From a live musical starring Maya Rudolph to a variety show hosted by Gwen Stafani, these new festive TV specials will have you decking the halls (or setting the PVR, at the very least).
Dreaming of a Jewish Christmas
A priest, a rabbi and a musicologist walk into a Chinese restaurant. That’s the set up for a documentary that examines the Jewish composers behind many of the world’s best-loved Christmas carols, from “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” to “White Christmas.” Directed by Toronto documentarian Larry Weinstein, the one-hour special also features appearances from former–Barenaked Lady Stephen Page.
Watch it: Dec. 7, 9 p.m., CBC
Gwen Stefani’s You Make Me Feel Like Christmas
The former punk princess ditches belly tops for boughs of holly in this hour-long variety show featuring songs from Stefani’s new holiday album. Expect guest appearances from famous friends including Chelsea Handler, Seth Macfarlane and (of course) Stefani’s “Sexiest Man Alive” boyfriend, Blake Shelton.
Watch it: Dec. 12, 9 p.m., NBC
Taraji’s White Hot Holidays
Empire’s indomitable matriarch hosts Fox’s annual variety special, featuring a slew of R&B’s fiercest females — Fergie, Faith Evans, Chaka Kan and Salt-N-Pepa — as well as “Prancerton,” a send up of the Hamilton musical, with a cast full of Christmas characters.
Watch it: Dec. 14, 8 p.m., Fox
A Christmas Story Live
After the huge successes of Hairspray, Grease and The Wiz, Fox is giving a live musical treatment to the classic holiday movie that taught us why it’s a bad idea to put your tongue on a cold pole. Maya Rudolph stars as the mom and Matthew Broderick (a.k.a. adult Ralphie) narrates, looking back on his red wagon days and the best Christmas ever.
Watch it: Dec. 17, 7 p.m., Fox
A Home for the Holidays
Josh Groban, Kelly Clarkson and Kacey Musgraves lend their oh holy pipes to a good cause: the 19th annual CBS special that alternates uplifting adoption stories with musical performances. If the heartwarming stories don’t give those tear ducts a workout, Groban’s angelic voice probably will.
Watch it: Dec. 19, 9 p.m., CBS
Because festive cookies are a must when watching these specials: