TV highlights: Musical specials galore


TOP CHEF: Musician Questlove makes an appearance and judges a competition before the chefs are asked to cook for college students. (David Moir/Bravo )
December 16, 2013

This year’s biggest pop sensations take the stage at New York’s Madison Square Garden on the “iHeartRadio Jingle Ball 2013” (CW at 8 p.m.) concert special. Miley Cyrus, Robin Thicke, Pitbull, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Fall Out Boy, Selena Gomez, Enrique Iglesias, Fifth Harmony, Ariana Grande, Jason Derulo and Austin Mahone make an appearance.

“Home for the Holidays With Celine Dion” (CBS at 8) airs to raise awareness of adoption and has Celine Dion at the helm, plus performances from Ne-Yo and Chris Young.

On “Kathy Griffin: Record Breaker” (Bravo at 8), the outrageous and outspoken comedienne delivers an hour-long stand-up set from San Antonio’s Majestic Theatre.

The E! Entertainment Special for “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues” (E! at 9) has the cast of the smash comedy hit, including Will Ferrell, Paul Rudd, David Koechner, Steve Carell, Meagan Good, Christina Applegate and James Marsden, interviewed by the network’s Giuliana Rancic in anticipation of the film’s premiere.

In her 21st annual countdown, Barbara Walters highlights “The 10 Most Fascinating People of the Year” (ABC at 9:30) in this 90-minute special. At the end of the program, the No. 1 most fascinating person according to the television legend will be announced.

“Michael Bublé’s 3rd Annual Christmas Special” (NBC at 10) employs the likes of Mariah Carey, Mary J. Blige and the Cookie Monster to duet Christmas classics with the modern-day crooner.

Questlove lends his musical talents to “Top Chef” (Bravo at 10) in a challenge that has the musician sampling various poultry drumsticks. Then the chefs serve fare to incoming students at Louisiana State University.

“The Girl With Half a Face” (Discovery Fit & Health at 10) follows the extraordinary story of 17-year-old Sarah, who suffers from neurofibromatosis, a rare disease that has caused a massive tumor to develop on half her face. The special documents Sarah in the days and weeks leading up to a risky operation that will remove part of her tumor, the surgery and Sarah’s amazing transformation.

Actor Ben Stiller comes to “Late Show With David Letterman” (CBS at 11:35), with musical guest Brett Dennen.

Actors Christina Applegate and Kevin Nealon are on “The Tonight Show With Jay Leno” (NBC at 11:35), with a musical performance from the winner of “The Voice.”

Actor Tim Robbins and sports analysts Bill Simmons and Jalen Rose join “Jimmy Kimmel Live” (ABC at 11:35), with musical guest Haim.

— Rachel Lubitz

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