The Week’s guide to what’s worth watching

The best programs on TV this week

Deck the Halls

A talented supporting cast, including Kathy Najimy, Jane Alexander, and Larry Miller, elevates this gently comic mystery, based on a novel by Mary Higgins Clark and daughter Carol Higgins Clark. Scottie Thompson stars as a private eye who, when her father is abducted by a kidnapper in a Santa suit, teams up with a peer who was a cleaning woman before taking up crime-solving. Tuesday, Dec. 20, at 9 p.m., TNT

Prime Suspect

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In “The Great Wall of Silence,” New York detective Jane Timoney finds few witnesses willing to talk about a Chinatown murder that took place during a game of mah-jongg. This gritty, intelligent cop show features compelling characters and wonderful acting by Maria Bello, Brían O’Byrne, and their supporting cast; regrettably, it appears doomed to cancellation by early January. Thursday, Dec. 22, at 10 p.m., NBC

Independent Lens: The Woodmans

The daughter of two well-known artists, Francesca Woodman eclipsed both of them with haunting photographs that have become widely valued since her 1981 suicide at age 22. Drawing on interviews with her parents and brother as well as Woodman’s own journals, this documentary paints a stark portrait of a prodigious talent and the demanding dynamics of her family, to whom art was tantamount to religion. Thursday, Dec. 22, at 10 p.m., PBS; check local listings

Wait Wait…Don’t Tell Me!

National Public Radio’s comic current-events quiz show comes to TV for the first time with a “year in review” edition taped before a live audience in the show’s customary milieu, Chase Auditorium in Chicago. Host Peter Sagal and judge Carl Kasell will be joined by a panel of both American and British talents, including comedians Paula Poundstone and Alonzo Bodden. Friday, Dec. 23, at 8 p.m., BBC America

NBA Basketball

Truncated by the lockout, professional basketball’s season finally opens, like a pile of presents, on Christmas Day. The five-game lineup: Boston Celtics vs. New York Knicks (noon, TNT); Miami Heat vs. Dallas Mavericks (2:30 p.m., ABC); Chicago Bulls vs. Los Angeles Lakers (5 p.m., ABC); Orlando Magic vs. Oklahoma City Thunder (8 p.m., ESPN); and Los Angeles Clippers vs. Golden State Warriors (10:30 p.m., ESPN). Sunday, Dec. 25

Other highlights

A Home for the Holidays With Martina McBride

The country star hosts this annual special, aimed at raising awareness about adoption. Other performers will include Mary J. Blige, Justin Bieber, and Gavin DeGraw. Wednesday, Dec. 21, at 8 p.m., CBS

Invention USA

Physicist Garrett Lisi and computer pioneer Reichart Von Wolfsheild assess backyard inventors’ ideas in this docuseries. Friday, Dec. 23, at 10 p.m., History

Christmas in Chelsea Square

New York’s historic General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church will be the setting for scripture readings and seasonal music, followed by a fireside reading of “A Visit From St. Nicholas,” by onetime seminary professor Clement Clarke Moore. Saturday, Dec. 24, at 11:35 p.m., CBS

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