Allison Scagliotti, Eddie McClintock and Joanne Kelly

You know, it really is a wonderful life when you get to spend the holidays in Warehouse 13.

Because we've apparently all been good boys and girls this year, Syfy last night unwrapped its annual batch of Christmas-themed episodes from the net's holy trinity — W13, Haven and Eureka. Of the three treats, Watercooler was most wowed by Warehouse's fresh, cheeky approach to one of television's oldest, and often moldiest tropes: The spoof of It's a Wonderful Life.

Usually presented as a sappy "despondent character sees what the world would be like without them" tale, the writers instead served up huge smiles with a seasonal flavor by literally sweeping perpetual optimist Pete out of existence after a run-in with a mystical brush once owned by Philip Van Doren Stern. Stern, for the Yule-challenged among you, penned the novel The Greatest Gift, which served as the inspiration for, you got it, It's a Wonderful Life.

This twist of having Pete stuck in a timeline where none of his charms (and they are copious, thanks to Eddie McClintock's big-kid likeability) could convince his pals that he was for real allowed for fun tweaks all around. We got a callback to the earlier, less Lattimer-loosened Myka. A psych ward-dwelling Claudia. An Artie who was incarcerated for a bungled bloodstone rescue. And best of all, the return of Roger Rees as baddie MacPherson, who was not just still alive, but grinchier than ever. Between his newly empowered villainy and the formidable threat to Mrs. Frederic he posed, is it too late to add "resurrect MacPherson for good when the show resumes" to our wish list, Santa?

Of course, all was made merry and bright by the end, so our crew was reunited just in time for the closing credits. And we wouldn't have it any other way. After three seasons, as well as this delightful outing, you don't need the light of Rudolph's nose to see that W13 ensemble simply shines when they are together.

Did you check in to Warehouse 13 last night? Was it the gift that keeps on giving for you, too?

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