Amy Poehler and Maya Rudolph preside over a friendly competition special, inviting celebrities to whip up some eclectic holiday treats, winning money for charity. Among the goodies: Kristen Bell’s Austrian Schaumrollen and pickle soup, Nicole Richie’s sticky apple cake, JB Smoove’s vegan banana pudding cake and first-time baker Fred Armisen’s attempt to recreate his mother’s recipe for Venezuelan Hallacas. Also premiering on the Peacock streamer: a second season of the actual competition series Baking It, with episodes dropping weekly as a new cast of baking teams shows their stuff before a judging panel of outspoken grandmothers.
My Next Guest Needs No Introduction With David Letterman
The title of this Emmy-nominated interview series has rarely been more apropos, for anyone keeping aware of world news. In a stand-alone special, Letterman travels to Kyiv, Ukraine, for a wide-ranging conversation with the country’s war-besieged president Volodymyr Zelenskyy in front of a small live audience.
You might be reminded of ABC’s wonderful Abbott Elementary as you watch producer-director Kevin Shaw’s inspiring documentary about a Chicago elementary school fighting to stay open. The setting is National Teachers Academy, a high-performing school serving mostly Black children on the South Side that is in danger of being closed and replaced by an integrated high school to appease a neighborhood alliance representing the gentrified South Loop’s more affluent residents. Parents become activists, disrupting meetings and City Hall to demand they and their kids be heard.
The Good Doctor
Good intentions lead to unhealthy competition when Dr. Shaun Murphy (Freddie Highmore) sets up a performance rating system, not realizing the effect it will have on new residents Danni Powell (Savannah Welch) and Danny Perez (Brandon Larracuente). In more personal hospital drama, Reznick (Fiona Gubelmann) may have crossed yet another line in her stormy relationship with Park (Will Yun Lee).
Inside Monday TV:
- The Cleaning Lady (8/7c, Fox): In the two-hour season finale, Thony (Élodie Yung) works with Arman (Adan Canto) and Garrett (Oliver Hudson) on a plan to take down Kamdar (Naveen Andrews) for good and keep son Luca (Sebastian and Valentino LaSalle) and sister-in-law Fiona (Martha Millan) safe.
- The Voice (8/7c, NBC): The final five each perform a ballad and up-tempo song, hoping to get enough votes to land them in the winner’s circle in Tuesday’s season finale.
- A Nashville Country Christmas (8/7c, Paramount Network, simulcast on CMT): Country legend Tanya Tucker stars as fictional superstar Josie Carson, ditching the fast lane for her hometown, where she reconnects with her ex (Keith Carradine) and discovers three orphans squatting on her family farm.
- The Adventures of Saul Bellow (8/7c, PBS): American Masters presents the first-ever major documentary profiling the Nobel Prize-winning author (The Adventures of Augie March) with commentary from peers including Salman Rushdie and the late Philip Roth.
- Dogs of the Year (8/7c, The CW): Entertainment Tonight’s Kevin Frazier and Keltie Knight host the annual celebration of impressive pups who’ve faced the impossible and left their pawprint on society.
- Celebrity IOU (9/8c, HGTV): Supermodel Cindy Crawford enlists Drew and Jonathan Scott to help bring glamour to the home of her best friend and personal trainer.
- Murder in the Wicked West (9/8c and 10/9c, Investigation Discovery): A new true-crime series spotlights murderous varmints in remote locales within the Western U.S., opening with the suspicious disappearance of a Utah ranch hand and his friend, and the murder of an Oklahoma newlywed at the wheel of his truck.
- CMT Crossroads Christmas: For King + Country & Friends (10/9c, CMT): The country-pop duo is joined by sister Rebecca St. James, Breland, Chrissy Metz and Natalie Grant for an hour of classic Christmas music and songs from their new A Drummer Boy Christmas album.