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What To Watch On New Year’s Eve

New Year’s Eve Live With Anderson Cooper And Andy Cohen
(Image credit: CNN)

On New Year’s Eve, millions of people around the country will descend upon city centers, concert halls, and other festive locations to ring in 2022. But if spending an arm and a leg on a new outfit or inflated ticket prices, braving massive crowds, or going to Disney World isn't your thing, don’t worry because there are plenty of great ways to celebrate the year that was and look forward to the one to come. And if you want to know what to watch on New Year’s Eve, then even better because you’ve come to the right place.

Throughout the day on Friday, December 31, there are plenty of options ranging from the premiere of Cobra Kai Season 4 on Netflix to college football games to star-studded shows like Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin' Eve with Ryan Seacrest and even a new party hosted by Miley Cyrus and Pete Davidson. And before we get started, please note the times below are all Eastern Time unless specifically noted.

Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin Eve With Ryan Seacrest 2021

(Image credit: ABC)

Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin' Eve With Ryan Seacrest - 8 P.M. (ABC)

Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest will kick off its 50th anniversary with one of the biggest shows in the event’s history. The celebration kicks off Friday, December 31 at 8 P.M. on ABC with Ryan Seacrest hosting live from New York City’s Times Square with co-host Liza Koshy and correspondent Jessie James Decker. But that’s just the beginning, as Billy Porter will be hosting from the Big Easy New Orleans, Cira and D-Nice will be handling duties in Los Angeles, and Roselyn Sánchez and Daddy Yankee will be bringing their energy to the Puerto Rico portion of the festivities. Expect even more performers and surprises before the ball drops on New Year’s Eve.

New Year’s Eve Live With Anderson Cooper And Andy Cohen

(Image credit: CNN)

New Year’s Eve Live With Anderson Cooper And Andy Cohen - 8 P.M. (CNN)

One of the biggest and most talked about events of the year is New Year’s Eve Live with Anderson Cooper and Andy Cohen, and the dynamic duo will be bringing their energy back to the airwaves (and Times Square) for the fifth straight year. The event kicks off on Friday, December 31 at 8 p.m. on CNN and will run through the start of the new year with all sorts of can’t-miss moments and surprises we’ll surely be talking about long after the last words of “Auld Lang Syne” have been butchered and confetti has been swept from the streets.

The 2021 It's Toast logo

(Image credit: NBC)

2021: It’s Toast - 8 P.M. (NBC/Peacock)

NBC/Peacock’s New Year’s Eve coverage will get underway with 2021: It’s Toast, a special hosted by Today personalities Hoda Kotb and Jenna Bush Hager. Billed as “the party before the party,” in a trailer released by NBC, the event will look back at the biggest events of 2021 and offer some comic relief for one of the strangest and most stressful 12 months in recent memory. Tune in at 8 p.m. for a load of laughs and cheer as you settle in for the new night.

Pete Davidson and Miley Cyrus on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon

(Image credit: NBC)

Miley’s New Year’s Eve Party - 10:30 P.M. (NBC/Peacock)

From 2004 until 2020, NBC’s New Year’s Eve coverage was hosted by Carson Daly, but that all changes this year when the network debuts a brand new special, Miley’s New Year’s Eve Party. This special event, which will air live Friday, December 31, at 10:30 p.m. on NBC, will be hosted by Miley Cyrus and Saturday Night Live’s Pete Davidson. The event will go toe-to-toe with Ryan Seacrest’s New Year’s Eve program, which was the top-rated entertainment show last year, according to Deadline. The event will also be streaming live on Peacock.

New Year’s Eve Live: Nashville’s Big Bash logo

(Image credit: CBS)

New Year’s Eve Live: Nashville’s Big Bash - 8 P.M. (CBS/Paramount+)

If you are looking for a boot-scootin’ boogie to ring in the new year, then CBS will have you more than covered. On Friday, December 31 from 8 to 11 p.m. and 11:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. ET/PT, radio personality Bobby Bones and Entertainment Tonight’s Rachel Smith will host the star-studded New Year’s Eve Live: Nashville’s Big Bash, a welcoming to 2022 and goodbye to 2021 filled with some of today’s biggest country music stars. According to Deadline, Jason Aldean, Jimmie Allen, Dierks Bentley, Brooks and Dunn, Luke Bryan, Elle King, Miranda Lambert, Darius Rucker, Blake Shelton, Zac Brown Band, and others will all take the stage throughout the five-hour event. The event will also be streaming live for anyone with a Paramount+ subscription.

All-American New Year logo

(Image credit: Fox News)

All-American New Year - 10 P.M. (Fox News)

Not to be outdone, Fox News will be hosting its own special, All-American New Year, starting 10 p.m. Friday. The event, which is being produced live from the Wildhorse Saloon in Nashville, Tennessee, will be full of line-dancing competitions, resolutions, and even a Times Square scavenger hunt as Fox News personalities await the dropping of the ball. 

New Year’s Eve Times Square Live Stream 2017

(Image credit: EarthCam)

New Year’s Eve Times Square Live Stream - 5 P.M. (Times  Square NYC)

If you want to take in the experience of seeing New York City’s New Year’s Eve celebration without having to travel to the Big Apple and stand in the same place for hours on end, you aren’t out of luck this year. Starting at 5 p.m. Friday, the official Times Square website will be hosting a live stream of the festivities for all of the world to see. This feed makes for a cool experience at home and allows you to see everything from the early stages of the party to the massive cleanup project that starts up after the crowds go home. Even if you only watch for a few minutes here and there, this is something you don’t want to miss.

Stream the New Year’s Eve Times Square Live Stream on TimesSquareNYC.org.

Johnny and Daniel in Cobra Kai Season 4

(Image credit: Netflix)

Cobra Kai Season 4 Premiere (Netflix)

Long before New Year’s Eve events begin to kick off around the country, Cobra Kai Season 4 will premiere, giving fans of the Karate Kid spinoff series plenty of time to binge one of the best shows on Netflix. In the meantime, there’s never been a better time to check out those jaw-dropping moments from the new season’s trailer or go back and catch up on the series so far.

Stream Cobra Kai on Netflix.

Cotton Bowl logo

(Image credit: NCAA)

Goodyear Cotton Bowl - 3:30 P.M. (ESPN)

New Year’s Eve will also feature a pair of high-profile college football games featuring the top four teams vying for an opportunity to play in the NCAA National Championship Game. The double-header will kick off with the Goodyear Cotton Bowl in Arlington, Texas, which will see the number-one seed Alabama Crimson Tide take on the fourth-ranked Cincinnati Bearcats. The game is set to kick off Friday, December 31 at 3:30 p.m. on ESPN.

Orange Bowl logo

(Image credit: NCAA)

Capital One Orange Bowl - 7:30 P.M.  (ESPN)

Immediately following the conclusion of the Cotton Bowl, the number-two seed Michigan Wolverines will take on the Georgia Bulldogs at the Capital One Orange Bowl in Miami, Florida. The game is set to get underway Friday, December 31 at 7:30 p.m. on ESPN. 

Hopefully all of this helps you decide what to watch on New Year’s Eve. If you want to know what else is coming out leading up to the big hoorah, check out CinemaBlend’s 2021 fall TV schedule for all the latest.

Philip Sledge

Philip grew up in Louisiana (not New Orleans) before moving to St. Louis after graduating from Louisiana State University-Shreveport. When he's not writing about movies or television, Philip can be found being chased by his three kids, telling his dogs to stop yelling at the mailman, or yelling about professional wrestling to his wife. If the stars properly align, he will talk about For Love Of The Game being the best baseball movie of all time.