RTÉ's Christmas TV line-up has been unveiled and it looks like there will be plenty of laughs in store with The Young Offenders, Mrs Brown's Boys and Bridget & Eamon Christmas specials and a specially commissioned panto among the highlights.

TV fans rejoice, the best time of the telly year is almost upon us and RTÉ has a whole host of new and returning festive programmes to keep us entertained while we work our way through the tin of Roses. 

The Young Offenders Christmas Special is set to steal the season on RTÉ. Filmed in Cork, the show will star Alex Murphy, Chris Walley and Hilary Rose, with Robert Sheehan guest starring.

If the film and TV series are anything to go by, you'll laugh, but you may also just shed a tear. We can't wait for this one.

Chris Walley, Hilary Rose and Alex Murphy as Jock, Mairéad and Conor in The Young Offenders Christmas Special

Mrs Brown’s Boys is back with two brand new episodes airing on Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve which will see Agnes invite Winnie to stay when her house is flooded and Buster revealing some big news.

Over on RTÉ2 on Christmas Eve, with their TV destroyed and being held at gun point, we see Bridget  and Eamon recreating a popular TV show to stay alive.

Bernard O'Shea and Jennifer Zamparelli are back as Bridget & Eamon

In a TV Christmas first, RTÉjr and RTÉ One will air a specially commissioned panto for all the family.

Written by Karl Spain and featuring RTÉjr stars and some special guests, including Teresa Mannion and Rosemary Smith, The Greatest Show That Never Was was recorded in front of a live audience of 500 kids and their parents in the Tommy Leddy Theatre in Drogheda.

Specially commissioned RTÉjr Panto to air this Christmas

There will be a celebrity special of Ireland’s Fittest Family where a cast of stars will be stepping away from their day jobs and be put through their paces in some grueling challenges.

Donncha is coaching actress Norma Sheahan and her family, Davy will push 2FM’s Keith Walsh and his clan to their limit and ensure they are tough competition, Derval hopes to be victorious with the young singers Sean and Conor Price, and Anna is putting all her experience into guiding Dancing with the Stars judge Brian Redmond and his family.

Ireland's Fittest Family to air celebrity special

Perennial favourite The Zoo will be back for a special hour-long episode in which viewers will see what happens when zookeepers are faced with one of their greatest challenges yet: making sure the animals they love are kept warm, fed and cared for during the Beast from the East that hit Ireland this year.

The Zoo Winter Special 

Celebrity Home of the Year is back as the judging panel, design legend Hugh Wallace, champion interior designer Deirdre Whelan and award-winning architect Peter Crowley, are invited into the homes of five well-known Irish faces: artist Robert Ballagh, broadcaster and entrepreneur Ramona Nicholas, writer John Boyne, meteorologist Jean Byrne and singer songwriter Eleanor McEvoy.

Five well-known faces to take part in Celebrity Home of the Year

For soap fans, Fair City will air an hour-long special on Christmas Day in which the Collins household prepare for their first festive season in Carrigstown and Robbie makes a shocking request to Carol.

Meanwhile, over on EastEnders, at least one person is left with blood on their hands in the show's typically high-drama Christmas offering.

Foodies can kick back and relax as Rory O’Connell and his sister Darina Allen are back together again for the return of their popular Christmas two-part programme A Simply Delicious Christmas, and Neven Maguire will spread some festive cheer in his scrumptious two-part Christmas programme, Neven's Kilkenny Christmas.

A Simply Delicious Christmas - Rory O'Connell and Darina Allen

On Carols from the Castle on Christmas Eve, Mary Kennedy brings Christmas magic into every home with a special evening of festive music, old and new, from the magnificently decked halls of Dublin Castle.

The RTÉ Concert Orchestra are joined by a wide range of performers including Johnny Logan, Bray trio Wyvern Lingo and The Lost Brothers.

Carols from the Castle - Mary Kennedy

As the clock ticks towards 2019, Keith Barry's Magical New Year Party has a star-studded cast of guests, including Barry Keoghan, Eamon Dunphy, Roz Purcell, Joanne O’Riordain, Tony and Erin McGregor, Kevin McGahern, Denise McCormack and Mario Rosenstock, with music from Kodaline, The Stunning, The Academic and more.

The show will also feature one of the most daring feats of escapology ever seen on Irish television.

Keith Barry's Magical New Year Party

Among the movies premiering on RTÉ One and RTÉ2 this festive season are The BFG, The Jungle Book, the Conor McGregor documentary Notorious, Antman, Zootopia, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, The Magnificent Seven, Deadpool, and Creed.

And of course, there will be some well-loved Christmas crackers including Home Alone, Love Actually, Miracle on 34th Street, plus seasons of Harry Potter and James Bond.

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