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Posted at 4:55 a.m. EST Wednesday, January 26, 2000



Washington Post

Oh, to have the pumpkin concession for prime-time television when the broadcast and cable networks trot out their Halloween-themed programming.

The idea of capitalizing on such holidays is neither novel nor creative. But it does give TV viewers something beside trick-or-treat loot in which to sink their teeth.

NBC's Frasier and 3rd Rock From the Sun join in with the other adult trick-or-treaters this year.

And, fear not, little ones, the season still has some programming approved by your mummies . . . uh, mommies.

Fox's Goosebumps concludes the chilling two-part episode, `One Day at Horrorland,` this morning at 10.

To appeal to both kids and adults, the tried-and-true king of scream remains The Simpsons, which checks in tomorrow with another `Treehouse of Horror` episode. This eighth installment features parodies `The Homega Man,` with Homer battling irradiated mutants; `Fly vs. Fly,` in which Bart morphs with a fly; and `Easy-Bake Coven` (a la The Crucible), the history of Halloween.

Fox's macabre lineup also includes last season's highest-rated Simpsons episode, `The Springfield Files,` featuring spooky guest stars David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson; and last year's Halloween trilogy -- `The Thing and I,` `The Genesis Tube` and `Citizen Kang,` in which presidential candidates Clinton and Dole are abducted by aliens.

King of the Hill also gets into the spirit -- Arlen, Texas, style -- when Hank and his buddies `toiler-paper` a woman's house.

Tomorrow's competition is especially scary coming five days before Halloween.

ABC's Wonderful World of Disney presents Tower of Terror, which is suitable for the entire family, followed by the film The Devil's Child, which is not recommended for younger viewers.

The week's other broadcast movies include Wolf, Tuesday on Fox, and Village of the Damned, Thursday on ABC.

The week's dark dramas include The Visitor and Millennium, Friday on Fox, and NBC's Saturday `thrillogy` -- The Pretender, Sleepwalkers and Profiler -- as well as lots of promos for the Nov. 2 start of NBC's House of Frankenstein 1997.

But most of the holiday fare See TV, Page D2 TV + A&E's 'Biography' profiles Boris Karloff Continued from Page D1skews to comedy, with two sure-fire treats scheduled for a Jekyll-and-Hyde battle Tuesday at 9.

On ABC's Home Improvement, the `Night to Dismember` episode has Mark featuring the family in his Halloween horror movie, and Tim using his Tool Time skills to build a hot-rod jack-o'-lantern for a pumpkinmobile race.

Meanwhile, NBC's Frasier features a literary-themed costume ball. The best get-ups are donned by Roz as the love slave in The Story of O, and Bulldog as the `Where's Waldo?` character.

Wednesday, the costume party on NBC's 3rd Rock From the Sun allows Dick to parade as a pirate, and Tommy and Sally to dress as Sonny and Cher.

Halloween parties also figure into the story lines of CBS' The Gregory Hines Show; Fox's Beverly Hills, 90210; and ABC's The Practice, Nothing Sacred, Sabrina, the Teenage Witch, Teen Angel, and daytime dramas Port Charles, All My Children, One Life to Live and General Hospital. Further, Sabrina (Melissa Joan Hart) pops up in Boy Meets World.

CBS' Meego, Cybill and George & Leo; ABC's Soul Man and You Wish; NBC's Union Square; Fox's Living Single and Between Brothers; and WB's Unhappily Ever After, The Jamie Foxx Show and, of course, Buffy the Vampire Slayer also get into the spirit.

CBS viewers also can see Stevil, the mischievous ventriloquist dummy, on the 200th episode of Family Matters and Cassandra `Elvira` Peterson on Nash Bridges.

On the more serious side, the Learning Channel features a full week of prime-time ghouls.

Tomorrow's Castle Ghosts of Wales scares up spooks supposedly haunting Welsh castles, with similar sightings Wednesday regarding Ireland and Scotland. Monday's Mythical Beasts and Monsters, narrated by Mark Hamill, separates history from lore.

The basic cable service this week also has programs on Bigfoot, Witches and Vampires, Wolfman: The Myth and the Science and The Real Frankenstein: The Untold Story.

Other networks take a similar tack. A&E's Biography profiles Boris Karloff, Lifetime's Intimate Portrait features witches, and History Channel's In Search of History tracks Frankenstein.

A&E also investigates the origin of the vampire on tomorrow's Ancient Mysteries and looks at Blackbeard's reign of terror on Thursday's Sea Tales. History provides The Haunted History of Halloween on Sunday, tackles witchcraft on Thursday's In Search of History and Frankenstein on Friday's episode. The Friday schedule also includes a repeat of Haunted History as well as True Story of the Vampire and Ghosts of Gettysburg.

Starting Thursday, American Movie Classics scares up 26 films plus a Monster Mania documentary on fright movies. The one-hour show is hosted by one-time Dracula Jack Palance.

A skeletal view of other movie choices (on Friday unless otherwise noted):

Cinemax -- Ghost, Vampire in Brooklyn, Bad Moon, Sorceress and four Friday the 13th films.

Comedy Central -- Transylvania 6-5000 and An American Werewolf in London.

Disney -- Susie Q, The Watcher in the Woods and Close Encounters of the Third Kind, all on Thursday; Hocus Pocus, Under Wraps and Double, Double, Toil and Trouble.

Encore -- The Shining and Ghost Story (Thursday); The Amityville Horror, Psycho, Terror in the Aisles.

Sci-Fi Channel -- Vampire at Midnight (Wednesday), The Monster Squad, Midnight Offerings, Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth, Omen IV: The Awakening, Body Parts and Dracula.

TBS -- Carrie, Teen Wolf, Repossessed, and My Best Friend Is a Vampire.

USA Network -- two Child's Play sequels.
CAPTION: James Marsters plays Spike and Sarah Michelle Gellar is

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