Worth Watching: ‘Grinch’ Joined by New ‘Dragon’ Holiday Special, ABC Goes Country, Armie Hammer ‘Running Wild’
A selective critical checklist of notable Tuesday TV:
How the Grinch Stole Christmas and How to Train Your Dragon Homecoming (8/7c, NBC): One of the all-time great Christmas specials is back, with Chuck Jones animating Dr. Seuss’s beloved book about the green fiend determined to ruin Christmas for the Whos in Whoville. Boris Karloff’s voice as narrator and as the Grinch adds a humorous gravitas to the fable, and Albert Hague’s catchy score has been a delightful earworm since its first hearing in 1966. This year, Grinch is joined (at 8:30/7:30c) by a new special based on the Dreamworks How to Train Your Dragon film trilogy, in which Hiccup (voiced by Jay Baruchel) plans a holiday pageant to remind a new generation of Vikings of their special bond with their fiery flying friends.
Brad Paisley Thinks He’s Special (8/7c, ABC): The good-humored country star headlines his own musical variety special, with comedic and heartwarming field pieces interspersed with musical performances from Nashville’s War Memorial Auditorium. Among those joining Paisley: Kelsea Ballerini, Hootie & the Blowfish, Tim McGraw, Darius Rucker, Carrie Underwood and NFL star Peyton Manning. Paisley provides a curtain-raiser to the 10th annual CMA Country Christmas (9/8c), a two-hour holiday extravaganza hosted by Trisha Yearwood, who’ll perform along with Kristin Chenoweth, Chris Janson, Lady Antebellum, Rascal Flatts, CeCe Winans, Brett Young and Chris Young and more.
Running Wild with Bear Grylls (10/9c, National Geographic Channel): How better to face your fears than heading to an exotic location like Sardinia with the well-traveled adventurer Bear Grylls. Which is where Armie Hammer confronts a paralyzing fear of heights, then scuba dives to find an underwater sea cave once reportedly used by smugglers. And amid it all, the handsome actor gets hijacked!
Inside Tuesday TV: Nobody opens up on a stand-up stage with the comedic vigor of Kids Say the Darndest Things host Tiffany Haddish, who returns to Netflix for a special titled Black Mitzvah. Oy!… The Disney+ special One Day at Disney tracks employees of the sprawling Magic Kingdom across the globe over a day in their busy lives. Subjects include Imagineers, animators, performers, a veterinarian and Good Morning America co-anchor Robin Roberts. Starting Friday, short One Day films will premiere weekly, profiling more behind-the-scenes Disney talents… Investigation Discovery’s Body Cam (10/9c) returns for a second season of you-are-there situations caught on police officers’ body cams, dash cams and security footage. The premiere includes a multiple stabbing in Muskogee, Oklahoma, a high-speed chase in Marion County, Florida, and a shootout in the dead of night in Evansville, Indiana.