TV picks: 'A Christmas Story Live!,' 'Gunpowder,' 'Last Tango in Halifax,' and more
"A Christmas Story Live!" - a new musical event from Fox with local ties - and "Gunpowder," a provocative historical thriller from HBO, are among the best bets this week.
A Christmas Story Live! Maya Rudolph stars as the mother, and newcomer Andy Walken as 9-year-old Ralphie Parker, in a live musical version of the beloved 1983 film. Includes some new music from the Oscar- and Tony-winning team of Ardmore native Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (La La Land, Dear Evan Hansen), who also wrote the songs for the 2012 Broadway version. 7 p.m. Sunday, Fox.
Last Tango in Halifax Holiday Special. First of two parts of a Christmas installment of the series starring Derek Jacobi, Anne Reid, and Sarah Lancashire should be new to most of us, though it aired in Britain last year. 8 p.m. Sunday and Dec. 24, WHYY12.
The Great British Baking Show: Christmas Master Class. Mary Berry and Paul Hollywood share the secrets of their favorite holiday treats. 9 p.m. Monday, WHYY12.
Gunpowder. Kit Harington (Game of Thrones), Liv Tyler, and Mark Gatiss (Sherlock) star in a three-night miniseries about the notorious 1605 plot to blow up Britain's Parliament and kill King James I. Tom Cullen (Downtown Abbey) plays Guy Fawkes, the arrested plotter Britons still burn in effigy every Nov. 5. Told from the point of view of the plotters, who blamed the king for the persecution of English Catholics, it features Harington in the role of one of his own ancestors, Robert Catesby, and might be seen as timely commentary on the roots of terrorism. 10 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, HBO.
Doctor Who Marathon. The iconic time lord takes over for a seven-day marathon featuring episodes with "doctors" David Tennant, Matt Smith, and Peter Capaldi, all leading up to this year's Christmas special, "Twice Upon a Time," which premieres at 9 p.m. Dec. 25. 7 a.m. Tuesday-Dec. 25, BBC America.
The Family I Had. This well-reviewed documentary from directors Katie Green and Carlye Rubin comes to TV from the film-festival circuit. Warning: The story of a mother whose then 13-year-old son killed her 4-year-old daughter might not be everyone's idea of holiday-season fare. 9 p.m. Thursday, Investigation Discovery.
The Last Post. Six-part British series from Peter Moffat (The Night Of) makes its U.S. debut on Amazon Prime Video. Set in the mid-1960s in what is now Yemen, it's inspired by the childhood memories of Moffat, whose father served in the Royal Military Police. Stars include Jessica Raine (Call the Midwife). Friday, Amazon.