While the start of December is typically the time for present shopping, big food orders and setting up travel plans, it's also when the festive TV schedules are officially confirmed – and Christmas has come early this year with the 2022 line-up.

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BBC, ITV, Channel 4, Sky and other channels have teased their Christmas content, and while many may be hoping for a wintery day out, you won't be disappointed when slumping in front of the TV after a big festive lunch.

The Witcher: Blood Origin will be making its debut on Christmas Day alongside The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse, starring Idris Elba, and the Smeds and the Smoos.

Meanwhile, Strictly Come Dancing will be back very shortly after its 2022 final with this year's festive special, followed by Call the Midwife, The Chase, Limitless Win and Bake Off with their annual December editions.

Of course, the soaps are out in full force this Christmas, with Coronation Street, EastEnders, and Emmerdale getting out the tinsel - however everybody can't wait for the return of Happy Valley, which is back with its long-awaited third season.

Here's everything we know so far about the 2022 Christmas TV schedule.

Best Christmas TV for 2022 - your guide to what to watch

1. Call the Midwife Christmas Special

Nurse Trixie Franklin (Helen George), Collette Corrigan (Francesca Fullilove), Nurse Nancy Corrigan (Megan Cusack) and Nurse Lucille Anderson (Leonie Elliott) in Call the Midwife Christmas special 2022
Nurse Trixie Franklin (Helen George), Collette Corrigan (Francesca Fullilove), Nurse Nancy Corrigan (Megan Cusack) and Nurse Lucille Anderson (Leonie Elliott) in Call the Midwife Christmas special 2022. BBC / Neal Street Productions

It wouldn't be Christmas without a Call the Midwife special as the midwives of Nonnatus House return to our screens to deliver another round of December babies.

The upcoming festive special - which will run for 1 hour, 29 minutes - will see the return of Rhoda Mullucks, whose baby was born with birth defects after Dr Turner prescribed her medication – a season 6 plot that tackled the Thalidomide scandal.

Speaking to RadioTimes.com in an exclusive interview, the show's creator Heidi Thomas said that the Mullucks family will reappear in the Christmas special as Rhoda deals with another pregnancy. "We haven’t actually been with that family for five years, so we’re picking up the pieces for them and it makes for a very special Christmas special."

Call the Midwife airs on Christmas Day at 7.55pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.

2. The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse

The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse animated film - BBC
BBC

BBC One is adapting Charlie Mackesy's bestselling novel, The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse, into an animated short film to air during the Christmas period.

With the likes of Idris Elba, Tom Hollander, Gabriel Byrne and Jude Coward Nicoll lending their voices to the short, this film follows the unlikely friendship of a boy, a mole, a fox and a horse as they journey together in the boy's search for home.

"The journey of making the film of The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse with my ridiculously talented and kind animation team has been a magical one," Mackesy said, teasing the upcoming film.

"It’s so great to think the story will be in the nation's homes this Christmas – and I really hope it helps bring comfort, love and laughter."

The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse airs on Christmas Eve at 4.55pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.

3. Bad Education Christmas Special

Bad Education
BBC

Bad Education is returning to BBC Three this festive season, with Jack Whitehall reprising the role of hapless teacher Alfie Wickers ahead of season 4.

While Form K are all grown up, Alfie's former students Stephen (Layton Williams) and Mitchell (Charlie Wernham) are back at Abbey Grove to follow in his footsteps in this 45-minute special.

Gavin & Stacey's Mathew Horne will be back as Mr Fraser, who is no longer headteacher but continues to hang around the school kitchen to the frustration of HR. Meanwhile, fans can expect a few newcomers in the cast, including Vicki Pepperdine (The Windsors), who stars as new headteacher Ms Hoburn.

Bad Education airs on 15th December 2022 at 9pm BBC Three and BBC iPlayer.

4. Christmas Comedy Club with Lost Voice Guy

Lost Voice Guy
ITV

Britain's Got Talent winner Lost Voice Guy is hosting his own Christmas special for ITV. The comedian, also known as Lee Ridley, is bringing back his Christmas Eve show, set to feature a line-up of big name comics who'll be delivering a bit of festive cheer.

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While ITV is yet to confirm the line-up for the upcoming special, last year's episode saw the likes of Bill Bailey, Rosie Jones, Omid Djalili and Joel Dommett perform sets at Salford's Media City.

Christmas Comedy Club with Lost Voice Guy airs on Christmas Eve at 10.40pm on ITV1 and ITVX.

5. Strictly Come Dancing Christmas Special

Tess Daly and Claudia Winkleman on Strictly Come Dancing.
BBC

While the Strictly Come Dancing final isn't too far away, the BBC One show will be back with its annual festive special, with a new line-up of stars taking to the dance floor in the hopes of a 10 from Craig Revel-Horwood.

The BBC is yet to reveal which celebrities will be slipping into their dancing shoes, however, the special is due to be recorded in advance on Wednesday 7th December.

Last year's special saw Fred Sirieix, Moira Stuart, Jay Blades, Adrian Chiles and Mel Giedroyc take part, however, it was The Voice UK's Anne-Marie who emerged victorious with her partner Graziano Di Prima.

Strictly Come Dancing's Christmas Special airs on Christmas Day at 5.10pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.

6. Luke Evans Showtime!

Luke Evans
Getty

Beauty and the Beast's Luke Evans is coming to BBC Two this Christmas with a festive entertainment special, Luke Evans Showtime!

The actor and stage star will be singing songs from his latest album A Song For You, with the likes of LeAnn Rimes, Olly Murs, Beverley Knight and other guest stars stopping by to perform.

Evans, who stars in Netflix's Scrooge: A Christmas Carol, performed a track from his new album on Strictly Come Dancing in November and will be recording the special on Thursday 10th November ahead of its December airdate.

Luke Evans Showtime airs on 22nd December 2022 at 8pm on BBC Two and BBC iPlayer.

7. Doc Martin Christmas Special

Doc Martin season 10
ITV

Martin Clunes reprises his much-loved role of Doc Martin in the ITV comedy-drama's upcoming festive special. While season 10 ended with the cynical medic appreciating the town of Portwenn more after a near-death experience, the Christmas special is set to be the perfect festive present for fans of the show.

The current Doc Martin cast members are expected to return for the festive special, including Caroline Catz as Martin's wife Louisa as well as Ian McNeice (Bert Large), Joe Absolom (Al), Jessica Ransom (Morwenna) and Selina Cadell (Sally Tishell).

Doc Martin airs on Christmas Day at 9.05pm on ITV1 and ITVX.

8. The Witcher: Blood Origin

The Witcher: Blood Origin
Netflix

While not particularly festive, The Witcher: Blood Origin is making its Netflix debut on Christmas Day this year, with the prequel starring Michelle Yeoh as deadly sword-elf Scían in a world set 1,200 years before the events of The Witcher.

This upcoming fantasy-drama tells the story of the Elven civilisation before its fall, with the likes of Laurence O'Fuarain, Sophia Brown, Mirren Mack and Nathaniel Curtis rounding out the rest of the cast.

The Witcher: Blood Origin will be released on Christmas Day on Netflix.

9. Mrs Brown's Boys Christmas Special

Winnie McGoogan Mrs Brown's Boys
Winnie McGoogan in Mrs Brown's Boys BBC Alan Peebles

Unsurprisingly, Agnes Brown will be back on BBC One this Christmas in the first of two festive 2022 specials. Brendan O'Carroll will reprise the role of Agnes Brown for a Christmas special as she muddles through another wintery period with her chaotic family.

The Irish sitcom, which follows pensioner Agnes Brown and the family shenanigans she gets up to, has aired on BBC One since 2011, returning for a Christmas special every year since 2013.

While the BBC is yet to reveal the cast for the upcoming special, it is likely to include Jennifer Gibney (Cathy), Fiona O'Carroll (Maria), Martin Delany (Trevor), Danny O'Carroll (Buster), Rory Cowan (Rory) and Eilish O'Carroll (Winnie).

Mrs Brown's Boys airs on Christmas Day at 10.25pm and New Year's Day at 10pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.

10. The Greatest Snowman

The Greatest Snowman
The Greatest Snowman Channel 4

Sue Perkins is fronting another special from The Greatest Snowman – Channel 4's snow building competition. In the upcoming episode, celebrities will travel to a snowy mountaintop to build a series of snow creations, which will be judged by Swedish sculpting sisters Sara and Emilie Steele as well as renowned British artist Taslim Martin.

The show first aired last December, with Dani Dyer, Liam Charles, Johnny Vegas and Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen taking part in the snowman-building competition. Llewelyn-Bowen will be back to offer artistic tips and advice to this year's famous competitors, who are yet to be announced.

The Greatest Snowman airs on Boxing Day at 7.30pm on Channel 4.

11. Death in Paradise Christmas Special

Death in Paradise festive first look 2022.
Death in Paradise festive first-look 2022 BBC

We're returning to the isle of Saint Marie this festive season as Ralf Little returns for another Death in Paradise Christmas special. The episode will follow the detectives as they deal with the season 11 cliffhanger, which saw Commissioner Patterson (Don Warrington) discover that he had fathered a daughter with his former lover Maggie (Orla Brady).

The BBC detective drama released a first-look at the upcoming Christmas special earlier this year, teasing Ralf Little and Don Warrington in their roles. As for the rest of the cast, Élizabeth Bourgine (Catherine Bordey), Tahj Miles (Marlon Pryce), Shantol Jackson (Naomi Thomas) and Ginny Holder (Darlene Curtis) are confirmed to be back for this festive affair.

Death in Paradise's Christmas Special airs on Boxing Day at 8pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer, while the twelfth season begins on 6th January 2023.

12. The Smeds and the Smoos

The Smeds and the Smoos
BBC

The BBC is adapting another book from Julia Donaldson (The Gruffalo) and Axel Scheffler into a Christmas special, with The Smeds and the Smoos arriving on our screens this December.

Featuring the voices of Bridgerton's Adjoa Andoh and Strictly Come Dancing winner Bill Bailey, The Smeds and the Smoos – which is based on the book of the same name – follows the family rivalry between the red Smeds and the blue Smoos. When young smed Janet (Ashna Rabheru) and smoo Bill (Daniel Ezra) escape together, the two families must learn to overcome their differences to find their little ones.

The Smeds and the Smoos airs on Christmas Day at 2.30pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.

13. Happy Valley

Happy Valley season 3 poster
Happy Valley season 3 poster BBC

The third and final season of Happy Valley is finally arriving on our screens from creator Sally Wainwright.

When police officer Catherine (Sarah Lancashire) is investigating a gangland murder that leads all the way to the evil Tommy Lee Royce (James Norton).

Her sixteen-year-old grandson Ryan (Rhys Connah) is getting older and keen to know more about his father despite Catherine's attempts to keep them apart and Catherine’s sister Clare (Siobhan Finneran) finds herself torn.

Don't miss the conclusion to the Happy Valley trilogy.

Happy Valley season 3 premieres on New Year's Day at 9pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.

14. EastEnders

Charlie Brooks as Janine Butcher in EastEnders.
Charlie Brooks as Janine Butcher in EastEnders. BBC

It wouldn't be Christmas on TV without some festive drama in Albert Square.

EastEnders this year will be focusing on the dramatic love triangle between Mick Carter (Danny Dyer), his ex-wife Linda Carter (Kellie Bright) and his pregnant partner Janine Butcher (Charlie Brooks).

As the love remains between Mick and Linda, Janine's paranoia grows and her secrets threaten to spill out.

With both Dyer and Brooks set to depart their roles over the festive period, how will this storyline conclude?

Elsewhere, the Fox-Brannings look set to join the Mitchells-Slaters for Christmas, while Lola Pearce deals with what could be last Christmas.

EastEnders airs on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.

15. Emmerdale

Will Ash as Caleb Milligan in Emmerdale
Will Ash as Caleb Milligan in Emmerdale ITV

The drama continues in the village of Emmerdale this Christmas as the tough times for the Dingle clan show no signs of letting up.

On Christmas Day itself, viewers will see the village introduced to Caleb Milligan (Will Ash) who is a successful business and the secret brother of Cain Dingle (Jeff Hordley) and Chas Dingle (Lucy Pargeter).

However, the big issue is that Cain has always known about their late mother Faith's secret child, but Chas did not.

How much further can Cain and Chas be driven further apart?

Emmerdale airs on ITV1 and ITVX.

16. Coronation Street

Tyrone Dobbs proposes to Fiz Stape in Coronation Street
Tyrone Dobbs proposed to Fiz Stape in Coronation Street ITV

It's set to be a Christmas of laughter and tears in Coronation Street as Tyrone Dobbs (Alan Halsall) prepares to surprise fiancée Fiz Stape (Jennie McAlpine) with a festive wedding.

Speaking to RadioTimes.com and other press during a recent visit to Weatherfield, executive producer Iain MacLeod said the Christmas episodes would be "fun, warm and family-oriented".

Adding more detail, MacLeod said: "The Fiz and Tyrone strand is the centrepiece - really good fun, and just the right amount of silly, brilliant writing.

"The performers are exemplary, as they are across the show generally, but Alan (Halsall) and Jennie (McAlpine) are marvellous. The kids are great.

"It feels totally Christmassy and totally Corrie. It's a warm, good-spirited end to the year for us."

Coronation Street airs on ITV1 and ITVX.

17. The Santa Clauses

The Santa Clauses
Disney/James Clark

Tim Allen returns to the role of Santa Claus, AKA Scott Calvin, in The Santa Clauses – Disney Plus's spin-off miniseries based on The Santa Clause film series.

The six-part comedy, which arrived on Disney Plus in November, follows Scott as he contemplates giving up the iconic red costume ahead of his 65th birthday and tries to find a suitable replacement – but in classic Santa Clause fashion, things in the North Pole don't go as smoothly as he'd like them to. Elizabeth Mitchell reprises her role as Carol Calvin, while David Krumholtz makes a cameo as Santa's former right-hand elf Bernard.

Available to stream on Disney Plus.

18. The Chase Celebrity Christmas Special

Shaun ‘The Barrister’ Wallace, Paul ‘The Sinnerman’ Sinha, Anne 'The Governess' Hegerty, Host Bradley Walsh, Jenny 'The Vixen' Ryan, Darragh 'The Menace' Ennis and Mark ‘The Beast’ Labbett on The Chase.
ITV

ITV's quiz whizzes are delivering yet another festive edition of the hit game show The Chase, with The Chase Celebrity Christmas Special airing on 25th December this year.

The 2022 special is Alice in Wonderland themed, with the Chasers dressing up as characters from the Lewis Carroll story - and if last year's Addams Family Christmas special is anything to go by, we can expect Anne 'The Governess' Hegerty, Mark 'The Beast' Labbett, Paul 'The Sinnerman' Sinha and the other brainiacs to fully embrace the fancy dress.

The Chase Celebrity Christmas Special airs on ITV at 5pm on Christmas Day.

19. The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special

Rocket, Groot and Cosmo in The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special
Marvel/Jessica Miglio

Disney Plus checks in on one of Marvel fans' favourite superhero teams for a festive treat in The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special, which is currently streaming on the platform.

The one-off episode follows the group as they take in Cosmo the Spacedog (voiced by Maria Bakalova) as a new member and try to find the perfect Christmas present for Peter Quill (Star-Lord), ultimately deciding to fetch his childhood hero – Kevin Bacon.

The Guardians of the Galaxy Holiday Special is available to stream on Disney Plus.

20. Ant and Dec's Christmas Limitless Win

Ant and Dec's Limitless Win
©Hello Dolly/Mitre Studios

Ant and Dec may have just wrapped up I'm a Celebrity, but it won't be long until they're back on ITV1 with a Christmas edition of Limitless Win.

The duo are back to host Ant & Dec's Limitless Win once again, with various celebrities trying their best to climb up the endless money ladder in the hopes of raising money for charity.

Teasing the upcoming special, Dec said: "We got a lot of feedback after the first season with people saying, ‘This is really tense! It’s hard to watch, it’s nerve-shredding!’ and this year it’s even more so. Sorry guys!

"We get higher up the ladder and more often. Contestants are nervous and stressed… they’re playing for very, very big sums of money. It’s really nerve-wracking. Very, very tense at times with a lot of jeopardy, but god it’s really watchable!"

Ant added that the great thing about the show is that "everybody can have a go at the answers because the answer to every question is a number".

Ant and Dec's Limitless Win returns on 9:05pm on ITV1 on Christmas Day.

21. Great Christmas Bake Off

Matt Lucas may have just quit Bake Off, but he'll be back with Noel Fielding on Channel 4 for this year's Great Christmas Bake Off.

Entering the Bake Off tent this year is The Big Breakfast's Gaby Roslin, Blackadder's Sir Tony Robinson, Steph's Packed Lunch presenter Miquita Oliver, The Word's Terry Christian and Brookside's Claire Sweeney, while viewers will also be treated to a performance from the English National Ballet of Swan Lake alongside the various showstopper shenanigans.

The Great Christmas Bake Off airs on Christmas Eve at 8:25pm on Channel 4.

22. The Big Fat Quiz of the Year 2022

Channel 4

It's been quite a year, with the country seeing three prime ministers, two monarchs, a Platinum Jubilee and a nation divided over whether Harry Styles did really spit on Chris Pine. Now, Jimmy Carr will be testing our knowledge on 2022 in the return of the Big Fat Quiz of the Year.

The comedian will be joined by Stephen Merchant, Katherine Ryan, Richard Ayoade, Maisie Adam, Jonathan Ross and Rose Matafeo as they take on the ultimate pub quiz – but who knows the most about this big fat year?

The Big Fat Quiz of the Year 2022 airs on Channel 4 at 9pm on Boxing Day.

23. Prince Andrew: The Musical

Prince Andrew: The Musical
Channel 4

While it seems Netflix has the monopoly on royal content with The Crown and Harry & Meghan, Channel 4 is throwing its satirical hat into the ring with Prince Andrew: The Musical – a song and dance about the "key events, relationships and controversies of Andrew's life".

The hour-long musical will chart Prince Andrew's "rise and fall", with Line of Duty impressionist Kieran Hodgson starring as the royal in numerous numbers, including one about Emily Maitlis's Newsnight interview with the Duke of York. Munya Chawawa, Jenny Bede, Harry Enfield, Joe Wilkinson and Baga Chipz all star in this tuneful parody.

Prince Andrew: The Musical airs on Channel 4 on 29th December at 9pm.

Looking for something to watch? Visit our TV Guide and Streaming Guide.

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