Review of the year: December 2014

In which X Factor's Ben Haenow didn't dream it was over, and Benedict Cumberbatch was cast as Doctor Strange

Gillian Anderson and Tom Hiddleston scooped the top Thespian prizes at the Evening Standard Theatre Awards, while Actor John Boyega won a metaphorical award for coolness by telling those questioning whether Star Wars should feature a black Stormtrooper: “Get used to it.”


Stuart Manning’s Doctor Who Radio Times retro poster collection went on sale after swathes of interest from fans on Twitter while our resident Tolkien experts watched the new Hobbit film and decided there were a whole eight reasons why the Hobbit trilogy is worse than The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Emmerdale’s Belle Dingle  plunged from the roof of the village’s cricket pavilion, but on a jollier note, Nick Frost met up with Santa Claus in Finland to try and get some insight into the man ahead of his Doctor Who Christmas special. 

Everyone got excited about Bond 24 and Stephen Hawking said he’d make an excellent villain. Finally the film’s title and cast were revealed via a dramatic live stream announcement.  

Talking of villains, Lord Sugar got mean when The Apprentice candidate Felipe sourced the wrong type of skeleton. “You are taking the p*** aren’t you? You are having a laugh with me now aren’t you? That is not a bleeding skeleton. Someone must think they’re being clever.”

Nigel Farage impressed Gogglebox’s Steph and Dom with his drinking, while nobody on Strictly Come Dancing was getting full marks for anything. Benedict Cumberbatch landed the role as Doctor Strange and Twitter went wild with glee.

Talking of Cumberbatch (when are we not?), he and Andrew Scott won got glory at the British Independent Film Awards, with Benny C giving a long and heartfelt speech about the independent British film industry.

Oh and also Sherlock knocked out Doctor Who in’s 2014 TV Show Championship in an epic quarter-final clash of greatness. There were more dramatic quarter-finals in Strictly as bookie’s favourite Pixie Lott was voted out.

Paddington picked up the Christmas Radio Times, and Mog creator Judith Kerr designed the cover. ITV revealed that David Tennant, Olivia Colman, Arthur Darvill and the rest of the cast would return to our screens on Monday 5th January for Broadchurch series 2.

The Sony hack  started a huge fall-out in the industry as scripts and emails were leaked, but in more fun news, BBC revealed it was thinking about Sherlock-land and Doctor Who-world theme park.

World Superbike champ Foggy won I’m A Celebrity, which BBC3 said it was to lose shows like Don’t Tell The Bride, and Sun, Sex and Suspicious Parents.

Martin Freeman, Benedict Cumberbatch and Ricky Gervais scooped Golden Globe nominations, and Russell Brand  went head to head with Nigel Farage in the most tweeted about Question Time ever. 

X Factor’s Ben Haenow didn’t dream it was over, which was lucky because he only went and won the entire show, beating pug-loving Andrea Faustini and Fleur East.

The Missing series 2 was confirmed, after a controversial finale which divided viewers. In The Flesh beat Sherlock to win 2014 TV Show Champion, after millions of votes were cast. 

Nick Hewer announced he was leaving Lord Sugar’s side, while Mark Wright won the business mogul over and was crowned victor of The Apprentice 2014. Talking of winning, Caroline Flack was crowned the queen of dance on Strictly Come Dancing.


And that, folks, was December: the month of winning, villains and the Christmas Radio Times.

How much of this year’s television can you remember? Take our Big TV Quiz 2014 and find out!