Americans who turned on their televisions last night may have spent at least a few minutes watching Blake Shelton cavorting with elves during his holiday special, “Blake Shelton’s Not So Family Christmas.”
While the sight of a “Voice” coach twangily yelling at Thomas Lennon and a little person dressed as a roast turkey may not be a yuletide tradition — yet — the celebrity-helmed Christmas show is certainly a long-standing cornball custom popularized years ago by, among others, the late Andy Williams.
This year, we’ve seen variety shows from Shelton and his “Voice” colleague Cee Lo Green. A few years ago, we also got one from Stephen Colbert. Given how many famous people are itchy for attention in this great, Santa Claus-worshipping nation, this Celebritologist is certain of this: There is more work to be done here.
Therefore, consider this list of 10 celebrity holiday specials that should exist right now. Feel free to suggest your own by posting a comment.
“Santa Claus is Never Ever Ever Coming Back to Town: A Taylor Swift Christmas”
Swift starred in her own, self-promotional Thanksgiving night special two years ago but hasn’t hosted her own, splashy, candy-cane-coated program. Given how much the girl loves the color red, it is a federal crime that this hasn’t occurred.
I envision a music-filled hour in which she sings a couple of duets with a hot Santa’s helper, and a bunch of break-up songs about how Santa totally dumped her. She then stages a grand finale in which she — backed up by many, many furries — reconnects with Santa, pulls off his beard and reveals him to be Harry Styles from One Direction, whom she is reportedly dating.
Why hasn’t this already happened?
(Thanks to faithful reader @byoolin for inspiring this suggestion. He also made this non-celebrity-oriented recommendation, which I include here because (a) it’s genius and (b) it almost made me spit water onto my computer monitor.)
“A Wes Anderson Christmas”
Imagine the ensemble — Bill Murray, all of the Wilsons, Bruce Willis, this guy. Imagine the number of times we would hear Vince Guaraldi’s Charlie Brown-y holiday music, which is the best holiday music there is. Imagine the yuletide-themed Andersonian fonts. Imagine this commercial, but with even more snow. I want to watch this right now.
“It’s Christmas Time in Ron Swanson’s Workshop”
This one is a bit niche, so if it didn’t air on NBC — the major network home of Nick Offerman’s Swanson — then maybe it could appear on HGTV. Basically, it would be a half-hour of Swanson teaching us how to make holiday decorations out of balsa wood, while simultaneously offering tips about how to maximize our enjoyment of this magical season, complete with the Swanson Pyramid of Yuletide Greatness.
“The Mel Brooks Hanukkah Special”
This brilliant suggestion comes from another loyal reader, @Sedna_51. She tweeted:
@celebritology Has Mel Brooks done one? Because if not, I nominate Mel Brooks. A quintillion bonus points if it's done in Claymation.— area (@Sedna_51) December 4, 2012
She also added:
@celebritology As a goyim: I would sit down on Christmas night, order Chinese food, and watch the hell out of that.— area (@Sedna_51) December 4, 2012
She makes a strong argument.
“Gwyneth Paltrow and Anne Hathaway: Home for the Holidays”
They could sing solos. They could sing duets. They could do cooking segments. Paltrow could tell us how to decorate our home with GOOP-sanctioned tinsel that costs a completely reasonable $8K.
Some of the kids from “Glee” could show up to do a black-and-white ribbon dance with Paltrow, their former co-star.
Big Bird and Snuffleupagus could show up to re-team with Hathaway.
Honestly, I think this could be highly enjoyable. And for those who get their jollies by hating on Paltrow, Hathaway or both, it would be the Greatest Christmas Gift of Potential Live-Tweeting Snark that they’ve ever received. No one loses in this scenario, you guys.
“A Big Hunk of Christmas Jon Hamm”
Because every Celebritology list is required to include Hamm. And also, this is a great idea. Look how handsome he looks with Christmas lights twinkling behind him.
“The Rufus Wainwright Christmas Hour”
Fine, maybe Wainwright isn’t quite as mainstream as Blake Shelton. He’d play just fine on IFC.
Plus, Canadian comedian Gavin Crawford has already given him a head start on developing a concept.
“Getting Christmas-Crafty With Amy Sedaris”
Crocheting! Kookiness! Probably some legitimately good holiday cookie recipe ideas! And special guest stars Martha Stewart, David Letterman and brother David Sedaris, who could do a live reading from “The SantaLand Diaries,” because there’s no way he’s sick of that!
“Ho, Ho, Ho, from Flight of the Conchords”
Another suggestion from Gwynne Watkins, a reader and my former colleague at Babble, who tweets:
@celebritology I would fork over some serious pay-per-view money for a Flight of the Conchords Christmas special.— Gwynne Watkins (@gwynnesanity) December 4, 2012
The only proper response to this is: YES.
“A Trainwreck Christmas With Lindsay Lohan”
This seems like an inevitable path for her to someday pursue. And it could be kind of fantastic in, like, an old Dean Martin special sort of way, where you never know what might happen or how much she’s had to drink.
Besides, Lohan is really, really good at Christmas numbers. She saved “Jingle Bell Rock” in a way that we all can agree was totally fetch.
It’s your turn. Turn on your celebrity holiday special invention powers starting . . . now.