TV best bets: New Year’s specials, Jimmy Carter, RuPaul, ‘Viking’ series finale, ‘Last Man Standing,’ Peach Bowl

President Jimmy Carter welcomed longtime friend Willie Nelson (and guest) to the White House.
President Jimmy Carter welcomed longtime friend Willie Nelson (and guest) to the White House.

Credit: Courtesy of Carter Presidential Library

Credit: Courtesy of Carter Presidential Library

The year 2020 is finally coming to an end with a flurry of New Year’s specials, some centered on what will be an empty Times Square, courtesy of COVID-19.

Your choices will be Ryan Seacrest with Billy Porter on ABC, Ken Jeong and Joel McHale on Fox, Carson Daly on NBC, or Anderson Cooper and his buddy Andy Cohen on CNN.

On New Year’s Day, the Georgia Bulldogs will play the undefeated Cincinnati Bearcats at the Peach Bowl in Atlanta. That evening, former Atlantan and Emmy winner RuPaul debuts the 13th season of his VH1 show “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” which will feature two Atlantans. And CNN debuts a documentary about Jimmy Carter’s connection with rock music.

The long-running History series “Vikings” has moved to Amazon Prime, which will air the series finale on Wednesday.

And on Sunday, Fox brings back the final season of Tim Allen’s “Last Man Standing” and debuts a new sitcom starring “Big Bang Theory” alum Mayim Bialik called “Call Me Kat.” ABC returns that night with the third season of “The Rookie” starring Nathan Fillion.

This covers Monday, Dec. 28 and Sun. Jan. 3.

MONDAY

“Cops and Robbers” 3:01 a.m. Netflix — Animation and activism unite in this multimedia spoken-word response to police brutality and racial injustice.

“Monday Night Football” 8:15 p.m. ABC, ESPN — The Buffalo Bills (11-3) at the New England Patriots (6-8).

“Atlanta Justice” 9 p.m. ID (new series) — A MARTA employee is found murdered and wrapped in duct tape in a Buckhead neighborhood.

“His Dark Materials” 9 p.m. HBO (second season finale) — As all paths converge on Cittàgazze, Lee is determined to fulfill his quest, no matter the cost. Meanwhile, Mrs. Coulter’s question is answered; and Will takes on his father’s mantle.

TUESDAY

“7 Little Johnstons” 8 p.m. TLC (eighth season debut) — Since fans last caught up with the world’s largest-known little family, relationship statuses have changed, a pandemic has hit, and all the kids are back under one roof.

“The Haves and the Have Nots” 8 p.m. OWN — David does the unthinkable to prove to help his long time friend.

“Moonshiners” 8 p.m. Discovery — Mark and Digger’s plan to employ an out-of-work friend backfires on payday.

“The Year; 2020″ 9 p.m. ABC — Robin Roberts reviews what many will look back and deem a particularly nutty year.

“Streets of Dreams With Marcus Lemonis” 10 p.m. CNBS (new series) — CEO and entrepreneur Marcus Lemonis goes behind the jewelry counter to crack the code on the diamond business on 47th Street in New York City’s notoriously secretive Diamond District.

WEDNESDAY

“Yearly Departed” 12:01 a.m. Amazon — A series of eulogies for the year 2020, where a lineup of all-women comedians will deliver everything from casual sex to beige Band-Aids and everything in between that we’ve “lost” in 2020.

“Vikings” 12:01 a.m. Amazon (series finale) — The tumultuous conflict between the Rus and Vikings comes to a conclusion with grave consequences.

“Best Leftovers Ever!’ 3:01 a.m. Netflix (new series) — Decadent pasta from day-old fries? Skillful cooks transform tired leftovers into tantalizing new dishes in this wildly creative culinary competition.

“Equinox” 3:01 a.m. Netflix (new series) — Twenty years after witnessing a bus full of students disappear, Astrid runs into a man she recognizes as one of the victims and begins to investigate.

“The Heroes on the Front Line” 8 p.m. the CW — Dean Cain hosts a celebration of the on-the-ground heroes who dared to make a difference in the midst of the unprecedented and unforeseen worldwide pandemic.

“My 600-lb Life” 8 p.m. TLC (ninth season debut) — At nearly 1,000 pounds, Samantha is dangerously close to dying. To make matters worse, she’s paid to eat by making videos online. If Samantha doesn’t overcome her toxic relationship with food, she worries that she will leave her daughter motherless.

“The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City” 10 p.m. Bravo — Lisa and John have a heart to heart. Whitney enlists her husband’s help.

NEW YEAR’S EVE

“Chilling Adventures of Sabrina” 3:01 a.m. Netflix (series finale) — Sabrina finishes up her run after four seasons.

“The Watch” 3:01 a.m. AMC+ — The Watch follows an unlikely group of misfits, The City Watch, who are forced to find the guts to save the world, surprising even themselves in the process.

“Dick Clark’s Rockin’ New Year’s Eve With Ryan Seacrest” 8 p.m.-11 p.m., 11:30 p.m.-1 a.m. ABC — Billy Porter co-hosts with Seacrest. Jennifer Lopez headlines. Other performers: Nelly, Miley Cyrus Megan Thee Stallion and Doja Cat.

“Fox’s New Year’s Eve Toast & Roast” 8 p.m.-10 p.m. Fox — Ken Jeong and Joel McHale host. Performers include LeAnn Rimes, Gloria Estefan, Ava Max, Gabby Barrett, Green Day and John Legend.

“New Year’s Eve: Escape From 2020″ 8 p.m.- 10 p.m. NBC — Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush host. Followed by Carson Daly’s New Year’s special at 10 p.m., then 11:30 p.m. featuring Amber Ruffin and Stephen “tWitch” Boss.

“New Year’s Eve Live With Andy Cohen and Anderson Cooper” 8 p.m.-12:30 a.m. on CNN — Cohen will try to get Cooper drunk again. Scheduled appearances by John Mayer, Snoop Dogg, Patti Labelle, Jimmy Buffett, Carole Baskin, Josh Groban and Leslie Jordan, to name a few.

NEW YEAR’S DAY

“The Minimalists: Less Is Now” 3:01 a.m. Netflix — They’ve built a movement out of minimalism. Longtime friends Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus share how our lives can be better with less.

“Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl” 12:30 p.m. ESPN — No. 9-ranked Georgia (7-2) will face the No. 8 Cincinnati Bearcats (9-0) at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

“RuPaul’s Drag Race” 8 p.m. VH1 (13th season debut) — It will be simulcast on Logo, the CW, MTV, Pop and MTV2.

“Mystery at Blind Frog Ranch” 10 p.m. Discovery (new series) — After discovering a system of seven underground caves that run through his property, Duane Ollinger is singularly focused on finding what’s hidden in them — no matter what the cost.

WEEKEND

“Titanic: Into the Heart of the Wreck” 9 p.m. History — The fascination with this particular shipwreck continues.

“Power Book II: Ghost” 8 p.m. Starz (first season finale ) — Desperate, Tariq will do whatever it takes to clear his mother. But knowing he’s not in the clear with Monet. Tariq’s backed against the wall trying to keep his promise to get Tasha out of prison.

“Call Me Kat” 8 p.m. Fox (new series) — Mayim Bialik stars as a 39-year-old woman who decided to open a cat cafe.

“The Real Housewives of Atlanta” 8 p.m. Bravo — Kenya gets shady by saying Porsha is just seeking attention after getting arrested again at a Breonna Taylor protest.

“NCIS: Los Angeles” 8:30 p.m. CBS — The NCIS team’s murder investigation of a man who sold military information leads to the abduction of a doctor whose cutting edge neurotechnology could be developed into advanced weaponry.

“Jimmy Carter: Rock & Roll President” 9 p.m. CNN — Carter becomes the first U.S. president to openly embrace rock ‘n’ roll.

ExploreJimmy Carter documentary showcases the ‘rock & roll president’
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“Who Wants To Be A Millionaire” 9 p.m. ABC — Rebel Wilson is in the hot seat.

“NCIS: Los Angeles” 9:30 p.m. CBS — As NCIS investigates a suspicious death and the missing key piece of evidence is a top secret, high tech battery, Pride and the team realize there could be deadly consequences if it falls into the wrong hands.

“Last Man Standing” 10 p.m. Fox (ninth season debut) — A series of time jumps finds Mike & Vanessa with two new grandchildren, as well as Mandy and Kyle living with them.

“The Rookie” 10 p.m. ABC (third season debut) — Nearing the end of his training, Nolan now faces his biggest challenge as a police officer yet when he must come to terms with the choices he has made in pursuit of the truth.

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