Monday, November 7, 2011

Halloween Lives On,
on Primetime-On-Demand Cable

Officer Nick Burkhardt (David Guintoli) investigates a crime scene along a jogging trail in the pilot episode of Grimm.

Halloween is my favorite holiday of the year. I love having an excuse to dress up in costume, savor chocolate (and not feel guilty about it), watch scary movies, and attend parties with friends, giggling at everyone's outrageously creative get-ups.

In my opinion, Halloween should always fall on a Saturday, similar to Thanksgiving, which is always on a Thursday, or Easter, which is always on a Sunday, in part so that children can go trick-or-treating and not worry about it being a school night. It should occur on the last Saturday of October and be combined with the annual “fall backward” time change from daylight savings to standard time, which gives us one hour extra at 2 a.m. on Sunday morning. That way, bars would be given one additional hour to stay open that night – a great pairing with what is actually the second largest income-producing retail holiday of the year.

The Sing-Off

This year, Halloween fell on a Monday, so regularly scheduled primetime Monday shows took advantage of the timing to really go all out with a Halloween theme. More notably, Tvgrrrrl’s favorite talent competition show, The Sing-Off, which airs every Monday on NBC [channel 4 or 1020 here on Brighthouse Cable in Orlando] from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m., produced a really spectacular song and dance number featuring several hit creepy tunes: This Is Halloween, Werewolves of London, and Ghostbusters. It was so very well done, better than even some Broadway musicals I’ve seen. Hats off to these talented a cappella performers for making me forget that there is no orchestra, or band of any sort, no bass or drums, just voices creating all those beautiful sounds. The performance occurs at the beginning of the show, so it only takes five minutes to view, just in case you are short on time and can't watch the entire episode. [channel 307]

The Simpsons

Another of my favorite shows, The Simpsons, produced their annual Halloween show, “Treehouse of Horror XXII,” which features three separate gruesome mini-stories. I’ve seen nearly every one of these, and although this wasn’t my favorite over the years (the Edgar Allen Poe and alien episodes are epic), I still enjoyed one segment in particular, featuring Homer, who becomes paralyzed due to a spider bite and learns that he can fart in order to communicate. In typical Simpson’s style, there’s always a bit of a twist to each story, which adds quite a “chunk” of hilarity. [S23Ep3 airing on 10-30] The Simpsons regularly airs on FOX TV at 8 p.m. each Sunday [channel 3 or 1035 here on Brighthouse Cable in Orlando].

In addition to Halloween themed shows, there are also a slew of series with scary themes throughout their season, perfect for watching on cold, dark and dreary, spooky fall nights by the fire.


One of the newer shows debuting this season is Grimm, on NBC [channel 4 or 1020 here on Brighthouse Cable in Orlando] airing on Friday nights at 8 p.m. Filmed in and around Portland, Oregon in the dark and drippy rainforest of the Pacific Northwest, the show is really no scarier than Eerie, Indiana, a G-rated creep show which used to air on Saturday mornings. The premise of the show is that police officer Nick Burkhardt (played by super hot David Guintoli) is visited by his Aunt Marie, who is dying of cancer and reveals to him on her deathbed that he is actually a “Grimm,” a special person with the unique ability to see past the disguises of supernatural monsters who pose as humans and walk the earth, committing heinous crimes. Each episode begins with a quote from a fairy tale (not always from Grimm’s Fairy Tales) and the crime committed is somehow related. The first is a twist on Little Red Riding Hood [episode 101] and the second [episode 102], a twist on Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Think X-files meets Fringe, complete with Outer Limits theme music.

American Horror Story

The FX network also features a scary new series, American Horror Story, about a family of three who moves into a house which they later discover is the site of multiple murders, haunted by an active collection of ghosts. It’s a complicated show and written like a soap opera, but is extraordinarily dark and creepy and worth the time to watch. Unfortunately, the pilot episodes are no longer being shown on primetime-on-demand. However, you can catch up beginning with episode 2 here online, quickly, before it also expires. The show regularly airs on Wednesdays at 10 p.m. on FX [channel 70 or 1283 here on Brighthouse Cable in Orlando].

The SyFy Network

The SyFy network, though primarily known for science fiction and fantasy, is full of freaky/creep shows as part of their regular season’s lineup this fall, including: Ghost Hunters, Fact or Faked, Paranormal Witness, Urban Legends, and Scare Tactics. [channel 69 or 1286 here on Brighthouse Cable in Orlando]

Each of these shows can be found in rerun on Primetime-On-Demand. Here in Orlando, Florida, these are found on Brighthouse channel 304 on digital cable.

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