It’s time to step into Christmas, and get planning what we’ll all be watching this year when we’re full to the brim and all done opening gifts!
Virgin Media Television has announced its festive TV schedule, with brand new specials of TV shows, new documentaries, family game shows, music specials, Irish movie premieres and live sport.
Whether you’re looking for a Christmas special or a festive movie, there is something for the whole family to enjoy this Christmas. Check out some of the top picks below.
‘Gogglebox Ireland’s Christmas Cracker’, Virgin Media One, Wednesday 9 December at 9pm
Virgin Media One will air the first ever ‘Gogglebox Ireland’ Christmas special featuring three new ‘Irish abroad’ homes. Unable to experience an Irish Christmas due to current restrictions, the nation’s favourite TV critics will be feasting their eyes on some classic Irish Christmas telly as the show goes from Cabra to Berlin, Limerick to London and Cork to Auckland in the name of bringing a little bit of home to those who can’t be here for the usual festive fun.
‘2020: Thank You, Next!’, Virgin Media One, Tuesday 29 December at 9pm
2020, never has there been a year we’re so ready to say goodbye to but before we socially-distance ourselves from it forever, Neil Delamere wants to rip it apart, eat it up and spit it out. Neil and his celebrity panel will find the funny in the year we can’t wait to forget in this one off special show.
‘The Green Room with Ivan Yates’, Virgin Media One, Wednesday 23 December at 10pm
Ivan Yates returns to television screens with a brand new Friday night entertainment show highlighting all the news, issues and fun from the world of sports. Each week Ivan is joined by Paddy Power, impressionist and TV broadcaster Conor Moore and a special guest, with comedy and competitions to help kickstart your weekend. The one off special airs on Wednesday 23rd December and the brand new series starts in late January.
‘I’m A Celebrity….Get Me Out of Here! Final’, Virgin Media One, Friday 4 December at 9pm
Nothing marks December on TV like the final of ‘I’m A Celeb’. After three weeks of facing their fears, coping with hunger and battling the elements, it’s time to find out who will be crowned King or Queen of the Castle.
‘The Masked Singer’, Virgin Media One, Saturday 26 December at 7pm
The highly anticipated Masked Singer finally comes to Irish TV. 12 famous faces attempt to hide their true identities and perform in front of the celebrity judges.
‘Britain’s Got Talent Christmas Spectacular,’ Virgin Media One, Friday 25 December at 8.00pm
On Christmas Day, this festive episode special will bring former contestants back to the BGT stage for a night of top entertainment.
‘Gary Barlow’s Night at the Museum’, Virgin Media One, Saturday 12 December at 8.30pm
Gary Barlow hosts an hour of musical fun from the Natural History Museum in London. He will perform some of his biggest hits, songs from his new album and some exciting covers. He will be joined by Michael Buble, Jack Whitehall, Beverley Knight, Alfie Boe, Rick Astley, Jason Donovan, Alesha Dixon, Ronan Keating and Sebastian Yatra.
‘The Voice UK’, Virgin Media One, Saturday 2 January at 8.30pm
‘The Voice UK’ returns for a new series as our celebrity judges begin their search for the best vocalist.
Documentaries and Specials
‘Ireland Under Lockdown: COVID-19 Stories’, Virgin Media One, Tuesday 8 December at 9pm
Virgin Media News reporter Zara King explores the impact of coronavirus on life in Ireland in this compelling documentary. Zara meets families who tragically lost loved ones, explores the effect the virus has had on our mental health and interviews the key public health decision makers including Chief Medical Officer Dr Tony Holohan, Minister Simon Harris and HSE Director General Paul Reid.
‘John Gilligan – The End of the Line’ Virgin Media One, Monday 14 December at 9pm
Virgin Media News, in conjunction with the Sunday World, will delve into the history of John Gilligan, one of Ireland’s most notorious criminals.
‘Don’t Look Back in Anger 2020’, Virgin Media One, Monday 28 Dec at 7.30pm
With more big news stories than an average decade, 2020 has given us a lot to remember and plenty more we’d love to forget. This latest addition to the Don’t Look Back in Anger series chronicles the highs and lows of 2020 and all the chaos in between.
‘Brian Kerr – A Life In Football’, Virgin Media Two, Wednesday 2 December at 10.15pm and Wednesday 9 December at 10.15pm
Legendary Irish international football manager Brian Kerr discusses his career and life in an in-depth conversation with Virgin Media Sport’s Tommy Martin.
‘Emmerdale’ Friday 25 December at 6.00pm and ‘Coronation Street’ at 7.00pm
Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without our favourite soaps and on Christmas Day there will be hour-long special episodes of Emmerdale and Coronation Street back to back.
‘Coronation Street – 60 Unforgettable Years’ Virgin Media One, Monday 7 December at 9pm
A must-watch for all corrie fans, with never heard before secrets from the show’s stars – from first audition nerves, to fallouts, to memorable location shoots, to remembering their special memories of the storylines that gripped everyone.
‘Coronation Street: Soapy Slip Ups’, Virgin Media One, Tuesday 15 December at 7.30pm
This special anniversary programme looks at all the mishaps from wardrobe malfunctions, missed lines and misbehaving props.
Movies in December
‘Bad Santa Two’, Virgin Media One, Friday 18 December at 9pm
(2016) A comedy must this Christmas is the Irish TV premiere of Bad Santa Two. Fuelled by cheap whiskey, greed and hatred, Willie teams up once again with his angry little sidekick, Marcus, to knock off a Chicago charity on Christmas Eve. Starring Billy Bob Thornton, Kathy Bates and Tony Cox.
‘Jimmy’s Hall’, Virgin Media One, Tuesday 29 December at 10pm
(2014) An Irish drama based on Jimmy Gralton, who returns home to Ireland after ten years of exile in America. Seeing the levels of poverty and oppression, the activist in him reawakens and he looks to re-open the dance hall that led to his deportation. Starring Barry Ward, Francis Magee and Aileen Henry.
‘The Commitments’, Virgin Media One, Thursday 24 December at 9pm
(1991) A Roddy Doyle Irish classic on Chistmas Eve filled with excitement, memorable characters, hilarious comedy, and a heartfelt portrayal of working-class Dublin.
‘Bridget Jones – Edge of Reason’, Virgin Media One, Thursday 31 December at 9pm
(2004) Our favourite singleton is back and now she’s all loved up with a new beau. But after finding love, she’s beginning to question if it’s really everything it’s cracked up to be. Starring Renée Zellweger, Colin Firth and Hugh Grant.
Other top movie picks include; ‘The Pursuit of Happiness’; ‘Mr Bean’s Holiday’, ‘The Italian Job’, Jack Reacher’, ‘Madagascar: Escape 2 Africa’ and ‘Alvin and the Chipmunks: Roadchip’.
Family Game Shows
‘The Celebrity Chase Christmas Special’, Saturday 26 December & Saturday 2 January, Virgin Media One at 6pm
Bradley Walsh presents two festive episodes of the hit series where celebrity contestants pit their wits against ruthless quiz geniuses the Chasers featuring the new Irish chaser, Darragh ‘The Menace’ Ennis.
‘Five Gold Rings’, Saturday 26 December, Virgin Media One at 5pm
Stripped across the week, six days in a row, this brand new interactive game show is hosted by Phillip Schofield. In the first episode Simon Gregson (Corrie’s Steve McDonald) and Matthew Wolfenden (Emmerdale’s David Metcalfe) will be playing to win more than £50,000.
‘Alan Carr’s Epic Gameshow Christmas Special’, Sunday 27 December, Virgin Media One, at 6pm
Get ready to “come on down”, as Alan Carr’s Epic Gameshow returns with a Christmas Special of The Price Is Right.
‘Family Fortunes Christmas Special’, 27 December, Virgin Media One at 8pm
Family Fortunes returns with a festive celebrity special. The family of Strictly judge Shirley Ballas take on Vogue Williams, her husband Spencer Matthews and their family for a chance to win a £30,000 jackpot prize for their chosen charities.
Sport in December
Virgin Media Television will continue to be the home of top class live sport this December with UEFA Champions League and UEFA Europa League, Heineken Champions Cup rugby and live horseracing.
UEFA Champions League & UEFA Europa League
Our coverage of the UEFA Champions League and Europa League continues in December with all games live on Virgin Media Sport.
Heineken Champions Cup rugby continues on Virgin Media Two with Bristol v Clermont onSunday 13th December at 12.50pm and Leinster v Northampton on Saturday 19th December at 12.30pm.
Seven days of live will air on Virgin Media One in December with Sandown, the Cheltenham International Meeting, Ascot and the King George VI Chase from Kempton on St. Stephen’s Day.