From the Boss on Broadway to Cardi B headlining in Vegas, we round up the top 10 shows to watch this week
1. Springsteen on Broadway – Sunday, December 16, Netflix
NetflixRock stars don’t come bigger or more beloved than Bruce Springsteen, who’s spent the last year-plus performing his critically acclaimed one-man show to sold-out crowds on Broadway.
On the same night as the Boss’s final performance of Springsteen on Broadway, Netflix will debut a filmed version of the show, an iconoclastic blend of stories from his life (taken from his autobiography Born to Run) and intimate performances of some of his biggest hits. The resulting show is a blend of theatre and pure rock ’n’ roll that has been described by critics using such terms as “revelatory,” “brilliant,” “astounding” and “sheer musical magic.”
Joined on some numbers by spouse/
E Street Band singer Patti Scialfa, viewers will enjoy stripped-down performances of such beloved Springsteen classics as “Thunder Road,” “Born in the U.S.A.” and, of course, “Born to Run.”
2. A Christmas Carol: The Family Musical with a Scrooge Loose! – Sunday, December 16, 7 p.m., CBC
CBCThe Ross Petty treatment of this holiday classic, filmed in front of a live audience at Toronto’s Elgin Theatre, blends Scrooge’s journey with hit songs, topical references and hilarious ad-libs. With the Christmas Ghosts employing some surprising allies on their quest, Scrooge has never been so tempted to come over to the bright side.
3. iHeartRadio Jingle Ball – Sunday, December 16, 8 p.m., The CW
iHeartPerformed at Madison Square Garden in New York on December 7th, the annual concert series that pulls together the hottest performers of the year features Cardi B, Shawn Mendes, Camila Cabello, Calvin Harris, Dua Lipa, Alessia Cara and more.
4. In Memoriam – Monday December 17, 10 p.m., ABC
ABCRobin Roberts hosts this sad special devoted to the celebrities who left us in 2018, looking
at the lives and the legacies they’ve left behind, featuring
the personal stories of the stars who knew them best. Among those certain to be featured: music icon Aretha Franklin, rapper Mac Miller, novelist Tom Wolfe, designer Kate Spade, chef-turned-TV star Anthony Bourdain, screen icon Burt Reynolds, Marvel Comics legend Stan Lee and more.
5. Dr. Suess’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas – Tuesday, December 18, 8 p.m., CBC
CBCLong before he became one of this year’s box-office sensations, and even decades before he received that Jim Carrey makeover, Dr. Seuss’s surly character was already plotting to ruin the holidays in Whoville, in a 1966 animated Christmas special featuring the voice of Boris Karloff as the Grinch and the narrator.
6. Merry Christmas, Johnny Rose – Tuesday, December 18, 9 p.m., CBC
CBCIn an all-new Schitt’s Creek special, Johnny (Eugene Levy) tries to re-introduce traditional Rose family yuletide celebrations, but the notion is hardly met with enthusiasm by the rest of the clan. As the family members succumb to the pressure of living up to cherished memories, Christmas spectacularly crumbles, Schitt’s Creek-style.
7. Entertaining Christmas – Thursday, December 20, 5 p.m. & 8 p.m., Super Channel Heart & Home
Hallmark ChannelWhen Candace (Fuller House’s Jodie Sweetin) is poised to carry on the brand of her mother Claire, a Martha Stewart of sorts, there is only one problem: Kara can’t cook or sew or do any of the things her mother is known for. She gets thrown in the deep end when asked to help a young girl welcome her deployed father home for Christmas, only to discover the girl’s uncle (Brendan Fehr) is a reporter looking for his next scoop. Oh, if only they would fall in love...
8. A Home for the Holidays: The 20th Anniversary – Thursday, December 20, 8 p.m., CBS
CBSThis star-studded holiday special features uplifting stories of child adoption from foster care to raise awareness of the issue. For two decades, the special has told inspirational stories of adoptive families, enhanced by performances from popular musical artists.
9. Murphy Brown – Thursday, December 20, 9:30 p.m., City & CBS
CBSThis week marks the season finale of CBS’s hotly anticipated Murphy Brown revival, which has, unfortunately for the network, proven far less successful than ABC’s Roseanne revival. (Though, as of this writing, Murphy Brown has not yet been forced to fire its title character, so... small victory?) Naturally, when news slipped out that Murphy was to be capped at just 13 episodes (not receiving the traditional full-season pickup) and would be replaced on CBS’s schedule with Nina Dobrev’s new sitcom Fam, the rumour mill leaped into overdrive that the show’s less-than-stellar ratings had already sent it back to the scrap heap of TV history.
In fact, that’s not the case, at least not yet: creator Diane English immediately took to social media to dismiss the suggestion that Murphy and the Murphy in the Morning team had gotten their walking papers, assuring the world at large that it was always intended to be a 13-episode season for the series’ return.
That said, English also clarified that “we will have to wait until spring to hear
if we are renewed for another season of 13,” but she thanked the fans for their loyalty. If you’re one of those loyal fans, then you’ll want to tune in to see how tonight’s finale plays out,
of course, but you should also be sure to tell as many people as possible to do the same... for Murphy’s sake.
10. Life Itself – Friday, December 21, Amazon Prime Video
AmazonThis Is Us creator Dan Fogelman crafts another generation-spanning tearjerker, this one a film about two troubled sweethearts (Oscar Isaac, Olivia Wilde) preparing to have a baby—an act that, over the years, will unexpectedly touch the lives of people across the globe. Antonio Banderas, Olivia Cooke, Mandy Patinkin and Samuel L. Jackson also star.