Your move, Hallmark Channel.

Mackenzie Dunn
August 04, 2020
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Lifetime

Lifetime is officially getting with the times for the 2020 holiday season, so cue the cups of hot cocoa and get ready to get cozy on the couch. The network announced Monday that it will air 30 new Christmas movies during its "It's a Wonderful Lifetime" programming block. The newest slate of holiday movies will kick off in mid-October, and this year, the schedule includes the network’s first film to feature a same-sex couple as its central romance. 

The Christmas Setup, which focuses on a love story between two men, marks an important shift in Lifetime’s typically white, heterosexual love lineup. 

According to the official synopsis, the movie will follow Hugo, a New York corporate lawyer, and his best friend, Madelyn, as they head to Milwaukee to spend the holidays with Hugo’s mom Kate, who is also in charge of the local Christmas celebrations.

Ever the matchmaker, Kate arranges for Hugo to run into Patrick, Hugo’s high school friend, and secret crush, who has recently returned after a successful stint in Silicon Valley," the official synopsis reads. "As they enjoy the local holiday festivities together, Hugo and Patrick’s attraction to each other is undeniable, and it looks as though Kate’s well-intentioned Santa-style matchmaking is a success. But as Hugo receives word of a big promotion requiring a move to London, he must decide what is most important to him.”

Though the plot sticks to Lifetime’s typical small-town storytelling format, the push for more diverse and underrepresented voices is an important one. In 2019, Lifetime showed a step in the right direction with the movie Twinkle All the Way, which included its first on-screen same-sex kiss. (The main image on this story is a still from that movie.) But The Christmas Setup will be Lifetime's first movie with an LGBTQ romance as the lead story.

According to a tweet by Philiana Ng, a senior editor at Entertainment Tonight, the movie has yet to be cast, so it's time to rep for your dream actors.

In a press release detailing the plan for the upcoming holiday season, Lifetime also announced that the 2020 holiday lineup would include a movie called A Sugar & Spice Holiday, which centers on the network’s first Asian American family, so there is evidence of the network is making a commitment to diverse storytelling with its storylines, talent, and characters. Though it has taken far too long, we love to see it.