How to watch A Christmas Story 24-hour marathon

 A Christmas Story.
A Christmas Story.
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Don't shoot your eye out! It's Christmas and for countless families the countdown to the big day can't begin until the annual 24-hour A Christmas Story marathon.

The tradition has been going strong on TNT since 1997 and since 2004 on TBS, where it became known as 24 Hours of A Christmas Story. Twelve airings of the holiday classic air back-to-back beginning on Christmas Eve and end in the evening on Christmas Day.

The fun begins on Christmas Eve, December 24, at 8 pm ET/PT on TBS and 9 pm ET/PT on TNT. The staggered start times allow fans to jump in at different times throughout the 24-hour period. The final showing of the movie will begin at 6 pm ET/PT on TBS and 7 pm ET/PT on TNT on Christmas Day.

This year, the marathon will be followed by a special showing of the 2022 sequel A Christmas Story Christmas, which premieres at 9 pm ET/PT on TNT.

With the basics out of the way, here is how to watch the 24-hour A Christmas Story marathon.

How to watch A Christmas Story

You can watch the 24-hour A Christmas Story marathon on TBS and TNT. TBS and TNT are included with most cable TV plans, but if you've cut the cord you'll need a live TV streaming service to watch live. Hulu with Live TV, Sling TV and YouTube TV are options for live TV streaming services.

In addition to 24 Hours of A Christmas Story on TNT and TBS, you can also watch A Christmas Story and A Christmas Story Christmas anytime on Max.

What is A Christmas Story about?

A Christmas Story debuted in 1983 with Darren McGavin (Kolchak: the Night Stalker) as The Old Man and Melinda Dillon (Close Encounters of the Third Kind) as The Mother. The real focus of the movie is on Ralphie (Peter Billingsley) and his younger brother Randy (Ian Petrella) as they counted down the days to Christmas.

Set in 1940s Hohman, Ind., the story was based on Jean Shepherd's 1966 book In God We Trust: All Others Pay Cash. Shepherd also serves as the movie's narrator.

Ralphie's only wish for Christmas is to get a Red Ryder BB gun (hence the now-famous "you'll shoot your eye out" quote). Throughout the movie, Ralphie has to navigate the trials and tribulations of everyday life at home and at Warren G. Harding Elementary school.

The movie wasn't an initial success, making $19.2 million at the box office, but over the years A Christmas Story developed a cult following, making it a must-watch holiday film for the whole family.