The Watchman: Merry Cystmas from ‘Dr. Pimple Popper;’ If You Haven’t Had Your Fill of Masks Yet …

Dr. Pimple Popper
'Dr. Pimple Popper: Season's Squeezings' on TLC (Image credit: TLC)

Dr. Pimple Popper: Season’s Squeezings is on TLC Dec. 21. The holiday special offers truly unique dermatological cases, and leads into a new season. 

The special features a beloved man in a red suit. “We all know Santa can’t get COVID, but he can get a pimple,” Dr. Sandra Lee said. 

She plays ukulele and there are holiday cookies, including one of Rudolph with a case of rosacea on, yes, his nose. “We all need a good squeeze right now,” said Dr. Lee. “It’s hokey and it’s punny but it’s all in good fun. 

Speaking of punny, Lee will host This Is Zit on Discovery Plus Jan. 4. 

Getting the season together amidst the pandemic was challenging. Dr. Lee saw patients outside, and learned to deal with all the noises, such as landscapers, involved with al fresco production. 

So what keeps people tuning in to Dr. Pimple Popper? Some simply get off on the explosion of a tumescent zit. Others like to see patients taking a step toward getting their normal lives back. “It’s like a movie — there’s conflict and resolution, and everybody walks away happy,” Dr. Lee said.

The Masked Dancer

'The Masked Dancer' on Fox  (Image credit: Fox)

The Masked Dancer debuts on Fox Sunday Dec. 27. Featuring incognito celebrities showing off their moves, the spinoff is hosted by Craig Robinson. Ken Jeong, Paula Abdul, Brian Austin Green and Ashley Tisdale make up the panel. 

They may have a tougher time figuring out who’s behind the mask than the panel does on The Masked Singer. “You have to pay a lot of attention to the clues, because we don't have a voice to base it on,” Abdul said at a press event. “The clues came everywhere, from within the costume, lots of clues in the package, even in the stage setting and choreography.”

The costumes have to be constructed in a way that allows the contestants to fully strut their stuff. Said exec producer James Breen, “Our costume people worked really hard with the celebrities, knowing the range of movement they have, whether they could flip or whether they were going to bounce around, to make sure they could perform to the best of their ability.”    

Austin Green got a feel for singing, and dancing, in a costume when he was on The Masked Singer. “It was hard because there was such a limited range of motion within those costumes, and I think they've solved that on this show,” he said. “The costumes seem a lot more streamlined.”

Robinson hinted at some of the banter the show will feature. “When Brian dances,” he said, “there's usually a limited range of motion.”

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, the L.A. Times and New York magazine.