Happiness is a Warm TV

October 31, 2013

What to Watch on Thursday: ‘Great Pumpkin’ leads a night of spooky programming

Special Halloween programming tonight includes “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown,” “SNL Halloween,” “The Returned,” a handful of scary movies and even a spooky(ish) “Grey’s Anatomy.”

It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (8pm, ABC) - Linus waits patiently in the pumpkin patch for the Great Pumpkin. Also, Charlie Brown is finally invited to a Halloween Party and Snoopy engages the Red Baron in a dogfight (and Lucy in an apple-bobbing fight).

SNL Halloween (8pm, NBC) - An hour of Halloween-themed sketches from “Saturday Night Live” is sure to include some Vincent Price sketches and if we’re very good, maybe Phil Hartman as Frankenstein.

Vampire Diaries (8pm, CW) - Elena meets a sad and secretive student on campus, and later, she and Damon attend the Whitmore Historical Ball dressed as Anne Boleyn and Henry VIII. While there, Elena receives a disturbing message from Dr. Maxfield.

The Returned (9pm, Sundance) - A supernatural series set in a quiet village in the French Alps begins with a group of confused people returning to their homes unaware that they have been dead for a number of years. As the newly walking dead try to reestablish their past lives, they uncover longtime secrets, while at the same time, a rash of brutal murders are sweeping the area. Highly recommended! Here’s my full review of “The Returned.

Grey’s Anatomy (9pm, ABC) - Eerie patients arrive at the hospital on Halloween, and one of them puts a doctor’s welfare at risk.

North Carolina Weekend (9pm, UNCTV) - Tonight’s episode includes a profile of The Mecca Restaurant, a downtown Raleigh institution for more than 80 years.

A Chef’s Life (9:30pm, UNCTV) - In the series’ fifth episode, Kinston Chef Vivian Howard cooks with heirloom rice.

• If you’re in the mood for scary movies, a marathon of the “ Halloween” films begins at noon and runs all night on AMC; “ Paranormal Activity” plays on FX (5:30pm and 10pm), as does “ Paranormal Activity 2” (8pm); and “ The Haunted Palace” is on Turner Classic Movies (9:30pm).

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