Christmas TV Guide 2020: find out all our top festive picks

There are some seriously good new shows on over Christmas!

Emmy Griffiths

Christmas is just around the corner, and while we're exciting for opening presents, seeing family (in three households, of course) and digging into some turkey, we also can't wait to snuggle down and watch the peak of Christmas telly. 

MORE: 15 best homemade Christmas gift ideas & easy DIY craft kits to create them

From BBC's festive highlights to Netflix's offerings, here are our top picks to watch over the merriest time of the year... 


Worzel Gummidge: Saucy Nancy - Christmas Eve, 5.55pm 

Did you enjoy the charming Worzel Gummidge last year? Tune in for the sequel! The synopsis for this sweet family film reads: "Mackenzie Crook returns as the walking talking scarecrow, alongside Shirley Henderson as Saucy Nancy, for a magical one hour film." 


Strictly: The Christmas Countdown - Christmas Day, 4.45pm 

Rather than have a one-off competition like usual, this year's special will be a look back at some of the show's most glorious, fun and exciting performances, led of course by the delightful Claudia Winkleman and Tess Daly. 


Call the Midwife's Christmas special - Christmas Day, 7.40pm

Ahead of the new season, we are being treated to a Christmas special. After all, Christmas isn't Christmas with the town of Poplar! The synopsis reads: "In Nonnatus House, Christmas 1965 has arrived, and the nuns... are hoping for a quiet Christmas in Poplar, but when one of the nuns receives an unwanted gift, and another is rushed to hospital, nothing goes quite to plan."

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Black Narcissus - 27 December, 9pm

Black Narcissus sees Gemma Arterton play Sister Clodagh, a 1930s nun who heads up a mission to the mysterious palace of Mopu in the Himalayas. The late, great Dame Diana Rigg also stars as Mother Dorothea. Find out all you need to know about the upcoming series here! 


Doctor Who: Revolution of the Daleks, New Year's Day, 6.45pm 

In the eagerly awaited Christmas special of the long-running sci-fi series, the Doctor has been imprisoned at the worst possible moment, leaving her three best friends to face the Daleks, the most ruthless of enemies, without her. Excited? So are we! 



Alan Carr's Epic Gameshow - The Price is Right Christmas special, Christmas Eve, 8.15pm 

Settle in with your family and join in guessing from the comfort of your sofa as Alan presents the iconic game show, The Price is Right. 

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Birds of a Feather: We Gotta Get Out of this Place Christmas Eve, 9.15pm

In this one-off special, three years have passed since we last saw the Birds, with Tracey reluctantly sold the house they all shared to Dorien. In the new episode, the synopsis reads: "Tracey and Dorien have been getting right on each others’ thruppennies, while Sharon has escaped to the other side of the world and is stuck on a Covid-cruise…  Who can fill the Sharon-shaped hole in their lives this Christmas?" 


The Chase Celebrity Christmas special - Christmas Day, 5pm 

Join our favourite quiz masters (and Bradley Walsh, of course) for a Christmas-version of the popular show, complete with special celebrity contestants. 


The Story of SM:TV Live - Boxing Day, 9.25am 

This documentary will be a look back at Ant and Dec's somewhat iconic stint on the popular children's morning TV show alongside their co-star, Cat Deeley. The episode will see Ant, Dec and Cat interviewed from a recreation of their old set and will look at some of their best moments from the show. We really hope there's plenty of Wonky Donkey! 

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The Great Christmas Bake Off - Christmas Eve, 7.40pm

Paul Hollywood, Prue Leith and Matt Lucas are joined by Bake Off: The Professionals host Tom Allen fills in for Noel Fielding to spend Christmas in the famous tent. Joining them are Bake Off's former contestants Jamie and Rosie from 2019, Ruby from 2018 and James from 2017. But who will win Christmas Star Baker? 


Quentin Blake’s Clown - Christmas Day, 7.40pm 

Narrated by The Crown star Helen Bonham-Carter, tune into this charming family film about the adventures of a little toy clown. The synopsis reads: "Thrown away with a load of old discarded toys, [the clown] goes on a journey to find a new loving home for himself and his friends." 


Escape to the Chateau at Christmas - Christmas Day, 8.10pm 

How is Christmas going to be celebrated in our favourite chateau? Find out in the Christmas special! In the episode, the Strawbridges take inspiration from an old 19th century Chateau ledger found in the attic and classic cookbooks to explore food and festivities, gifts and games from bygone eras.

Of course, they create a winter wonderland on the Chateau's grounds too, and we can't wait to see it in all of its festive glory!


Big Fat Quiz of the Year 2020 - Boxing Day, 9.05pm 

Grab your pens and notebooks and settle in for a nice quiz (and endless entertainment) with Jimmy Carr and the teams this year, Richard Ayoade, David Mitchell, Maya Jama, James Acaster, Joe Lycett and Stacey Solomon. This year is going to be a good one, we can tell! 



The Midnight Sky - 23 December

The official synopsis for the new Netflix original reads: "This post-apocalyptic tale follows Augustine (George Clooney), a lonely scientist in the Arctic, as he races to stop Sully (Felicity Jones) and her fellow astronauts from returning home to a mysterious global catastrophe." 


George also directed the upcoming film

Bridgerton - Christmas Day 

This seriously hyped period drama follows a young woman as she debuts in London society and finds herself striking up a mutually beneficial deal with the charming Duke of Hastings. 

MORE: Netflix's Bridgerton: everything you need to kknow

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WATCH: Bridgerton lands on Netflix on Christmas Day

The synopsis reads: "Despite proclaiming that they want nothing the other has to offer, their attraction is undeniable and sparks fly as they find themselves engaged in an increasing battle of wits while navigating society’s expectations for their future." 

Death to 2020 - 27 December 

This mockumentary, by the creators of Black Mirror, will look at this unprecedented year while helped out by a team of A-list stars including Samuel L Jackson and Hugh Grant. The synopsis reads: "2020: A year so [insert adjective of choice here], even the creators of Black Mirror couldn’t make it up… but that doesn’t mean they don’t have a little something to add." 

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WATCH: A look back on the year we'd like to forget!

Best Leftovers Ever! - 30 December

What better time when you still have half a turkey in your fridge than to work out what to do with your leftovers? In this show, the kings & queens of leftover cooking will take a leftover dish on an epic journey across two rounds. 

The synopsis reads: "Each half-hour after party, our home cooks will compete in the ultimate food makeover, finding ways to give old leftovers new life, all in the hopes of winning a $10,000 prize!" 


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