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Santa, Rudolph, Grinch back in holiday programming

If you’re a fan of the Garth Brooks song “Unanswered Prayers,” you could fork over $253 a ticket — thanks to Steve Wynn’s new “Recession? What recession?” pricing structure — to see him perform it next weekend at Wynn Las Vegas.

Or you could get a jump on things — and still be able to put something under your Christmas tree without having to sell your fillings through Cash4Gold — by staying home to watch “Unanswered Prayers” (9 p.m. Monday, Lifetime), the movie inspired by the nearly 20-year-old hit.

Now, if I were making a movie based on a Brooks song, I’d go with “Papa Loved Mama,” his rollicking tune about the trucker who gets rid of his cheatin’ wife by plowin’ his big rig into her motel room.

But “Unanswered Prayers” seems to better fit the season.

The Lifetime original is part of a barrage of holiday programming that kicks off in earnest with the latest “Hallmark Hall of Fame” presentation, “November Christmas” (9 p.m. today, KLAS-TV, Channel 8), about a community’s early gift for a sick girl.

Both are part of hundreds of hours of specials and movies leading up to Christmas, the highlights of which are listed here. As always, times and dates are subject to change.

SPECIALS

“A Charlie Brown Christmas” — 8 p.m. Dec. 7, 8 p.m. Dec. 16 (KTNV-TV, Channel 13)

“Christmas in Rockefeller Center” — 8 p.m. Tuesday (KSNV-TV, Channel 3)

“Christmas with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir Featuring Natalie Cole” — 8 p.m. Dec. 15 (KLVX-TV, Channel 10)

“Christmas in Washington” — 8 p.m. Dec. 17 (TNT)

“CMA Country Christmas” — 9:30 p.m. Monday (Channel 13)

“Disney’s Prep & Landing” — 8:30 p.m. Dec. 9 (Channel 13); 8 p.m. Dec. 15, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 20 (ABC Family)

“Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas” (Animated) — 8 p.m. Tuesday, 8 p.m. Dec. 23 (Channel 13)

“Frosty Returns” — 8:30 p.m. Dec. 11, 9 p.m. Dec. 17 (KLAS-TV, Channel 8)

“Frosty the Snowman” — 8 p.m. Dec. 11, 8:30 p.m. Dec. 17 (Channel 8)

“Frosty’s Winter Wonderland” — 8 p.m. Dec. 7, 7 a.m. Dec. 12, 11 a.m. Dec. 18, 7 p.m. Dec. 24 (ABC Family)

“A Home for the Holidays” — 8 p.m. Dec. 22 (Channel 8)

“Jack Frost” — 6 p.m. Dec. 6, 10 a.m. Dec. 18, 6 p.m. Dec. 24 (ABC Family)

“Mariah Carey: Merry Christmas to You” — 9 p.m. Dec. 13 (Channel 13)

“A Miser Brothers’ Christmas” — 10 p.m. Dec. 9, 4 p.m. Dec. 18 (ABC Family)

“Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer” — 8 p.m. Tuesday (Channel 8)

“Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer and the Island of Misfit Toys” — 7 p.m. Dec. 6, 3:30 p.m. Dec. 24 (ABC Family)

“Rudolph’s Shiny New Year” — 6 p.m. Dec. 9, 2 p.m. Dec. 18, 10 p.m. Dec. 24 (ABC Family)

“Rudolph & Frosty’s Christmas in July” — Noon Dec. 18, 1:30 p.m. Dec. 24 (ABC Family)

“Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town” — 8 p.m. Thursday (Channel 13); 8 p.m. Dec. 9, 7 p.m. Dec. 10, 5 and 10 p.m. Dec. 18, 5 p.m. Dec. 19, 8 p.m. Dec. 24, 8 a.m. Dec. 25 (ABC Family)

“Shrek the Halls” — 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, 8 p.m. Dec. 9 (Channel 13)

“‘Twas the Night Before Christmas” — 7:30 a.m. Dec. 12, 8:30 a.m. Dec. 18, 1 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 24 (ABC Family)

“The Year Without a Santa Claus” — 9 p.m. Dec. 9, 6 p.m. Dec. 10, 3 p.m. Dec. 18, 4 p.m. Dec. 19, 9 p.m. Dec. 24, 9 a.m. Dec. 25 (ABC Family)

MOVIES

“The Bishop’s Wife” — 5 p.m. Dec. 24 (Turner Classic)

“A Christmas Carol” (1938) — 5 p.m. Dec. 10 (Turner Classic)

“A Christmas Story” 24-hour marathon — 8 p.m. Dec. 24 (TBS)

“Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas” (Live Action) — 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. Wednesday, 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. Dec. 14, 7 and 9:30 p.m. Dec. 25 (ABC Family); 8:30 p.m. Dec. 23 (Channel 13)

“Fred Claus” — 8 p.m. Dec. 10 (TBS)

“Home Alone” — 7:30 a.m. Tuesday (HBO)

“Home Alone 2: Lost In New York” — 8:30 p.m. Dec. 7, 6 p.m. Dec. 8, 11:30 a.m. Dec. 19, 8:30 p.m. Dec. 24, 4:30 p.m. Dec. 25 (ABC Family)

“It’s A Wonderful Life” — 8 p.m. Dec. 11, 8 p.m. Dec. 24 (Channel 3)

“Miracle on 34th Street” (1947) — 6 p.m. Dec. 18, 7:30 p.m. Dec. 24 (WGN); 10:15 p.m. Dec. 17-20 (AMC)

“Miracle on 34th Street” (1994) — 8:30 p.m. Dec. 8, 6 p.m. Dec. 21, 10 a.m. Dec. 25 (ABC Family)

“The Nightmare Before Christmas” — 11 p.m. Saturday (ABC Family)

“The Polar Express” — 6 and 8:30 p.m. Friday, 8:30 p.m. Dec. 21, 4 p.m. Dec. 23 (ABC Family)

“Santa Claus Conquers the Martians” — 12:45 a.m. Dec. 17 (Turner Classic)

“The Santa Clause” — 7 and 9 p.m. Thursday, 8 p.m. Dec. 10, 5 p.m. Dec. 11, 8 p.m. Dec. 22, 6:30 p.m. Dec. 23, 2:30 p.m. Dec. 25 (ABC Family)

“The Santa Clause 2” — 10 p.m. Dec. 10, 7 p.m. Dec. 11 (ABC Family); 7 p.m. Dec. 19, 9 p.m. Dec. 24 (Channel 13)

“The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause” — 9 p.m. Dec. 11, noon Dec. 12, 10 p.m. Dec. 22 (ABC Family); 9 p.m. Dec. 19 (Channel 13)

“Scrooge” (1970) — 6:30 p.m. Dec. 10, 3 p.m. Dec. 24 (Turner Classic)

“Scrooged” — 8 and 10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. Dec. 25 through 6 a.m. Dec. 26 (AMC)

“White Christmas” — 8 and 10:45 p.m. Dec. 11-12 (AMC)

Christopher Lawrence’s Life on the Couch column appears on Sundays. E-mail him at clawrence@reviewjournal.com.

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