Get with the programme, darling

Dom Joly on convincing his Canadian wife of the importance of festive telly

Quality time: Dom prepares to watch Where Eagles Dare for the 65th time PIC: THE BOY FITZHAMMOND

CHRISTMAS… it’s all about family and celebrating the birth of Jesus and peace and goodwill to all men… Well, that’s the idea. But the reality is that it always descends into bankruptcy, homicidal stress levels and an annual promise to never see your family again.

There’s only one thing that saves us from all this — the telly. Christmas is the time when it’s deemed OK to slob about in your pyjamas and watch TV all day. At least, that’s what I tell my Canadian wife.

‘It’s a tradition here in the UK,’ I tell her. ‘You’re foreign and need to integrate more! This is why I voted Brexit, to get rid of you Canadians coming over here to try and change our Christmas traditions.’

This never goes down too well. She starts to waffle on about strange things like ‘doing quality stuff with your family’. Or ‘do the washing up — make an effort you lazy, no-good b*****d’. I just hope that, once the Hard Brexit deportations start and she is shipped back to the icy prairies from whence she came, she’ll get with the programme.

It’s Christmas! This is Dom trying to explain why the Pointless festive special is part of British tradition

She’ll learn her lesson: Christmas Canadian television is worse than North Korea’s output. A British Christmas is about quality TV and no colonial moose-muncher is ever going to tell me different.

Film-wise, when else am I going to be able to watch Where Eagles Dare for the 65th time? There’s no other time of the year when opting to watch a Police Academy film makes any sense, is there? Also, the Christmas edition of Pointless is not going to watch itself is it? It’s a crucial part of my holy tradition to watch Richard Osman demean himself by wearing a silly Christmas hat while I listen to Alexander Armstrong’s secret comedy album of middle of the road songs aimed at housewives who long for another Dido album.

Gossip-wise, how am I going to know which newsreader is in so much financial trouble that he/she agreed to do all the news broadcasts over the Christmas weekend on their own using a camera that they have to control themselves as the rest of the building is empty? My money is on Sophie Raworth this year — I have no inside info but the other day she wore the same top as she did on April 3, 2015. I’m not obsessed or anything, I just notice these things.

Christmas Gogglebox is the one I’m really looking forward to. There’s been tension on the show for ages — ever since the over-excitable son of the Essex couple tried to break free and go on Big Brother. It didn’t go well and he’s now back on the show with his tail firmly between his legs.

But Scarlett Moffatt has smashed the doors wide open by winning I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! The show is going to be a veritable green-fest of envy and my family will be betting on who breaks free next. Well, most of us — it rather depends on whether my wife gets her visa or not…

Joly will be back on our screens on Christmas Eve on C4 at 11pm with a Trigger Happy Christmas Special. The entire 2016 Trigger Happy mini-series is also available on AllFour

Jolly and the ivy

Stand-up DVDs for the post-dinner slump

Billy Connolly — High Horse Live

The legendary Scot offers up an engrossing greatest hits retrospective and a skewed look at mortality as he faces down his Parkinson’s disease. £10,

Sarah Millican — Outsider Live

The Geordie stand-up is always great company: here she’s pondering the trials of body image – and moving to the country. £10,

That’s The Way, A-Ha A-Ha, Joe Lycett — Joe Lycett Live

Cheeky and warmly intimate, the hugely talented stand-up details his online antics, bisexuality and disdain for celebrity culture. £10,

Tim Vine Live — Tim Timinee Tim Timinee Tim Tim To You

If Christmas crackers leave you wanting more on the pun front, there’s plenty in this cheery whirlwind of a show. £12.99,

Romesh Ranganathan — Irrational Live

He has a brutal way with words but still, this in an impressive set as the Asian Provocateur star grapples with modern life and his Sri Lankan roots. £10,