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Festive television traditions

Written by TV

After the yearlong countdown, December has finally arrived, returning the traditional Christmas cheer and excitement for 2019, especially with all the festive films and television programmes. If, like me, you are eager to discover the delights that are airing on television during this seasonal period, you may invest in the Christmas Radio Times magazine; it is definitely tradition to flick through the pages, highlighting all the ‘must see’ shows as you go and planning those cosy winter nights in front of the TV, next to a burning fire with a mug of hot chocolate.

The lead up to Christmas is almost always signified by the arrival of Strictly Come Dancing and I’m a Celeb to our screens; these long running reality programmes have brought great entertainment to many households over the years, and have helped to fill up the evenings of the last few weeks before it is deemed acceptable to start celebrating Christmas. When December finally hits, all the traditional TV Christmas specials are introduced, and I am sure that this year everyone is aware of the return of Gavin and Stacey, which has created a massive influx of national excitement. In the past, Downton Abbey was known to have a festive episode, along with other programmes such as the brilliant Sherlock. Occasionally, dramas based on the stories of Agatha Christie are shown around New Year, and there is great potential for more of these short mysteries to be developed. Other shows like The Great British Bake Off, Call the Midwife and Dr Who will have specific episodes to comply to the season, bringing further merriment and carrying on the tradition.

Credit: BBC Trailers, Youtube

A plethora of films are also shown on the television; a lot of people traditionally snuggle up with their families and watch a film on Christmas Eve, whilst others commit to a monthly movie marathon by attempting a film version of an advent calendar. Of course, there is always the debate as to which movie is the best Christmas film, which is undoubtedly the Grinch. Other contenders are commonly Elf, Home Alone and Love Actually, all very good films which deserve a watch, but do not quite make it to the standard of the Grinch. Another less popular film which merits a high rating is: It’s A Wonderful Life, the black and white American fantasy is a heart-warming classic that should, without a doubt, be added to everyone’s list of screening traditions. The phenomenal films of Harry Potter also make a yearly appearance during the holiday season, with all eight movies shown in chronological order, to satisfy the global fandom and to maintain ITV’s tradition.

Hopefully as the term begins to wind down and everyone returns home for Christmas, the festive television programmes and films will add extra enjoyment and relaxation to a well-deserved break and this wonderful time of the year.

Last modified: 10th December 2019

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