The Joy of the Christmas Radio Times

By Richard Temple, CEO

It has always been a traditional joy to pick up the Radio Times Christmas Edition to scan through which programmes will adorn the festive schedule. Fortunately for our advertisers who embrace underdog thinking, our AV department still scours the Radio Times every week looking to unleash potential opportunities. This ensures that they don’t miss added audience value or strong contexts for some of our client brands.

Channel 5 went early this year with their Christmas Special of All Creatures Great and Small last night. This should easily deliver well over 3.5m impressions. However, Channel 5’s success in commissioning this show really highlights how well they understand mainstream Britain’s older audience.

At JAA, we’re most looking forward to the Channel 4 Sales festive cat-themed commercial break with Cats Protection for Mog’s Christmas. Tune in at 7.45pm on Christmas Eve. Channel 4 look as if they will ‘win’ Christmas Eve as Mog is followed by Christmas Great British Bake Off which is also sure to deliver strong audience numbers.

From underdog to old dog: Channel 4 will be showing all the Indiana Jones movies starting with Raiders of the Lost Ark on Boxing Day. These movies still command audiences of over 1,000,000 on live TV – quite extraordinary in this day and age. Dial of Destiny is also available to stream on Disney + – and probably the best one of the franchise since Temple of Doom.

There is an abundance of compelling Premier League Football on Sky, TNT and Amazon. However, if you really want to back the underdog, watch to see if Burnley can take on ‘Angeball’ at Tottenham in the FA Cup 3rd Round on Friday, 5th January on ITV.

ITV’s bizarre smash hit The Masked Singer returns not just for a Christmas special but a brand new series starting on 30th December. Last year this show’s first episode hit 4.9m people.

Probably the most important underdog story is Mr Bates vs The Post Office which airs on ITV from New Year’s Day. This is a tale of how one sub-postmaster took on the might of the Post Office overcoming a huge miscarriage of justice that took 20 years to overturn. He took up the fight despite the Establishment initially backing the Post Office and this tale has long-term ripples for many families and their descendants today.

At JAA we always say, it’s not the size of the dog in the fight; it’s the size of the fight in the dog. Do watch this.

Enjoy the telly. A very happy Christmas to all our clients, colleagues, media and creative partners.