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Making Two Lists, Checking Them Twice

Feel free to open before Christmas


Holiday TV Shows

  • Sean Severud

TV specials are nearly as old as television itself. The very first Hallmark Hall of Fame on Christmas Eve, 1951, was a live performance of the commissioned-for-television Amahl and the Night Visitors. The first animated holiday program produced specifically for television was Mister Magoo's Christmas Carol in 1962 on NBC. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer followed two years later. Then came A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965), Frosty the Snowman (1969) and all the rest.

Here are 10 of this season's most-anticipated TV specials. We're particularly excited to watch Reindeer Family & Me (Wednesday, Dec. 19, on Idaho Public Television), in which a wildlife photographer travels deep inside the Arctic Circle to meet the ancient Sami culture and the animals they hold so close—reindeer.

  • How the Grinch Stole Christmas December 1 TBS
  • A Charlie Brown Christmas December 6 ABC
  • Frosty the Snowman December 8 CBS
  • Frosty Returns December 8 CBS
  • Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer December 8 CBS
  • Disney's Prep & Landing 1 & 2 December 13 ABC
  • Saturday Night Live Christmas December 13 NBC
  • I Love Lucy Christmas December 14 CBS
  • Reindeer Family & Me December 19 IdahoPTV
  • Shrek the Halls December 19 ABC

Holiday Films

  • Sean Severud

The first-ever Christmas movie, Santa Claus Filling Stockings, was filmed in 1897. Since then, Santa has been portrayed by more actors than any other character in movie history (suck it, Sherlock). Everybody has their favorite Christmas film: from A Christmas Story to Elf to Home Alone to National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation. And every year, movie studios hope to capture more of that magic.

  • Sean Severud
This year is no exception. Some are more Christmas-y (The Grinch) than others (Ralph Breaks the Internet), but they're all holiday-appropriate.

Here's our list of 10 movies that we won't miss this season. Some will hit the big screen, but we'll also be able to stream some Christmas classics via Amazon, Hulu or Netflix, from the comfort of our living rooms.

  • Ralph Breaks the Internet Already in Cinemas
  • The Grinch Already in Cinemas
  • The Nutcracker and the Four Realms Already in Cinemas
  • Mary Poppins Returns Opens in Cinemas Dec. 19
  • It's a Wonderful Life Amazon Prime
  • The Man Who Invented Christmas Amazon Prime
  • A Frozen Christmas Hulu
  • The Christmas Chronicles Netflix
  • The Star Netflix
  • White Christmas Netflix


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