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TV Tonight: our highlights for Sunday, Dec. 26

TV tonight - Sorry, Neville, your Christmas is cancelled!
Sorry, Neville, your Christmas is cancelled! (Image credit: BBC)

On TV tonight, bask in a little Caribbean sunshine as BBC1 shows a feature-length Death in Paradise Christmas Special, Claire Foy and Paul Bettany star in A Very British Scandal and David Tennant takes the lead role in Around the World in 80 Days, both also on BBC1. Here’s what you shouldn’t miss on TV tonight. 

  • Our hand selected recommendations for what's on TV tonight include three TV shows, a film, live sport and the latest trending need-to-binge-on-now box set 
  • Keep up to date with the latest soap spoiler storylines on TV tonight with our daily soap synopsis 
  • For more information about what’s on TV tonight see our TV Guide 

What's on TV tonight

Our expert TV journalists have picked the best things on TV tonight...

Best TV shows on TV tonight

Death in Paradise Christmas Special, 7.30pm, BBC1

TV tonight DS Florence Cassell and DI Neville Parker

DS Florence Cassell and DI Neville Parker take on another case. (Image credit: BBC)

A shipping tycoon’s death forces Neville (Ralf Little) to change his Christmas plans and stay in Saint Marie. The death looks like a suicide, but when a cab driver (Mathew Baynton) gets a message about murder in a Christmas card, the team must take another look. With a fab guest cast, the return of Officer Dwayne Myers (Danny John-Jules) and the long-awaited reveal of what happened after Neville declared his true feelings to Florence, this feature-length special is a festive feast with all the trimmings. 

★★★★★ SP

A Very British Scandal, 9pm, BBC1

TV tonight Claire and Paul are aristos at war

Claire and Paul are aristocrats at war. (Image credit: BBC)

Paul Bettany and Claire Foy star as the Duke and Duchess of Argyll, whose bitter divorce in 1963 caused a media storm. Written by Sarah Phelps, this is a gripping real-life tale that charts the moment the fiery couple first met to the rapid deterioration of their marriage, featuring back-stabbing and betrayal, break-ins and even forgery. With a star-studded cast, including Julia Davis as socialite Maureen Guinness and Sophia Myles as the Duke’s wronged second wife, the three-part drama, which plunges you into the uber-privileged and party-packed aristocratic world, is compelling viewing, with outstanding performances by Claire and Paul. Continues tomorrow. 

★★★★★ TL

Around the World in 80 Days, 5.50pm, BBC1

TV tonight Phileas Fogg with Passepartout and Abigail Fix

Phileas Fogg with Passepartout and Abigail Fix. (Image credit: BBC)

Jules Verne’s classic novel has been adapted for the screen many times, and this spectacular eight-part series brings the story to a new generation of viewers. The action still takes place in 1872, and David Tennant’s Phileas Fogg is more flawed and thoughtful than many of his predecessors, while tenacious journalist Abigail Fix is a refreshing addition to a tale that has something for all the family. In tonight’s opening double bill, Fix, Fogg and his valet Passepartout set off on their epic journey, and their adventure is almost over before it begins when they’re dragged into a
Paris uprising. 

★★★★★ SMA

Best box set to watch on TV tonight

Emily in Paris, season 2, Netflix

TV tonight Lucien Laviscount as Alfie and Lily Collins as Emily.

Life gets even more chaotic for the star of the Netflix show. (Image credit: Netflix)

Sex and the City creator Darren Star’s glossy comedy drama was a big hit for Netflix last year, providing a bright spot during a gloomy time. Lily Collins stars as American-abroad Emily Cooper, an eager young marketing executive with a unique fashion sense, who has relocated from Chicago to Paris for work. The second season sees life becoming more complicated and chaotic for Emily as she finds herself caught up in a love triangle with Gabriel (Lucas Bravo), and his ex and her new friend Camille (Camille Razat), who wants to rekindle their romance.

Best film to watch on TV today

A Boy Called Christmas, 6.10pm, Sky Cinema Christmas/NOW

TV tonight Once upon a time, when Santa was a boy…

Once upon a time, when Santa was a boy… (Image credit: Sky)

There are many films about Santa, but not many explore what he was like as a child. This magical adaptation from Matt Haig’s best-selling children’s book redresses that with a tale about Nikolas, an ordinary young boy who sets out on an extraordinary journey to find a fabled village of the elves called Elfhelm. With snowy scenes aplenty, a CGI talking mouse voiced by Stephen Merchant and co-stars including Jim Broadbent, Maggie Smith, Toby Jones, Sally Hawkins and Kristen Wiig, this origin story of Santa is a slice of festive heaven. 

Live Sport

  • Premier League, Liverpool v Leeds United, 11.30pm (k-o 12.30pm), BT Sport 1
  • EFL, Barnsley v Stoke City, 2.45pm (k-o 3pm), Sky Sports Main Event/NOW
  • Premier League, Aston Villa v Chelsea, 5pm (k-o 5.30pm), Sky Sports Main Event/NOW
  • Premier League, Brighton & Hove Albion v Brentford, 7.45pm (k-o 8pm), Sky Sports Main Event/NOW
  • Cricket, The Ashes, 11pm, BT Sport 1

Soaps on TV tonight

If you watch just one thing on TV tonight…

Don't miss Death in Paradise Christmas Special on TV tonight – a little bit of Caribbean sunshine to warm up this dark evening. 

Not found anything you want to watch on TV tonight? Check out our TV Guide

Happy viewing!