I’ve looked hard, I’ve done the work so you don’t have to, there is not a lot on this Christmas that’s in the don’t miss category, but still, there is enough for a top 10…
And, just a point, this is stuff I like…which means no Doctor Who, or Call the Midwife, or Strictly…so, consider this an alternative to the usual Christmas highlights list. I do appreciate there are a lot of folk who like the Doctor (hasn’t been good since David Tennant left, sorry, but it’s true) and Strictly is fine light entertainment, but not my bag. Call The Midwife, Victoria and all of those other period dramas I can’t bare either, frankly I always like a bit of comedy this time of year so that’s what I’ve gone for in the main.
Honourable mentions that missed out are Michael McIntyre on BBC One Christmas Eve, League of their Own on Sky One at various times (if you can stand that), more football than you can shake a stick at on Sky Sports and if you’re a 90’s child (as in a 90’s teenager) like me don’t miss Oasis: Supersonic on BBC Two on the 27th (10pm).
Anyway, on with the list:
10. The Great Christmas Bake Off
Christmas Day – Channel 4 – 19:40 – 21:00
New Year’s Day – Channel 4 – 19:40 – 21:00
Well this looks like fun. The usual mob of Paul ‘The Tan’ Hollywood, Prue ‘Glasses’ Leith, Sandi ‘QI’ Toksvig and Noel ‘Better than you thought he’d be’ Fielding are back. They’re getting 8 previous bakers back in the tent for a bit of Christmas baking. Honestly, just sounds perfect with a glass of wine and a mince pie to me.
9. The Price is Right
Saturday 30th December – Channel 4 – 20:00 – 21:00
No, they’ve not revived Leslie Crowther to give a bit of the old “Come on down” magic…this is a new Alan Carr ‘comedy’ vehicle. It’ll probably end up as good and successful as last year’s David Walliams’ catastrophic Blankety Blank, but have a drink and settle in for what will surely have a giggle or two at least.
8. Vic and Bob’s Big Night Out
Friday 29th December – BBC 2 – 21:00 – 21:30
Such a shame this is only half an hour. I used to love watching the old Big Night Out on Channel back in the 90s, if this is even close to that, it’ll be top drawer fun. No doubt it’ll be utter lunacy too…but that’s half the fun.
7. Celebrity Juice – Christmas Special
Thursday 21st December – ITV 2 – 22:00 – 23:00
Now I get this is rude and all that, and that Keith Lemon is a real acquired taste…but as many people who know me will know, I like a tipple or two. And if I’ve had a tipple or two, if I’m right at the sweet spot, I’ll argue till I’m blue in the face, that this is the funniest thing on TV. Outside of that meanwhile…I totally agree it’s smutty garbage that’s not as funny as it used to be…but it’s Christmas, I’ll record this and watch it when I’m prime drunk, I suggest you do the same!
6. Crystal Maze – Christmas Special
Thursday 14th December – Channel 4 – 20:00 – 21:00
Against all expectations, the new Crystal Maze was rather brilliant. It was helped along by the fact that some of the contestants were ridiculously dense and Richard Ayoade nailed every moment perfectly with that awkward comedy he does so well. This is a celebrity edition, so it might not be quite the same fun, but the format remains great so get it watched. Oh, and yes I know it was on last night, but it’s repeated on 7Seven over Christmas, it’s also on Channel 4 on New Year’ Eve and you can find it all over OnDemand..so get it watched!
5. Miranda Does Christmas
Wednesday 27th December – Channel 4 – 21:00 – 22:00
It’s pretty clear by now that Channel 4 have won Christmas on the TV, so kudos to them. I like Miranda, always good for a giggle. This show is a one-off and it’s not the sitcom thing from BBC One either, this is Miranda out and about talking to folk and getting people have fun at Christmas. You know, I don’t make it sound particularly great there…but she’s generally good value so I reckon this will be pretty decent.
4. Trollied – Christmas Special
Christmas Eve – Sky One – 21:30 – 22:30
This came out of the blue really, I’ve browsed around it’s a genuinely brand new episode too. Now, Trollied, it is pretty rubbish and yet, it’s also chock full of some really well known faces of British comedy. These days, finding even a half decent sitcom is a challenge so this is a welcome relief. If you like Trollied, you’ll like this, if not I’m sure it won’t convince you.
3. 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown – Christmas Special
Friday 29th December – Channel 4 – 21:00 – 22:00
It’s been ages since this was last on the telly it seems to me, and it’s been really missed. Jimmy, Sean and Jon are back in this one, which is nice as the last series Sean and Jon were apart all too often. It’ll be the same old fun, with idiocy from Joe Wilkinson, genius from Rachel and Susie…an hour of genuine comedy you can play along with too.
2. Taskmaster – Champion of Champions
Wednesday 13th December – Dave – 21:00 – 22:00
Wednesday 20th December – Dave – 21:00 – 22:00
Taskmaster is easily one of the most under the radar, best shows on TV. The premise is five comedians, over eight weeks, are set a series of tasks ranging from silly to clever to creative. There have now been five series of this, and that means there is a champion of champions edition and here it is. Only two episodes, and it’s repeated loads (and all over OnDemand)…it’s worthy of your time, I promise.
1. Big Fat Quiz of the Year 2017
Boxing Day – Channel 4 – 21:00 – 23:10
The annual show, quite literally the funniest thing on TV every year, this year along with Jimmy Carr presenting, we’ve got Richard Ayoade, Noel Fielding, David Mitchell, Roisin Conaty, Katherine Ryan and somebody called Big Narstie…and showing my age I guess, I have no clue who that is.
An absolute must watch and I guarantee, I’ll be there on Boxing Day, feet up on the pouffe, slippers on, still vaguely full after dinner at the in-laws after all the football is done, chilling with the wife, a few drinks, cheese and crackers and laughing away!
So there we have it, feel free to add anything I’ve not mentioned in the comments.