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TV Wasteland: Halloween Wasteland
A full week heralds November
By Rob Vaux
October 30, 2011
The Halloween holiday controls the start of the TV Wasteland(2011).
© Robert Trate
It’s a full week on the Wasteland, so let’s waste no time!
Terra Nova (Fox, 8:00 PM EDT)
Josh looks for a way to reunite with his girlfriend in the future and the colony’s first murder has everyone up in arms. I’m not fond of this show but I’ll give it credit for not trying to foist a contrived Halloween special on us.
Scared Shrekless (ABC, 8:00 PM EDT)
Those of you who, like me, were unmoved by the big-screen charms of Puss in Boots can find solace in the rerun of the Shrek Halloween special, which holds more cleverness in five minutes than the entire running time of the current feature film.
Ghost Hunters Halloween Live (Syfy, 8:00 PM EDT)
The team broadcasts live from a Pennsylvania insane asylum in hopes of catching glimpses of real life spooks.
Halloween (AMC, 8:00 PM EDT)
The John Carpenter classic. When if not now? What if not this?
Halloween III: Season of the Witch (AMC, 10:00 PM EDT)
This is far from a classic, but let’s be honest: it’s better than any of the other Halloween sequels/remakes you can find out there.
Village of the Damned (TCM, 8:00 PM EDT)
TCM is always a good bet for Halloween viewing, especially with this terrific British film about alien-spawned children in a sleepy little town.
Night of the Living Dead (TCM, 9:30 PM EDT)
Along with Halloween, this constitutes the unquestioned high point of the evening.
Hatchet II (Cinemax, 8:30 PM EDT)
If your Halloween viewing schedule is so bereft and empty as to tackle this barely-seen sequel to a not-exactly-beloved original, do yourself a favor and find a nice Shirley Temple movie instead.
Twilight (FX, 7:30 PM EDT)
Scratch that. If it’s between Hatchet II and this, run stampeding towards Hatchet II: trampling small children and the elderly if necessary.
Predator 2 (FMC, 8:00 PM EDT)
It’s not exactly a horror movie, but damn that monster’s cool.
Cursed (IFC, 8:00 PM EDT)
Wes Craven’s career hits a decided bump in a tale of a brother-sister duo who turn into werewolves. If you need a bit of shapeshifting for your All Hallows’ Eve, stick around for…
Ginger Snaps (IFC, 10:00 PM EDT)
Simply put, it’s the best lycanthropy movie since An American Werewolf in London.
Hulk (Starz, 7:00 PM EDT)
What? It’s kind of horror…
Resident Evil: Afterlife (Starz, 9:22 PM EDT)
I won’t call it good, but it can certainly be fun.
Happy Halloween everyone! Stay safe out there…
The Mummy (AMC, 8:00 PM EDT)
Of all the Raiders of the Lost Ark rip-offs out there, this is the best. That may sound like faint praise, but Brendan Fraser sure makes it work.
District 9 (FX, 7:30 PM EDT)
The term “modern classic” was tailor-made for this brilliant South African import, the other sci-fi movie nominated for Best Picture in 2009.
The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian (Syfy, 8:00 PM EDT)
A fine, exciting adaptation of the C.S. Lewis classic… even for those of us not entirely comfortable with the Jesus Lion.
Sleeper (TCM, 9:45 PM EDT)
Woody Allen’s sci-fi comedy about an Allen-esque nebbish who wakes up in the far future ranks among his very best.
American Horror Story (FX, 10:00 PM EDT)
The second part of the Halloween special arrives a few days late to give us one last scare.
Ghost Hunters (Syfy, 9:00 PM EDT)
We head to the Show-Me State where undead inmates haunt a prominent penitentiary.
The Day after Tomorrow (FX, 7:00 PM EDT)
I’m still trying to wrap my head around the fact that the same guy who directed this also tackled the Oxfordian Shakespeare controversy.
The Rite (HBO, 7:30 PM EDT)
Anthony Hopkins redefines phoning it in in this silly, derivative Exorcist rehash.
The Big Bang Theory (CBS, 8:00 PM EDT)
Penny and Bernadette shop for wedding dresses without inviting Amy. I’m sure sci-fi will enter the equation somewhere.
Burn Notice (USA, 10:00 PM EDT)
The popular USA series returns after a two-month hiatus as Michael and Fiona head to Puerto Rico in order to find a hacker’s valuable software.
The Vampire Diaries (The CW, 8:00 PM EDT)
Damon takes drastic action to reach Stefan, while Elena and Rebekah go from mortal enemies to apparent besties after a new revelation about Rebekah’s past.
The Secret Circle (The CW, 9:00 PM EDT)
Cassie’s grandmother disappears, prompting the circle to move heaven and earth in search of her.
The Quick and the Dead (AMC, 8:00 PM EDT)
Sam Raimi directs a ridiculous and wildly entertaining Western mash-up about a female gunslinger (Sharon Stone) out to settle a score at a quick-draw competition.
Beowulf (BBC America, 9:00 PM EDT)
We should have known that the whole motion capture thing was doomed after this less-than-stellar take on the ancient legend. On the other hand, we do get to see Angelina Jolie’s virtual breasts… as apt a use for 3D as I’ve ever seen.
Lake Placid 2 and Lake Placid 3 (7:00 PM EDT and 9:00 PM EDT)
Syfy beats the life out of the original giant crocodile movie with a pair of thoroughly uninspired sequels.
Fringe (Fox, 9:00 PM EDT)
The great Stephen Root show up to help when time-loop anomalies start causing trouble.
Chuck (NBC, 8:00 PM EDT)
Our guest star this week is The Matrix’s Carrie-Ann Moss, playing a new rival of Chuck’s. No word on whether she back-flips off the ceiling or not.
Grimm (NBC, 9:00 PM EDT)
A burglary case leads to a family with a dodgy moral history. Somehow, this involves supernatural creatures; how exactly, we’re not quite sure.
Nikita (The CW, 8:00 PM EDT)
Amanda intercepts sensitive correspondence between Ryan and Nikita, even as Nikita conspires to spring Ryan from the pen.
Supernatural (The CW, 9:00 PM EDT)
A town full of psychics sees the murder rate spike when an angry spook shows up, prompting the boys to take a look.
Sanctuary (Syfy, 10:00 PM EDT)
An Abnormal fugitive leads the team right to Tesla who, as usual, is up to no good.
Young Justice (Cartoon, 6:30 PM EDT)
The team has to replace the Justice League when an alien invasion hits Earth. I hate when that happens.
Batman: The Brave and the Bold (Cartoon, 7:00 PM EDT)
The episode includes four separate stories, each featuring a different hero teaming up with Batman: Amazing Man, The Flash, Adam Strange and the Creature Commandos.
Star Wars: The Clone Wars (Cartoon, 8:00 PM EDT)
The 501st continue their attack on Umbara with a less-than-ideal Jedi in command. It’s not easy being cloned…
ThunderCats (Cartoon, 8:30 PM EDT)
It’s a new episode, but information on it is a little sparse.
The Invisible Man (TCM, 8:00 PM EDT)
The 1933 classic holds up surprisingly well, with Claude Rains often conveying the titular character using only his voice.
Lake Placid (AMC, 8:00 PM EDT)
Bridget Fonda heads up an amusing lark about a giant croc in Maine. If you were unfortunate enough to catch the sequels earlier in the week, this should cure what ails you.
Clash of the Titans (BBC America, 9:00 PM EDT)
Ray Harryhausen goes out with a bang in this incomparable Saturday matinee romp that no amount of crappy remakes can dim.
Avatar (Cinemax, 7:15 PM EDT)
Blue aliens save their world from evil Marines. Apparently, one or two people thought that it was rather good.
The Devil’s Rejects (IFC, 8:45 PM EDT)
Rob Zombie directs a sort-of sequel to House of 1000 Corpses that actually proves to be better than the original.
Push (Showtime, 9:30 PM EDT)
Psychics on the run hide from the government in Hong Kong. It’s kind of like Jumper except that it doesn’t actually suck.
The Green Hornet (Starz, 8:00 PM EDT)
Seth Rogen is better when he’s actually trying to be funny, not when he’s just trying to be a jackass.
The Wizard of Oz (TBS, 10:00 PM EDT)
Don’t tell me you don’t love this. Because then you would be lying.
Armageddon (FX, 8:00 PM EDT)
It’s Michael Bay in his purest and most unfiltered, so stuff is gonna blow up. A lot.
Primal (IFC, 8:00 PM EDT)
What did we tell you kids about skinny-dipping in the Outback?
Starship Troopers (Syfy, 7:00 PM EDT)
Classic or turkey… with this one, it’s all in the eye or the beholder.
Outlander (Syfy, 9:00 PM EDT)
The title refers to a soldier from outer space, who lands in Viking-era Scandinavia and helps the locals take down a giant monster. It looks like a standard Syfy turd, but it’s attracted some notable talent, including Jim Caviezel, Ron Perlman and John Hurt.
The Walking Dead (AMC, 9:00 PM EST)
Fallout from the previous weeks leads the group to contemplate whether living is really all that different from dying.
Dexter (Showtime, 9:00 PM EDT)
Dexter’s new case hits a little closer to home than he’d like, while Debra struggles with her new duties.
Once Upon a Time (ABC, 8:00 PM EST)
The once and former Snow White meets up with the once and former Prince Charming in the coma ward and reads to him from the storybook. I have to say I was a little hard on this show when I covered it a couple of weeks ago. It’s actually pretty decent.
Red Planet (Syfy, 6:30 PM EST)
Val Kilmer stars in a fair-to-middling sci-fi adventure that scores points more for the cool robot than anything in the plot.
The Fifth Element (Syfy, 9:00 PM EST)
Syfy always ends the week with this one, don’t they?