What’s on TV tonight: Kirstie’s Handmade Christmas, Secrets of the Imperial War Museum, and more

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Friday December 3

Kirstie’s Handmade Christmas
Channel 4, 8pm
A seasonal fixture since 2014, one of the more reliable signs that Christmas is not far off now is Kirstie Allsopp’s show offering crafty – in every sense – festive tips on how to have a stylish Christmas without breaking the bank, assuming you’ve got time on your hands for a project or 10. This year she’s going all out to make it a Christmas to remember with a three-part series, fashioning all sorts of seasonal makes, bakes and decorations. Helping her out (and, let’s be honest, hindering too) is her Location, Location, Location co-host Phil Spencer, who if not exactly skilled at making sparkly Christmas crackers and presentable personalised scarves, is a dab hand at wrapping them, at least. 

More of a perfectionist is Kirstie’s florist sister, Sofie Fletcher, who puts together some stunning floral arrangements to get the seasonal atmosphere in swing. Also on hand are former MasterChef winner Shelina Permalloo, who demonstrates how to give a luxurious Mauritian twist to your festive menu with a seafood spectacular, and TikTok star Coinneach MacLeod (aka the Hebridean Baker), who whips up a Christmas trifle and shows how to mix the perfect Hogmanay cocktail. GO

Secrets of the Imperial War Museum
Channel 5, 7pm
Staff at the main IWM site in Lambeth race to complete a ceiling installation designed to give a sense of the sights, sounds and terror of a bombing raid during the Blitz. And, at IWM Duxford, a Mark I Spitfire is undergoing a rigorous test flight in preparation for the airshow season. It’s a glimpse inside one of Britain’s most beloved institutions. GO

The Thames at Night with Tony Robinson
Channel 5, 8pm
At Greenwich Observatory, Robinson gets a chance to view Mars as the Victorians would have seen it, and he spends a night working with Borough Market’s last wholesale grocers before retiring to one of the few pubs in London open at six in the morning, a relic of the bygone days when day-drinking wasn’t only the norm; when the water quality was dodgy, it was best practice. GO

St Andrew’s Day at the BBC
BBC Four, 9pm
Get into the St Andrew’s Day Eve spirit with three hours devoted to Scottish pop and rock, beginning with a selection of BBC archive featuring the likes of Texas, Annie Lennox, Emeli Sandé, Primal Scream, Deacon Blue and others. The Proclaimers: This Is the Story and Travis with the BBC SSO at the Barrowland follow. GO

Simple as Water
Sky Documentaries, 9pm
A hard-hitting documentary from Oscar-winning filmmaker Megan Mylan, filmed over the course of five years in Turkey, Greece, Germany, Syria and the US, exploring the impact of war, exile and separation on four families displaced by the civil war in Syria. GO

Chucky
Sky Max, 9pm
“Hi, I’m Chucky, your friend till the end!” are words likely to strike terror into those who’ve watched the gory Child’s Play comedy-horror films featuring serial-killer doll Chucky. Here the franchise is given smart new life in a HBO series from original creator Don Mancini, with Brad Dourif reprising Chucky’s unforgettable voice, and Zackary Arthur as Jake, the teen who acquires the murderous plaything at a yard sale. GO

1976: Britain’s Biggest 70s Hits
Channel 5, 10pm
In this glorious slab of musical nostalgia, David Grant and Katie Puckrik are among those reflecting on a classic year for pop in a  show celebrating the hits of 1976, featuring everything from Elton John and Kiki Dee to The Wurzels via Queen, ABBA, Rod Stewart, Dr Hook and Brotherhood of Man. GO

Godzilla vs Kong (2021) ★★★★ 
Sky Cinema Premiere, 9pm 
The stuff of small boys mashing toys together in the playground, Adam Wingard’s outsized monster feature is exactly the kind of loud, trashy mayhem your Friday night needs. Rebecca Hall and Alexander Skarsgård shout to make themselves heard amid the CGI blare-a-thon when King Kong must bring his scaly rival, who is laying waste to the West Coast, to heel. The fourth instalment in the MonsterVerse lands with a satisfying smack.

Donnie Brasco (1997) ★★★★ 
Dave, 10pm 
Given the car crash of Johnny Depp’s recent career, it’s salutary to be reminded of his early work. In this thriller, he stars as an undercover FBI agent who infiltrates a New York mafia family by ingratiating himself with a low-level mobster (Al Pacino) in this gritty and blood-soaked mob movie, based on a true story. The premise might sound overfamiliar, but Donnie Brasco is very much its own beast, and makes for engrossing viewing.

Greta (2018) ★★★ 
BBC One, 11.55pm 
Not a profile of the youthful climate activist, instead it’s a greasily watchable stalking thriller from Neil Jordan. Isabelle Huppert does her best Isabelle Huppert as an unsettling, widowed piano teacher who ensnares Chloë Grace Moretz’s needy waitress. There’s promising shades of lesbian drama Carol in the set-up, but from Huppert’s darkly furnished lair to her wackily ripe English pronunciation, the film threatens to unspool into theatrical self-parody. 

Saturday December 4

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