Friday TV: Trolling the Christmas Specials

dreamworks-sets-a-trolls-animated-specialThe Christmas special floodgates open, with the one new one “Dreamworks Trolls Holiday” (NBC, 8:30 p.m.), based not on internet scoundrels but on the candy-colored dolls and movie.

Along with it comes a lot of oldies: “Frosty the Snowman” (CBS, 8 p.m.) and “Frosty Returns” (CBS, 8:30 p.m.), “Santa Claus in Comin’ to Town” (ABC, 8 p.m.) and the 1966 “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” (NBC, 8 p.m.).

Even public television is in on the act with the Broadway revival of Irving Berlin’s “Holiday Inn” on “Great Performances” (PBS, 9 p.m., check local listings). It’s the one that introduced “White Christmas.”

There may be some good stories that have come out of 59 years of Grammy performances, but here’s a two hour special that promises “Grammys Greatest Stories: A 60th Anniversary Special” (CBS, 9 p.m.).

The second shoe drops in the two part “iHeartRadio Music Festival” (The CW, 8 p.m.) from Las Vegas with performances from Lorde, Miley Cyrus, DJ Khaled, Big Sean among others.

On the made-for-TV “Finding Santa” (Hallmark, 8 p.m.) the search for a new Kris Kringle may or may not involve romance.

We’ll have to deal with the real Angela Merkel now that “The Tracey Ullman Show” (HBO, 11 p.m.) is reaching its second season finale.

NBA star Anthony Davis wants a room-sized aquarium on “Tanked” (Animal Planet, 9 p.m.).

News zombies appear on “Z Nation” (Syfy, 9 p.m.).

“Josh Gates’ Destination Truth” (Travel, 9 p.m.) goes to Chile and New Zealand.

The new series “Happy!” (Syfy, 10 p.m.), staring Christopher Meloni as a hit man who is visited by a winged horse, based on the graphic novel, gets a preview.

A condo is renovated for two cats and a dog on “Animal Cribs” (Animal Planet, 10 p.m.).

Marvin Hunter, Rita Brent, Ben Compton and Merc B. Williams perform on “Kevin Hart Presents: Hart of the City” (Comedy Central, 11 p.m.).

“Finding Escobar’s Millions” (Discovery, 10 p.m.) reaches the jungle.

Jermaine Dupri welcomes five new hopeful artists on ’The Rap Game” (Lifetime, 10 p.m.) who are advised by Bow Wow and Ricci Bitti.

A new crime series zeroes in one profession: “Deadly Dentists” (Investigation Discovery, 10 p.m.).

“How It’s Made” (Science, 10 p.m.) has its own Thanksgiving episode.

Matthew Modine is guest programmer on Turner Classic Movies. His choices: “The Dirty Dozen” (8 p.m.), “Cool Hand Luke” (10:45 p.m.), “Network” (1:15 a.m.) and “Grand Illusion” (3:30 a.m.).

Hockey today includes Pittsburgh at Boston (NBC, 1 p.m.).

Basketball has Charlotte at Cleveland (NBA, 8 p.m.) and Chicago at Golden State (NBA, 10:30 p.m.).

Here’s a rare thing for network prime time: college football. So here’s Texas Tech at Texas (Fox, 8 p.m.). It’s among a number of games today, with Western Michigan at Toledo (ESPNU, 11;30 p.m.), Miami at Pittsburgh (ABC, noon), Baylor at TCU (ESPN, noon), Navy at Houston (ESPN, noon), Missouri at Arkansas (CBS, 1:30 p.m.), South Florida at Central Florida (ABC, 3:30 p.m.), New Mexico at San Diego State (CBS Sports, 3:30 p.m.), Iowa at Nebraska (Fox Sports, 4 p.m.) and California at UCLA (Fox Sports, 10:30 p.m.).

College basketball includes Missouri vs. St. John’s (ESPNews, 11 a.m.), Northern Iowa vs. Villanova (ESPN2, noon), St. Mary’s vs. Washington State (ESPNews, 1:30 p.m.), NC State vs. Tennessee (ESPN2, 2:30 p.m.), North Carolina vs. Arkansas (ESPN, 3:30 p.m.), UCF vs. West Virginia (ESPN2, 5 p.m.), Duke vs. Texas (ESPN, 5:30 p.m.), New Mexico vs. TCU (CBS Sports, 7 p.m.), Georgia vs. San Diego State (ESPN2, 7 p.m.), Virginia vs. Rhode Island (ESPNU, 7:30 p.m.), Stanford vs. Ohio State (ESPN2, 9 p.m.), St. Bonaventure vs. Maryland (CBS, 9:30 p.m.), Oregon vs. DePaul (ESPNU, 9:30 p.m.), Vanderbilt vs. Seton Hall (ESPNews, 9:45 p.m.), Florida vs. Gonzaga (ESPN2,11:30 p.m.), Connecticut vs. Michigan State (midnight).

Daytime Talk

Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest: Patricia Heaton, Jensen Ackles, Reba McEntire (rerun). The View: Sen. John McCain (rerun). Harry Connick: Queen Latifah, Ledisi (rerun). Steve Harvey: Milo Ventimiglia, Toni Braxton (rerun). Ellen DeGeneres: Eric Stonestreet, Whitney Cummings, Kelsea Ballerini, Brandi Smith (rerun). Wendy Williams: Whoopi Goldberg, Laurie Schacht. The Real: Michelle Hurd (rerun).

Late Talk

Stephen Colbert: Morgan Freeman, Grace Gummer (rerun). Jimmy Kimmel: Jon Stewart, Woody Harrelson, Tony Bennett, Paul Shaffer (rerun). Jimmy Fallon: Billy Crystal, Derek Hough, Les Twins, Jessie Reyez (rerun). Seth Meyers: Mark Wahlberg, Martin McDonagh, Walk the Moon, Nathan Davilmar (rerun). James Corden: Jeff Bridges, David Boreanaz, Liam Gallagher (rerun). Carson Daly: Nicolle Wallace, Mura Masa, Richard Blais (rerun).


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