We're within reaching distance now of the full swing of 2012's festive season, with the big day of December 25th just around the corner. Thankfully, the entertainment industry isn't taking a relaxing break just before the blitz next week though, instead electing to hand us some of the biggest and best releases that December 2012 could possibly bring before the end of the year. Here's our full guide to what's to come...
ARROW: YEAR'S END- This brilliant American DC superhero series has really hit its stride these past few weeks, and now Arrow reaches its mid-season finale. Forced to confront the conflict in his family, Oliver realises that the Queens haven't celebrated Christmas since his absence five years ago. Can the prodigal son who's returned reunite his allies in time for the battles ahead, or is the Queen festive season doomed to be lost forever? (Monday 17th)
LIFE OF PI- Here we've got a semi-Slumdog Millionare lookalike that boasts special effects which will no doubt rival James Cameron's 2009 great Avatar. Will Life Of Pi have the same shallow and lacklustre narrative, though? We'll discover the truth as this much-anticipated Oscar tipped film from Ang Lee finally arrives in cinemas to a wealth of early critical acclaim! (Thursday 20th)
MERLIN: THE DIAMOND OF THE DAY PART 1- So, the truth is out: Morgana knows that Merlin is Emrys, and she'll stop at nothing to take him down before he can protect Arthur on the plains of Camlann. Yet that battle looms, and with the sides now firmly drawn, the end of the legend is near. Who will make it out of Merlin's two-part finale, The Diamond Of The Day, alive? Make no mistake, this week's opening instalment to the show's conclusion isn't going to have a happy ending...(Saturday 22nd)
JAMES MAY'S TOY STORIES: FLIGHT CLUB- The ever-lovable James May's Toy Stories is back this week with a festive special involving the Top Gear presenter's creation of the world's largest paper aeroplane. As always, we can no doubt expect much of the same hilarious antics and frivolics that have made the past two seasons such hits, and the success of this new episode could well determine the likeliehood of a third season, so make sure to give it your time! (Sunday 23rd)
AND THERE'S MORE- The first three seasons of The Killing, Rihanna's Live Tour 2012 and two editions of Les Miserables are all headed to DVD and Blu-Ray this week, plus 007 Legends gets its Nintendo WiiU release with the Skyfall DLC attached and Nativity! 2 culminates its cinema run with its final showings, all in the next seven days.
ON THE BLOG- Fresh off our big review of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey last week, we've got a reviews blitz this week, as An Idiot Abroad 3: The Short Way Round, Nativity! 2: Danger In The Manger, Merlin: The Diamond Of The Day Part 1 and plenty more new releases go under the radar in time for Christmas. Our Advent Calendar will also continue in the lead-up to the big day, and the full trailer for Star Trek Into Darkness should be rearing its head too...
AND NEXT WEEK...In the words of one Smithy, "It's CHRISTMAAASSS!" That is all. Just kidding, because we've got Doctor Who: The Snowmen, Merlin: The Diamond Of The Day Part 2, Outnumbered's 2012 Christmas Special, the Trollied Christmas Special and the return of Miranda to our screens next week, all ready for December 25th to kick off 2012 with the biggest bang imaginable. The New Year will be merely two days away come Sunday, so make the most of the remainder of 2012!
On-Screen Wishes You A Very Merry Christmas This Festive Season, And A Happy New Year!