Judging by the excessive number of emails I’m getting from the overly greedy retailers letting me know that, supposedly, ‘Black Friday’ has already begun even though it was only Monday, it’s never to early to think about Christmas…for the right reasons. This rings true, especially for the true believers (you know who you are) who know full well that it’s time to think about Christmas when promos begin to arrive letting you know what’s in store from a telly standpoint in the UK.
Contrary to their North American neighbors to the west, Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Years Day have long given rise to the fact that these three days could possibly be the most important days in the UK for telly watching all year. Each and every year, both the BBC and ITV1 pull out all the stops and do not disappoint. This year will be no exception.
Obviously, there are way too many reasons to want to be in London this Christmas. Besides the obvious fact that it is London, Christmas telly is way up on the list for me. As we wrote last year…and the year before…and, ok, the year before that, Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Years Day telly in the UK can be a brilliant sight to behold. As always, arrive early, get a good seat in front of the telly and enjoy. Here’s a quick look at some of the things coming your way for Christmas telly on the BBC.
Dickensian brings the Victorian novelist’s characters together in one story set in 19th century London with Scrooge, Fagin and Miss Havisham and many more of Dickens’ seminal creations intertwine. Dickensian stars Stephen Rea (The Honourable Women, Utopia), Pauline Collins (Upstairs Downstairs, Bleak House), Caroline Quentin (Men Behaving Badly, Life Of Riley) and Peter Firth (Spooks).
Sitting at the heart of BBC One’s schedule this Christmas include the return of two critically acclaimed detectives, Luther and Sherlock, and the adaptation of the best-selling crime novel of all time, And Then There Were None, starring Aidan Turner of Poldark fame, a new three-part BBC adaptation of Agatha Christie’s novel set in 1939 and focuses on a group of people who come to an isolated Devon island…and get bumped off one by one.
Call the Midwife delivers another much loved Christmas special as Poplar readies itself for Christmas 1960. Nonnatus House is rocked when Sister Monica Joan goes missing. As per the last couple of years, the Call the Midwife special will also air Christmas night on PBS in the U.S.
And what would Christmas Day be without a new special from Doctor Who! This time, on a remote human colony on Christmas Day, 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.
For the first time on BBC One, Shaun the Sheep has his own 30-minute special with The Farmer’s Llamas continuing Aardman Animations’ festive tradition. What has quickly become a staple of Christmas viewing, we get another bit of brilliance from David Walliams with an adaptation of his book, Billionaire Boy, starring Walliams himself, telling the story of 12-year-old Joe who has everything he could ever want from his billionaire father, except for a friend.
For some inexplicable reason, if that’s not enough for you this holiday season, dare we even mention that SHERLOCK returns to both BBC1 and PBS on New Years Day with the broadcast of “The Abominable Bride”!!! This new trailer says it all!!!
Londoners. Color your American cousins jealous, yet again, this year. Remember, we haven’t even gotten the ITV line-up yet!