The perfect holiday movies and TV shows to pair with every festive activity
CBC's lineup brings extra feels to all the fun
Busy, busy! That's us over the holiday season — you as well, we're sure. This season puts a lot on our plates (literally and figuratively), there's a lot to plan, prepare and party about. We're guilty of putting our "let it snow!" playlist on repeat when we're baking, trimming, and wrapping, but we get most excited when our special, holiday faves air on TV. This year is no exception. We have plenty of holiday shows and specials to accentuate any activity that is fitting of a little cheer. Including simply putting your slipper-clad feet up while you hug a cup of hot chocolate close.
Jingle All The Way
Perfect for: Online shopping
When: Sunday, November 27th at 5PM on CBC
There's no better allegory for the commercial chaos of Christmas than Arnold - the epitome of strength - getting trampled by parents and children who need to get their hands on the Turbo-Man toy. While Black Friday may leave some footprints on your back, we've come a very long way from having to go to the store and we can get our gifts in just a few clicks. So put on this Christmas gift equivalent of the Hunger Games and bask in the glow of knowing your days of putting pants on and leaving the house are over. Also, Phil Hartman is the greatest neighbour in holiday film history.
The Goods Holiday Shows
Perfect For: Wrapping, trimming, all things tinsel and bows!
Monday, December 11 through Friday, December 15 and Wednesday, December 20 at 2 p.m. (2:30 NT) on CBC
The Goods is always there for your lifestyle needs and they've got all the inspiration you need to get your home ready to ring in the season. Whether it's the latest in smart winter decor according to Steven (you can tell he designed this year's set), going Christmas-chic with Jessi's fashionably festive outfits, gracing your dinner table with the perfect (and perfectly easy) holiday feast thanks to Shahir, or Andrea helping you avoid the post-holiday bloat when you've had too many cookies, every episode will unwrap a winter wonderland of lovely lifestyle possibilities.
Dreaming Of A Jewish Christmas
Perfect For: Settling into the couch while you wait for trays of cookies to cool
Thursday, December 7th at 9PM on CBC
The Dreaming Of A Jewish Christmas is a Toronto-shot musical documentary about a group of Jewish songwriters, including Irving Berlin, Mel Tormé, Gloria Shayne Baker, who penned many of the holiday songs we all know by heart. Not only does the doc delve deeper into meanings of songs you never realized (is Rudolph The Red Nosed Reindeer an allegory for the immigrant experience?) but it also reminds us that concepts like warmth, cheer and togetherness have been crossing religious and ethnic boundaries for decades before us.
Perfect for: Consoling your crew if it doesn't snow
Sunday, December 24th at 5:30PM on CBC
Speaking of Irving Berlin, if you were in Toronto last year, you experienced a grey Christmas. Unpredictable weather patterns make hard to anticipate what kind of holiday season we'll have; bizarrely warm and sunny, viciously dark and windy or those horrible years when mother nature decides to make every surface an ice rink. So when you don't get the powder your skis crave (or if you're smart enough to have a tropical holiday), this classic musical is the perfect replacement. Danny Kaye's feet are flawless, Rosemary Clooney's pipes are on point and Bing Crosby is the epitome of holiday warmth, the kindest man on the planet, determined to bring snowy cheer to those who need it the most (including you). Oh, and may we all dress so stylishly this season.
Perfect for: Packing for that big family trip
Sunday, December 10th at 8PM on CBC
If you're taking the family on a holiday trip this year, good luck. Whether it's on the ground or in the air, you're going to need all your patience and packing skills if you're ever going to survive. So it's nice to remind yourself of a family that did a way worse job of it than you: forgetting their most adorable child. Despite the travel anxiety and continued abuse of Joe Pesci, the movie also packs plenty of holiday hijinks, along with a great John Candy cameo.
National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation
Perfect for: Right Before Family Comes Over
Sunday, December 17th at 8PM on CBC
If it's your turn to host your family's holiday feast, peace be with you. Spending your whole day in the kitchen only to feed relatives that get on your nerves can bottle up a lot of rage and this flick is the perfect release. Everyone is in it; your critical parents, indifferent children, freeloading cousin and pompous neighbours, not to mention Chevy Chase nailing the biggest blow up rant in holiday film history. Enjoy your turkey.
The Great Canadian Baking Show: Holiday Baking Week
Perfect for: Some serious icing inspiration
Wednesday, December 6th at 9PM on CBC
Are you all caught up on the Great Canadian Baking Show? Hurry! Whether you like cooking or just eating, this hungry amateur-based competition series will have you in the kitchen in no time (and viewers are already baking it up). Based on its popular British counterpart, the show really illuminates the passion (and stresses) baked into creating confections and even more so in this holiday special, where they will have to complete three seasonally special challenges. Whether you're making a spiced cake to ship overseas, or creating an epic gingerbread house for your little one to fawn over, holiday baking involves a lot of sugar, stress and sweat! It's nice to watch other people passionately going through the paces with you, and you will definitely pick up some icing inspiration too.
Dragons' Den Holiday Special
Perfect for: Feeling better about that shopping spree
Thursday, December 7th at 8PM on CBC
It just takes one bill to arrive for you to wonder that ugly Christmas sweater you're wearing as you open it was really worth it. Perhaps it's not the most preposterous X-mas deal that went down! The Dragons are armed with fire and tinsel this year, reading to swat down or scoop up some outrageous holiday-themed business proposals. Expect it to be both comforting and infuriating to see people who are both smarter and more reckless with their money than you are. Plus, it may encourage you to invent that self-decorating Christmas tree you've always dreamed of.