In these cash strapped times there really is no need to hand over your hard-earned dosh for a copy of Radio Times (other listings magazines are available), because we’ve bought a copy and have worked out which are the best shows over the holidays. It’s our Xmas gift to you.
QI: Jingle Bells
Stephen ‘National Treasure’ Fry hosts a Christmassy edition of the show with guests Sarah Millican, Danny Baker, Phill Jupitus and regular sidekick Alan Davies. Go on, admit it, the show has now been on TV for so long that most of the things you know you learned from QI.
Friday 21st December BBC2 10PM
The Snowman And The Snowdog
Altogether now: ‘We’re walking in the aaaaair. With a dog’. The long-anticipated sequel to The Snowman features a snowman and his dog. Or something. We’ve not properly looked into it because we don’t want the surprise spoilt. It’ll be ace whatever happens. Monday 24th December Channel 4 8PM
Friday Night Dinner
Christmas with the Goodmans – a truly nerve-tingling proposition. Robert Popper’s magnificent sitcom gets its first festive special, if you’ve not got into FND yet this is the perfect opportunity.
Monday 24th December Channel 4 10.30PM
You’d have thought it impossible for Doc Who’s producers to replace Karen Gillan but they seem to have done a fantastic job with Louise Coleman. Here she makes her debut proper in a storyline that sees her and the doctor take on some funny/ fearsome-looking snowmen. Tuesday 25th December BBC1 5.15PM
Call The Midwife
Miranda Hart, Jessica Raine, Jenny Agutter et al are back for some Xmas midwifery antics. TV’s most visceral period drama follows the midwives of 50’s East London as they deliver a load of post war sprogs called Carol and Noel. Probably. Tuesday 25th December 25 BBC1 7.30PM
Xmas. Downton. Downton. Xmas. Was there ever a time when these two words were not synonymous? One day they will stop making Downton Abbey. Now there’s a thought to chill the soul.
Tuesday 25th December ITV1 8.45PM
The Royle Family
Let’s be honest, the Royle Family Xmas special has always been a bit hit and miss. But we’ll all still be sat in front of it in the hope that it’s a vintage year. After all, it’s the Royle Family, innit?
Tuesday 25th December 25 BBC1 9.45PM
Oh look, it’s Miranda Hart again. This time not in period costume and not delivering babies but talking to camera and falling over a lot. At Christmas.
Wednesday 26th December BBC1 9PM