Prepare yourself for the war over the remote control with this quick guide to the five TV shows you can’t afford to miss over Christmas. For full TV highlights (including the best films), see timeout.com/tv
The Snowman and the Snowdog
Christmas Eve 8-8.30pm, C4
Thirty years after charming a nation, Raymond Briggs’ seasonal staple returns with a new boy and a new dog, but the same familiar hand-drawn magic.
Christmas Day 5.15-6.15pm, BBC1
Karen who? Jenna Louise Coleman enters the Tardis full-time to help the Doctor against – what else? – an onslaught of evil snowmen.
Boxing Day 9-10pm, BBC4
The impossibly cute trolls were born of a turbulent life, as this warm and involving profile of Moomins creator Tove Jansson illustrates.
Boxing Day 9-10.30pm, BBC2
Another astonishing transformation from Toby Jones, who simply is Hitchcock to Sienna Miller’s Tippi Hedren in this chilling biopic about the making of ‘The Birds’.
Sat Dec 29 6.45-8.15pm, BBC1
One final lap of honour for Olympic heroes including Mo Farah, Nicola Adams and the Brownlees, all competing in a one-off revival of the classic 1970s sporting contest.