Is there room for a new holiday classic? The competition is fierce and the giants of the field (“Grinch”, “Charlie Brown” and “Rudolph”) are 60 years ahead.
Netflix broadcasts “Robin Robin”, from animation studio Aardman, famous for the stop-motion magic of “Wallace & Gromit”. In “Robin”, directors Dan Ojari and Michael Please have come up with a new variation on the adorable misfit who learns the meaning of the holidays.
In this case, it’s a robin with a slightly distorted perspective. Because its egg fell from its nest before it hatched, it ended up being raised by mice and tends to prefer their company. Similar to a mouse, this bird wants nothing more than to sneak into a human’s house and munch on Christmas bounty or at least the crumbs that fall on the floor.
â¢ If it is difficult to introduce a new Christmas tradition, redoing one can be dangerous. After reimagining the world of Archie Comics in all the weirdest ways, The CW is coming out on a branch with a reboot of âThe Waltons’ Homecomingâ (7 p.m. Sunday, CW, TV-PG), the 1971 movie special that started the beloved series. Richard Thomas, who played John Boy in the original, returns here to relate.
One of the reasons for the initial success of “Homecoming” and “The Waltons” was the Depression Era setting. Not to sound like Charlie Brown, but the more “commercial” Christmas got, the more viewers seemed to long for a time when people seemed to want and need less. With its stories of foreclosures and bank runoff, âIt’s a Wonderful Lifeâ was heavily influenced by the Depression Era. “A Christmas Story” takes place at the end of the 1930s, when wealth seemed only a rumor. Written in 1956, “A Christmas Memory” by Truman Capote dates back to the southern Depression era. It was adapted for television in the 1960s and 1990s, still finding a receptive audience.
These poignant stories from simpler times contrast with the more recent school of holiday comedies, such as â8-Bit Christmas,â now airing on HBO Max. Though bathed in the nostalgic glow of 1980s pop culture, âBitâ is about a boy desperate to get his Nintendo Entertainment System before everyone else. Not exactly “The Gift of the Magi”.
â¢ Speaking of gifts, the four-part âThe Toys That Made Americaâ series (8 p.m. Sunday, story) recalls the games, dolls and toys that made history, and how Historical events from the Civil War to the Cold War influenced children’s toys.
âToysâ also features business visionaries who have transformed small family businesses into billion dollar companies named Milton Bradley and Mattel. Filled with clips, interviews and pageants, it recalls the development of favorites such as the Frisbee and the industrial mishap that inspired the Slinky.
â¢ If a new âWaltonsâ doesn’t prove that everything needs to be recycled, a two-hour âNash Bridgesâ film event (8 p.m. Saturday, US, TV-14) could.
Fit, groomed and charming as always, Don Johnson returns to his role as a rule-breaking San Francisco cop. He was first seen cracking up with his sidekick (Cheech Marin) before finding himself embroiled in a shootout with bad guys in the middle of a traffic jam that resulted in a gas truck exploding. And yes, he still drives his vintage Barracuda convertible.
In the stereotypical logic of these shows, his derring-do passes him off as a hero before being arrested for breaking the rules, a simple speed bump for our hero, because the brass are aware that even a 70-year-old Nash is essential. .
Comfort food as unthreatening as leftover turkey, “Nash Bridges” is television generations far from its prime. This was a popular CBS tariff in the years before “CSI” increased budgets and body counts for that network’s police procedures. This was not out of place in a program that included Angela Lansbury in Dick Van Dyke’s âMurder, She Wroteâ and âDiagnosis Murderâ.
Is âNashâ a signal that the United States wants to reclaim its reputation for non-threatening procedures like âMonkâ and âRoyal Painsâ? Times have changed since these shows started. For some viewers, the sight of a handsome middle-aged man driving vintage metal from Detroit might make them think they are watching a Viagra commercial.
â¢ College football action includes Texas A&M at LSU (6:00 p.m., ESPN), Oklahoma at Oklahoma State (6:30 p.m., ABC) and Notre Dame at Stanford (7:00 p.m., Fox).
â¢ âRobbie the Reindeer in Hooves of Fireâ (7pm, CBS, r, TV-G) is followed by âRobbie the Reindeer in Legend of the Lost Tribeâ (7:30 pm, CBS, r, TV-G).
â¢ Favorites return in “Home Town Takeover: Where Are They Now?” Â»(7 p.m., HGTV).
â¢ A child is born on âMerry Liddle Christmas Babyâ (7 pm, Lifetime, TV-PG).
â¢ Pursued by gangsters, a businessman infiltrates the role of the big guy in the 2021 holiday comedy âSoul Santaâ (7 pm, BET, TV-14).
â¢ The late Ed Asner is one of the voices heard in âThe Story of Santa Clausâ (8 p.m., CBS, r, TV-G).
â¢ A tourist is mistaken for an elite party planner and hired to run a posh Irish estate in the 2021 romance ‘Christmas at Castle Hart’ (8 p.m., Hallmark, TV-G).
â¢ Scheduled on â60 Minutesâ (6:00 pm, CBS): a hazing incident at Washington State University that claimed the life of a freshman; a profile of Rita Moreno and a preview of the new âWest Side Storyâ; how Rwanda’s growing gorilla population has attracted high-end tourism.
â¢ âThe Wonderful World of Disney: A Magic Holiday Celebrationâ (6 p.m., ABC, TV-G).
â¢ “One Last Time: An Evening With Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga” (7pm, CBS) offers a bittersweet coda to Bennett’s career that dates back to “Because of You”, his first hit record, released in 1951. The 95-year-old singer has been diagnosed with dementia.
â¢ The Baltimore Ravens host the Cleveland Browns in an NFL football game (7:20 pm, NBC).
â¢ Musicians are honored at the 2021 Soul Train Awards (7 p.m., BET, TV-14).
â¢ The local mogul makes an announcement on âDexter: New Bloodâ (7 p.m., Showtime, TV-MA).
â¢ âThe Great Christmas Light Fightâ (8 p.m., ABC, TV-PG) returns for a ninth season.
â¢ Threats on several fronts on âYellowstoneâ (7 p.m., CMT, Paramount, TV-MA).
â¢ Jane Pauley hosts âForever Young: In Search of the Fountain of Youthâ (9 p.m., CBS).
â¢ Taissa’s campaign reflects on the low road on âyellow vestsâ (9 p.m., Showtime, TV-MA).
Ewan McGregor stars in the 2019 shocker âDoctor Sleepâ (9 p.m. Sunday, TNT, TV-14), a sort of sequel to âThe Shiningâ.
John O’Hurley and David Frei host the National Dog Show (7 p.m., NBC, r, TV-PG) … A vintage portion of “Saturday Night Live” (9 p.m., NBC, r, TV-14).
Rain men on “The Simpsons” (7pm, Fox, TV-PG) … The idol of Beef (JK Simmons) returns on “The Great North” (7:30 pm, Fox, TV-14) … The son of Bishop becomes a target on “The Equalizer” (8pm, CBS, TV-14) … Tina feels ignored on “Bob’s Burgers” (8pm, Fox, TV-PG) … A film noir mystery on “Family Guy â(8:30 p.m., Fox, TV-14).
– OK, that was weird. The least anticipated story of the week was the scandal involving Felicity Huffman (“Desperate Housewives”) and Lori Loughlin, star of “When Calls the Heart” (7pm Sunday, Hallmark, TV-G), in a corruption plot. / cheating to get their respective daughters into elite universities.
This is obviously an ongoing case, and all parties must have their say, or someday, in court. But the motivation at the center of this story is worth discussing. It implies an overwhelming urge to do anything to get children to elite schools. As if something “less” was unthinkable.
Television does not play a small role in this insecurity. I can’t remember how many times I’ve had to describe an ABC legal drama where every character is only taken from the most exclusive Ivy and spends most of the pilot bragging about it.
There was a time, not so long ago, when John Grisham wrote bestselling books about barely-accredited young lawyers from anonymous institutions who took on impossible cases against big corporations and ended up winning. And I got the girl, to boot.
So, our current era’s neurotic obsession with elitism and inequality is barely wired.
If anything comes from this sordid affair, it is an appreciation that shoddy efforts of snobbery are always essentially pathetic. Or on classic, comical TV. Watching âGilligan’s Islandâ we identified with Mary Ann and the skipper, and took pity on the millionaire and his wife.
– CNN launches the four-hour documentary “Tricky Dick” (8 p.m., Sunday), describing the life and times of Richard Nixon’s public career, which spans decades from the dawn of the Cold War to ‘to the Clinton years.
– Anxious new mother joins a solidarity and support group, only to find out they have darker plans on their agenda in the 2019 shock “Mommy Group Murder” (7 p.m., Lifetime, TV-14).
– The Thunder and Warriors meet in NBA action (7:30 p.m., ABC).
– An old kidnapper returns to form on “Ransom” (8 p.m., CBS, TV-14).
– Program on â60 minutesâ (6:00 p.m., CBS): employees of embassies in China and Cuba complain of mysterious illnesses; AOL founder Steve Case and his plans to invest in the future of little-known American small towns; a visit to Monaco.
– The duels begin on âWorld of Danceâ (7 p.m., NBC, TV-PG).
– Auditions continue on âAmerican Idolâ (7 p.m., ABC, TV-PG).
– Lex Luthor is free on “Supergirl” (7pm, CW, TV-PG).
– Mr. Wednesday prepares for battle on “American Gods” (7 pm, Starz, TV-MA).
– After learning of her royal lineage, an adopted 10-year-old becomes a little tyrant in the 2019 shock “Mommy’s Little Princess” (7 pm, Lifetime, TV-14).
– A secret room contains dangers on “Charmed” (8 p.m., CW, TV-14).
– Hidden secrets revealed on “The Walking Dead” (8pm, AMC, TV-MA).
– A new trial continues on “The Case Against Adnan Syed” (8 p.m., HBO, TV-14).
– Ax is determined to destroy Taylor in the premiere of the fourth season of “Billions” (8:00 PM, Showtime, TV-MA).
– Ulysses is pursuing a conspiracy theory on âNow Apocalypseâ (8 p.m., Starz, TV-MA).
– âUnsungâ (8 p.m., TVONE) portrays the Jets.
– Pacific openings on “Madam Secretary” (9 p.m., CBS, TV-PG).
– The tension mounts on “Good Girls” (9 p.m., NBC, TV-14).
– Mo’s past is revealed on “Black Monday” (9pm, Showtime, TV-MA).
– Saint-Patrick’s Day inspires many traditions. Syfy offers a marathon of âLeprechaunâ films, from âLeprechaun 5: In the Hoodâ (4pm Saturday, TV-14) to âLeprechaun 2â (8pm). TCM takes the traditional approach, distributing the Technicolor blah of director John Ford’s 1952 romance “The Quiet Man” (7 p.m. Sunday, TV-PG).
“Dateline” (7 p.m., NBC, TV-PG) … “NBA Countdown” (7 p.m., ABC) … Kids are doing fine on “MasterChef” (8 p.m., Fox, r, TV-PG) … ” 48 Hours â(9 p.m., CBS) … A vintage portion ofâ Saturday Night Live â(9 p.m., NBC, R, TV-14).
A visit from an old friend inspires Miles on âGod Friended Meâ (7pm, CBS, TV-PG) … Homer can’t leave Bart’s virtual realm on âThe Simpsonsâ (7pm, Fox, TV-14 ) … Empathy for everything on “Bob’s Burgers” (7:30 p.m., Fox, TV-14).
A stroll down the aisle on “NCIS: Los Angeles” (8 p.m., CBS, TV-14) … On two episodes of “Family Guy” (Fox, TV-14), Meg’s Winter Olympics ( 8 p.m.), fights on a dowager (8:30 p.m., r) … Body aches on “Shark Tank” (9 p.m., ABC, TV-PG).