Here it is our last TVweek of 2021. This BUMPER Special covers two weeks including Christmas and New Year’s Eve!
6.00pm Rolling It: Christmas Special ITV – Stephen Mulhern hosts a special Christmas edition of the game show where everything can change on the roll of a coin. Anton Du Beke, Ranvir Singh and Catherine Tyldesley join three members of the public who will try to win thousands of pounds. All they have to do is take on one of the biggest arcade games in the world, but will one of them be lucky enough to hit the jackpot and go home Rolling In It?
6.00pm A Lake District Farm Shop at Christmas Channel 4 – Tebay’s staff and its army of local producers are working hard to make a magical Christmas for customers. Head Butcher Dave Morland has a key role, as customers come in their droves to buy their table centrepieces and holiday essentials. Staff members also have their work cut out handling the increase in travellers, and this year Tebay is offering a wide array of speciality artisan and craft products, from delightful hampers to delicious gifts.
6.10pm The Weakest Link Celebrity Special BBC One – New host Romesh Ranganathan brings his own twist to the classic quiz and kicks off with a Strictly Come Dancing special leading up to tonight’s final. Anton Du Beke, Janette Manrara, Catherine Tyldesley, Dr Ranj Singh, Emma Barton, Clara Amfo, HRVY and Ore Oduba are the eight contestants playing together as a team – knowing that at the end of each round, they must vote off the player they believe is the worst.
7.00pm Strictly Come Dancing BBC One – Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman host the final of the pro-celebrity contest, which sees the three remaining couples perform a routine of their own choosing, one set by the judges and one last show dance. As usual Shirley Ballas, Craig Revel Horwood, Motsi Mabuse and Anton Du Beke will be reviewing their efforts, but only the viewers’ votes will count to determine the winner. Who will follow in Bill Bailey and Oti Mabuse’s footsteps and lift the glitterball trophy?
7.00pm A Story Called Gomorrah Sky Atlantic – Documentary about the Italian crime drama.
9.00pm Madonna at the BBC BBC Two – A look back at a selection of magical Madonna moments on a range of BBC shows – from her first Top of the Pops appearance with Holiday in 1984, right up to the present day. This collection covers the singer’s journey from Material Girl to Queen of Pop. It captures how, over the years, her ability to combine charisma, controversy and classic pop tunes has made her a female icon and a true global superstar.
9.00pm Gomorrah Sky Atlantic – Fifth and final series of the Italian crime drama begins. With war in Naples imminent, Genny is forced to give up his dream of normality and to return to action.
9.00pm Music Box Sky Atlantic – Documentaries exploring pivotal moments in music, starting with Alanis Morisette’s beginnings.
9.30pm Paul O’Grady’s Saturday Night Christmas Lineup ITV – A festive edition of the comedy chat and game show in which Paul puts questions, scenarios and dilemmas to celebrity guests Dame Joan Collins, Paddy McGuinness, Sunetra Sarker and Julian Clary, who must arrange themselves from best to worst correctly to match the order the British public have put them in.
10.35pm The Jonathan Ross Christmas Show ITV – Jonathan introduces a festive edition of the chat show, and is joined by The Chase presenter Bradley Walsh, comedian and actress Roisin Conaty, Hollywood star Andrew Garfield and Bafta Award winner Tom Hollander. Music comes from Leona Lewis, who also joins the host for a chat.
4.45pm Christmas Countryfile BBC One – Matt Baker and Charlotte Smith present a festive episode from Christmas Common in Oxfordshire, a hamlet which is home to one of the biggest Christmas tree farms in the country.
5.45pm Antiques Roadshow at Christmas BBC One – Fiona Bruce presents a special Christmas episode from the Vyne in Hampshire, a Tudor mansion steeped in history and providing a suitably festive backdrop for the show.
6.15pm Sitting on a Fortune: Christmas Special ITV – Gary Lineker hosts a festive edition of the quiz, with Chris Kamara, Sam Quek, Joe Pasquale, Nina Wadia, Colson Smith and the Rev Kate Bottley competing to try to win £100,000 for charity.
6.45pm BBC Sport’s Personality of the Year 2021 BBC One – Gary Lineker, Gabby Logan, Clare Balding and Alex Scott present coverage of the ceremony live from Media City UK in Salford, as the year’s key sporting moments are reviewed and the successor to Lewis Hamilton is crowned following a public vote. Among the highlights set to feature are Great Britain’s multi-medal winning Olympics and Paralympics, England’s run to the final of Euro 2020 and Emma Raducanu’s dominant performance in the US Open.
7.00pm Devon & Cornwall at Christmas Channel 4 – Documentary examining life in the two counties in south-west England.
7.00pm Hamley’s at Christmas Channel 5 – The hidden stories of the famous London toy store, from its links to the royals to the vital role its owners played in the Second World War, and from battling bankruptcy to bringing in five million visitors every year. The programme reveals why traditional teddy bears still remain a favourite, and why magic played an important role in the store hundreds of years before Harry Potter came along. Former staff uncover the secrets of the shop floor, including how toy demonstrators try to capture the imagination and encourage people to part with their cash.
7.20pm The Royal Variety Performance ITV – Alan Carr hosts the event from the Royal Albert Hall, with music from Ed Sheeran, Rod Stewart, Anne-Marie, James Blunt, Years & Years, Gregory Porter and Elvis Costello, along with The Greatest Showman’s Keala Settle. There is comedy from Judi Love, Bill Bailey, Chris McCausland and Josh Widdicombe, and performances by the casts of hit musicals Moulin Rouge and Matilda.
8.00pm Escape to The Chateau: Christmas Special Channel 4 – Dick, Angel, Arthur and Dorothy prepare to celebrate a family Christmas inspired by a very special part of France, Colmar in the Alsace region, close to the German border. Here they discover an enchanting medieval town that makes Christmas feel more magical than ever.
8.00pm Britain’s Favourite 90s Toys Channel 5 – A countdown of the best-loved toys and games of the decade, featuring a cast of experts, toymakers and manufacturers, as well as a smattering of famous faces and comedians.
8.00pm Alex Rider E4 – A chance to see the Amazon Prime series which stars Otto Farrant.Following his uncle’s mysterious death, teenager Alex begins a quest for answers that leads him into a dark world of secrets and espionage. He comes to realise that his uncle wasn’t the man he thought he was and that he himself is expected to follow in his footsteps.
9.00pm The Girl Before BBC One – Four-part psychological drama about a woman who is given the chance to move into a beautiful, ultra-minimalist house designed by an enigmatic architect. There’s just one catch – occupants have to abide by his list of exacting rules, and very soon she feels the house changing her in unexpected ways. Starring Gugu Mbatha-Raw, David Oyelowo, Jessica Plummer and Ben Hardy. Continues Tomorrow & Tuesday at 9.00pm, Concludes Wednesday at 9.00pm.
9.00pm Beauty & The Beast: A Pantomime for Comic Relief BBC Two – Lily James heads the cast as famous names from theatre, film, comedy and music gather together online to bring a unique and hilarious adaptation of Beauty and the Beast, all to raise money for some very good causes. Joining Lily are Guz Khan, Sian Gibson, Kiell Smith-Bynoe and Miranda Hart among many others.
9.00pm Guy Martin’s Lancaster Bomber Channel 4 – Guy Martin honours the air crews who served on the iconic Lancaster bomber planes by seeing if he has what it took to be a member of Bomber Command: the Allied unit that had the highest attrition rate of the Second World War. This is a project that’s very personal to Guy; not only did he grow up in Lincolnshire, known as ‘Bomber County’ during the war, but he’s named after the most famous Lancaster pilot of all – Wing Commander Guy Gibson – who led the famous dambusters raid. Guy experiences the seven different roles on a Lancaster, ranging from pilot to gunner. He gets behind the controls of the 30-tonne plane under the tutelage of Flt Lt Mike Chatterton, one of the RAF’s most experienced heavy plane pilots, whose father flew Lancasters during the war. Guy also gets to fire an original Lancaster gun turret, especially reactivated for this programme – meaning the mighty 50-calibre machine guns are experienced for the first time in 80 years.
9.00pm 22 Kids & Counting at Christmas Channel 5 – A festive special following Noel and Sue Radford and their children on the ultimate Yuletide getaway to Lapland. They ride across the snowfields of Finland on a reindeer sleigh, have a go driving snowmobiles, and check out the wonder of the Northern Lights before the kids get a chance to meet Father Christmas.
9.00pm Rob & Romesh Vs Christmas 2021 Sky Max – A festive special in which Rob Beckett and Romesh Ranganathan join the circus, teaming up with West End and Big Top show Zippo’s. They learn how to do acrobatics, contortion and knife throwing ahead of their final Christmas performance at Winter Wonderland.
10.00pm The Ranganaton Christmas Special BBC Two – Romesh Ranganathan hosts a festive edition of his comedy show and is joined by TV presenter Scarlett Moffatt and comedian Josh Widdicombe – as well as his hand-picked focus group the Ranganation. Together they take a humorous look at some of the biggest talking points of Christmas, including the worst-ever presents, over-indulging and finding out the truth about Father Christmas.
10.00pm Buried Sky Crime – Four-part documentary about the rape and murder of eight-year-old Susan Nason. The crime has remained unsolved for almost 20 years, until one day in 1989 when her childhood friend suddenly remembers witnessing the incident
10.00pm Michael Buble’s Christmas in the City ITV – The Canadian singer celebrates the 10th anniversary of his chart-topping album Christmas with a festive special featuring a mix of comedy, music, special guests and, of course, the spirit of the season.
7.05pm Mary Berry’s Festive Treats BBC One – The culinary expert comes to the aid of cousins James, Jack and Leah, all of whom are terrible cooks, but want to learn how to prepare a spectacular Christmas feast so they can surprise their mothers. While the three novices get to grips with recipes including salmon pate, clementine-glazed ham with garlic potatoes, and red berry tiramisu trifle, they are joined by Alex Jones and Patrick Grant, who Mary sends off in search of ingredients. Finally, everyone gathers at Kent’s spectacular Leeds Castle for a family feast to be remembered.
8.00pm Love Not War Sky Max – Hosted by Carey Mulligan and Himesh Patel with Dawn O’Porter and Chris O’Dowd, this special one-off concert unites some of the nation’s favourite musicians and comedians all in the name of fundraising for Choose Love and War Child. Featuring performances by acts including Bastille, Elbow and Ellie Goulding at the Troxy in London’s East End, with all money raised going to projects supporting children and families affected by war around the world.
8.30pm Would I Lie To You at Christmas? BBC One – Festive edition of the award-winning comedy panel show, with actor Jim Broadbent, broadcaster Angela Rippon and comedians Rose Matafeo and Ardal O’Hanlon joining host Rob Brydon and team captains David Mitchell and Lee Mack.
9.00pm QI Christmas Special: Season’s Greetings BBC Two – Sandi Toksvig hosts a festive edition of the quite interesting quiz, with guests Bonnie Langford, Joe Lycett and Sally Phillips joining regular panellist Alan Davies.
9.00pm The Big Soap Quiz: Coronation Street Vs Emmerdale ITV – Stephen Mulhern hosts a special edition of the quiz show in which teams from ITV’s biggest soaps battle it out to find out who knows the most about their show. Jack P Shepherd is the captain of the Corrie team and is joined by Jane Danson and Tanisha Gorey, while Mark Charnock leads the Emmerdale contingent of Sally Dexter and Emile John.
9.00pm Inside Liberty at Christmas Channel 4 – Documentary following the famous London department store’s preparations for Christmas. This festive season is particularly important, in light of the blow to profits caused by the closure during 2020, but setting up the decorations coincides with their most ambitious building restoration ever, their first in 100 years. The programme also follows the team behind Liberty’s new range of candles, which have been designed and manufactured during lockdown.
9.00pm Christmas Cruising with Susan Calman Channel 5 – The comedian cruises around the Norwegian coastline with her trip beginning in a chilly Dover, where she boards her boat to the southern Norwegian city of Stavanger. On board, it’s Christmas cheer all the way as Susan meets her shipmates. But as the ship crosses the Arctic Circle, expect temperatures to plummet. Concludes Tomorrow at 9.00pm
Notable Continuing Series: Curb Your Enthusiasm, 9.00pm, Sky Comedy
9.00pm Notorious Special: The Girl in the Box Sky Crime – The true story of Colleen Stan, who in 1977 was kidnapped by young married couple Cameron and Janice Hooker. For the next seven years the 20-year-old spent the bulk of her time imprisoned in a coffin-sized box hidden beneath their bed, though was occasionally forced to partake in Cameron’s extreme S&M fantasies.
9.00pm Made in Chelsea: Christmas Special E4 – The gang swaps Chelsea for a retreat in the Lake District, where Reza and Ruby begin to grow closer again and Verity finds that she and Digby lack chemistry.
9.30pm Two Doors Down: Christmas Special BBC Two – It is merry and bright over at Michelle and Alan’s as they welcome the neighbours for a festive get-together. But Christine is feeling vulnerable after Beth and Eric agree to a last-minute invitation to spend Christmas away, Gordon is irritating Ian with all his fussing, and Cathy is desperate to find the `real” party, so Michelle struggles to keep the evening on track. Comedy, starring Arabella Weir.
10.00pm We Wish You a Mandy Christmas BBC Two – Comedy written, directed by and starring Diane Morgan, with Johnny Vegas, Pearce Quigley and John Cooper Clarke. Mandy contemplates the true meaning of Christmas. Is it the glimmer in a schoolboy’s expectant eye as he opens his pillowcase on Christmas morning and tucks into a delicious walnut and a bruised tangerine? Is it the wide smile on a publican’s face as he welcomes merry revellers with a vat of warm mulled wine he’s made himself? Is it the haunting harmony of a choir respecting Covid protocols? Or, is it a Christmas episode of a TV show that is slightly longer than usual?
10.00pm Deck the Halls: The Luxury Christmas Decorators Channel 4 – Behind the scenes with the Liverpool-based company responsible for decorating some of Britain’s most famous landmarks for Christmas, following preparations at sites ranging from the Natural History Museum and Blenheim Palace to Alder Hey Children’s Hospital and London’s exclusive Lansdowne Club. After last year’s cancelled Christmas, the teams are more determined than ever to create the biggest and best ever festive season – but face several unexpected hiccups along the way.
10.00pm The Standup Sketch Show Christmas Special ITV2 – Routines by Russell Kane, Seann Walsh, Dane Baptiste, Glenn Moore, Lily Phillips, Nabil Abdul Rashid, Bella Hull and Vidura Rajapaksa are brought to life in sketch form.
10.00pm The Late Late Show Christmas Special Sky Comedy – Festive edition of James Corden’s chat and entertainment show.
10.30pm All Star Dance-Off ITV2 – The Vivienne and Steen Raskopoulos present as celebrity feuds being settled through dance battles, beginning with throwdowns between rivals Pete Wicks and Sam Thompson, and Karim Zeroual going up against Melody Thornton.
8.00pm Celebrity Masterchef: Christmas Cook-off BBC One – John Torode and Gregg Wallace present the first of two festive specials in which previous contestants are invited back to the MasterChef kitchen. This evening Strictly Come Dancing professional Oti Mabuse, reality star Joey Essex, former footballer Neil Ruddock, comedian Judi Love and actress Su Pollard must create a dish using ingredients found in an advent calendar and then cook something they would like to eat over the festive period. John Torode and Gregg Wallace’s favourite will not only win the title of Christmas champion – they will also take home the all-new Golden Whisk trophy.
8.00pm Sarah Beeney’s New Life in the Country at Christmas Channel 4 – The family prepare for their perfect countryside Christmas. Sarah has grand plans for a treehouse inspired by an alpine chalet, and with the main house still not complete, the woodland home will also host an early festive party for family and friends. Sarah has a ready supply of honey from her bees, which she uses to make a honey-based booze, and uses the leftover beeswax to make a candle for the treehouse. To help get in the festive mood, they also visit a herd of reindeer.
8.00pm Harrods at Christmas Channel 5 – A behind-the-scenes look inside the world famous department store at Christmas, revealing how the store claimed its place at the very heart of the festive season. Former employees discuss what it is like looking after celebrities and royalty during the festive season, and how they work to bring the Harrods experience to life across the store – from the toy department to the famous food halls.
8.00pm Agatha Rasin: Kissing Christmas Goodbye Sky Max – During the dark, grey days of early December, the sleuth is obsessed by two things – the looming festivities, and her ex James Lacey. In order to drive the latter from her thoughts, Agatha concentrates on planning the perfect Christmas for her friends, but when there’s a poisoning in the village, it’s down to her to solve the case before the 25th rolls around. The return of the mystery, starring Ashley Jensen, with Phil Daniels.
9.00pm A Taste of Christmas with Andi Oliver BBC Two – The cook meets three very different families from Glasgow as they create celebratory feasts for their nearest and dearest. The households share their treasured family recipes and traditions with Andi, and demonstrate how a simple meal can help tell the story of a whole city – its culture, spirit and history.
Notable Continuing Series: Impeachment: American Crime Story, 10.00pm BBC Two
What We Do in the Shadows, 11.15pm BBC Two
9.00pm Philip: Prince, Husband, Father ITV – Documentary charting the life of Prince Philip, drawing on rare archive footage and audio recordings spanning eight decades to tell his story in his own words. Augmented by interviews with biographers, friends and colleagues, this intimate portrait captures Prince Philip’s commitment to crown, country and above all, his family.
9.00pm Amazing Spaces: George’s Icelandic Adventure Channel 4 – George is joined by his friend, master craftsman Will Hardie, to explore the best of Iceland’s architecture, from a cool, contemporary lake house and a traditional homemade of turf to a treetop hotel room inspired by a Christmas bauble and a stunning, modernist build in the snowy wilderness. Along the way, the design duo also get to grips with mysterious elves, majestic horses, geothermal baths and wild camping.
10.00pm The Great British Truck Up Channel 4 – In the run-up to Christmas 2021, with the UK in the grip of a crippling shortage of lorry drivers, a training school in Croydon is putting new recruits behind the wheel. This documentary follows them through five days of intensive coaching from veteran instructors at the National Driving Centre, before they take their test on Croydon’s roads – featuring notorious roundabouts and the dreaded reversing manoeuvre.
10.00pm Dating No Filter: Under the Mistletoe Sky Max – A festive edition of the show in which comedians observe people on blinds dates with a Christmas twist and give their own take on proceedings.
5.15pm Pointless Celebrities: Christmas Special BBC One – Alexander Armstrong and Richard Osman present a star-studded festive edition of the general knowledge quiz, with Jaymi Hensley, Lesley Joseph, Amelle Berrabah, Louie Spence, Myra Dubois, Amelia Lily, Chizzy Akudolu and Joe Pasquale pairing up to compete.
8.00pm The Great British Sewing Bee Celebrity Christmas Special BBC One – New host Sara Pascoe presents the first of two festive specials, inviting the Rev Kate Bottley, Anneka Rice, Kiell Smith-Bynoe and Antony Cotton to take part in a trio of sewing challenges. They must follow a pattern for a Christmas jumper, transform a charity shop bundle into a fancy dress outfit and create a dress from Christmas past – with judges Esme Young and Patrick Grant keeping a close eye on every stitch and hem. The big question is, does Corrie’s Antony Cotton (knicker stitcher Sean) really know his way round a sewing machine?
8.00pm The Hairy Bikers Go North for Christmas BBC Two – Hitting the road once more, Dave Myers and Si King set their sights on creating a festive feast inspired by the north of England.
8.00pm Christmas at the Tower of London Channel 5 – Historic Royal Palaces interpretation officer Emma Bell has a bold plan to transform the fortress into a spectacular winter wonderland, inspired by the Tower’s famous menagerie. Chief curator Tracy Borman uncovers how a grumpy Henry VIII rejected his wife Catherine of Aragon’s Christmas gifts, Beefeater Darren Hardy takes the Yeoman Warders carol-singing around their homes in the Casemates cottages, and the Tower community comes together for a special service in the Chapel Royal.
9.00pm Inside the Christmas Factory BBC Two – Gregg Wallace and Cherry Healey visit factories to find out how household staples are made, while Ruth Goodman steps back in time to examine their history.
9.00pm Madame Tussauds: The Full Wax ITV – Filmed across a year at Madame Tussauds’ London and Blackpool locations, this documentary offers a behind-the-scenes look at the world famous tourist attraction, following the creation and launch of some of their latest wax figures, including Little Mix and Dan TDM. The programme reveals how staff decide which celebrities and pop culture icons should be given their own wax doppelgangers, and the work that goes into creating them.
9.00pm First Dates at Christmas Channel 4 – With Christmas 2020 having been cut short for so many, Fred Sirieix and his team are back and pulling out all the stops to make sure that this Christmas is one to remember. First into the festive restaurant is 25-year-old Dan, a jobbing Father Christmas who, despite spreading joy each year, has struggled to sprinkle some magic on his own love life. Also ready to get her festive flirt on is 21-year-old recruitment consultant Macy, who is looking to fill the permanent position of boyfriend this Christmas.
9.00pm Our Victorian Christmas Channel 5 – A family experiences Christmas as it would have been 150 years ago, while historians and experts provide historical background and revealing insights into the era. The programme charts the transformation of Christmas over the course of the Victorian era as it went from 12 days of feasting, drinking and partying to a far more family-friendly celebration focused on Christmas Day. Later, the modern-day family work their way through a Victorian Christmas to-do list, as they prepare to celebrate the big day as their 19th century ancestors would have.
10.00pm Live at the Apolo: Christmas Special BBC Two – Jason Manford plays host for this festive instalment of the show recorded before a packed house at London’s Hammersmith Apollo. He warms up the audience before introducing routines by Maisie Adam and Nabil Abdulrashid.
10.00pm Joe Lycett – Mummy’s Big Christmas Do! Channel 4 – The comedian hosts a big festive house party live from his Birmingham hometown, a yuletide spectacular packed to the rafters with special guests, musical performances, stand-up and culminating in Joe’s alternative nativity. A whole host of celebrities will be dropping by, including Lorraine Kelly, John Whaite, Suzi Ruffell, Rosie Jones, Munroe Bergdorf, Kimi Woodburn, drag stars Bimini Bon Boulash, Tayce, Baga Chipz and Jodie Harsh, and social media icon Charity Shop Sue.
10.00pm Nevermind the Buzzcocks: Christmas Special Sky Max – Greg Davies hosts a festive edition of the comedy quiz, with regulars Noel Fielding, Daisy May Cooper and Jamali Maddix joined by Frankie Goes to Hollywood frontman Holly Johnson, broadcaster Lauren Laverne and People Just Do Nothing star Asim Chaudhry.
6.30pm The Weakest Link: Christmas Special BBC One – New host Romesh Ranganathan brings his own twist to the iconic quiz, joined by eight celebrities, each with their own connection to Christmas who have to work as a team to try to win a maximum prize of £50,000 for their chosen charity. The famous faces taking part are Kym Marsh, Gemma Collins, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Christopher Biggins, Kate Bottley, Bonnie Langford, Olly Smith and Danny John-Jules.
7.15pm The Wall vs Celebrities: EastEnders Special BBC One – Danny Dyer hosts a special festive edition of the game show, with EastEnders stars Maddy Hill and James Bye taking on The Wall and answering questions that combine knowledge, strategy and luck to win money for charity.
8.00pm Blackburn Sings Christmas with Gareth Malone BBC Two – The choirmaster heads to Blackburn, one of the areas of the country hit particularly hard by Covid-19, to help create and stage a concert that celebrates the work of NHS staff and other keyworkers. In and around the Royal Blackburn Hospital, Gareth encounters a wealth of amateur musical talent. Working with them to devise and rehearse musical performances that reflect their experiences over the last year, he uncovers a number of moving stories about how the town has pulled together through the pandemic.
8.00pm Alan Carr’s Epic Gameshow Christmas Special ITV – The comedian hosts an updated version of classic game show The Price Is Right. Contestants get the chance to guess if the price is indeed right on a variety of Christmas prizes. The best players go on to spin the famous wheel, and one lucky contestant will take on the Epic Showcase, where they stand to win a mountain of incredible prizes.
8.00pm Christmas Holkham Hall Channel 4 – A visit to the East Anglian Palladian pile, situated on the north Norfolk coast, as creative director Lady Polly Leicester leads a team of friends, staff and volunteers to transform the state dining rooms and galleries into a candlelight experience, while the marble hallway entrance becomes a workshop full of decorations and artefacts pilfered from cellars and barns. It’s all about teamwork and improvisation, as Lady L’s team rushes to transform this great hall with sweet-scented pine trees, greenery, sparkling decorations and twinkling lights.
8.00pm Hansel & Gretel: After Ever After Sky Max – The siblings have escaped the witch’s gingerbread house only to learn that their village is being enchanted by a mysterious stranger plying them with sweet treats. Determined to set things right, it’s up to Hansel and Gretel to face their worst fears and return to the witch’s house for a final showdown. Fantasy comedy, starring David Walliams and Sheridan Smith.
8.30pm Ghosts: Christmas Special 2021 BBC One – In the run-up to the festive season, Kitty becomes convinced that Santa has made an early stop at Button House when Mike and Alison discover a man living in a tent on their grounds. The ghosts’ advice on how to deal with him leaves much to be desired, but eventually Mike and Alison learn that they have more to offer this Christmas than they realised. Jennifer Saunders guest stars.
9.00pm Celebrity Masterchef: Christmas Cook-off BBC One – John Torode and Gregg Wallace return for the second of two festive specials in which previous contestants are invited back to the MasterChef kitchen. This evening Gemma Collins, Joe Swash, Les Dennis, Mica Paris and the Rev Richard Coles recreate and embellish a festive recipe and cook their ultimate Christmas dinner in a bid to take home the title of Christmas champion and win the all-new Golden Whisk trophy.
9.00pm The Cube Celebrity Christmas Special ITV – Contestants Jordan Banjo and Perri Kiely, and Lorraine Kelly and Rosie Smith try to complete a series of increasingly difficult challenges, ranging from agility tests to skill trials, under pressure to hold their nerve as friends, family and the studio audience watch their every move.
9.00pm One Night in the Natural History Museum Channel 4 – Comedian Aisling Bea joins Alex Brooker and Josh Widdicombe inside one of London’s most epic and iconic buildings – the Natural History Museum. The trio are awestruck by the splendour of the building as they scoot through its epic corridors, enjoy a game of hide-and-seek, muck about in the lavish exhibitions and raid the gift shop. While exploring the facility’s off-limits areas, they stumble across the strange and spectacular basement Tank Room, housing the gruesome-looking collection of `wet specimens” – a multitude of species preserved in jars of alcohol. This somewhat gothic, creepy experience only increases the trio’s giddy delirium.
9.00pm Christmas at Cannon Hill Farm Channel 5 – Helen Skelton and Jules Hudson present this festive special, with guests including JB Gill, Dr Amir Khan, stars from The Yorkshire Vet, and Reuben Owen from Our Yorkshire Farm. Nicholson brothers Rob and Dave take a trip to Sweden to meet the people whose lives depend on reindeer, while farm chef Tim Bilton has the best tips to prevent those last-minute Christmas dinner disasters.
10.00pm Not Going Out: Christmas Special 2021 BBC One – Jason Donovon guests in a panto themed Christmas episode of Lee Mack’s family comedy.
10.30pm Britain’s Flashiest Families at Christmas Channel 5 – Four families reveal how they spend their way to an extravagant Christmas as they take the festive fun to a whole other level. Rosi and Paul are determined to have the best Christmas yet, hiring a private chef and live reindeer, if they can find them in Cheshire. Meanwhile, footballer’s wife Magali is on the hunt for an exclusive location to host a Christmas party that will be the envy of all her friends.
5.30pm The Chase: Celebrity Special at Christmas ITV – Bradley Walsh presents as Lesley Joseph, Judge Jules, Jenni Falconer and Patrick Kielty pit their wits against five of the ruthless Chasers in the hope of winning a potential prize pot worth thousands of pounds. They must work as a team and play strategically to answer general knowledge questions against the clock and race down the game board to the exit without being caught.
6.00pm Shaun the Sheep: The Flight Before Christmas BBC One – It’s Christmas Eve at Mossy Bottom Farm, but Shaun’s seasonal excitement turns to dismay when a farmhouse raid to get bigger stockings inadvertently leads to Timmy heading off to a Christmas market in the back of the farmer’s truck. Shaun sets out to get his cousin back before he becomes someone else’s present. Animated adventure, with the voices of Justin Fletcher and Marcus Brigstocke.
6.15pm Carols from Kings BBC Two – The candlelit, fan-vaulted Chapel of King’s College, Cambridge is the stunning setting for this much anticipated annual celebration of the Christmas story.
7.00pm The Repair Shop at Christmas BBC One – Furniture experts, horologists, metal workers, ceramicists and upholsterers try to restore family heirlooms and treasured possessions to their former glory.
7.00pm The Amazing Mr. Blunden Sky Max – Christmas adventure arrives for London teenagers Jamie and Lucy Allen in the form of a mysterious old man, Mr Blunden offers their mum the opportunity to become the caretaker of a ruined country house – one that’s said to be haunted. Within its neglected, overgrown grounds, Jamie and Lucy have an encounter with what appears to two ghosts of children. Fantasy, starring Simon Callow, Tsion Habte, Jason Rennie,Tamsin Greig and Mark Gatiss.
7.30pm Royal Carols: Together at Christmas ITV – The Duchess of Cambridge hosts carols from Westminster Abbey. The event will blend Christian, secular and multi-faith moments, mixing traditional elements with a modern and inclusive feel to encompass people of all faiths and none.
8.00pm The Greatest Snowman Channel 4 – Sue Perkins hosts this seasonal show following a pack of celebrities as they travel to an Alpine resort to compete in an epic snowman-building competition. With thousands of tonnes of snow and giant blocks of crystal-clear ice at their disposal, Johnny Vegas, Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen, Dani Dyer, Liam Charles and Cherry Healey go head to head across three tough rounds that will test both their brain and brawn. Supported by a crew of seasoned sculptors, engineers, and snow builders the stars have to design and create some of the most extraordinary snow creations ever seen on TV.
8.00pm World’s Luxury Cruises at Christmas Channel 5 – Cameras explore the Seven Seas Splendor as it sets sail on its maiden Yuletide voyage this Christmas. Temperatures are soaring as the six-star floating hotel sets sail around the Caribbean, and the pressure is higher than ever on board. Will staff be able to maintain impeccably high standards? And what does it take to host spectacular festivities at sea, when no expense has been spared?
8.30pm Top Gear: Driving Home for Christmas BBC One – Chris Harris, Paddy McGuiness and Freddie Flintoff aren’t choosing their own cars, but instead choosing for one another. After unwrapping their presents in the Welsh village of Bethlehem, the trio set off on a yuletide trek across Britain, stopping off to play the game of `High-Speed Visual Charades” and deliver an enormous tree to the Unesco World Heritage city of Bath. Then it’s time for the presenters to visit the Top Gear test track, transformed into a winter wonderland of speed.
9.00pm Bradley & Barney: Breaking Dad at Christmas ITV – The actor and his son hit the road together on a series of adventures.
9.00pm All Creatures Great & Small Christmas Special Channel 5 – Adaptation of James Herriot’s books about life as a vet in the Yorkshire Dales, starring Nicholas Ralph and Samuel West.
9.00pm Father Ted: A Christmassy Ted More4 – This festive episode from 1996 finds the Craggy Island clerics and six other priests lost in what seems to be the world’s largest lingerie department, with only Ted’s quick thinking preventing the Catholic Church being rocked by a major scandal. His bravery earns him the coveted Golden Cleric award, which is when his troubles really begin. Comedy, starring Dermot Morgan, Ardal O’Hanlon and Frank Kelly.
9.30pm I Can See Your Voice BBC One – Paddy McGuinness hosts the singing game show, in which contestants, aided by a celebrity panel, must spot good singers without hearing them. Gabby Logan assists the player who is hoping to win £10,000 by guessing correctly, while regular panellists Jimmy Carr, Alison Hammond and Amanda Holden are joined by X Factor star Leona Lewis. Can they sort out the wheat from the chaff just by their lip-syncing skills?
9.30pm 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown Christmas Special Channel 4 – Jimmy Carr hosts an edition packed with festive surprises. Countdown regulars Susie Dent and Rachel Riley are on hand to help maintain order as Jon Richardson and Sarah Millican take on Lee Mack and Jason Manford. They are joined by guests Nick Mohammed and Joe Wilkinson.
10.00pm Spitting Image: Christmas Special ITV – Festive edition with the latex lookalikes, including Elton John who meets an angelic Brad Pitt. Plus, Nicola Sturgeon shares a Glasgow kiss under the mistletoe, and Tom Cruise finds driving a sleigh risky business.
10.30pm A Ghost Story for Christmas: The Mezzotint BBC Two – The year is 1922 and in the heart of an old English college Dr Edward Williams, the curator of a university art museum, receives an engraving of an unknown country house for his institution’s collection. However, the artwork appears to change slightly each time it is gazed upon and in due course it reveals a disturbing backstory. Mark Gatiss’s adaptation of MR James’s supernatural tale, with Rory Kinnear, Robert Bathurst and Frances Barber.
10.30pm Christmas Comedy with Lost Voice Guy ITV – He rose to fame as the winner of Britain’s Got Talent in 2018. Now Lost Voice Guy returns to TV for this festive special featuring guests Bill Bailey, Rosie Jones, Omid Djalili and Joel Dommett.
10.30pm The Last Leg: Christmas Eve Special Channel 4 – Adam Hills, Josh Widdicombe and Alex Brooker front a merriment-packed Christmas edition. In a show filled with festive treats, the boys get into the Christmas spirit in a way only they can – joined in the studio by the `absolutely fabulous” Joanna Lumley and chef and grime artist Big Zuu for some very merry leglessness.
12.00pm Top of The Pops Christmas Special BBC One – Clara Amfo and Jordan North look back at the year’s biggest chart hits, featuring performances by Anne-Marie, Joel Corry ft Mabel, Sigrid, Tom Grennan, Grif, Mimi Webb, KSI and Clean Bandit ft. Wes Nelson. Plus, music from some of the biggest artists of the year, including Lil Nas X, Coldplay, Glass Animals and Ed Sheeran, and the 70th Christmas Number One.
1.10pm All-Time Favourite ABBA Songs Channel 5 – A countdown of the Swedish pop group’s most popular songs.
2.30pm Superworm BBC One – Animated adaptation of Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler’s children’s book. Garden-dwelling hero Superworm is always on hand to help the other animals – but his best friend Butterfly never gets any of the credit for helping him save the day. When Superworm is kidnapped by a greedy lizard wizard on the hunt for treasure, Butterfly comes up with a daring plan to rescue him. Narrated by Olivia Colman, with the voices of Matt Smith, Patricia Allison, and Rob Brydon.
5.00pm Channel 4’s Alternative Christmas Message Channel 4 – Channel 4’s alternative to Her Majesty the Queen’s Christmas Message. The alternative message is a tradition that started in 1993, and has since featured illustrious and varied speakers such as Danny Dyer, John Bercow and whistle-blower Edward Snowden.
5.30pm Paul O’Grady: For the Love of Dogs at Christmas ITV – It’s Christmas at Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, but not everyone is feeling festive. Paul helps a lonely beagle whose Christmas wish is to find a new friend, an excitable cross breed with a short attention span, and comforts a Patterdale terrier cross that needs a serious operation following a past injury.
6.00pm The Masked Sing-along ITV – Joel Dommett hosts a one-off special of TV’s most surreal guessing game. Across two series, 24 celebrities disguised in extravagant costumes have taken to the stage, competing to keep their identities hidden. Now some of the favourite characters return, including Queen Bee, Badger, Duck, Robin, Hedgehog, Blob and Sausage, performing ballads, bangers and all the very best singalong tunes. With Rita Ora, Ken Jeong, Davina McCall, Jonathan Ross and Mo Gilligan.
6.25pm Michael McIntyre’s Christmas Wheel BBC One – The comedian hosts a special celebrity edition of the game show, with contestants Danny Dyer, Zoe Ball and David Walliams competing to win a cash prize for their chosen charity. Helping the contestants to win as much money as possible will be a panel of seven celebrity experts, each with their own Christmas specialist subject. Choirmaster and broadcaster Gareth Malone, actress Martine McCutcheon, comedian Jason Manford, EastEnders actress Tameka Empson, comedian Julian Clary and TV presenters Gregg Wallace and Alex Scott take their turns to help answer questions on everything from Christmas movies to festive food – but whose help will be a gift and who has got their traditions in a twist?
7.00pm Emmerdale ITV – Christams in the Dales.
7.30pm Terry Pratchett’s the Abominable Snowbaby Channel 4 – David Harewood narrates this animated adaptation of the short story about a small town where the Christmas festivities are thrown into upheaval by the appearance of a 14-foot snow monster. The creature is adopted by a kindly grandmother, but not everyone is pleased with her new guest. With the voices of Julie Walters and Hugh Dancy.
8.00pm Call the Midwife BBC One – The Christmas of 1966 promises to be a memorable one at Nonnatus House as Lucille and Cyril prepare for their upcoming winter wedding. The midwives are faced with their busiest Christmas Day ever as the Maternity Home is filled with expectant mums to be, each with their own challenging case, but, luckily, Mother Mildred is on hand to support them.
8.00pm Great Christmas Bake Off Channel 4 – Paul Hollywood, Prue Leith, Matt Lucas and Noel Fielding invite the stars from the award-winning hit drama It’s a Sin to join them in the famous white tent to celebrate Christmas. Olly Alexander, Nathaniel Curtis, Lydia West and Shaun Dooley compete for the coveted Christmas Star Baker title, before the London Community Gospel Choir perform their version of All I Want for Christmas.
8.00pm Coronation Street ITV – Christmas in Weatherfield.
8.35pm A Musical Family Christmas with the Kanneh-Masons BBC Two – A festive celebration with the classical musical siblings, featuring seasonal performances of their favourite Christmas music, including Mary’s Boy Child, We Three Kings and Tchaikovsky’s Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy, plus covers of In the Bleak Midwinter and Hallelujah. The programme also follows the family as they prepare for their traditional Anglo-Afro-Caribbean-style Christmas celebrations in their Nottingham home.
9.00pm The Larkins at Christmas ITV – In this festive special, the Larkins are gearing up for Christmas, and in the village all talk is of the pantomime and an ongoing spate of burglaries – with Miss Pilchester, the Normans and the local celebrity among the victims. While PC Harness applies his limited gifts to finding the culprit, Mariette and Charley take their love to the next level, and Pop and Ma are overjoyed to have the pair back for Christmas, but chaos descends when Charley’s parents arrive to meet the Larkin clan, and the entire village is left without lighting and heating following a power cut.
9.00pm Britain’s Favourite Party Songs Channel 5 – A celebration of the best-loved dance craze records from across the past 50 years, featuring the likes of the Macarena, Vogue and Agadoo. This programme tells the stories of each song and its routine and there’s footage of non-professionals attempting the moves, including the rich and famous.
9.15pm Gogglebox 2021 Channel 4 – Highlights of the past year’s episodes, featuring memorable appearances by the Siddiquis, Giles and Mary, Jenny and Lee, Ellie and Izzi, Marcus and Mica, and Amira and Iqra as they share their opinions and lively discussions based on the best and worst TV of 2021.
9.35pm EastEnders BBC One – Christmas on the square.
10.20pm Mr’s Brown’s Boys BBC One – As Christmas rolls around once more in Finglas, Agnes is recruited to the church choir, but is under strict instructions from Father McBride that there is to be no singing – and certainly no dancing. Meanwhile, Dermot and Buster organise this year’s festivities at Foleys – a murder mystery night in aid of alcoholic greyhounds – and a Christmas tree shortage means Agnes may have to go without this year.
4.15pm Saturday Night Takeaway Presents Double Trouble ITV – Another chance to see the comedy serial featured in the show, with Ant & Dec trying to stop clones of themselves who have led a gang of celebrities in a daring bank heist.
5.00pm The Chase Celebrity Christmas Special ITV – Bradley Walsh presents as celebrity contestants Kate Silverton, Ruthie Henshall, Iain Stirling and the Rev Richard Coles pit their wits against all of the ruthless Chasers – each dressed as a member of the Addams Family – in the hope of winning a potential prize pot worth thousands of pounds.
5.00pm Lego Masters Australia E4 – Return of the contest in which teams of two build structures out of Lego, with the opening edition seeing them have 15 hours to create a new world of their own.
5.50pm Around the World in 80 Days BBC One – Following an outrageous wager, wealthy Englishman Phileas Fogg and his French valet, Passepartout, take on the unlikely challenge of circumnavigating the globe in just 80 days. The pair are swiftly joined on their journey by aspiring journalist Abigail `Fix” Fortescue, who seizes the chance to report on this extraordinary feat. Adaptation of Jules Verne’s late 1800s-set adventure, starring David Tennant, Ibrahim Koma and Leonie Benesch.
6.00pm Celebrity Catchphrase: Christmas Special ITV – Stephen Mulhern hosts a festive edition of the game show, with Perri Kiely, Anne Hegerty and Rob Brydon all trying to say what they see, as they guess well-known phrases for the chance to win a £50,000 jackpot for their chosen charity.
6.00pm Britain’s Scenic Railways at Christmas Channel 4 – A magical winter journey through some of the country’s most festive railways, including the sparkling illuminations of Steam in Lights at the Severn Valley Railway, a steam train carrying Santa through the Yorkshire Moors, a stunning helicopter flight checking for snow drifts in the wild Scottish Highlands, and the Cairngorms reindeer herd on a day trip to the Strathspey steam railway.
7.30pm Death in Paradise: Christmas Special BBC One – A feature-length special to conclude the anniversary celebrations, which stretches from a grey, damp and drizzly London all the way to the sparkling beauty of idyllic Saint Marie. A wealthy shipping magnate is found dead at a Christmas party. Things get stranger when a man in London receives a mysterious Christmas card connected to the victim’s death. Danny John-Jules makes a return as charismatic Officer Dwayne Myers, with special guests Mathew Baynton, Juliet Stevenson, Stanley Townsend, Jocelyn Jee Esien, Anthony Calf, Tessa Bonham Jones, Elizabeth Tan, Tariq Jordan and Sara Cox joining the regular cast.
8.00pm All Star Musicals for Christmas ITV – Host John Barrowman welcomes Fern Britton, Ben Miller, Gyles Brandreth, Anita Rani, Catherine Tyldesley and Radzi Chinyanganya. They’ll embark on a musical theatre masterclass, each hoping to steal the show with their performance and be voted All Star Musicals Champion. Equipped with mentoring from the returning panel, Elaine Paige, Samantha Barks and Trevor Dion Nicholas, the celebrities will be supported by a West End ensemble, an orchestra, and, in the lead-up to their big performance, also receive training from West End choreographers and vocal coaches.
8.00pm All I Want(ed) for Christmas Channel 4 – Celebrities get the chance to unwrap the presents they wanted as kids but never got, and discover if they are as exciting as they imagined. Getting to grips with their childhood dreams are Jonathan Ross, Asim Chaudhry, Robert Webb, Big Narstie, Keith Lemon, Rosie Jones, Martine McCutcheon, London Hughes, Aled Jones, Kerry Godliman, Kiri Pritchard-McLean, Charlie Higson, Simon Day, Grace Dent, Lucy Porter and Justin Edwards.
9.00pm A Very British Scandal BBC One – Fact-based drama focusing on the 1963 divorce of the Duke and Duchess of Argyll, one of the most extraordinary and brutal legal cases of the 20th century, notorious for scandalous accusations and salacious photographs. The pair first meet while he is still married and she is finalising her divorce. They eventually marry and begin work on reopening his ancestral castle – a task that leads to massive debts and rising tensions. Starring Claire Foy, Paul Bettany and Sophia Myles. Continues Tomorrow at 9.00pm, Concludes Tuesday at 9.00pm.
9.00pm Mortimer & Whitehouse Gone Fishing: Christmas Special BBC Two – Paul takes Bob on a steam train to the north of England to search for a prized English salmon, fishing in the rivers Eden and Tyne in search of their elusive quarry. They are joined on the riverbank by former footballer Paul Gascoigne, who has also always dreamt of catching a salmon, while Dr Anand Patel has a chat with Bob about how to look out for the more vulnerable at Christmastime.
9.00pm The Big Fat Quiz of the Year 2021 Channel 4 – The annual year-end quiz, hosted by Jimmy Carr. Guests including Sarah Millican, James Acaster, Jonathan Ross and Judi Love look back on the strange events of 2021, from space travel and celebrities who do not shower, to sea shanties and Tony Blair’s peculiar hair. Charles Dance and the children of Mitchell Brook Primary School are on hand to help Jimmy pose his questions.
9.30pm Billy Connolly: My Absolute Pleasure ITV – The comedian invites viewers to spend time with him in his newly adopted home of the Florida Keys for an insight into the life he leads now. As the comedy great launches his first-ever autobiography, he shares a personal selection of his best-loved stand-up routines captured during his tours, some of which have never before been seen on TV.
10.00pm Adele: The BBC Sessions BBC Two – Adele has broken records, won numerous awards and has recently released her highly anticipated fourth album, 30. This programme takes a trip back into the BBC’s archives to look again at how it all started for one of the 21st century’s biggest music stars. These performances include her first TV appearance on Later… with Jools Holland, in 2007, on which she sang Daydreamer.
Monday 27th December
5.15pm In for a Christmas Penny ITV – Stephen Mulhern will be spreading some Christmas cheer this December in a special edition of the popular series In For A Christmas Penny. The show will see Stephen let loose on the streets of Chelmsford injecting some festive fun to unsuspecting members of the public unwrapping a host of hilariously funny games including a special Christmas version of the popular In For A Penny where he will be giving away some holidays.
6.00pm Family Fortunes Christmas Special ITV – Hosted by Gino D’Acampo.
7.30pm The Voice Kids ITV – Spice Girl Melanie C joins Danny Jones, will.i.am and reigning champion Pixie Lott in the search for the next generation of singing talent, while Emma Willis is back to host the series. Continues at 7.30pm, Concludes Wednesday at 8.00pm.
8.00pm Masterchef: The Professionals: The Rematch BBC One – One-off special in which four previous finalists show Monica Galetti, Marcus Wareing and Gregg Wallace how appearing on the famous cooking show has had an impact on their careers, before facing two demanding challenges. Taking part are Philli Armitage-Mattin, Santosh Shah, Bart van der Lee and Jamie Park, and Monica and Marcus throw them in at the deep end by getting them to cook for restaurant critics Grace Dent, Jimi Famurewa and Jay Rayner, who all have high hopes. In the second round, they have to cook a festive centrepiece – and as this could win them the title they go all out to deliver.
8.00pm Only Connect: Christmas Special BBC Two – Victoria Coren Mitchell hosts the first of four festive editions of the lateral-thinking quiz, with two favourite teams from previous series returning for an evening of cheese, wine and Christmas quizzing. The Turophiles take on the Corkscrews, trying to draw together the connections between things which, at first glance, seem utterly random, with one set of clues comprising Ben, Phillip Schofield, The Ivy, and Crickets.
8.00pm Travel Man: 96 Hours in Iceland Channel 4 – Joe Lycett takes over the quirky travelouge. On his maiden voyage, Joe’s off to Iceland with comedian and dance champion Bill Bailey. In a packed four-day itinerary they embrace local cuisine, alfresco bathing, and some of Iceland’s festive folklore. But first they explore Reykjavik, including an immersive visit to the punk museum, housed in a disused public toilet; an art installation featuring neon synthetic hair; and lunch at a restaurant where the theme is tomato.
9.00pm Jon & Lucy’s Christmas Sleepover Channel 4 – Married comedians Jon Richardson and Lucy Beaumont host a special post-Christmas, pre-New Year celebration, inviting guests including Roisin Conaty, Romesh Ranganathan and Rob Beckett to join them for a look back at the year gone by.
Notable Continuing Series: Curb Your Enthusiasm, 9.00pm, Sky Comedy
9.00pm Clarice Alibi – A year after the Buffalo Bill case, Special Agent Clarice Starling (Rebecca Breeds) is called on to investigate a series of brutal murders with an elite FBI Unit.
9.05pm Sondheim at the BBC BBC Four – A special tribute to Stephen Sondheim, featuring archive footage of performances of his songs by some of the world’s biggest stars, taken from BBC shows over the past 60 years. The programme includes clips of Shirley Bassey, Sammy Davis Jr, Michael Ball and Liza Minnelli.
Tuesday 28th December
6.55pm Escape to the Chateau: Restoring the Dream More4 – The transformation of the Strawbridges’ 45-room chateau, beginning with a look at how Dick overcame the enormous technical and engineering challenges to make the building habitable for Angel and their young family.
7.15pm Worzel Gummidge: Twitchers BBC One – After a raging thunderstorm, a flock of rare choughs turns up at Scatterbrook Farm. Keen to seize the opportunity of scaring such a rarely sighted bird, Worzel enlists the help of Susan and John, but their plans are soon scuppered once word of the choughs gets around and a group of avid twitchers moves in before he has even had his chance. To make matters worse, their arrival forces Mr Braithwaite to come face to face with his old birdwatching rival, Lee Dangerman. With the twitchers refusing to leave, can the children come up with a plan to help scare the choughs and save Worzel and Mr B from embarrassment? First of two festive episodes, starring Mackenzie Crook.
8.00pm Extraordinary Christmas Escapes with Sandi Toksvig Channel 4 -Businesswoman Deborah Meaden, actress Fay Ripley and space scientist Dr Maggie Aderin-Pocock accompany Sandi Toksvig as she travels to Norway. Maggie and Sandi go in search of killer whales during a stay in an architectural gem designed for guests to enjoy the wonders of the Northern Lights from their sofa, Deborah Meaden swaps the Dragons Den for a face to face meeting with a pack of wolves and it really is Cold Feet for Fay Ripley when in sub-zero temperatures she and Sandi venture to a mountain-top glass cabin.
10.00pm Mock The Week: End of Year Special BBC Two – Dara O Briain and Hugh Dennis are joined by an array of guests in a special edition of the show, featuring a look back at the year gone by as well as outtakes and all the usual fun.
Wednesday 29th December
7.00pm Billionaire Blooms Channel 4 – Documentary access to some of the most internationally celebrated florists as they cater to the luxury end of the market. Jamie Aston is planning one of his enormous Christmas displays at exclusive London venues – a design so large that the team have to bring in scaffolding. Celebrity floral designer Paula Rooney’s client wants their entire mansion decorated for Christmas, and newcomers Iona and Romy mix flowers and subculture to create a cool Christmas installation at a leading restaurant.
7.00pm Harry Potter: Hogwarts Tournament of Houses Sky Max – Helen Mirren hosts the ultimate Harry Potter quiz, as the loyal Hufflepuffs face the valiant Gryffindors for a place in the final.
7.15pm Worzel Gummidge: Calliope Jane BBC One – Susan and John are excited when they learn that FR Peregrine’s Travelling Fair is coming to Scatterbrook for one night only, but as much as he’d love to join his friends, Worzel can’t be seen wandering around by humans. He recalls the legend of a fairground with an enchanted organ that has the power to send humans to sleep, so that scarecrows can enjoy the rides without fear of being seen. At the museum, Aunt Sally finds herself agreeing to go on an adventure with another ex-fairground attraction, Calliope Jane, and it turns out Worzel isn’t the only scarecrow who wants to attend the fair. Bill Bailey guest stars.
7.30pm Paul O’Grady: For the Love of Dogs ITV – Paul O’Grady returns this week to help a blind Bichon cope in her world of darkness. Paul also becomes captivated by a mystical, bald, rare breed of cat… and shows a cockapoo in distress to de-stress with the help of essential oils.
8.00pm Pauline Collins: Britain’s Sweetheart Channel 5 – Celebrity-studded tribute celebrating the actor’s long career, with a host of famous faces sharing their insights and anecdotes, and selecting their favourite moments from her films. Among those interviewed are Tom Conti, Simon Callow, Willy Russell and Nerys Hughes, and there are clips from several of her well-known, and less known, movies and TV appearances.
9.00pm Inside the Factory: XL Diggers BBC Two – Gregg Wallace and Cherry Healey get special access to the JCB factory in Rocester in Staffordshire, where as many as a hundred iconic yellow diggers are made every single day.
9.00pm Britain’s Most Expensive Houses Channel 4 – Documentary going behind the scenes with UK Sotheby’s International Realty, giving an insight into the exclusive world of super-prime properties. Brokers John and Mary head to Windsor to view a £30million mansion on behalf of a French Moroccan socialite who cannot travel due to Covid-19 restrictions. Back at the office, Shereen is mentoring junior broker Leena on a search for her buyer, Anastasia, who wants to swap her property portfolio from Russia to London.
9.00pm The Great British Dig: History in Your Back Garden More4 – Hugh Dennis and a team of expert archaeologists return to excavate back gardens around Britain, uncovering the lost history buried beneath lawns and flower beds. They start off by trying to uncover a Roman fort, connected to the Antonine Wall, buried beneath the back gardens of the quiet suburban streets of Falkirk in central Scotland.
10.00pm Frankie Boyle’s 2021 New World Order BBC Two – The comedian tries to make sense of the modern world, using a combination of stand-up, review, discussion and audience interaction to dissect the week’s news – with a panel of guests on hand to take Frankie to task over his claims. Continues at 10.45pm with an ‘Unseen bits’ special.
10.00pm Celebrity Quizness Channel 4 – Tom Allen invites actress Siobhán McSweeney, comedian Jo Brand, TV judge Robert Rinder and presenter AJ Odudu to go head to head to win up to £25,000 for charity. As usual, there’s a twist to the comedy quiz – if they want to win the game, they must prove their brains by looking daft, with fiendish questions on anything from Richard III to Big Bird.
Thursday 30th December
8.00pm Attenborough and the Mammoth Graveyard BBC One – David Attenborough joins a team of archaeologists and palaeontologists excavating a mammoth graveyard discovered by fossil hunters in the prehistoric riverbed of the Thames. The site has also led to the discovery of stone artefacts, providing an insight into the relationship between early humans and mammoths during the Ice Ages. Leading experts in the fields of evolution provide their insight into this unique vision of prehistoric Britain.
8.00pm Only Connect: Champion of Champions Special BBC Two – Series 15 champions the 007s take on Series 16 victors the Puzzle Hunters to be named Only Connect Champions of Champions. They’ll compete to draw together the connections between things which at first glance, seem utterly random. Victoria Coren Mitchell hosts.
9.00pm The Great British Sewing Bee: Celebrity New Year’s Special BBC One – Host Sara Pascoe invites Drag Race winner Lawrence Chaney, comedian Rose Matafeo, Steps singer Claire Richards and journalist Kirsty Wark to take part in a series of challenges in the sewing room. Judges Patrick Grant and Esme Young set the celebrities a range of tasks, including rustling up a festive waistcoat and transforming some old clothes into children’s party dresses. Finally, they hit the dance floor, with Claire performing an ’80s disco classic.
9.00pm One Night in London Zoo Channel 4 – Comedians Desiree Burch and Guz Khan join Alex Brooker and Josh Widdicombe at the famous animal attraction. During a magical and high-spirited night, they hang out with the giraffes, feed the camels and endure the company of spiders, as they freewheel around the zoo in a golf cart and stay overnight in the zoo’s lodges. As the night progresses, the friends get a glimpse into what the animals get up to after dark, and even find themselves inadvertently spying on some amorous lions, as they make the most of this once-in-a-lifetime chance to enjoy the zoo without any other members of the public present.
9.00pm Wogan: Now You’re Talking Channel 5 – A celebration of the life and work of much-missed broadcasting legend. With the help of old friends, colleagues and fellow broadcasters, cameras chart Terry Wogan’s rise from Dublin bank clerk to national treasure. There’s also a look at his most memorable moments, taking in the likes of Eurovision, Blankety Blank, Wogan and Children in Need – and not forgetting his first love, radio.
10.00pm The Russell Howard Hour: Selection Box Sky Max – Festive edition of the comedy chatshow and best bits from the year.
10.30pm Most Shocking TV Interviews Channel 5 – look through the top 30 worst TV interviews of all time. Matthew Wright, Kathy Lette, John Sergeant and other commentators analyse the most excruciating, awkward, shocking and hilarious disasters. Clips include Prince Andrew’s interview with Emily Maitlis, and the Bee Gees storming off Clive Anderson’s chat show.
New Year’s Eve
4.15pm Top of the Pops: New Year’s Special BBC One
9.00pm The Last Leg of the Year Channel 4 – The quadruple-BAFTA-nominated entertainment show is supersized this New Year’s Eve with an extra-special two-hour extravaganza to say goodbye – and good riddance – to 2021. Adam Hills, Alex Brooker and Josh Widdicombe are joined by a host of celebrity guests in a bumper satirical spectacular looking back at the highs and lows of the past year… and what a year it’s been. Featuring hilarious VTs, joyously raucous debate and, of course, some brilliantly stupid songs, The Last Leg of the Year is an uproarious romp poking fun at the year’s news and looking forward to what 2022 might have in store. Joining Adam, Alex and Josh for the end-of-year fun are special guests including Aisling Bea, Joe Wilkinson, Ivo Graham, Nish Kumar and Vick Hope. House band Alex Horne and The Horne Section provide musical entertainment.
9.30pm Have I Got 2021 For You? BBC One – A compilation series looking back at 2021.
10.20pm The Graham Norton New Year Show BBC One – Graham is joined by A-listers as the build-up to 2022 begins.
11.25pm The Big New Years & Years Eve Party with Kylie and Pet Shop Boys BBC One – Years & Years singer Olly Alexander throws a spectacular New Year’s Eve Party as we build up to the midnight moment. Olly will be performing many of his hits and some surprise cover songs as well as duetting with special guest, pop superstar Kylie Minogue.
11.25pm Jolls’ Annual Hootenanny BBC Two – With Jools in the studio is Ed Sheeran, who will perform tracks from his fourth album ‘=’. Gregory Porter, Lulu, Joy Crookes, Rag’n’Bone Man, Yola and Ruby Turner.