|BBC/Magic Light Productions|
Your ultimate guide to Christmas & New Year TV.
5.35pm Keep it in the Family: Christmas Special ITV – Bradley Walsh presents a festive edition of the game show in which the Mustafas from London take on the Fletchers from Liverpool as they go head-to-head in a series of challenges to win all kinds of prizes. They are joined by an award-winning formation dancing troupe, the hilarious Nanas and the cast of The Play That Goes Wrong. Corrie’s Jack P Shepherd, Jane Danson and Wendi Peters, dancer Louie Spence and Chasers Shaun Wallace and Paul Sinha are the celebrities facing the dreaded drop.
6.25pm The X Factor: The Winner’s Story ITV2 – A look at the journey of this year’s X Factor winner, from their initial auditions and live show performances right through to the nail-biting final and beyond.
6.50pm Sports Personality of the Year 2015 BBC1 – Gary Lineker, Clare Balding and Gabby Logan host BBC Sports Personality Of The Year, live from the SSE Arena, Belfast. It’s been another incredible 12 months of sporting excellence and this world famous show – now in its 62nd year – again recognises some of the standout achievers. Stars from the sporting world are among the 7,500 crowd in Northern Ireland’s capital city and, as ever, there is a full review of the sporting year.
7.30pm The Sound of Music Live ITV – A live broadcast of an ITV production of the classic Rodgers and Hammerstein musical – the first time a production has been shown live on UK television. With a cast including Kara Tointon as Maria, Julian Ovenden as Captain von Trapp and Alexander Armstrong as Max Detweiler, the production is directed by Coky Giedroyc and Richard Valentine. Based on the original stage musical, it tells the timeless story of Maria, the young governess to the Von Trapp family, who falls for her widowed employer and plans to flee with him and his children before the German invasion of Austria in 1938.
8.00pm Bear Goes Wild with Barack Obama Channel 4 – In a historic and unprecedented special episode Bear Grylls takes President Barack Obama on an adventure in the Alaskan wilderness. Viewers will see a side of the Commander in Chief that they’ve never seen before as Bear and President Obama journey across a glacial outwash and through a dense forest on their way to Alaska’s famed Exit Glacier, where they see the effects of climate change first-hand. Bear gives the President a true taste of the Alaskan wilderness, as we see the two men cooking bear-gnawed, half-eaten salmon and chatting around their campfire.
9.00pm The Apprentice: The Final BBC1 – After 12 tasks Lord Sugar finally hires his latest business partner. In You’re Hired Jack Dee meets the winner, runner-up and Lord Sugar himself to discuss the tears, triumphs and most memorable moments of the past 12 weeks. They are joined by old candidates past and present, and a panel including You’re Fired comedian Romesh Ranganathan.
Notable Continuing Series: Homeland, 9.00pm, Channel 4
10.10pm Live at the Apollo: Christmas Special BBC2 – Nina Conti is the host, introducing Tanyalee Davis, Royal Variety Show favourite Hal Cruttenden and star of The Last Leg and Mock The Week Josh Widdicombe.
7.00pm Cue The Queen: Celebrating the Christmas Speech BBC1 – Kirsty Young takes a unique look at the story of the Royal Christmas broadcast and how the tradition started by King George V in 1932 has found a place at the heart of Christmas Day.
8.00pm The Making of The Sound of Music Live ITV – A behind-the-scenes documentary showing how the first ever live TV performance of the musical The Sound of Music got to air. The cameras follow the cast through rehearsals and witness the excitement, nerves and preparations as they head towards the two-and-a-half hour live transmission.
9.00pm The John Bishop Christmas Show BBC1 – Recorded at the Lyceum Theatre in London. This time, he welcomes the comedy talents of Sarah Millican, Danny Bhoy, Tom Allen and Andy Askins, plus music from Jess Glynne and Kylie Minogue.
9.00pm The Gorilla Family and Me BBC2 – Gordon Buchanan realises a lifelong dream by gaining the trust of a family of rare Grauer’s gorillas, the largest primates on Earth. In the dangerous forests of the Democratic Republic of Congo, he meets the fearsome leader of his gorilla family, Chimanuka, and two baby gorillas, one a lonely orphan. As Gordon gains the trust of these mysterious, seldom-seen gorillas, he discovers their incredible compassion and gets caught up in a battle between giant rival silverbacks for control of the family.
9.00pm BAFTA Celebrates Downton Abbey ITV – The British Academy of Film and Television Arts honours Downton Abbey with a special award presented by Julie Walters at the Richmond Theatre. Jonathan Ross hosts this definitive insight into one of the world’s most popular dramas, featuring unprecedented behind-the-scenes access to the cast and crew. Dame Maggie Smith and Hugh Bonneville perform a specially written sketch, and Dame Kiri Te Kanawa and Julian Ovenden perform live.
9.00pm Cutting Edge: The Rich Kids of Instagram Channel 4 – Instagram has given the world’s wealthiest 1% the chance to show off their jet-set lifestyles like never before, offering the remaining 99% a rare glimpse into the lives of the super rich. But with 70 million photos being uploaded to Instagram every day, it takes something special to get noticed. From group snaps on super yachts and pouting selfies on private jets, to parading luxury goods or flashing stacks of cash – Instagram’s youngest and richest users have been causing both admiration and condemnation around the world. But who are the Rich Kids of Instagram? This Cutting Edge programme delves into the lives of some of the world’s most affluent youngsters, examining what drives them to flaunt pictures of luxuries that most people can only dream of.
9.00pm From Andy Pandy to Zebedee: The Golden Age of Children’s TV BBC4 – A look back the golden age of Children’s TV.
10.00pm Mock the Week: Christmas Special BBC2 – Topical comedy panel show. Dara O Briain presents a special festive show featuring hilarious seasonal material, outtakes, quizzes, films and props.
7.00pm Celebrity Mastermind BBC1 – John Humphrys puts the questions to some of the UK’s cleverest celebrities. In the first of this series, boxer Ricky Hatton, chef Tony Singh, comedian and actor Ardal O’Hanlon and antiques expert Kate Bliss answer questions on Only Fools and Horses, the history of tartan, the Velvet Underground and Carl Faberge.
8.00pm How the Rich Live Longer Channel 4 – Dr Christian Jessen investigates what the super-rich are willing to spend their wealth on in an attempt to live longer and, in some cases, forever. With some people in the wealthiest areas of Britain living up to 18 years longer than those in the poorest, Dr Jessen examines whether money really does make a difference when it comes to health and longevity
Notable Continuing Series: Luther 9.00pm, BBC1
|BBC/Endemol Shine UK|
9.00pm We’re Doomed! The Dad’s Army Story BBC2 – 60-minute scripted comedy drama about how the legendary creators of Dad’s Army – Jimmy Perry and David Croft – overcame BBC management scepticism, focus groups and cast constipation to get the much-loved legend onto air. Running from Perry’s initial idea in 1967 until the transmission of the first episode in 1968, this affectionate and witty film shows the beginnings of Perry and Croft’s writing partnership and the casting woes, personal clashes and production difficulties that put the show’s very existence in jeopardy. It reveals to fans and newcomers alike what went on behind the scenes in the making of the classic sitcom Dad’s Army and is a true love letter to British creativity.
9.00pm The Supervet at Christmas Channel 4 – It might be Christmas, but Noel Fitzpatrick is busier than ever in this festive special for the end of the current series. Adam, a sleigh-pulling Alaskan malamute needs both knees replacing with implants. But can the two-year old withstand two replacements being done in quick succession? Harvey, a much-loved springer spaniel, is rushed in with a shattered jaw. And Noel has a serious case of puppy love when he meets a six-week-old miniature dachshund puppy with a deformed foot.
9.00pm Michael Buble’s Christmas Show Five – Michael Buble, the multi-Grammy Award winning singer-songwriter brings the holiday spirit for the fifth consecutive year. Celine Dion, Sharon Jones and the Dap-Kings, and Tori Kelly join BublÚ for special performances in celebration of his favorite holiday. Gigi Hadid, Kylie Jenner, Jay Leno, Eva Longoria, William Shatner and Blake Shelton join in the festivities for comedy segments that take BublÚ to classic Hollywood locations.
9.00pm A League of Their Own: Christmas Party Sky1 – James Corden is treating the A League of Their Own boys to an extra-special Yuletide treat: a good ol’ fashioned knees-up in the countryside.
10.35pm Take That on Tour BBC1 – An up-close-and-personal look at life on the road with Take That. Featuring exclusive behind-the-scenes footage, interviews with the band, and songs from the show itself. Gary, Mark, and Howard talk about how life has changed for the one-time boy band after almost 25 years in the music industry.
8.00pm All Star Mr. & Mrs. Christmas Special ITV – The couples hoping to win are Martine McCutcheon and her husband Jack, football manager Harry Redknapp and his wife Sandra, and acting duo Gwyneth Strong and Jesse Birdsall.
8.00pm Posh Pawn at Christmas Channel 4 – In this Christmas special, Prestige Pawnbrokers managing director James is struggling to get into the festive spirit, until a day out at the track with world superbike champion Carl Fogarty lifts his spirits and secures him a charity deal. A former Miss England wants to trade in her diamonds for a new life in the United States, Lawrence gets excited when a Falklands veteran turns up with a piece of Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s 34-year-old wedding cake, and James treats the pawnshop staff to a snow-filled outing that features a special guest appearance.
8.30pm Snow Chick BBC1 – Documentary narrated by Kate Winslet, telling the intimate dramatised story of an emperor penguin chick’s first precarious months on the ice, growing up in the world’s most extreme nursery. Emperor penguins are the only animals to breed in the Antarctic winter, and after months of blizzards, male emperor penguins are watching and waiting for their chicks to hatch. As the chick takes his first steps, he tries to fit in with the baby penguin gang.
Notable Continuing Series: Prey 9.00pm, ITV
24 Hours in A&E, 9.00pm, Channel 4
The Affair, Sky Atlantic, 9.00pm
Toast of London, 10.00pm, Channel 4
9.30pm Boomers Christmas Special BBC1 – Comedy series following the ups and downs of three retired couples. It’s Christmas Eve, and the three couples have reached the Eurotunnel in Calais, returning from a long weekend visiting the Christmas markets in Cologne. Everyone is laden with gifts – a gingerbread house for the grandchildren, rude novelty Santas for the boys at the golf club and plenty of duty-free wine. Disaster strikes when they realise they have read the departure times wrong on their tickets and have missed their train. There is only one more before the French strike for the holiday season, which would be fine, except Alan got his and Joyce’s tickets on a voucher deal online and they are not flexible. While they wait to see if they can switch tickets, John and Alan have their preconceptions about Germans challenged by striking up unlikely alliances in the departure hall. Meanwhile, Carol goes AWOL, and Joyce and Maureen have to track her down.
9.30pm Christmas Shopping Fever: John Lewis and the Retail Race BBC2
|BBC/Channel X North/Treasure Trove/Lola Entertainment|
10.00pm Detectorists Christmas Special BBC4 – Festive edition of the comedy gem starring Mackenzie Crook and Toby Jones.
10.00pm Christmas With Britain’s Biggest Family Five – Documentary series exploring the real-life stories of people who face a challenging festive season. The festive season is a time when the whole family comes together to eat, drink and be merry. But what happens when there are so many in the family that they can barely fit round the table for Christmas lunch?
10.00pm Alan Davies: As Yet Untitled: Christmas Special Dave – Jason Manford, Jo Joyner, Joe Lycett and Rev Richard Coles join Alan to chew the goose fat about Christmas, with seasonly surreal musings on yuletide stains and nativities.
5.20pm Professor Branestawm Returns BBC1 – hen Lady Pagwell dies, leaving a substantial sum to fund local inventing, it could mean the end of Professor Branestawm’s money troubles. But scheming local councillor Harold Haggerstone will stop at nothing to thwart Branestawm and insists that Pagwell holds an inventing competition to decide who gets the money. Haggerstone tries to hire his own rival inventor. When Professor Algebrain, from an unspecified European country, turns up, Haggerstone thinks he’s onto a winner. Branestawm, meanwhile, is having problems of his own. Not only is he struggling to come up with an invention that will really knocks the judges’ socks off, he’s upset his faithful young assistant, Connie.
7.00pm Jamie’s Night Before Christmas Channel 4 – Jamie’s Night Before Christmas is a must-watch treat on Christmas Eve for a delicious and stress-free Christmas. Jamie Oliver wants everyone’s Christmas to go with a bang and is determined to help the nation raise its seasonal game with foolproof recipes and clever last minute ways to pimp up your food.
7.10pm Pointless Celebrities: Christmas Special BBC1 – Alexander Armstrong and co-host Richard Osman. Featuring Jeffrey Holland and Su Pollard, Alison Hammond and Robin Windsor, The Krankies, Louise Jameson and Colin Baker.
|BBC/Endemol Shine UK/Brian Ritchie|
8.00pm Would I Lie To You at Christmas? BBC1 – Festive edition of the comedy panel show in which teams must sort the truth from the fiction. Rob Brydon presents, David Mitchell is joined by Bill Bailey and Ruth Jones, and Lee Mack is joined by Jo Brand and Dame Kelly Holmes.
8.00pm All Aboard! The Sleigh Ride BBC4 – In a Slow TV Christmas special, a traditional reindeer sleigh is rigged with a fixed camera for a journey around the world.
8.00pm My Crazy Christmas Lights Channel 4 – Documentary that meets the people who spend each year preparing to go into seasonal battle with their neighbours in a bid to come out on top in the extreme decorating stakes. As well as the race to get the lights up and working for the big switch on, there’s rivalries, tears and tantrums, and sometimes the risk of electrocution. And behind the brash bulbs and dazzling displays lies a range of surprisingly emotional personal stories as to why Christmas lights have become an obsession for some.
8.30pm The Abba Christmas Party ITV – Paddy McGuinness hosts a celebration of 1970s pop sensation Abba, who in the decade they stayed together became one of the most successful groups of all time. Favourite songs of the Swedish group are performed in the setting of a Scandinavian Christmas lodge by Susan Boyle, Alexandra Burke, Corrie’s Shayne Ward and Catherine Tyldesley, The Feeling, Scouting for Girls and the cast of Mamma Mia! There is also an exclusive interview with Abba’s Bjorn Ulvaeus, who talks about his own memories of the group’s heyday and how the band used to celebrate Christmas.
9.00pm The Great History Quiz: The Tudors BBC2 – Quiz hosted by Kirsty Young that delves into one of the most remarkable periods in British history – the Tudors. Two teams of historians, captained by Lucy Worsley and Dan Snow, answer questions on all aspects of Tudor life.
9.00pm 8 Out of 10 Cats Christmas Special Channel 4 – 8 Out of 10 Cats returns for a Christmas special featuring host Jimmy Carr and team captains Sean Lock and Jon Richardson. A whole host of familiar faces from the worlds of comedy and entertainment join the regulars as they cast their eyes over some of the most memorable stories of the year. As well as the usual banter there’s a selection of classic Christmas games alongside some brand new ones.
9.00pm Morecambe & Wise Christmas Special Five – Magic from one of television’s best-loved double-acts, still hilarious after all these years. Ernie rewrites ‘Julius Caesar’ with Eric in the title role, and distinguished veteran actor Ralph Richardson (Greystoke) suffering the ritual indignity, tomfoolery and chaos. Plus Eric and Ernie do their best to upstage pop star Alvin Stardust as his backing group.
|ITV Studio Limited|
9.05pm Peter Kay: 20 Years of Funny BBC1 – Documentary looking at the career to date of Peter Kay. Intercut with clips from Peter’s television shows and stand-up tours, the programme charts Peter’s life in comedy from Bolton schoolboy to award-winning, record-breaking comic, actor, writer and director. An in-depth interview with Peter gives rare insight into his comedy roots and early ambitions, and shares the stories behind the creation and production of TV classics like Phoenix Nights, Max and Paddy’s Road To Nowhere, Britain’s Got The Pop Factor, and Car Share.
9.45pm Through the Keyhole ITV – A festive Keith Lemon peeks into three more celebrity homes, sniffing out seasonal clues to help the star-studded studio panel guess who it is that lives there. Getting in the Christmas spirit with Keith are magician and presenter Stephen Mulhern, Strictly Come Dancing’s Claudia Winkleman and comedian Jimmy Carr.
10.05pm Walliams and Friend BBC1 – David Walliams stars in this sketch spectacular alongside very special guest Joanna Lumley. Filmed in front of a live studio audience, the show also features comedic talent from Morgana Robinson and Mike Wozniak.
10.45pm Not Going Out Christmas Special BBC1 – Christmas special of the sitcom featuring happy-go-lucky Lee, Lucy and their friends. It is Christmas Eve and newlyweds Lee and Lucy are doing some last-minute shopping when an unexpected stranger turns their Christmas upside down.
2.00pm Top of the Pops Christmas 2015 BBC1 – Presenters Fearne Cotton and Reggie Yates return to the Top of the Pops studio to celebrate Christmas Day with a special yuletide edition of Top of the Pops. Pop princesses Little Mix kick off the show after a fantastic year of success both here and in the US. Rock royalty and old friends of the show Coldplay return to the Pops studio with their latest smash hit Adventures of a Lifetime. 2015 has undoubtedly been a great year for Jess Glynne, and she returns to the TOTP Christmas show with a string of number one hits under her belt. The indomitable Ellie Goulding also makes a welcome return to Christmas Top of the Pops with another fantastic year behind her. Plus performances from Lunchmoney Lewis, Sigma and Rita Ora, Hozier, Years and Years, OMI, James Bay and Fleur East.
3.10pm Cameraman to the Queen ITV – Insight into the work of royal cameraman Peter Wilkinson, who has been present at the Queen’s public engagements for 18 years. This documentary highlights his unique relationship with the monarch and captures his work during a state visit by the Chinese president, at a royal garden party at Buckingham Palace, on a visit by the Queen to Essex, and in Scotland on the momentous day when the she became the longest-serving monarch in British history. He talks about some of the most memorable and poignant royal moments he has filmed, including the days after the death of the Queen Mother and the aftermath of 7/7
4.45pm Stick Man BBC1 – A half-hour animated film based on the children’s picture book written by Julia Donaldson and illustrated by Axel Scheffler, creators of The Gruffalo. Stick Man tells the tale of a happy-go-lucky father’s epic journey to make it home in time for Christmas, as he runs from a playful dog, gets thrown in a river, escapes from a swan’s nest and even ends up on top of a fire.
5.15pm Doctor Who BBC1 – It is Christmas Day on a remote human colony, and the Doctor is hiding from Christmas carols and comedy antlers. But when a crashed spaceship calls upon the Doctor for help, he finds himself recruited into River Song’s squad and hurled into a fast and frantic chase across the galaxy. King Hydroflax is furious, and his giant robot bodyguard is out of control and coming for them all! Will Nardole survive?
5.00pm Paul O’Grady: For the Love of Dogs at Christmas ITV – Paul O’Grady returns to Battersea Dogs and Cats Home for a Christmas special.
6.15pm Strictly Come Dancing BBC1 – Christmas special of the dance contest. Past series winners Abbey Clancy, Harry Judd and Tom Chambers go head-to-head for the trophy with finalist Lisa Snowden, the People’s Strictly winner Cassidy Little and 2013’s bubbliest star, Alison Hammond. The stars take on classics such as Alice in Wonderland, Puss in Boots, Scrooge, Jack Frost, Rapunzel and Hansel and Gretel. The judges embrace the Christmas spirit as they get into costume as characters from Snow White. Shirley Bassey and Blake perform.
|Studio Lambert/Channel 4|
8.00pm Gogglesprogs Channel 4 – This Christmas, a whole new cast of children take centre stage as the much loved classic Gogglebox is transformed. From news events to TV highlights and Christmas classics, the ten sets of children give their honest, inimitable and hilarious take on some of the memorable moments of 2015. There’s best friends Christina and Stephanie from Essex: Stephanie loves The X Factor but Christina prefers classical music. North Yorkshire lads Jacob and Connor are self-confessed news and current affairs junkies. Mia and Charlotte from Leeds love nothing more than settling down together to watch their favourite soap, Emmerdale, with a cup of tea. The children watched a range of programmes from the past year, from big news stories like the general election, to some of the most popular TV hits such as the Great British Bake Off, and powerful documentaries like the BBC’s nature doc Growing Up Wild.
8.45pm Downton Abbey ITV – The final ever episode of the hugely popular period drama.
8.50pm Darecy’s Ballet Heroes BBC2 – Ballet star and Strictly Come Dancing judge Darcey Bussell undertakes a very personal journey to meet the heroes and dancers who transformed male ballet.
9.00pm Alan Carr Chatty Man Channel 4 – In this Chatty Man Christmas special there’s a treat of festive frolics plus the odd song or two by Alan’s very special Christmas house band. Joining Alan on the sofa for some Christmas cheer are Catherine Tate’s Nan, Keith Lemon, Lorraine Kelly, Emma Willis and Marvin Humes plus many more. Music comes from Little Mix and One Direction.
9.45pm Mrs. Brown’s Boys BBC1 – Agnes Brown is determined to have a safe and peaceful Christmas at home this year. But with Mark and Betty rowing over the reappearance of his first love Bubbles, carol singers haunting Agnes’s every waking hour and Buster installing a new Christmas tree with a very unusual feature, how will Agnes survive?
10.25pm Michael McIntyre’s Big Christmas Show BBC1 – Award-winning stand-up comedian Michael McIntyre is back with his Big Christmas show, a night of entertainment recorded in front of a live audience at London’s Theatre Royal Drury Lane.
10.45pm Our Cilla ITV – A celebration of the extraordinary life and career of the much-loved singing star and TV host through the people who knew her best. Including interviews with family members, friends and fellow professionals, as well as her personal costume designer, hairdresser and photographer who all played key roles in her life.
6.00pm The Nation’s Favourite Disney Song ITV – Over the years, Disney movies have provided the world with a host of memorable songs. This is a celebration of the most popular tracks from some of the best. Narrated by Stephen Mulhern, it includes family favourites from The Jungle Book, Frozen, Mary Poppins and The Lion King. There are appearances by those responsible for the songs – Sir Tim Rice, Sir Elton John, Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez
|Aardman Animations Ltd 2014.|
6.10pm Shaun the Sheep: The Farmer’s Llamas BBC1 – Animated comedy. When the Farmer and Bitzer go to a country fair, Shaun the Sheep steals away with them, intent on causing mischief. There, Shaun spies an auction, where he sees three exotic and very crafty llamas going under the hammer. Instantly besotted by their fantastic pranks, Shaun cleverly gets the unwitting Farmer to buy them. Back at Mossy Bottom, Shaun is delighted with his mischief and convinces the flock that the llamas are just what they need to spice up their lives.
6.30pm Britain’s Favourite Children Books with David Walliams Channel 4 – A celebration of children’s books presented by Britain’s best-selling children’s author, David Walliams, who counts down all the way from 50 to one. The show features guest appearances from Miranda Hart, Rob Brydon, Sarah Hadland, Meera Syal, Rufus Hound, Grace Dent and Levison Wood – who re-live their childhood experiences. David visits Paddington station with Michael Bond, takes tea with Judith Kerr, and visits Sir Quentin Blake’s studio while he brings to life some of Roald Dahl’s classics. Julia Donaldson, Michael Morpurgo, Lauren Childs, Michael Rosen and Dame Jacqueline Wilson all bring their work to life in conversation. And as an extra treat, Julie Walters and Martin Freeman read extracts from the top 50, including Treasure Island, Just William and The Hobbit.
|Red Planet Productions|
7.00pm Dickensian BBC1 – Drama series set within the world of Charles Dickens’s novels. It’s Christmas Eve, and when Amelia and Arthur Havisham gather to hear the reading of their father’s will, their lives are left in turmoil by its unexpected contents. Elsewhere, Jacob Marley collects debts from the sick and needy, showing his cruel and vicious nature. Has he given someone a motive for murder? Continues at 8.30pm
7.00pm Surprise Surrpise ITV – In this special festive edition, Holly Willoughby brings seasonal surprises to some extraordinary people. Olympic gold medallist James Cracknell meets an injured soldier who is about to row the Atlantic Ocean. One Direction make the dreams of a young heart transplant survivor and her sister come true. Two people who spend all year giving to the needy in their community are recognised for their incredible efforts, and there is a very special family reunion for a brother and sister who have not spent Christmas together for 25 years.
8.00pm Top Gear: From A-Z BBC2 – John Bishop narrates the first programme of this two-part alphabetical celebration of the best of the Clarkson, Hammond and May years.
8.00pm Still Open Hours BBC1 – It’s Christmas at Arkwright’s, and Granville has his eye on a tree which gives him more than he bargained for. Nurse Gladys gossips with Mrs Featherstone about tactics for her new job, and Eric and Cyril embark on a new fitness plan to impress their wives. Meanwhile, as Granville plans a cosy festive drinks party, can he and Gastric tempt Madge into the Christmas spirit?
8.00pm Peter & Wendy ITV – Drama inspired by JM Barrie’s Peter Pan. When Lucy, a young girl with a heart condition, arrives at Great Ormond Street Hospital for an operation, she discovers the legacy of Peter Pan and is whisked away to her very own magical Neverland.
8.00pm Inside Lego at Christmas Channel 4 – Following the success of The Secret World of Lego earlier this year, Channel 4 once again goes behind the scenes of the notoriously secretive, family-owned superbrand as it opens its doors for Christmas. With more than half of all Lego sales coming in the last three months of the year, this programme visits the Lego factory to see how staff gear up for the holiday season, create new lines for Christmas and manage the multi-language customer call centre at the busiest time of year. The programme also follows the construction of a spectacular Lego train in central London and meets the Addis family, who have built a huge Lego sculpture in their Cambridgeshire living room every December for the last 20 years.
9.00pm And There were None BBC1 – Three-part mystery drama based on Agatha Christie’s novel. Ten strangers are drawn away from their normal lives to an isolated rock off the Devon coast. As the mismatched group wait for the arrival of the hosts, the weather sours and they find themselves cut off from
9.00pm A Gert Lush Christmas BBC2 – Feel-good comedy about loved-up couple Dan and Lisa, set in Bristol in the small town of Bamford. Russell Howard stars as Dan, who brings his new girlfriend Lisa home to meet the family at Christmas, but introducing her to his eccentric family leads to unexpected yet hilarious consequences. What begins as an over enthusiasm to welcome Lisa into the family ends with Lisa running away and making Dan regret having ever introducing her to them in the first place. Starring Neil Morrisey as Dan’s dad Dave, Sophie Thompson as mum Sue, real-life sister Kerry Howard as sister Julie and not forgetting Greg Davies as Uncle Tony, the dysfunctional family pull together in their own unique and crazy way to put things right.
9.00pm The Big Fat Quiz of the Year Channel 4 – The Big Fat Quiz of the Year returns as Jimmy Carr tests a panel of A List Celebrities to see who knows the most about 2015. Who was described as a north London geek? Just what colour was that dress? And what on earth does ‘Netflix and Chill’ mean? If you know some, all or even none of the above then help celebrate the end of 2015 as Jimmy challenges Rob Brydon, Sue Perkins, David Mitchell, Claudia Winkleman, Greg Davies and Jo Brand to battle for the coveted Big Fat Quiz crown. Also helping Jimmy out along the way are the likes of Simon Pegg, Heston Blumenthal, Olly Murs, Rita Ora, Charles Dance and, of course, Jon Snow. So, put the post-Christmas diet on hold and join us for a festive helping of Big Fat Quiz of the Year.
10.00pm Abz on the Christmas Farm BBC2 – Christmas special catching up with ex-boy band rapper turned smallholder Abz Love and his girlfriend Vicky Fallon, as a tumultuous year on the farm draws to a close. Over a Christmas drink by the tree, they reflect on the highs and lows of their new life. We see how their green money-making schemes – from rock-star eggs to alpaca rearing – fared and get a real insight into the hard graft of farming a small holding.
6.00pm Fungus the Bogeyman Sky1 – Timothy Spall, Victoria Wood and Keeley Hawes lead an all-star cast in this gloriously gross family drama inspired by Raymond Briggs’ much-loved tale.
8.00pm Dragons’ Den BBC2 – Series in which budding entrepreneurs pitch business ideas to multimillionaires. The Dragons turn fifty shades of angry over a product that promises to banish grey hairs, and they get more than they bargained for when a zombie bootcamp business turns the Den into a little shop of horrors.
Notable Continuing Series: Dickensian, 7.30&8.30pm, BBC1
And Then There Were None, 9.00pm, BBC1
Gorilla Family & Me, 9.00pm, BBC2
Homeland, 9.00pm, Channel 4
8.00pm Walking the Himalayas Channel 4 – Explorer Levison Wood takes on a new challenge: to walk the length of the world’s highest mountain range, from Afghanistan to Bhutan. Taking the same intimate and authentic approach that made his previous series, Walking the Nile, a hit, Levison treks 1700 gruelling miles over four months, teaming up with local guides, meeting monks, soldiers and nomadic tribes and passing through some of the most remote, beautiful and perilous regions on Earth: places few outsiders ever get to see. This first episode begins in Afghanistan’s remote and inhospitable Wakhan Corridor: an area few Westerners have ever set foot in. Levison and his guide, Malang, need help from Kyrgyz and Wakhi tribespeople to make it to the Irshad Pass, a 5000-metre wall of snow and ice that stands between Afghanistan and Pakistan.
8.30pm Harry Price: Ghost Hunter ITV – Supernatural drama about the celebrated real-life paranormal investigator Harry Price. When MP’s wife Grace Goodwin is found naked on a London street, notorious ghost hunter Harry Price is summoned to investigate claims that her house is haunted. With the help of housemaid Sarah Grey, Harry uncovers a dark history surrounding the Goodwins’ Finchley home.
9.00pm Most Shocking Celebrity Moments 2015 Five – A light-hearted look at the most outlandish and outrageous antics by the rich and famous this year. There is bad behaviour from repeat offenders like Justin Bieber and Miley Cyrus, but also new faces including Barry Manilow, Tom Jones and the Duke of Edinburgh dropping the F bomb. Plus punch-ups, break-ups and the most shocking wardrobe malfunction since Nipplegate.
10.00pm U2 – iNNOCENCE + eXPERIENCE Live In Paris BBC2 – Concert film captures the Irish band’s groundbreaking tour as it returns to the French capital for two very special shows. Staged in the round, the iNNOCENCE + eXPERIENCE Tour features multiple performance areas plus a state-of-the-art 100-foot LED screen suspended above a 118-foot walkway running the length of the arena floor.
10.25pm Catherine Tate’s Nan BBC1 – Nan’s aggressive attitude to harmless pensioners finally gets her into trouble with the police, and she’s forced to attend anger management classes. However, her course leader is revealed to be struggling with some latent issues of his own, which are in danger of being brought bubbling back to the surface. Meanwhile, Jamie joins forces with Nan’s kindly new neighbour to raise funds for the local zoo, with unexpectedly dramatic results.
Monday (28th December 2015)
5.30pm Hedgehog Hotel ITV – A rare and magical glimpse into the mysterious moonlit world of one of our best loved but lesser-known animals – the hedgehog. Set in a garden paradise designed to provide the perfect conditions for rescued hedgehogs to thrive, the film follows a cast of prickly characters as they prepare for their return to the wild.
Notable Continuing Series: Fungus the Bogeyman, 6.30pm Sky1
And Then There Were None, 9.00pm, BBC1
Gorilla Family & Me, 9.00pm, BBC2
8.00pm The World’s Most Expensive Food Channel 4 – The World’s Most Expensive Food follows exclusive food suppliers who cater to super-rich clients in a world untouched by austerity. New Yorker Jerry Toth wants to break into Britain’s lucrative luxury food market with his To’ak chocolate, which costs ú195 for a bar. Each bar comes with a wooden box, a 100-page booklet and a pair of special tasting tweezers. He pitches to a specialist chocolate retailer, to a group of wealthy, discerning customers, and finally to Harrods.
8.00pm Big Cats: An Amazing Animal Family Sky1 – Patrick Aryee comes within a whisker of some of Earth’s most majestic predators as he embarks on a remarkable journey through the feline family tree.
9.00pm John Bishop’s Gorilla Adventure ITV – Comedian John Bishop travels to the forests of Rwanda to come face to face with the indigenous gorilla population and the people who have dedicated their lives to protecting them. He joins the Gorilla Doctors, a group of vets who work tirelessly to protect the 880 mountain gorillas left in the wild. It can be dangerous work, especially when a huge silverback male gets protective over an infant the team try to treat, but John soon finds that he shares a lot in common with the mighty creatures.
9.00pm Gogglebox 2015 Channel 4 – This special programme revisits the funniest comments from the loveable Leon and June, ‘posh couple’ Steph and Dom, hairdressers Christopher and Stephen, and Brixton’s own Sandy and Sandra. From Saturday night entertainment juggernauts to the week’s big soap storylines, from hard-hitting documentary series to gritty drama, the Gogglebox households deliver sharp, insightful, passionate and sometimes emotional critiques of the week’s popular and topical TV shows, sparking debates and giving the audience the chance to rewatch those ‘we said that!’ moments.
9.00pm Michael Palin’s Quest for Artemisia BBC2 – Curious about a powerful but violent painting that caught his eye, Michael Palin sets off on a quest to discover the astonishing story of the forgotten female artist who painted it over 400 years ago. Travelling to Italy in search of Artemisia Gentileschi’s tale, Michael encounters her work in Florence, Rome and Naples. He unearths not only her paintings but a complex life which included her rape as a teenager and the ensuing indignity of a full trial, her life as a working mother and her ultimate success against all odds as one of the greatest painters of the Baroque age who transformed the way women were depicted in art and who was sought after in many courts across 17th-century Europe.
Tuesday (29th December 2015)
Notable Continuing Series: Fungus the Bogeyman, 6.30pm Sky1
8.00pm Gareth Malone’s Great Choir Reunion BBC2 – To mark the 10th anniversary of The Choir, Gareth Malone tracks down members from all his choirs for one huge reunion party. The centrepiece will be his Choir of Choirs, made up of his most talented singers from across the decade. But he has got just four short weeks – can he bring them all together and pull off a performance worthy of a decade’s work getting the nation singing? In the first of two episodes, Gareth tracks down ex-pupils from the first two choirs he created at Northolt High School and Lancaster Boys School. He discovers how being part of the choir changed their lives, and how they have gone on to successful careers, many in music. When he gets a group of them together to start rehearsing for the big reunion, they immediately feel the old bonds of camaraderie, and Gareth can’t resist suggesting an impromptu performance for friends and family.
8.00pm Storage Hunters UK: Celebrity Special Dave – Carl Froch, Bez, Bob Mortimer, Ross Noble and Jimmy Bullard are amongst the A-list auction fans bidding for their chosen charities and having ‘lots’ of laughs along the way!
9.00pm David Beckham: For the Love of the Game BBC1 – David Beckham sets himself the challenge of a lifetime: playing a football match on all seven continents of the globe in under ten days and getting back in time for his own Unicef fundraising match at Old Trafford. On the journey, David discovers what football means to the many different people he meets and plays with, as well as some of the universal truths about the game itself, like its unique ability to inspire and unite people across the world. David plays with tribes in Papua New Guinea, children from an earthquake-damaged school in Nepal and refugees from neighboring African countries at a refugee camp in Djibouti. He flies on to Argentina, where he plays a community youth team in Buenos Aires, then to Antarctica to play with an international team of scientists, then to the USA to play the University of Miami women’s soccer team, before finally flying on to Old Trafford in Manchester for the Unicef fundraiser match.
9.00pm Stephen Fry: A Life on Screen BBC2 – Documentary series that celebrates the incredible careers of the best of British talent. In this programme, Stephen Fry tells the story behind his success, after presenting the BAFTAs for more than ten years. With an outstanding career in film and television which began with a chance meeting with comedy partner Hugh Laurie at Cambridge, he went on to create the outrageous Melchett in Blackadder and has become a firm favourite on BBC2 with the quite interesting quiz QI. Featuring a supporting cast of friends, including interviews with Michael Sheen, Hugh Laurie and Alan Davies.
9.00pm 8 Out of 10 Cats: End of Year Special Channel 4 – In this special edition of 8 Out of 10 Cats, host Jimmy Carr and team captains Jon Richardson and Sean Lock discuss and dissect the biggest personalities that have hit the headlines in 2015. Jon and Sean are joined by famous faces from the world of entertainment and showbiz, and by plenty of exciting talent from the world of comedy too. And there are silly games and surprises as the guests look back at some of the funniest stories of the year.
Wednesday (30th December 2015)
8.00pm Big Star’s Little Star: Christmas Special ITV – Entertainment show which lifts the lid on celebrities’ lives through the eyes of their children. This time, Stephen welcomes Mrs Brown’s Boys star Fiona O’Carroll and her son Felix, former footballer Robbie Fowler and his son Jacob and former cricketer Michael Vaughan and his son Archie. Whose face will be as red as Rudolph’s nose as the kids are let loose?
8.00pm What Britain Bought in 2015 Channel 4 – Eye-opening and intriguing look back at how we shopped in 2015 and what the ú6 billion-a-week shopping habit says about the nation. Mary Portas discovers the must-haves, can’t-resists, and why-did-we-ever purchases of 2015, meeting the high street buyers, trend forecasters and retail gurus who spotted their potential – but who also reveal the products that took them by surprise. With exclusive inside information from some of the nation’s biggest retailers – including M&S, Lakeland, Waitrose, Superdrug, JD Sports and John Lewis – Mary lifts the lid on a year of British spending.
Notable Continuing Series: Top Gear: From A-Z, 8.00pm, BBC2
24 Hours in A&E 9.00pm Channel 4
Catherine Tate’s Nan, 10.25pm, BBC1
9.00pm Great Barrier Reef with David Attenbourough BBC1 – David Attenborough returns in this landmark series to his most magical place on earth, the Great Barrier Reef. In this first episode, David descends beneath the waves at night in the state-of-the-art Triton submersible, the first of its kind to visit the reef. He meets some of the tiny coral animals that built the reef and helped to turn it into an underwater wonderland. He then takes to the skies to witness the vast scale of their endeavour, a living structure that provides a home for thousands of species. Using cutting-edge technology to generate computer scans of the sea floor, David learns that the Great Barrier Reef we know today is much younger than scientists ever imagined. He meets some of the people that have lived alongside it and who have told stories of its origins for thousands of years.
9.00pm Charlie Brooker’s End of the Year Review BBC2 – Charlie Brooker is back for his annual review of the year to pick over the bones of 2015’s news and cultural events.
9.00pm It’ll Be Alright on the Night ITV – Griff Rhys Jones presents a brand new collection of previously unseen outtakes from the world of film and television featuring some of the nation’s best loved stars. Including fluffs and foul-ups from hit shows Mr Selfridge and Doc Martin, and a horse that steals the scene on Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell. Other bloopers rescued from the cutting room floor feature Dame Helen Mirren, Carol Kirkwood, Vernon Kay and Richard E Grant.
9.00pm Luke Kempner’s Impression of 2015 ITV2 – Comedy impressionist Luke Kempner takes a cheeky look back at the year’s most noteworthy events in a series of fast-paced sketches featuring some of the year’s biggest celebrities.
10.00pm The Millionaire Party Planner Channel 4 – For nearly 30 years Liz Taylor has been organising spectacular business and private events across the UK. From her headquarters in Manchester, she plans up to 100 parties a year, including the Coronation Street Christmas party, charity balls that raise hundreds of thousands, and most recently Mark Wright’s wedding. With nearly every client being wealthy, The Millionaire Party Planner reveals the tantrums, tears and occasional tiaras, as Liz and her trusty team strive to create the best parties on the planet. From the Marina Dalglish charity ball to a lavish bar mitzvah, and an exclusive 40th birthday party in which a luxury home is transformed into a nightclub, the money pit is seemingly bottomless, the stakes are high and the expectations enormous.
New Year’s Eve
7.30pm TFI Friday: New Year’s Special Channel 4 – Chris Evans welcomes in the new year with an exciting mix of features, raucous stunts and top guests including Will Poulter, Sia and New Order, Olly Murs, The Vaccines and Izzy Bizu.
Notable Continuing Series: Gareth Malone’s Big Choir Reunion, 8.00pm, BBC2
8.30pm Panda Babies ITV – Steve Leonard presents this wildlife documentary which explores the world of the giant panda. These amazing creatures are a kind of animal royalty, but their numbers are critically endangered. Steve has been a vet for over 20 years and has never seen a panda in the wild, but this is about to change. Travelling over 5,000 miles to China, he goes behind the scenes of three remarkable panda habitats to watch the cutest baby animals on the planet grow up. Steve meets some adorable panda characters, witnesses the incredible moment when a panda is born, and follows their development from newborn through to one-year-old youngsters.
9.00pm Alan Carr’s New Year Specstacular Channel 4 – After the success of Alan Carr’s New Year Specstacular over previous years, Alan has decided to do it all over again to celebrate New Year’s Eve 2015. Alan and his celebrity guests – in various guises – run riot around Channel 4 HQ bringing in 2016 with unpredictable madness, party games, sketches, and top musical performances. Guests include David Guetta, Danny Dyer, Mel B, Greg Davies, Verne Troyer and Katherine Rya
10.45pm The Graham Norton Show BBC1 – Graham welcomes Hunger Games star Jennifer Lawrence and Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne, as well as Ron Burgundy actor Will Ferrell and actor-producer Mark Wahlberg, together in new comedy Daddy’s Home. Plus music from Years and Years
11.30pm Bryan Adams Rocks Big Ben Live BBC1 – As we bid farewell to 2015, Bryan Adams stages an exclusive live concert a stone’s throw away from the iconic landmark of Big Ben. Bryan performs many of his greatest hits in the build-up to the clock striking midnight and the start of the world-famous fireworks display over the River Thames.
New Year’s Day
11.55am Top of the Pops: New Year’s Special BBC1 – Fearne Cotton and Reggie Yates host a New Year’s Day celebration of the biggest hits of 2015 and reveal the first Number 1 of 2016. Featuring DJ KDA, Tinie Tempah and Katy B, the Vaccines, Sigala, Jess Glynne, the Vamps, Years and Years, Lost Frequencies, Grace, Nick Jonas, the Maccabees and Ellie Goulding.
7.00pm Billionaire Boy BBC1 – One-off family comedy. Father and son Len and Joe Spud have very little, but they become overnight billionaires when Len invents a new toilet roll. Joe now has everything he ever wanted – except a friend. Len starts dating Sapphire Diamond – a 40-something-year-old hand model who claims to be 21 – who is only with him for his money, and he neglects Joe. The butler helps Joe to transfer to the local comprehensive, where Joe is sure he will make some friends. Joe meets Bob and they become good friends, but Joe hides the fact that he’s so wealthy. When Len turns up at the school with Joe’s forgotten homework, the cat is out of the bag.
8.00pm Jamie and Jimmy’s Friday Night Feast Channel 4 – Jamie Oliver and Jimmy Doherty join forces for a third series at their end-of-the-pier caff. Jamie and Jimmy grew up sharing a love of food. At their cafe on Southend pier, they create blow-out feasts designed to add some serious culinary wow factor to your weekends. Jamie cooks show-stopping dishes to share with friends and family. Jimmy explores the foods we buy in the supermarkets that actually we could be making at home – which will taste better AND you’ll know exactly what’s in them. Plus a host of celeb friends pop in to learn how to cook a favourite dish. And the boys are back on the road to continue their fight against food waste. On the cafe menu this time: Orlando Bloom shows off his sword training when he cooks up a Moroccan tagine.
9.00pm Sherlock: The Abominable Bride BBC1 – New episode for 2016 which sees Sherlock Holmes and John Watson transplanted to Victorian London. Thomas Ricoletti is a little surprised to see his wife dressed in her old wedding gown, since just a few hours before, she took her own life. Mrs Ricoletti’s ghost now appears to be prowling the streets with an unslakeable thirst for revenge. From fog-shrouded Limehouse to the bowels of a ruined church, Holmes, Watson and their friends must use all their cunning to combat an enemy seemingly from beyond the grave.
9.00pm The Big Quiz ITV – Stephen Mulhern is the host as stars from Coronation Street and Emmerdale are tested on the biggest events and the funniest moments in the Dales and on the cobbles during 2015.