At NotJustAnotherTVSite.com, we pride ourselves on our commitment to quality. This particular article is one of a series that will aid in your pursuit of Holiday related television content. As a self admitted “Christmas Degenerate”, I know all too well that the influx of Holiday programming is daunting. Chances are pretty good that even when the desire strikes, finding what you’re looking for may be challenging. I would venture a guess that I am in the top 1% of those who have seen the sheer volume of Holiday programming that is available. I will be the first to admit that a large portion of which cannot be categorized as ‘high quality’. So, consider me your guide through the Holiday Television landscape.
I thought we’d start off very simply. I am providing you with a weekly Television schedule of Holiday content. Each Sunday through the remainder of the Holiday season I will post the upcoming week’s schedule. Not only what the show or movie is, but what network it will air on and when it will air. As you peruse the list you will come across multiples. The same movie repeated throughout the list. This is not because I personally feel it’s worth watching multiple times. I, and I hope most of you, live in the DVR Era. With certain DVR limitations, you may not be in a position to record the movie or show in question the first time it airs. So, I have given you options. Not all of these are future classics. However, all that are mentioned have some redeeming value. From ‘Santa Jr’ all the way up to National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (a consensus top 5 of all time movie).
Your varying interest in fact will depend on you personally. For me, aside from what we bring you here on this site, I am exclusively Holiday content as soon as they start airing it. Usually around late October. By the time we get to December, I don’t have DVR space for re-runs or ‘if I have time, maybe I’ll watch it’ type of DVR recordings. If you find yourself searching the list and can’t decide if something is for you, or have a specific taste and don’t want to waste your time with something you won’t enjoy, feel free to pose your question or concern in the comments section. I will be more than happy to do the leg work for you. With that said, let’s look at the list.
Monday December 15th actually has a very nice spread. Something for everyone. Right out of the gate is The Most Wonderful Time of the Year. This might just be my favorite made for TV Christmas movie that isn’t sappy. The name might have you believing this is a classic. It is not. Uncle Ralph (played by Henry Winkler) meets a fellow traveler on his way to visit his grown niece. When Denver gets snowed in, Ralph convinces Jen (the niece) to allow Morgan (the traveler) to stay with them for a day. It’s fun, light-hearted, not too serious, and your basic ‘good’ made for TV holiday movie.
It’s A Wonderful Life needs no introduction. For my money, I hope it’s not the colorized version. A Royal Christmas is cute. It’s not a romance flick, but does center around two people wanting to be together despite obvious hurdles. This is your typical Prince falls for a commoner, and Queen doesn’t who approve, type of stories. It is the second movie of its kind in the last five years or so. Both are on this list.
Christmas Blessing is a little closer to the Lifetime/Hallmark wheelhouse. Neil Patrick Harris as a surgeon. Yeah, I know, Doogie Howser MD grows up just a little to be a surgeon. Then a surgery doesn’t go well and he runs off back home to escape. There is a romantic interest, a young boy (the one from Two and a Half Men) and a project to build a safe place for kids. This is actually a relative sequel to the movie Christmas Shoes. Christmas Shoes is even a little more real or too serious. Having seen both, Blessing is better and I rarely if ever see myself watching Christmas Shoes again. Anyone who has heard the song Christmas Shoes will know everything they need to in order to view Blessing without having seen Shoes.
Matchmaker Santa is fun. Girl in the wrong situation gets out of it and into the right situation after a series of events manipulated by a nice old man, or Santa depending on how literal you want to be. By the end of this one, rest assured all live happily ever after.
When Angels Come to Town is specific. This one might not be for everyone. However, I enjoy the pairing of Katey Segal post Married with Children but pre-Sons of Anarchy and an aging Peter Falk (Columbo). This one is a little slow-moving, but one I think most people should see at least once. Falk and Segal are angels sent to earth to do a small thing that will help a family immensely. The Job gets fumbled and eventually rectified. But not before some hijinks. Like Peter Falk dressed as an old and very ugly female shop clerk. This may not be one you watch every year, but it’s worth the time every now and again.
Disney’s Prep and Landing is without question for the kids. It’s an animated story about a particular elf trying desperately to improve his station at the North Pole. Seriously, if you have age appropriate kids, go for it. Otherwise, keep scrolling. They usually are paired together in prime time.
Home Alone 2: Lost in New York is what I would consider an almost classic. I personally prefer the original, but as sequels go Lost in New York is real solid. Like the Die Hard 1 vs 2 debate. Most people have the one they prefer, but an argument could be made for the other.
The Polar Express, again almost strictly for the children. My not quite 3-year old is crazy for this one right now. I think it’s because it’s about a train and my son loves trains. As an adult, I think it’s something I still wouldn’t watch more than once a year. The CG is inconsistent. The elves are almost creepy. And it drags on. When I do watch it, I normally fast forward through the first 30 minutes.
Love at the Christmas Table is, in my humble opinion, the best ‘sappy’ made for TV Christmas movie to date. I am a child of the 80’s, so casting Winnie Cooper had me sold immediately. This is the story of two families and their respective children. These two children grow up and apart while always coming back to the same Christmas party. The only question is if they will end up together. And if they do, what will that mean for the families around them.
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