Christmas with a country twang

Sugarland's Jennifer Nettles host "CMA Country Christmas" (8:30 p.m., ABC, TV-PG), a celebration of the season with a little twang. Country music Christmas ballads have done such a good job of working their way into the pop lexicon that many forget their Nashville roots. Who recalls that "Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer" was first a hit for Gene Autry? Or that Brenda Lee's "Rockin' Around the Christmas Tree" was a hit on the country charts? And you think of country every time you hear Elvis warble "Blue Christmas" over the shopping mall's loudspeaker.

Kellie Pickler has recently been added to a list of singers, performers and storytellers that include Sheryl Crow, Little Big Town, Martina McBride, Brad Paisley, Rascal Flatts, Reba McEntire, LeAnn Rimes, Darius Rucker and Sugarland.

• In an era when so much "news" involves experts sounding off from the safety of network desks, it can be jarring to watch a film that covers a war with the immediacy of "Restrepo" (8 p.m., National Geographic). The film is named after a 15-man outpost in the hostile Korengal Valley of Afghanistan. It takes its name from a platoon medic killed during an ambush.

Using handheld cameras, "Restrepo" keeps its focus entirely on the unit during violent altercations with the enemy and during brief stretches of relative quiet. We see them eat, fight and engage with tribal elders who are close friends or probably relatives to the men they are fighting. What we don't see or hear is any overview from an omniscient narrator or policy statements from generals or politicians. This is a short dose of "reality television" that is all about the soldiers and what they endure. It may be too much for some viewers to bear.

• "Moguls & Movie Stars" (7 p.m., TCM) surveys Hollywood in the 1940s, a decade began with the movie industry united behind the war effort and ended in disarray, with the studios facing antitrust lawsuits, competition from television and reacting to Cold War fears with a divisive black list of talent. Christopher Plummer narrates.


Other highlights

• House and Cuddy take a personal day on "House" (7 p.m., Fox, r, TV-14,V).

• Celebrities compete on ice on "Skating with the Stars" (7 p.m., ABC, TV-PG).

• Arizona hosts San Francisco on "Monday Night Football" (7:15 p.m., ESPN)

• Sophia has a mission for Simon on "The Event" (8 p.m., NBC, TV-14).

• The three-part "Vanguard" (8 p.m., Current TV) series "War on the Border" concludes.

• Lightman tries to fulfill a dying man's (John Amos) wish on "Lie to Me" (8 p.m., Fox, TV-14,V).

• On two episodes of "In Treatment" (HBO, TV-MA), Sunil's erratic behavior (8 p.m.); Francis' sister's condition worsens (8:30 p.m.).


• Violence breaks out at a football game on "Hawaii Five-O" (9 p.m., CBS, r, TV-14,V).

• Disturbed women put the pedal to the metal on "Chase" (9 p.m., NBC, TV-14).

Cult choice

• A cause-driven playwright (John Turturro) lands in a 1930s Hollywood inferno in the Coen Brothers 1991 fantasy "Barton Fink" (7 p.m., IFC, TV-MA), co-starring John Goodman.

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