This year closes with the worldwide, national, and local premieres of 34(!) British, Irish, and Canadian TV programs.
For updates about shows from the UK, Canada, and Ireland added to US channels and streaming services throughout the month, see the British TV Viewing Guide.
Programs and dates are subject to change without prior notice.
Midsomer Murders: Season 21 (UK)
Neil Dudgeon, Nick Hendrix, Annette Badland, and Fiona Dolman return for the new season of Midsomer Murders, whose stories involve the murders of a ballroom dancer, a real estate agent, a Granville Norton local, and a Solomon Gorge villager. Midsomer Murders: Season 21 has its world premiere in the US on Sunday, December 1, on Acorn TV and BritBox. (The latter also debuts on Dec 1 a doc that looks back at 20 years of the series.)
Mount Pleasant: Series 4 (UK)
This feel-good dramedy follows the lives of Lisa Johnson (Sally Lindsay, Scott & Bailey), her husband Dan (Daniel Ryan, Home Fires), and their friends and family in Manchester. Costarring Ainsley Howard (The Village), Neil Fitzmaurice (Peep Show), Paula Wilcox (Upstart Crow), and Bobby Ball (Not Going Out), Mount Pleasant: Series 4 premieres in the US on Monday, December 2, exclusively on Acorn TV.
Toast of London (UK)
Matt Berry (The IT Crowd) stars in this comedy series as Steven Toast, an eccentric, middle-aged actor who spends more time dealing with his problems off stage than performing on it. Toast of London has its US linear TV debut on Wednesday, December 4, at midnight ET, on IFC.
Vikings: Season 6: Part 1 (Ireland-Canada)
The final season of this historical drama series follows the Vikings as they travel thousands of miles from Kattegat, meet vicious rivals, and face the consequences of Ragnar’s death. Vikings: Season 6, Part 1 premieres with two episodes on Wednesday, December 4, at 9 PM ET, on History.
V Wars (Canada)
Based on the comics by Jonathan Maberry and Alan Robinson, this horror series sees Dr. Luther Swann (Ian Somerhalder, The Vampire Diaries) battling best friend Michael Fayne (Adrian Holmes, 19-2) after the latter is transformed into a murderous vampire-like predator by a mysterious disease. V Wars, a Netflix Original series, premieres in the US on Thursday, December 5, exclusively on Netflix. (You can add it to your queue now.)
Burden of Truth: Season 2 (Canada)
This drama’s second season finds attorney Joanna Chang (Kristin Kreuk, Smallville) starting fresh at a top law firm in Winnipeg, where a new client draws her into the shadowy world of hackers, activists, and a take-no-prisoners political movement — and a killer targeting her. Burden of Truth: Season 2 has its US SVOD premiere on Friday, December 6, on Hulu.
Deep Water (UK)
Based on the novels Just What Kind Of Mother Are You? and The Mistake I Made from Paula Daly‘s “Windermere” series, this drama set in the Lake District delves into the tangled issues of modern parenting, women’s friendships, and relationships, as it follows three woman struggling with moral and ethical crises. Starring Anna Friel (Marcella), Sinad Keenan (Little Boy Blue), and Rosalind Eleazar (Harlots), Deep Water premieres in the US on Friday, December 6, exclusively on the PBS Masterpiece channel on Amazon.
Glow Up (UK)
Hosted by Stacey Dooley (Strictly Come Dancing), this competition series follows ten aspiring makeup artists as they apply themselves to celebrity looks, movie prosthetics, and more, to prove their potential to judges Val Garland and Dominic Skinner and be named Britain’s next make-up star. Glow Up, a Netflix Original series, premieres in the US on Friday, December 6, exclusively on Netflix. (You can add it to your queue now.)
In the Long Run: Season 2 & Christmas Special (UK)
Season 2 of this 1980s-set comedy sees Walter (Idris Elba, Luther) dealing with a strike after he’s elected union rep, while younger brother Valentine (Jimmy Akingbola, Cheat) finds living on his own in London isn’t what he expected. In the Long Run: Season 2 premieres in the US on Friday, December 6, at 10 PM ET, on Starz. The Christmas special debuts Friday, December 20, also at 10 PM. (Video is from Season 1)
Would I Lie To You?: Season 13 (UK)
This comedy panel show, hosted by Rob Brydon (The Trip) along with team captains David Mitchell (Upstart Crow) and Lee Mack (Not Going Out), returns with another season filled with celebrity guests trying to hoodwink each other. Would I Lie To You?: Season 13 premieres in North America on Friday, December 6, exclusively on BritBox as a “Now” title.
The Art Detectives: Series 4 (UK)
Season 4 of this factual series finds Dr. Bendor Grosvenor and Emma Dabiri investigating what might be a Botticelli painting at the National Museum of Wales in Cardiff, and a possible prep sketch for Thomas Gainsborough’s The Cottage Door at the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery. The Art Detectives: Series 4 has its US SVOD premiere on Monday, December 9, on Acorn TV. (Video is from Series 3)
The 2019 Royal Variety Performance (UK)
With the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge as guests, this year’s program included performances by Robbie Williams, Harry Connick Jr., Lewis Capaldi, Mabel, Luke Evans, Flo and Joan, and Sheku Kanneh-Mason. The 2019 Royal Variety Performance premieres in North America on Tuesday, December 10, exclusively on BritBox as a “Now” title that will be shown live with the UK broadcast. (Video is from 2018)
Jack Whitehall: Christmas with My Father (UK)
Jack Whitehall (Good Omens) attempts to get his stodgy father, Michael, into the holiday spirit in this special. Featuring celebrity guests that include Hugh Bonneville (Downton Abbey), Jack Whitehall: Christmas with My Father, a Netflix Original comedy special, premieres in the US on Thursday, December 12, exclusively on Netflix. (You can add it to your queue now.) (Video is from Season 2)
The Sweeney: Seasons 1-4 (UK)
John Thaw (Inspector Morse) and Dennis Waterman (New Tricks) star in this classic cop drama that follows the activities of the Flying Squad, the elite unit of the Met that investigates violent crimes in London. The newly-remastered The Sweeney: Seasons 1-4 premieres in North America on Friday, December 13, exclusively on BritBox. (Video is a retrospective)
Sheridan Smith (Cilla) stars in this telepic as Jenny, a single mum who relies on her mum, Mary (Alison Steadman, Gavin & Stacey), for childcare. When Mary suffers a stroke and develops dementia, Jenny must find a way that allows her and her mum’s well-being to be taken care of. Care has its US SVOD premiere on Monday, December 16, on Acorn TV.
A Christmas Carol (UK)
Based on Charles Dickens‘ classic story, this adaptation from Steven Knight (Peaky Blinders) stars Guy Pearce (Jack Irish) as Ebenezer Scrooge, Stephen Graham (Line of Duty) as Jacob Marley, Joe Alwyn (The Favourite) and Vinette Robinson (Sherlock) as Bob and Mary Cratchit, and Andy Serkis (Planet of the Apes), Charlotte Riley (Press), and Jason Flemyng (Jamestown) as the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future. A Christmas Carol premieres in the US on Thursday, December 19, at 7:30 PM ET, on FX.
The Lights Before Christmas: Estates Aglow (UK)
This original holiday series features some of the trails that decorate the most stately homes across the UK, including Blenheim Palace, Waddesdon Manor, and Longleat House. Highlighting Queen Victoria’s Christmas tree, the Studley Royal Water Garden, and more, The Lights Before Christmas: Estates Aglow has its world premiere on Sunday, December 22, exclusively on BritBox. (Video is from 2018)
The Victorian House of Arts & Crafts (UK)
In this BBC living history series, a late 1800s Victorian arts and crafts commune in the Welsh hills is brought back to life as six 21st-century crafters move in to experience the highs and lows of living and working together as a creative commune. The Victorian House of Arts & Crafts has its US SVOD premiere on Monday, December 23, on Acorn TV. (Photo © Lion Television / all3media)
Carols From King’s (UK)
The annual Christmas celebration from the Chapel of King’s College, Cambridge, features carols sung by the boys choir and the story of the Nativity told in the words of the King James Bible. Carols From King’s 2019 premieres in North America on Tuesday, December 24, exclusively on BritBox as a “Now” title. (Video is from 2018)
Call the Midwife Holiday Special 2019 (UK)
In this year’s special, Mother Mildred (Miriam Margolyes, Bucket) and the Nonnatus House team go to the Outer Hebrides in response to a nursing shortage. The 2019 Call the Midwife Holiday Special premieres in the US on Wednesday, December 25, at 9 PM ET, on PBS. (Check your local listings) (Video is from 2018)
Gavin & Stacey Christmas Special 2019 (UK)
It’s been eleven years since the 2008 Christmas special, so let’s off to Wales for this year’s festivities with Gavin (Mathew Horne, Agatha Raisin), Stacey (Joanna Page, Breathless), Smithy (James Corden, The Late Late Show), Nessa (Ruth Jones, Stella), Pam (Alison Steadman, Hold the Sunset), Mick (Larry Lamb, Pitching In), Gwen (Melanie Walters, The Collection), and Bryn (Rob Brydon, The Trip). The Gavin & Stacey 2019 Christmas Special premieres in North America on Wednesday, December 25, exclusively on BritBox as a “Now” title. (Photo © Baby Cow 2008)
Lucy Worsley’s 12 Days of Tudor Christmas (UK)
Historian Lucy Worsley returns with a new special! During a 12-day extravaganza, she discovers that much of what we enjoy during Christmas — from carols and gift-giving, to mistletoe and mulled wine — has Tudor origins. Lucy Worsley’s 12 Days of Tudor Christmas premieres in the US on Wednesday, December 25, at 8 PM ET, on PBS. (Check your local listings) (Photo courtesy of Burning Bright Productions)
Mrs. Brown’s Boys Christmas (UK)
The Christmas episodes of this bawdy and hilarious comedy series find the eponymous boisterous Irish matriarch (Brendan O’Carroll) doing what she does best: meddling in the lives of her children. Mrs. Brown’s Boys Christmas premieres in the US on Wednesday, December 25, exclusively on BritBox as a “Now” title. (Video is from 2013)
Murdoch Mysteries: Season 13 (Canada)
Based on the characters in Maureen Jennings‘ “Murdoch Mysteries” novels, the new season of this period whodunit series opens with Murdoch (Yannick Bisson) investigating an explosion at a suffrage rally. Murdoch Mysteries: Season 13 premieres in the US with Episodes 1 and 2 on Wednesday, December 25, exclusively on Acorn TV. (Video is from Season 11)
The Queen’s Christmas Message 2019 (UK)
A UK Christmas tradition that’s become one for Anglophiles in the US is tuning in to the Queen’s Speech. The Queen’s Christmas Message of 2019 premieres in North America on Wednesday, December 25, exclusively on BritBox as a “Now” title. (Video is from 2017)
Celebrity Mastermind (UK)
Hosted by John Humphrys, this celebrity version of Britain’s ultimate intellectual challenge pits four famous faces against one another in tests of general and specialty knowledge. Celebrity Mastermind premieres in North America exclusively on BritBox as a “Now” title (date tba). (Video is from 2012)
Corrie at Christmas (UK)
This year, the Coronation Street Christmas special takes a look back at nearly 60 years of the drama with an hour-long special featuring interviews with cast members past and present. Corrie at Christmas premieres in the US exclusively on BritBox (date tba). (Video is from 2018)
Mock the Week Christmas Special (UK)
Host Dara Ó Briain, permanent panelist Hugh Dennis, and teams of guest comedians gather for the Christmas special of this panel-and-stand up comedy show. The Mock the Week Christmas Special premieres in North America exclusively on BritBox as a “Now” title (date tba). (Video is from 2012)
QI Christmas 2019 (UK)
This panel show’s 2019 Christmas special offers up some useful tips, like the best way to wrap an awkwardly shaped present and how to get wine stains out of the carpet. Hosted by Sandi Toksvig with permanent panelist Alan Davies and guest panelists Jason Manford and Romesh Ranganathan, QI Christmas 2019 premieres in North America exclusively on BritBox (date tba). (Video is a compilation)
Would I Lie To You? At Christmas 2019 (UK)
Lily Allen, Noddy Holder, and David Mitchell attempt to outbluff James Acaster, Sian Gibson, and Lee Mack with Christmas-themed truth and lies. Would I Lie To You? At Christmas 2019 premieres in North America exclusively on BritBox (date tba). (Video is from Christmas 2018)
Select public TV stations will begin airing the following programs on or after December 1. Check you local listings or contact the station that serves your area for air dates and times. To request the shows, contact your station or American Public Television.
Great Indian Railway Journeys (UK)
Michael Portillo (Great British Railroad Journeys) sets off to see the majestic mountains and ornate palaces of India, and discovers how British-designed railways inadvertently spread messages of independence to millions of Indians, who today live in the world’s largest democracy. Great Indian Railway Journeys is confirmed for airing on Idaho Public Television, KBTC, Montana PBS, Twin Cities PBS, Vegas PBS, WCMU, WETA, and WNED.
This documentary uses time-lapse and drone footage to chronicle the stories of people whose lives are affected by tides, one of the Earth’s most mysterious forces of nature, and visits locations with the world’s strongest and highest tides. Tide is confirmed for airing on AETN, Arizona Public Media, Idaho Public Television, KLRU, Louisiana Public Broadcasting, Oregon Public Broadcasting, UNC TV, WHRO, and WIPB. (Photo courtesy of APT)
NON-PREMIERE PROGRAMS BEING ADDED TO STREAMING SERVICES
Ain’t Misbehavin’ (UK)
This wartime musical drama stars Robson Green (Grantchester) and Jerome Flynn (Game of Thrones) as two bandsmen whose misadventures involve gangsters, romance, and black marketing in 1940 London. Ain’t Misbehavin’ begins streaming Monday, December 2.
Slings and Arrows: Season 3 (Canada)
This cult-favorite series chronicles the backstage shenanigans of a troubled theater company, which embarks on a production of King Lear in this final season. Slings and Arrows: Season 3 begins streaming Monday, December 16, exclusively on Acorn TV. (Video is from Season 1)
The Fragile Heart (UK)
This BAFTA-winning series stars Nigel Hawthorne (Yes Minister) as a cardiac surgeon who faces a professional and personal crisis: how to heal others — and himself. Costarring Dearbhla Molloy (Acceptable Risk) and Helen McCrory (Peaky Blinders), The Fragile Heart begins streaming Monday, December 30.
Relative Strangers (Ireland)
Oscar® winner Brenda Fricker (My Left Foot) stars in this drama series as Maureen, a married Irish nurse living in Germany, whose life changes when her husband dies and she learns about his debts and his second wife and family in Dublin. Relative Strangers begins streaming Monday, December 30. (Rescheduled from November)
Gavin & Stacey: Seasons 1-3 (UK)
Written by costars James Corden and Ruth Jones, this multiple-award-winning comedy series follows the relationship of English lad Gavin (Mathew Horne) and Welsh girl Stacey (Joanna Page), as well as the lives of their mates and families. Gavin & Stacey: Seasons 1-3 begins streaming Wednesday, December 25. (Video is from Season 3)
Titles in this section begin streaming on the dates shown below on Hulu.
Killing Eve: Season 2 (US-UK)
Based on the “Codename Villanelle” novellas by Luke Jennings, Season 2 of this addictive thriller opens 36 seconds after the Season 1 finale. Villanelle (Jodie Comer, Thirteen) has vanished, Eve (Sandra Oh, Grey’s Anatomy) is reeling, and another assassin is in their midst. Killing Eve: Season 2 begins streaming Wednesday, December 18.
Close to the Enemy (UK)
Set in a bomb-damaged London hotel, this post-war thriller follows British intelligence officer Captain Callum Ferguson (Jim Sturgess, Hard Sun), whose last task for the Army is to get captured German scientist Dieter Koehler (August Diehl, Parfum) to hand over secret, cutting-edge military technology crucial to national security. Close to the Enemy begins streaming Thursday, December 26.
Did you miss any of the new shows from previous days, weeks, or months? Check out the British TV Viewing Guide 2019 Archives to find out.
For details about the December premieres of shows from Australia and New Zealand, visit The Down Under TV Place. For those about the debuts of original-language, English-subtitled programs from Europe, visit The Euro TV Place.
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