Apple TV+ made information by buying the Charlie Brown specials, transferring them off of ABC (earlier than making them accessible through PBS). However that is simply the tip of a tinsel-topped iceberg of content material, with a number of cable channels (Freeform, Hallmark and Lifetime amongst them) closely turning their schedules over to vacation fare.
As for the relative newcomers to this annual programming onslaught, streaming companies — a few of which did not even exist final Christmas — have additionally gotten into the act, with a lineup of authentic films and sequence meant to woo subscribers.
The next is only a smattering of what is on faucet over the following few weeks, together with just a few mini-reviews to assist separate naughty choices from the great ones, as programmers vie to seek out the following perennial “It is a Great Life” (once more scheduled for Christmas eve on NBC) or “Rudolph the Crimson-Nosed Reindeer” (Dec. 1 on CBS).
Provided that these specials had been simply that — particular — after they rolled round yearly within the pre-DVR period, that is unlikely. However appropriately for the vacations, hope springs everlasting.
Music specials! This yr, everybody desires in on the old-time Christmas particular act, which incorporates: “CMA Nation Christmas” (ABC, Nov. 30), Carrie Underwood (HBO Max, Dec. 3), Mariah Carey (Apple TV+, Dec. 4), Dolly Parton (CBS, Dec. 6), “Excessive College Musical: The Musical: The Vacation Particular” (Dec. 11, Disney+), Argentine pop singer Diego Torres (HBO Max, Dec. 18), and a Garth Brooks-Trisha Yearwood reside live performance (CBS, Dec. 20).
“Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey” (Netflix): Not too long ago launched on Netflix, this energetic authentic musical stars Forest Whitaker as a toy maker — robbed of his greatest concepts — who rediscovers the vacation spirit when his granddaughter enters the image.
“The Lego Star Wars Vacation Particular” (Disney+): Spoofing the legendarily dangerous 1978 “Star Wars” vacation particular, this animated hour celebrates “Life Day” — and 40-plus years of cinematic historical past — with the characters from the newest trilogy.
“Dolly Parton’s Christmas on the Sq.” (Nov. 22, Netflix): That includes authentic songs from Parton’s vacation album, the film maybe not surprisingly has an inordinately excessive sugar content material, with Christine Baranski because the Scrooge-like determine who intends to evict the inhabitants of a small city, earlier than discovering vacation cheer (and some different surprises). The songs aren’t particularly memorable, so the film — directed and choreographed by Debbie Allen — falls into the class of these you actually need to be within the temper/spirit to look at.
“The Happiest Season” (Nov. 24, Hulu): A contemporary twist on the vacation film, as Mackenzie Davis (“Irresistible”) brings Kristen Stewart house for the vacations, with out having come out to her household or advised them that they seem to be a couple. Messiness ensues, with a supporting solid that features Mary Steenburgen, Aubrey Plaza and “Schitt’s Creek’s” Daniel Levy.
“12 Dates of Christmas” (Nov. 26, HBO Max): A relationship present with a vacation twist, as singles search for love at a “fairytale citadel” in Austria.
Godmothered (Dec. 4, Disney+): Jillian Bell is a fairy godmother-in-training on this film set across the holidays, making an attempt to help the one mother who had really reached out for assist when she was a younger lady.
“Illumination Presents Minions Vacation Particular” (Nov. 27, NBC): An animated particular that includes the strange-talking characters from the “Despicable Me” franchise, consisting of 4 new shorts.
“Expensive Santa” (Dec. 4, on demand): A documentary have a look at Operation Santa, the 100-year-old program of the US Postal Service to take needy youngsters’s letters to Santa and fulfill their needs.
“Dr. Seuss’ The Grinch Musical!” (Dec. 9, ABC): “Glee’s” Matthew Morrison stars because the irascible Grinch on this stage model of the story, being carried out in London.
“A Creepshow Vacation Particular” (Dec. 18, Shudder): Within the “one thing totally different” division, the horror anthology sequence is bringing its personal spin to the Christmas-themed particular with an episode written and directed by its producer, Greg Nicotero, on the AMC Networks streaming service.
Sure, in 2020, even the vacations include a contact of horror.