Entertainment Television

'The Walking Dead' and 'Once Upon a Murdoch Christmas' top this week's TV must-sees

By Bill Harris, Special to Postmedia Network

Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan in "The Walking Dead."

Jeffrey Dean Morgan as Negan in "The Walking Dead."

Bill Harris' TV must-sees for the week of Dec. 11

1. Once Upon a Murdoch Christmas

Holiday episode

This is the second consecutive stand-alone Murdoch Mysteries Christmas special. While Murdoch (Yannick Bisson) investigates a series of brazen robberies targeting Toronto's businessmen just days before Christmas, some needy children mistake Julia (Helene Joy) for a storybook heroine.

When: Monday, Dec. 12 on CBC

2. The Walking Dead

Mid-season finale

Doesn't it seem as if this show has some sort of debut or finale every couple of weeks? Nonetheless, with members out scavenging for supplies, the unwelcome visit to Alexandria by Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) continues. Guests staying too long? Now THAT'S a true Christmas tradition.

When: Sunday, Dec. 11 on AMC

3. The Hollow Crown

Return

This is the first of three new episodes, airing on three consecutive Sundays, collectively titled The Wars of the Roses, and individually titled Henry VI Part 1, Henry VI Part 2, and Richard III. All-star cast includes Benedict Cumberbatch, Hugh Bonneville, Judi Dench, Tom Sturridge and Sophie Okonedo.

When: Sunday, Dec. 11 on most PBS channels

4. Star

Debut

A "sneak peak" – although there's nothing sneaky about it – of a new series that technically debuts in January. Created by Lee Daniels and Tom Donaghy, the story revolves around three young singers (played by Jude Demorest, Ryan Destiny and Brittany O’Grady) trying to navigate the music biz.

When: Wednesday, Dec. 14 on Fox

5. Son of Zorn

Holiday episode

Alan (Johnny Pemberton) is torn between Christmas, preferred by his mom Edie (Cheryl Hines), and Grafelnik, the Zephyrian holiday of revenge, preferred by his dad Zorn (voice of Jason Sudeikis). So Alan does the only mature thing: He plays his parents off against each other to get better presents.

When: Sunday, Dec. 11 on Fox, City

6. Modern Family

Holiday episode

Jay (Ed O'Neill) desperately wants to get out of volunteering at the school's lavish winter dance, but his excuse – pretending that he wants to spend more time with Phil (Ty Burrell) – backfires. Meanwhile, Mitchell (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) is shocked that he sees a lot of himself in the school bully.

When: Wednesday, Dec. 14 on ABC, City

7. Family Guy

Holiday episode

Peter (voice of Seth MacFarlane) gets power hungry when he's asked to fill in for a mall Santa. Hmmm, didn't see that coming at all. Meanwhile, Stewie (MacFarlane) and Brian (MacFarlane again) decide to crash holiday office parties for free food, fun and women. Wait a minute, can you do that?

When: Sunday, Dec. 11 on Fox, City

8. The Goldbergs

Holiday episode

Adam (Sean Giambrone) discovers that the things he loved about the holidays as a small child simply aren't as good as he remembers them. We've all been there. And when Erica (Hayley Orrantia) is encouraged to write a Hanukkah song, Barry (Troy Gentile) feels pressured to prove his own musical prowess.

When: Wednesday, Dec. 14 on ABC, CTV

9. Brooklyn Nine-Nine

Holiday episode

When Jake (Andy Samberg) helps Charles (Jo Lo Truglio) secure his son's favourite toy for Christmas, they end up at odds with a Latvian crime ring. Back at the precinct, the team gets ready for the annual caroling contest. Wait, do they have time for caroling with all the extra security needed at Trump Tower?

When: Tuesday, Dec. 13 on Fox, City

10. Critics' Choice Awards

Live

T.J. Miller, who plays Erlich on Silicon Valley, returns to host this 22nd annual event honouring the best in film and TV, as voted by members of the Broadcast Film and TV Critics' Associations. Mid-December seems like an odd time for an awards show, but you know, water finds its own level.

When: Sunday, Dec. 11 on A&E

Twitter: @billharris_tv

bharris@postmedia.com