of our suggestions for things you should check out on Thanksgiving. 


  • National Lampoon’s Vacation marathon from 1-11 pm ET/PT

BBC America

  • James Bond movie marathon starting at 2 pm ET/PT


  • John Wick movie marathon starting at noon ET/PT


  • CBS presents The Thanksgiving Day Parade from 9 am-noon ET/PT


  • Planes, Trains and Automobiles marathon starting at 11 am ET/PT

Comedy Central

  • Seinfeld marathon starting at 1 pm ET/PT

E! Network

  • It’s a Wonderful Life marathon starting at noon ET/PT


  • Star Wars movie marathon starting at 6:30 am ET/PT


  • Everybody Loves Raymond marathon starting at 9 am ET/PT


  • The 97th Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade from 8:30 am-noon ET/PT (simulcast live on Peacock and encore at 2 pm ET/PT)
  • The National Dog Show Presented by Purina from noon-2 pm ET/PT (simulcast on Peacock)


Paramount Network

  • Yellowstone marathon starting at 10 am ET/PT 

Paramount Plus

  • Good Burger 2


  •  A Saturday Night Live Thanksgiving Special 

Pluto TV

  • The Chicago Thanksgiving Day Parade starting at 8 am ET/PT
  • Hanks-giving: a Tom Hanks marathon (featuring Punchline, Forrest Gump, Catch Me if You Can and Saving Private Ryan) starting at 2 pm ET
  • Director Spotlight: Steven Spielberg marathon (featuring Raiders of the Lost Ark, Indiana Jones & The Temple of Doom, Indiana Jones & The Last Crusade, Indiana Jones & The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull and Adventures of Tintin) starting at 2 pm ET

Sundance TV

  • Hatfields & McCoys marathon starting at 10 am ET/PT


  • Friends marathon from 6:30 am-3:30 pm ET/PT
  • Modern Family marathon from 3:30-6 pm ET/PT
  • The Big Bang Theory marathon from 6-8 pm ET/PT
  • The Wizard of Oz starting at 8 pm ET/PT


  • Christmas movie marathon (featuring Jack Frost, The Polar Express, The Year Without a Santa Claus, Four Christmases, Elf and National Lampoon Christmas Vacation) starting at noon ET/PT
Terrell Smith

Terrell Smith has a diverse writing background having penned material for a wide array of clients including the federal government and Bravo television personalities.  When he’s not writing as Terrell, he’s writing under his pseudonym Tavion Scott, creating scripts for his audio drama podcasts. Terrell is a huge fan of great storytelling when it comes to television and film. Some of his favorite shows include The CrownWandaVision, Abbot Elementary and Godfather of HarlemAnd a fun fact is he's completely dialed into the TLC 90 Day Fiancé universe.