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TV Wasteland: Too Early for Christmas...

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TV Wasteland: Too Early for Christmas...

The holiday season kicks off. The Wasteland doesn't care.

By Rob Vaux     November 26, 2012

Another busy week on the Wasteland, and Christmas arrives way too early as usual. Let’s see what the last week in November holds for us.


Revolution (NBC, 10:00 PM EDT)
Miles has to meet with Monroe if he hopes to rescue Danny.
WALL*E (ABC Family, 9:00 PM EDT)
R2-D2 or WALL*E? The battle for most awesome robot ever is officially on.
Chronicle (Cinemax, 8:30 PM EDT)
It’s an odd title for a film about three teenagers who get super powers, but we’ll forgive it.
Sky High (Disney, 8:30 PM EDT)
Disney’s mash-up of high school comedies and superhero films actually works quite well, thanks in part to cool cameos from Bruce Campbell, Lynda Carter and multiple members of Kids in the Hall.
Live Free or Die Hard (FMC, 8:00 PM EDT)
Let’s chalk it up as a minor win and move on.
Idiocracy (IFC, 8:00 PM EDT)
I don’t mind the brilliant concept here – about a modern man who wakes up in a world populated by morons – I just think it runs out of gas after about 25 minutes. 
Edward Scissorhands (IFC, 9:45 PM EDT)
And lo, did Johnny Depp shed his 21 Jump Street stigma for all time. 
Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi (Spike, 8:00 PM EDT)
Seriously, does Spike show anything but Star Wars movies these days?
The Green Hornet (Starz, 9:00 PM EDT)
Seth Rogen hates us. I’m sure of it.
Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (Syfy, 6:30 PM EDT)
It’s not the best Indy film of all time, but you’ve got to give it up for that bad guy…
The Mist (Syfy, 9:00 PM EDT)
This chilling Stephen King adaptation will leave you feeling like your guts have been kicked out… in the best possible way. Repeats Tuesday at 6:30 PM EDT.


How the Grinch Stole Christmas (ABC, 8:00 PM EDT)
Boris Karloff narrates, Chuck Jones animates, and no live-action monstrosity can come close to this 1966 holiday perennial.
Shrek the Halls (ABC, 8:30 PM EDT)
Okay, it’s not the Grinch, but this animated special featuring everyone’s favorite surly green ogre is still reasonably charming.
Up (ABC Family, 9:00 PM EDT)
Pixar registers yet another instant classic. Repeats on Wednesday at 7:00 PM EDT.
Rambo 4 (AMC, 8:00 PM EDT)
All I want for Christmas is buckets of Lionsgate CG blood.
Constantine (AMC, 10:00 PM EDT)
Admit it: you kind of dig Keanu Reeves in this.
Ice Age 2: The Meltdown and Ice Ice 3: Dawn of the Dinosaurs (FMC, 8:00 PM EDT and 10:00 PM EDT)
Two of the most unnecessary sequels you’ll ever see… now together for twice the suckage!
Mr. and Mrs. Smith (FX, 7:00 PM EDT)
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie begin their reign as annoying tabloid fodder of the new millennium right here. Enjoy. 
TRON: Legacy (Starz, 6:50 PM EDT)
Come for the Jeff Bridges, stay for… um, the Jeff Bridges.
Finding Nemo (Starz, 9:00 PM EDT)
That’s the third Pixar classic running this week: a trend worth getting behind.


A Charlie Brown Christmas (ABC, 8:00 PM EDT)
The first – and one of the very best – Peanuts special delivers a little sanity to our annual holiday slog.
Arrow (The CW, 8:00 PM EDT)
And like Smallville before it, Arrow officially enters “unnecessary guest character of the week” mode. (It’s the Huntress.) Also, the same episodes reruns on Friday at 9:00 PM EDT. 
Supernatural (The CW, 9:00 PM EDT)
Castiel has decided to become a hunter, which means he tags along on the Winchesters’ latest investigation.
America Horror Story: Asylum (FX, 10:00 PM EDT)
This just in… nun senses evil in lunatic asylum. In other news, the sky is blue and water is wet.
The Time Machine (TCM, 8:00 PM EDT)
George Pal’s classic version of the H.G. Wells science fiction masterpiece still holds up, thanks to terrific special effects and David Duncan’s faithful screenplay.
The Andromeda Strain (TCM, 10:00 PM EDT)
Not as great as The Time Machine, but still a fun bit of early 1970s sci-fi.
Aladdin (ABC Family, 9:00 PM EDT)
It’s not the masterpiece we once thought it was, but it’s not bad. 
Poseidon (AMC, 8:00 PM EDT and 10:00 PM EDT)
Sometimes, you just need to let remakes go down with the ship. Bwa! Get it? Because… right, I’ll just shut up now.
From Russia with Love (BBC America, 6:30 PM EDT)
Of all the James Bond movies, this one is perhaps the most faithful to the original Ian Fleming novel.
Tooth Fairy (FMC, 10:00 PM EDT)
The Rock can hurt you in more ways than one.
Final Destination 5 (HBO, 8:30 PM EDT)
I’m not sure how well this works away from 3-D, but it’s surprisingly watchable for a Part 5.
Leatherface: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre III (IFC, 9:00 PM EDT)
This isn’t watchable in any sense of the term, even for a Part 3.
Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan (IFC, 10:45 PM EDT)
We expect IFC to keep hitting the Star Trek films pretty hard the next couple of weeks, making a further mockery of their name but certainly keeping us Trekkies happy.
Van Helsing (Starz, 9:00 PM EDT)
There are too many talented people involved for it to be this shitty. And yet…


The Big Bang Theory (CBS, 8:00 PM EDT)
The rumble is on after the university gives Sheldon’s parking space to Howard.
Burn Notice (USA, 10:00 PM EDT)
Michael tries to rescue a captured smuggler by getting captured himself. Um, sure. Whatever works, big guy.
The Vampire Diaries (The CW, 8:00 PM EDT)
With the Twilight series now over (mercifully, mercifully over), where can we turn for hunky, mopey undead? The CW has your hook-up.
Beauty and the Beast (The CW, 9:00 PM EDT)
J.T. tries to help Vincent with his blackout, and hopefully doesn’t trigger another one in the process.
Last Resort (ABC, 8:00 PM EDT)
It’s Thanksgiving on the island. Coconuts and MREs for everyone!
Elementary (CBS, 10:00 PM EDT)
While investigating one crime, Holmes discovers evidence of another. Hey, are you gonna tell him he’s wrong?
Highlander (Sundance, 8:00 PM EDT)
Insert awesome quote from kick-ass movie here.
Rosemary’s Baby (Sundance, 10:00 PM EDT)
Roman Polanski scares the crap out of us in a weird and unsettling horror classic.
Dungeons and Dragons: Wrath of the Lich King and Dungeons and Dragons: The Book of Vile Darkness (Syfy, 6:30 PM EDT and 9:00 PM EDT)
Yes, they made more movies. Try not to be alarmed.
V for Vendetta (BBC America, 8:00 PM EDT)
Natalie Portman and Hugo Weaving do their best, but the remainder of this Alan Moore adaptation is serviceable at best.
Rise of the Planet of the Apes (Cinemax, 10:00 PM EDT)
How on Earth did this film rock so hard? And are we actually looking forward to the sequel? Yes we are…
Spy Kids (Disney, 8:30 PM EDT)
Everyone loves this film and I can’t for the life of me figure out why.
Iron Man (FX, 7:00 PM EDT)
I’m pretty sure I know exactly why everyone loves this one.
Strangeland (IFC, 9:00 PM EDT and 10:45 PM EDT)
Dee Snyder, former headliner for big-hair heavy metal band Twisted Sister, expends the last of his name recognition on a not-very-good slasher flick that vanished as quickly as it came. 
Apollo 18 (Showtime, 8:00 PM EDT)
Even for the threadbare found-footage genre, this bit of piffle feels pretty tired.


Nikita (The CW, 8:00 PM EDT)
The president of Uzbekistan is an ex-Division agent, and Nikita would like very much to have a word with him.
Arrow (The CW, 9:00 PM EDT)
They’re rerunning Wednesday’s episode, in case you missed it.
Haven (Syfy, 10:00 PM EDT)
They’re sparse on the details for this one; we only know that burning is involved.
Land of the Dead (AMC, 8:00 PM EDT)
George A. Romero scores a palpable hit with his fourth zombie apocalypse film. Watch for Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg in cameos. 
A Knight’s Tale (BBC America, 8:00 PM EDT)
Heath Ledger and Paul Bettany headline a ridiculous but largely enjoyable medieval rock-and-roll mash-up.
The Twilight Saga: Eclipse (Showtime, 7:55 PM EDT)
Someone give Showtime the message: these movies officially never happened.
The Three Musketeers (Showtime, 10:00 PM EDT)
Paul W.S. Anderson doesn’t exactly instill one with confidence, but hey: Milla Jovovich!
Dracula’s Daughter (TCM, 9:45 PM EDT)
TCM unlocks a not-bad sequel to the original Bela Lugosi masterpiece. Good fun from the Universal Horror vault. 
The Dark Knight (TNT, 8:00 PM EDT)
The third one was a letdown only because the second one was so, so good.
Grimm is a rerun; Fringe is off.


Elf (ABC Family, 8:00 PM EDT and 10:02 PM EDT)
I’m not particularly fond of this film. Then again, I’ve been told that I’m a cold, cynical bastard whose soul has long since shriveled up into a lifeless black husk, so there you go.
Terminator 2: Judgment Day (AMC, 8:00 PM EDT)
Don’t get me wrong, I love this movie.  But could it scream “1991” any more loudly?
How to Train Your Dragon (FX, 8:00 PM EDT)
Dreamworks’ winner returns for a flight on FX this Saturday.
Fright Night (Showtime, 7:00 PM EDT)
Very few people saw this movie in the theaters. Now’s a great time to rectify the mistake.
Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance (Starz, 7:20 PM EDT)
And speaking of mistakes…
Inception (TNT, 8:00 PM EDT)
Christopher Nolan is awesome, isn’t he?
Starship Troopers (Syfy, 6:00 PM EDT)
You really shouldn’t edit Paul Verhoeven movies for television. It misses the point.
Dragonwasps (Syfy, 9:00 PM EDT)
Why don’t they just call it Attack of the Crappy CGI and be done with it?


The Walking Dead (AMC, 9:00 PM EDT)
Andrea has to step up when Woodbury starts to go to pot, while the folks in the prison need to deal with a new situation… which may or may not involve the Governor showing up with bulldozer.
Dexter (Showtime, 9:00 PM EDT)
Hannah’s father pops in for a visit, which throws Dexter for a loop, even as the Phantom Arsonist becomes more troublesome.
Once Upon a Time (ABC, 8:00 PM EDT)
Regina and Mr. Gold try to keep Cora out of the real world, which could put Emma and Mary Margaret in danger.
666 Park Avenue (ABC, 10:00 PM EDT)
It’s a time travel episode, as James journeys to 1927 and discovers his family’s connection to the Drake. 
Friday the 13th, Parts 3 and 4 (IFC, 7:00 PM EDT and 9:00 PM EDT)
It sounds like a random pairing, but it actually kind of works: the two movies deal with Jason Voorhees’s receiving his hockey mask and his (eventually aborted) death.
Pitch Black (Spike, 8:00 PM EDT and 10:45 PM EDT)
Vin Diesel’s career began with this rather brilliant piece of dystopian sci-fi.
The Smurfs (Starz, 9:00 PM EDT)
I actually turned this one off when I saw it… and I never do that.
Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (Starz, 10:50 PM EDT)
Johnny Depp scored an Oscar nomination for his performance in the first and still the best of the Pirates franchise.
Land of the Lost (Syfy, 6:30 PM EDT)
Sid and Marty Krofft stuff stinks no matter what medium you use.
Raiders of the Lost Ark (Syfy, 8:30 PM EDT)
Nothing makes me happier than closing the week with the greatest action movie ever made.  Enjoy!


Showing items 1 - 10 of 10
RobertTrate 11/26/2012 6:12:59 AM

 Considering WallE and R2 were voiced by the same guy, Ben Burt, it is really no competition. 

Walker 11/26/2012 6:52:21 AM

Honestly, if it were not for the absolutely awful CGI, D&D: Wrath of the Dragon God would be an enjoyable bit of cheese.  It was far better than the theatrical release.  And it was better than 90% of the drek from the 80s, when cheap fantasy was in.

But good lord that CGI is awful.  You would have thought that the movie was made a decade earlier than it actually was.

ElBaz13 11/26/2012 7:18:38 AM

Agree. For what it was, Wrath of the Dragon God was decent. It felt like a decent fantasy TV show like the 90s Hercules and not a major motion picture.

It's too bad. Could have been good TV. Just watch the trailer for Book of Vile Darkness. ugh!

Sorry but the D&D name is tainted. No one will greenlight a movie with D&D in it as its too closely associated to nerds and the negative stuff from the 80s. If they want to make a decent 'D&D" show, they should just used the Drizzt character and his adventures and name it Icewind Dale or something like that.


jackwagon 11/26/2012 10:15:50 AM

 "Attack of the Crappy CGI" sounds like a rip-roaring good time.  Does anyone even find these supposed "SyFy Original Movies" slightly entertaining?  I can't imagine even the lowest of the lowest common denominators finding them to be watchable.

mellowdoux 11/26/2012 10:33:08 AM

 Anything Lucan do, I can do better...

doublec 11/26/2012 1:20:33 PM

 Seriously, there's a PROBEM with Spike running just Star Wars?
And yes, you are  cynical old bastard etc. but I don't like Elf either. The only part I found even remotely funny was the sendup of the Roger Patterson Bigfoot footage. And what baboon made Zooey Deschannel a blonde?

And we really couldn't wait a week until it's actually December to start running the Christmas shows? Which reminds me: Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is STILL an hour long!

karas1 11/26/2012 4:18:53 PM

Jackwagon, I have been known to find some of the Syfy original movies entertaining, particurlarly ones which feature actors I like from other scifi TV series or movies.  Watching Michael Shanks and Shannen Dourghty battle living rock creatures was classic.  I even have Boa vs Python on DVD.  With an unexpected nude scene added.

The most recient one I enjoyed was New Jersey Shark Attack which was hysterical with what had to be deliberately crude looking CGI sharks and corny dialogue you had to hear to believe.

And some of the Syfy original movies are just bad and not in an entertaining way.

I think my favorite holliday film is Santa Claus the Movie with Duddley Moore and John Lithgow.  What a hoot!

hanso 11/26/2012 5:11:19 PM

 The Three Musketeers is shit.

I'd like a sequel to Sky High.

GenghisKong 11/27/2012 9:11:48 AM

I thought the title of Chronicle was in reference to the fact that the one kid was filming every aspect of his day-to-day life, even before the super powers....or were you being funny?

Also, when I watched it, I was reminded more of Akira than other super hero origin stories....was it just me?

LadyBrowncoat 11/27/2012 10:13:20 AM

 New Nikita!  I'm in!



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