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All Hail the Queen of Christmas TV
December 1, 2007  | By David Bianculli
 
In certain areas of TV criticism and history, I bow to no one. (I should, but I don't.) But when it comes to holiday television, I bow quite humbly to The Queen of Christmas TV.

She Who Cannot Be Equalled, during this time of year, is Newsday TV columnist Diane Werts. When it comes to December holiday shows on television, she wrote the book.

Christmas on Television

She really did. It's called Christmas on Television, and it's full - astoundingly, almost ridiculously full - of just about every holiday special, or holiday-themed series episode, made at the time the book was published two years ago.

I don't even know why I use the qualifier "just about," because every time I think of something and look it up in the index, it's there. Jack Benny's special Christmas episode, and Gumby's? Check. The Star Wars Holiday Special? Check. Mr. Hankey the Christmas Poo from South Park? Chrismukkah from The O.C.? Festivus from Seinfeld? Check and double check. Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, even Chrismukkah - all present and accounted for.

Her book can be purchased here, in time for a perfectly appropriate gift for any TV and book lover.

(Full disclosure: I'm credited as the series editor for this Praeger Television Collection, but that's completely separate from my enthusiasm and admiration for this particular book.)

In the meantime, here are Diane's seasonal updates. First, her holiday column for 2007, from Newsday:

Gumby Christmas

And here are her complete listings of holiday TV shows, which you can peruse to find if, when and where your own favorites will be televised. Like Diane, it's insanely thorough.

Even on December 1, it's not too early to start collecting and enjoying holiday TV classics. Tonight at 8 ET, TV Land begins a 24-hour marathon of holiday-themed episodes. Included early in the marathon: 9 p.m. ET's memorable episode of M*A*S*H, in which Alan Alda's Hawkeye writes home from Korea.

That, and more, makes for a ho-ho-whole lot of TV WORTH WATCHING this month. Strike or no strike.

 

1 Comment

 

Toby OB said:

It's always great for televisiology research to have someone like Diane around - an experts in their particular niche. I don't think I could make it through all of those TV Christmas episodes, but thanks to Diane, I don't have to.

Her lists each year make it easy to track down those particular episodes I need to see for whatever seasonal Toobworld project I may be working on.

I'm glad you spread the word!

Comment posted on December 1, 2007 9:35 AM

 
 
 
 
 
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