For the couch potatoes among us, getting in the Halloween spirit can simply mean sprawling out on the couch in front of a Freddy Krueger marathon. While many shows plan special spooky episodes, below you can find a handpicked list of other seasonal programming that will be screening on television today and on Halloween tomorrow.
“Halloween” Franchise Marathon: October 30 at 8pm, AMC; October 30 at 8pm, Spike TV
John Carpenter’s 1978 foray into the slasher franchise follows an escaped mental patient as he stalks Jamie Lee Curtis and smalltown middle America for blood and remains a classic. AMC will follow it up with “Halloween II” at 9pm, “Halloween III: Season of the Witch” at midnight, “Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers” at 2am and “Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers” at 4am, so huddle in for a night of diminishing returns. Spike TV also opted for “Halloween” tonight, though it will only air the first sequel at 10:40pm.
“Nightmare Factory”: October 30 at 8pm, Epix
Epix is airing the world premiere of this documentary from director Donna Davies about the Hollywood special effects house KNB EFX, which is responsible for “The Walking Dead” zombies and figures on over 1000 films. Epix is following it up with “Evil Dead II,” which features effects from Gregory Nicotero, who’d later go on to form KND with Howard Berger and Bob Kurtzman.
“The Rocky Horror Picture Show”: October 30 at 11:59pm, IFC; October 31 at 6pm, Ovation
Even if you can’t corral a group of audience participants to your living room, there’s still a reason “Rocky Horror” is the number one midnight movie of all time — so much so that two networks have chosen to air it to commemorate Halloween. Subsequent screenings will follow throughout the day on both channels.
“Trick ‘r Treat” Marathon: October 31 at 6am, FEARnet
FEARnet is running 24-hours worth of Michael Dougherty’s cult favorite 2007 horror anthology film (a sequel to which was just announced), featuring new content created by Dougherty. The film stars Anna Paquin, Brian Cox and Leslie Bibb as shunners and celebrators of the holiday.
“Nightmare on Elm Street” Sorta-Marathon: October 31 at 3pm, Syfy
Syfy seems to have secured the TV rights for the second, fourth and fifth installments of the Freddy Krueger series, along with iconic-baddies-clashing 2003 film “Freddy Vs. Jason,” which will air at 9pm.
“28 Days Later”: October 31 at 8pm, BBC America
Post-apocalyptic London as ravaged by an unforeseen contagion, Danny Boyle’s 2002 “28 Days Later” reinvigorated the zombie flick, launched Cillian Murphy’s career and sparked endless conversations about the fast vs. the slow undead.
“It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown”: October 31 at 8pm, ABC
ABC’s airing the classic 1966 Peanuts animated special in which Linus stakes out the pumpkin patch hoping to finally get a glimpse of The Great Pumpkin, while Charlie Brown has no luck trick-or-treating and the gang goes to a Halloween party. The special will be aired alongside a bonus Peanuts cartoon, “You’re Not Elected, Charlie Brown.”
Vincent Price Marathon: October 31 at 8pm, TCM
Turner Classic Movies has been celebrating Vincent Price all month, and on Halloween night has scheduled a nice slate of his films, starting with 1961’s “The Pit And The Pendulum” at 8pm, “The Haunted Palace” at 9:30pm, “The Masque Of The Red Death” at 11:15pm, “The Abominable Dr. Phibes” at 1am, “Twice-Told Tales” at 2:45am and “The Tomb Of Ligeia” at 5am.
“The Returned” Series Premiere: October 31 at 9pm, Sundance Channel
It’s not exactly horror, but this acclaimed French drama is about the dead returning mysteriously to life in a small town. The series, which premiered in France last year and was a runaway hit in Europe, now finally comes to the U.S. Check out our review.
“Paranormal Activity”/”Paranormal Activity 2”: October 31 at 10pm, FX
The first two installments of the franchise that taught us how scary, annoying and lucrative fixed camera found footage could be air on FX on Halloween, at 10pm and midnight.
“Tim & Eric’s Bedtime Stories: Haunted House”: October 31 at 11:59pm on Adult Swim
Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim are joined by Zach Galifianakis for this special that promises to deliver more strange humor than frights — maybe. The three learn that they’ve been left money by their grandfather, the catch being that in order to get it they have to live in his haunted mansion.