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What to Watch Besides the Super Bowl on Sunday

"1923," "Back to the Future," and a bunch of dog shows are some of the programming options available for non-sports fans.

"Back to the Future," the Puppy Bowl, "1923"

“Back to the Future,” the Puppy Bowl, “1923”

©Universal Pictures / Courtesy Everett Collection/Damian Strohmeyer / © Animal Planet/Discovery Communications / Courtesy: Everett Collection/Courtesy of Emerson Miller / Paramount+

For many, this coming Sunday is all about football and Rihanna (not necessarily in that order). Kickoff for Super Bowl LVII begins at 6:30 p.m ET on February 12, with the Kansas City Chiefs and Philadelphia Eagles competing to win the championship. Fox is set to air the event, which will feature Chris Stapleton performing the national anthem and Rihanna making a return to performing during the Halftime Show.

For the less sports-inclined among us, it can be hard to find other ways to spend your time on Super Bowl Sunday. Luckily, between endless streaming shows and cable programming, there’s no shortage of films and TV shows to enjoy. Here’s a guide to all the counter-programming available during the Super Bowl — whether you’re tuning out entirely, only checking out the Halftime Show, or quit halfway through when your favorite team starts losing.

Dog Shows

The most famous “Super Bowl” alternative is, of course, the Puppy Bowl, Animal Planet’s long-running special that subs out hulking athletes crashing into each other with adorable shelter dogs playing games in a model stadium. This year’s 19th edition kicks off at 2:00 p.m. ET, and airs on Animal Planet, TBS, and Discovery Channel, in addition to streaming on Discovery+ and HBO Max.

The Puppy Bowl isn’t the only dog-themed game in town on Super Bowl night. Starting at 8:00 p.m. ET, ESPN will re-air the annual AKC National Championship Dog Show from Thanksgiving. And at 5:30 p.m. ET, Fox Sports 1 (or FS1) will replay the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show from last June.

1923” (Paramount+)

Although a lot of its audience probably overlaps with Super Bowl viewers, “1923” is going ahead with premiering its sixth episode — out of eight — “One Ocean Closer to Destiny” on Sunday. Fans of the Helen Mirren and Harrison Ford-led “Yellowstone” prequel can watch the episode as soon as it goes up on Paramount+ at 3:00 a.m. ET, or save it for later at night.

Sunday will also see the linear premiere for Episode 5 of HBO’s “The Last of Us.” But, while you’re free to save the episode for 9 p.m. ET that night, HBO opted to get ahead of the big game a bit by premiering the episode on streaming two days early.

“Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown” (CNN)

If your main reason for going to a Super Bowl party is the food, you might be tempted to tune in to CNN on Sunday. The cable channel will air a marathon of the late, great Anthony Bourdain’s beloved travel food series “Parts Unknown” beginning at 6 p.m. ET. The marathon runs for eight episodes overnight until 2 a.m ET on Monday, and focuses on episodes of the Emmy-winning series set in the United States, including Detroit, Chicago, Montana, and the Mississippi Delta.

Back to the Future” (Syfy)

If you want to spend Sunday watching a perfect film (and its slightly-less-perfect sequels) Syfy has you covered with a “Back to the Future” trilogy marathon. The iconic first film that sees Marty Mcfly (Michael J. Fox) travel to the past in a DeLorean automobile and meet his parents will begin airing at 7:30 p.m. ET. Fans of Robert Zemeckis ’80s cultural touchstone can stick around to watch Marty and Doc Brown’s (Christopher Lloyd) adventures continue in “Back to the Future Part II” (10:03 p.m. ET) and “Part III” (12:33 a.m. ET).

Shirley Temple on TCM

For parents whose kids aren’t into sports, Turner Classic Movies is dedicating Sunday night to a trio of classic kids movies. At 5:30 p.m. ET, the channel will broadcast “The Wonderful World of the Brothers Grimm,” a 1962 film from Henry Levin and George Pal that retells the life stories of the fairy tale icons alongside recreations of their most classic stories. And at 8 p.m. ET and 9:30 p.m. ET, viewers can watch two of iconic child star Shirley Temple’s films, “Curly Top” and John Ford’s “Wee Willie Winkie.”

New on Streaming

This weekend brings two new romantic comedies to streaming: the Ashton Kutcher and Reese Witherspoon house-swapping flick “Your Place or Mine” on Netflix, and Alison Brie’s “My Best Friend’s Wedding” riff “Somebody I Used to Know” on Prime Video.

Those looking for something a little less warm-and-fuzzy can spend their Sunday night watching Penn Badgley’s indestructible stalker Joe solve a murder mystery in Part 1 of “You” Season 4, streaming on Netflix. Reality show fans who enjoy mess can also tune in to Season 3 of the “Love is Blind” spin-off “After the Altar” on Netflix, to check up on how Bartise and Cole are doing. On HBO Max, fans of “Harley Quinn” can tune in to the show’s new Valentine’s Day special, and comedian Marc Maron has a new special “From Bleak to Dark” premiering the Saturday before the Super Bowl.

For those who want to watch some old favorites or newer theatrical titles from the comfort of their home, plenty of great films have been added to various streaming services this month. “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” has made its debut on Disney+, if you want to check out Angela Bassett’s Oscar-nominated performance. HBO Max also has “All That Breathes,” the acclaimed Oscar-nominated documentary, and Best Cinematography nominee “Empire of Light.”

In terms of older titles, Netflix has added all three films in the beloved “Lord of the Rings” trilogy if you have the time for a nine-hour marathon, while Peacock has all three “John Wick” films in prep for the fourth chapter of the Keanu Reeves series next month. Other notable titles that made their debut on streaming this month include “If Beale Street Could Talk” (Hulu, Peacock, Paramount+), all three “Men in Black” movies (Peacock), “La La Land” (Netflix), “Mean Girls” (Paramount+), and two “Shrek” films (Amazon Prime).

And if you want to spend Sunday night catching up on the Oscars, almost every Best Picture nominee — “Women Talking” and “Avatar: The Way of Water” notwithstanding — have made it to streaming or VOD platforms. “All Quiet on the Western Front” can be streamed on Netflix, “The Banshees of Inisherin” and “Elvis” on HBO Max, “Everything Everywhere All at Once” and “Top Gun: Maverick” on Paramount+, and “Tár” on Peacock. “The Fabelmans” can be bought on VOD platforms starting at $19.99, while “Triangle of Sadness” can be rented at $5.99.

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