What to watch on Wednesday, December 26...
How the Grinch Stole Christmas
It's Dr. Seuss’s perennial classic, narrated by Boris Karloff, about the chartreuse nogoodnik who plots to steal Christmas from all the Whos down in Whoville. This is allegedly followed at 8:30pm by some sort of live-action movie version, but I distinctly remember all of us agreeing never to speak of that again.
Overwhelmed by the non-stop love and good tidings of the holiday? Spike your Yuletide cocktail with four episodes' worth of vintage Nick Miller crankiness to balance out the excessive cheer. The gang attends Schmidt’s office holiday party in last season’s “23,” and then Winston grapples with an aurally invasive cranberry in this year's Christmas episode, “Santa,” at 8:30pm. Those are followed by “Control” at 9pm and “Bully” at 9:30pm, two installments from the stretch of Season 1 when New Girl was beginning to hit its stride.
9pm, BBC America
Doctor Who: The Snowmen
‘Twas the night before Christmas 1892, and all through Victorian London not a creature was stirring... except for a swarm of evil snowmen with big, scary, pointy teeth. The Doctor was in mourning for his lost friends, but who else could be called upon to thwart this icy terror? Okay, possibly the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, but I’m pretty sure Steven Moffat doesn’t own the rights to them, so the Doctor it shall be!
Downton Abbey Revisited
In anticipation of Series 3, start warming the cockles of your Anglophilic heart with this retrospective of Downton’s first two series. Cast and crew interviews include creator Julian Fellowes, Hugh Bonneville, and Jim Carter. And the whole thing is hosted by Angela Lansbury, just in case the show needed to magnify its classiness quotient even further.
9pm, ABC Family
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
Spend Christmas with Chevy Chase, Beverly D’Angelo, and the rest of the Griswold clan in their halcyon pre-Old-Navy-commercials days. Although I bet Old Navy bought up a lot of commercial space during this airing, so watching it might give you a sense of what it’s like to be stuck in a time loop.
SEASON 3 FINALE, 9pm, TNT
Rizzoli & Isles
A building collapse leaves trapped loved ones in peril, seemingly contradicting the episode title, “No More Drama in My Life.” In fact, whoever the “my” in that title refers to had better think twice if they want to have a future on this network, seeing as how “drama” is TNT’s entire brand identity.
SERIES FINALE, 10pm, TNT
After five seasons, Leverage wraps up with “The Long Good-bye Job,” an episode whose title belies the writers’ anticipation of TNT’s just-made cancellation decision. A case connected to the death of Nate’s son leads the team into one of its most dangerous capers yet.
10:30pm, Disney Channel
Phineas and Ferb
A cozy cabin, a roaring fire, a mad scientist, a platypus in a fedora, a guest appearance by Kelly Clarkson, and a multicultural rendition of “We Wish You A Merry Christmas”—what more do you need in a spirited spin on the traditional Christmas special? A humongous sno-cone machine, you say? Well good news, that’s in store in the second half of the episode “A Phineas and Ferb Family Christmas; S’Winter.”
WHAT ARE YOU WATCHING TONIGHT?