A Christmas Story

A Christmas Story Marathon
8/7c TBS
Butter up plenty of popcorn, gather the family and settle in for lots of holiday yuks as this 1983 classic airs in 12 consecutive screenings. Directed by Bob Clark (this is great enough to forgive him for Porky's), and written and wonderfully narrated by humorist Jean Shepherd, the film tracks the misadventures of Ralphie Parker (Peter Billingsley), a beamish lad in the 1940s who wants nothing else for Christmas but a Red Ryder BB gun. — Dean Maurer

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SportsNation 101 Holiday Jeers

4/3c ESPN2
For the chunk of sports fans who've grown weary of TV debate formats long on ear-splitting blather and short on substance, Colin Cowherd and Michele Beadle have developed a popular alternative that's long on irreverence and, uh, still short on substance. Their daily run through the latest sports talking points — and hilarious Web videos — is largely shaped by results from online fan polls that, bless the producer's heart, nobody seems to takes too seriously. Take a whirlwind trip back through 2010, then, as Colin and Michele dish out 101 lighthearted shots at the world of sports, an oh-so-easy target. — Roger Leister

The Bishop's Wife
8/7c TCM
'Tis the night before Christmas and on TCM, host Robert Osborne is screening five yuletide gems. The countdown begins with The Bishop's Wife (1947), with Cary Grant as an angel impacting the life of a clergyman and his wife. Next there's the 1937 tearjerker Make Way for Tomorrow, and the 1940 comedy-drama Remember the Night, with Barbara Stanwyck and Fred MacMurray. Then it's time to Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas with Judy Garland in the 1944 heartwarmer Meet Me in St. Louis, followed by Bell, Book and Candle (1958) with James Stewart and the bewitching Kim Novak. — Ray Stackhouse

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The Karate Kid
8/7c Encore
The "Big '80s Weekend Returns," a marathon of memorable 1980s movies kicks off with The Karate Kid, the 1984 smash about a bullied new-kid-in-town (Ralph Macchio) who learns martial arts at the hands (and feet) of a sage handyman (Noriyuki "Pat" Morita). Also on the list is 1982's Fast Times at Ridgemont High, featuring the "high"-jinks of surfer-stoner Jeff Spicoli (a truly memorable Sean Penn) and his Callifornia high-school classmates. Then there's Bachelor Party, (1984), with soon-to-be groomsman Tom Hanks engaged in rowdy shenanigans with his randy friends. — Ray Stackhouse

Hawaii Bowl
8/7c ESPN
Hawaii takes on Tulsa in Honolulu, in a battle of two teams who have had remarkable comeback seasons. Thanks to a powerhouse offense led by QB G.J. Kinne and all-purpose receiver Damaris Johnson, the Golden Hurricane have gone from 5-7 last year to 9-3 this season, and rank among the nation's top 15 in both passing and rushing. Hawaii (10-3 this year after going 6-7 in 2009) can run the ball, but prefers to pass, with QB Bryant Moniz the nation's total offense leader, and Greg Salas among the country's top pass catchers. — Dave Roeder

It's a Wonderful Life
8/7c NBC
Every time a bell rings, an angel gets its wings. And every year, James Stewart brings good cheer in director Frank Capra's poignant 1946 fantasy about a luckless small-town family man who learns just how lucky he really is. And, in the process, reminds us all what values are genuinely most important. What began as a Christmas story written by Philip Van Doren Stern and mailed to his friends has become an uplifting cinema classic for the ages. — Dean Maurer

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Phineas and Ferb
8:30/7:30c ABC
Phineas and Ferb are on Christmas break and realize that Santa doesn't get enough thanks for all he does so they embark on Operation: Bright Lights, Big Belly, which will turn Danville into one giant "Thank You" card to Mr. Claus. Unfortunately, Doofenshmirtz's naughty-inator threatens to cancel Christmas and Old St. Nick's visit. The delightful holiday yarn is filled with a half-dozen fun songs, including the inspired "I Really Don't Hate Christmas," sung by the daffy Doofenshmirtz. — Tim Holland