It's the most wonderful time of the year... unless you're looking for season premieres of television shows, because if there's one thing that the holiday season means, it's Special Episodes based around yuletide and peace and love. So if this month's selection of all-new shows for your viewing pleasure has a theme, don't blame us...
If it's December, then it's time for another Syfy mini-series based around a popular kids' tale. After Alice and Tin Man, this time it's Peter Pan getting the makeover treatment with this prequel about Peter's arrival in the eponymous magical world, the origins of Captain Hook and, of course, the secret of eternal youth, with a cast including Rhys Ifans, Bob Hoskins and Pushing Daisies' Anna Friel as an 18th century pirate (as well as Kiera Knightly as the voice of Tinkerbell). (Dec 4th and 5th, both 9pm, on Syfy)
Adventure Time: Holly Jolly Secrets
Where else but this particular Cartoon Network series would the Ice King keep a video diary, never mind leave it around the place for Finn and Jake to discover, giving them a chance to find out all about his origins? Yes, it's a heartwarming holiday episode as only this show could handle it, so expect weirdness and confused laughter to accompany that evening's helping of eggnog. (Dec 5th, 8pm on Cartoon Network)
Countdown To Christmas
For the second year running, Syfy runs a mini-marathon of special Christmas episodes of its top series. This year, we get Eureka turned to claymation in "Do You See What I See," before Warehouse 13's Pete accidentally ends up in a world where he was never born in "The Greatest Gift" (Seriously, Warehouse writers, you couldn't have called it "It's A Wonderful Lattimer"?), and the evening ends with a Haven one-off, "Silent Night," where the town's inhabitant's slowly (and, of course, mysteriously) disappear one by one. (Dec 6th, 8pm, 9pm and 10pm respectively on Syfy)
As everyone who saw last year's holiday special knows already, Community gets what makes the yuletide great. And so, even though this is the last episode before the show's forced hiatus (Dear NBC, you still can't convince me that Whitney deserves a timeslot more than this show does. Love, pretty much everyone I know), they're going out singing... literally. Yes, it's a Christmas musical episode. Will it be able to beat the heights of the Dean/Jeff duet on "Kiss From A Rose" a few weeks back? Admittedly doubtful, but you owe it to Greendale to tune in and find out. (Dec 8th, 8pm on NBC)
As I've already explained, the annual Who Christmas episodes have become such a tradition for me that I can't imagine this time of year without the excitement and anticipation of seeing what's in store this time 'round. For the 2011 special, Steven Moffat is going all Narnia on us with the story of a widow, her children and a world inside a wardrobe. Somehow, I don't think we're going to be getting Christian allegory and talking lions this time around, somehow; I'm sure that's something that the Doctor wouldn't stand for at all, really... (Dec 25th, 9pm on BBC America)