From “The Exorcist” to “It’s a Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” — this week’s TV lineup has something spooky for everyone
Halloween is synonymous with pumpkin carving and sexy nurse costumes, but the harvest holiday is also an excellent time for binge-watching television.
From hauntingly scary horror classics like William Friedkin‘s “The Exorcist” to ABC’s spook-tacularly sweet TV specials “It’s a Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown,” this week has a little something for everyone. So, grab a handful of those fun-sized candy bars you pretended to buy for trick-or-treaters, throw on an orange Snuggie and prepare for a long week on the couch.
Enjoy TheWrap‘s Halloween viewing guide:
AMC’s Fear Fest
The “Walking Dead” network switches back into feature mode with a litany of upcoming horror staples like “Tremors,” “Pumpkinhead,” and more “Halloween” and “Child’s Play” sequels than you can shake a stick at.
“Halloween” airs Friday, Oct. 31 at 3 p.m. ET on AMC.
SyFy’s “31 Days of Halloween”
The network’s month-long marathon is winding down, but there are still plenty of scares left including “30 Days of Night,” “Halloween “II,” “Children of the Corn” and “Texas Chainsaw Massacre.”
“Texas Chainsaw Massacre” (2003) airs Friday Oct. 31 at 2:30 p.m. on SyFy.
“13 Nights of Halloween” on ABC Family
Not all Halloween movies are R-rated. ABC Family has all-ages classics like “ParaNorman,” “Beetlejuice,” “Poltergeist” and “The Addams Family” planned.
“Poltergeist” airs Friday, Oct. 31 at 2 p.m. ET on ABC Family.
“The Rocky Horror Picture Show” on Logo TV
Logo TV will air “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” all day on Halloween, so make sure to fill up those water guns and stock up on the rice.
“The Rocky Horror Picture Show” airs from 10 a.m. Oct. 31 to Nov. 1 on Logo TV
“The Exorcist” on IFC
IFC will air “The Exorcist” several times this week, and who can blame them? Considered a staple of its genre, William Friedkin‘s terrifying 1971 possession film is still the only horror film to ever be nominated for a Best Picture Oscar.
“The Exorcist” airs Tuesday, Oct. 28 at 9:00 p.m. ET on IFC
Horror classics on Netflix
Netflix always does a good job of bolstering its horror offerings around Halloween. This year subscribers can choose from a lot of great scary films, including “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” “The Craft,” “Cabin in the Woods,” and “Rosemary’s Baby.”
Netflix programming is available 24/7.
“The Great Halloween Fright Fight,” ABC
From the producers of last year’s holiday hit “The Great Christmas Light Fight,” a one-hour special — “The Great Halloween Fright Fight” features families competing for the greatest haunted Halloween displays to earn a $50,000 prize. Michael Moloney and Sabrina Soto are judges.
“The Great Halloween Fright Fight” airs Tuesday, Oct. 28 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC
“About a Boy,” NBC
“About a Will-o-Ween” – Will (David Walton) orchestrates his yearly Halloween extravaganza, and Fiona (Minnie Driver) finally lets her hair down, according to the official synopsis. Fiona winds up meeting Sean (guest star Humphrey Ker) there and reveals a whole new side of herself. Will also shows Marcus (Benjamin Stockham) the joys of Halloween.
“About a Boy” airs Tuesday, Oct. 28 at 9:30 p.m. ET on NBC.
NCIS: New Orleans, CBS
“Master of Horror” – With New Orleans decorated for Halloween, the NCIS team investigates the murder of a Naval Staff Judge Advocate found in a cemetery dressed in a Victorian costume with vampiric puncture wounds on her neck. Meanwhile, the team debates what Halloween night activity and costumes would be best. Paige Turco guest stars as Pride’s wife, Linda. Steven Weber guest stars as Councilman Douglas Hamilton.
“NCIS: New Orleans” airs Tuesday, Oct. 28 at 9:00 p.m. ET on NBC.
“The Goldbergs,” ABC
“Family Takes Care of Beverly” – When Pops accidentally starts a fire in his apartment during a Halloween party, he’s evicted and Beverly invites him to move into the Goldbergs’ home. Pops’ wild lifestyle is soon too much for the family to handle and they decide to look into other options. Meanwhile, Barry stops Erica from eating Pop Rocks candy with soda, since according to urban legend, the combination would kill her. Since he “saves” her, Barry wants something in return from Erica.
“The Goldbergs” airs Wednesday, Oct. 29 at 8:30 p.m. ET on ABC.
“Criminal Minds,” CBS
“Boxed In” – When a young boy who went missing in San Diego on Halloween suddenly reappears one year later, the BAU must work fast when another trick-or-treater disappears under similar circumstances. Series star Thomas Gibson directed the episode. Gibson’s son, Travis, guest stars as Jake McCauley, one of the missing boy’s friends.
“Criminal Minds” airs Wednesday, Oct. 29 at 9 p.m. ET on CBS
“Modern Family,” ABC
“Halloween 3: AwesomeLand” – Even though Halloween is Claire’s holiday, she allows Phil to take over this year so instead of her usual fright-fest theme, he decides to turn the house into AwesomeLand! Gloria picks out Princess Fiona and Shrek costumes for her and Jay but Jay decides he wants to be Prince Charming complete with a full head of gorgeous hair, and with the hair comes a new sense of confidence. Elsewhere, Cameron gets overwhelmed by the day’s activities and Mitchell has closing arguments for a huge case, and it doesn’t help that the stenographer is dressed like a spider.
“Modern Family” airs Wednesday, Oct. 29 at 9 p.m. ET on ABC.
“The Prank King” – Dre (Anthony Anderson) fears his holiday fun will be ruined when the older kids balk at the glorious Johnson Halloween tradition of seeing who can pull the most outlandish pranks on each other. Guest starring are Peter Mackenzie as Mr. Stevens, Deon Cole as Charlie Telphy, Jeff Meacham as Josh and Jacob Kemp as Kris.
“Black-ish,” airs Wednesday, Oct. 29 at 9:30 p.m. ET on ABC.
“The Haunting” – While investigating a series of eerie threats, the TAU team discovers the victim’s house has a creepy history and is believed to be haunted. When the danger turns deadly, the team spends Halloween night searching a wild costume party looking for a perpetrator long believed to be dead. Executive Producer and Creator Kevin Williamson wrote the episode.
“Stalker” airs Wednesday, Oct. 29 at 10 p.m. ET on CBS.
“It’s a Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” (1966) on ABC
The one-hour Peanuts special won’t give you nightmares, but many consider it to be the best Halloween program ever created. The gang goes trick-or-treating on Halloween night.
“It’s a Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” airs Thursday, Oct. 30 at 8 p.m. on ABC.
“Two and a Half Men,” CBS
“The Ol’ Mexican Spinach” – Following a health scare on Halloween, Walden decides to re-prioritize his life with Alan’s help, on the 12th season premiere. Aisha Tyler (“The Talk”) guest stars as Walden’s lawyer.
“Two and a Half Men” airs Thursday, Oct. 30 at 9 p.m. ET on CBS.
“Hall-Oates-Ween” – It’s Halloween and Cristela is eager to show Trent her “party-whispering” skills to make this year’s party a success. After failing to convince Josh, Cristela gets Maddie to join her in dressing up as Hall & Oates. Meanwhile at home, Natalia’s dislike for Halloween has her celebrating the Day of the Dead instead and, ironically, her stories of deceased relatives makes her the most popular Halloween attraction in the neighborhood.
“Cristela” airs Friday, Oct. 31 at 8:30 p.m. ET on ABC.
“Hawaii Five-0,” CBS
“Ho’oma’ike” – It’s Halloween and Five-0 must track down a serial killer who is copying murders depicted in a cult slasher film. Meanwhile, McGarrett must help Jerry after he is kidnapped by the counterfeiters he has been tracking.
“Hawaii Five-0” airs Friday, Oct. 31 at 9 p.m. ET on CBS.
“Penny Dreadful,” Showtime
As a special Halloween treat, Showtime will re-air the first two episodes of its new drama series “Penny Dreadful.” Fans will reacquaint themselves with some of literature’s most famous characters, including Dr. Frankenstein, Dorian Gray and iconic figures from the novel Dracula, all re-imagined in a whole new light, embroiled in Victorian London.
“Penny Dreadful” airs Friday, Oct. 31 at 9 p.m. ET on Showtime