A Very Special Night For Television

A Very Special Night For Television

Here’s what’s up in the world of TV for Monday, December 9. All times are Eastern.

Six By Sondheim (HBO, 9 p.m.): The great fall-off is beginning: Network shows are starting to go home for the holidays—our regulars Adventure Time
, Regular Show, How I Met Your Mother, Mom, and even The Blacklist are running repeats tonight. But fortunately we've got a few stragglers—and a whole lot of specials. One Direction is having an album release party on The CW, and ABC is hosting something called The Great Christmas Light Fight. HBO is broadcasting an original documentary that profiles the legendary musical theatre composer and lyricist, Stephen Sondheim. Todd VanDerWerff found the film good but not great; but fans are sure to like it, and the documentary features six new performances of six of Sondheim's classics, performed by the likes of Audra McDonald, America Ferrera, and Darren Criss. The documentary is directed by James Lapine, a longtime friend of Sondheim's. There will be singing! Dancing! And verbose lyrics! Never say we don't know how to make you happy.

The Wrong Mans (Hulu, 7 p.m.): The final episode of this Hulu show airs today. Erik Adams and Sonia Saraiya will be crosstalking it, so that history knows exactly what we both thought of this British caper.

Almost Human (Fox, 8 p.m.): Our heroes have to guard a crucial witness in a major murder trial. Can that be the whole story? Probably not. Kevin McFarland is on the case.

Sleepy Hollow (Fox 9 p.m.): A golem is released from purgatory as Ichabod tries to communicate with Katrina. John Noble guest-stars as a guy who might be able to help him communicate. Zack Handlen is not interested in a Fringe crossover, guys. Wait. Yes he totally is!

Hostages (CBS, 10 p.m.): Brian goes to the police to expose Duncan, but he's deterred, for some reason, when he discovers his wife has been getting her ladybusiness on with Duncan's sexy stubble-face. Meanwhile, Duncan's sexy stubble-face is being tortured because he didn't kill the president that one time! Oh God, not Duncan Carlisle! We love him too much! America weeps. Sonia Saraiya does, too, but for different reasons.

WWE Monday Night Raw: The 2013 Slammy Awards (USA, 8 p.m.):
It's really called the Slammy awards. Pro wrestlers will receive awards for slamming, among other wrestling feats of strength. Featuring John Cena, Randy Orton, Shawn Michaels, and The Authority.

The Great Christmas Light Fight (ABC, 9 p.m.): Then in the dawning of the second week of the 12th month, the networks decreed that one hour of our lives would be devoted to watching families compete with each other to perform the most electrical lighting for the winter solstice festival of a baby in a manger. Erik Adams reviewed the first episode of this show, where the prize is $50,000 and the families are rabid. Happy Christmas one and all.

One Direction iHeartRadio Release Party (The CW, 9 p.m.): The teen demigods perform in Los Angeles to promote their new album, Midnight Memories. 

The Sing-Off (NBC, 9 p.m.): This show debuts its fourth season with an aptly titled episode: "The Sing-Off Is Back!" The groups sing, and it is a competition. It is not The Voice, but it's not not The Voice, either!

Home Alone 2: Lost In New York (AMC, 8 p.m.): A home gets lost in New York City for the second time. It learns to love it, though.

XXX (FXM, 8 p.m.): Vin Diesel stars as a guy who should not be a secret agent but is anyway and blows stuff up.

Monday Night Football: Cowboys at Bears (ESPN, 8:25 p.m.): Oh wow, this one sounds like it could be a doozy. Cowboys and bears are natural enemies, after all. As are Dallas and Chicago. (Are there bears in Chicago? Should we be worried about bears? Answer: Yes, you should always be worried about bears, always.)

Masters Of Sex: Okay, we definitely called this out last week, too. But last night, Masters Of Sex had its best episode yet, the penultimate of this first season. Unfortunately, it's called "Phallic Victories." Fortunately, it features Lizzy Caplan singing! 

More What's On Tonight