Thursday Movie Picks – Halloween/TMP Television Edition: Horror

For this week’s Thursday Movie Picks, run by Wandering through the Shelves, we’ve been asked to list three to five TV shows from the horror genre.

As usual I have based my selection from films I’ve watched. It was a hard call just picking five, as there were actually six in the running. A special mention goes to Stranger Things (2016-present). I really enjoy the show but it didn’t make the cut as I thought it might be a popular choice this week.

Twin Peaks (1990-1991; 2017)

I challenge anyone to write ‘Twin Peaks’ and not have Julee Cruise’s haunting ‘Falling’ immediately start playing in their head. It’s a cult classic for good reason, not least for the fact it spans several genres bringing together supernatural elements with larger-than-life soap opera tropes. I’m yet to watch the 2017 series but hope to do so at some point.

Buffy the Vampire Slayer (1997-2003)

As mentioned in my ‘2020: The Year in Review’ post, Buffy the Vampire Slayer helped me get through the various UK lockdowns. Having only seen the odd episode previously, I watched every single one and fell in love with how witty, moving and original the show was. It is undoubtedly one of the greatest horror TV shows and was, in many ways, ahead of its time.

True Blood  (2008-2014)

An adaptation of author Charlaine Harris’ ‘Southern Vampire Mysteries’, the show focused on telepathic waitress Sookie Stakehouse (Anna Paquin) and her life now that vampires had ‘come out the coffin’ and entered mainstream society. It was the show that brought Alexander Skarsgård and Joe Manganiello to the masses and it remains one of the most gory yet sexy shows produced.

The Walking Dead (2010-present)

I came late to The Walking Dead and only started watching it this year when it arrived on Disney+. I quickly became hooked and am now fully caught up. While I do agree that the series repeated itself in the middle series, it remains an excellent show that has given us charismatic performances, some unforgettable scenes and incredibly talented extras.

The Terror (2018-present)

The first series of The Terror fictionalised the real life lost Franklin Expedition. HMS Terror and HMS Erebus set sail from the UK in May 1845 with the intention of discovering a navigable route through the Arctic. Sadly, no souls ever returned. Every episode was gripping, featuring an all-star line up of British actors including Jared Harris and Tobias Menzies.

5 thoughts on “Thursday Movie Picks – Halloween/TMP Television Edition: Horror

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  1. The only one I watched for any length of time at all is True Blood but I gave up after a couple of seasons when it became increasingly foolish. But I did enjoy it at first.

    I heard of all the others excepting the last. By the time I became interested in Twin Peaks it had been on too long and I never bothered to catch up. With Buffy I know people love it but I can’t abide SMG so she repelled me away from it.

    It’s rare that I’ll watch a weekly horror show but I’ll give anthologies a try from time to time so that’s the way I went.

    Hammer House of Horror (1980)-British anthology series created by Hammer Films consisting of thirteen hour-long episodes featuring various kinds of horror-witches, werewolves, ghosts, devil-worship, voodoo etc. The stories were populated with some of the leading performers in England at the time-Peter Cushing, Denholm Elliott, Diana Dors-as well as future stars like Pierce Brosnan who were just starting out.

    Circle of Fear aka Ghost Story (1972-73)-Similar in construction to House of Horror but produced in America offered tales of the supernatural horror with an astonishing list of talent-Jodie Foster, Gena Rowlands, Jason Robards, Patty Duke, Patricia Neal, Tyne Daly, Helen Hayes etc. every week.

    Thriller (1960-62)-Anthology series hosted by Boris Karloff originally was conceived more in the mystery/thriller vein of Alfred Hitchcock Presents but moved more towards Gothic horror shortly after its debut. Again, the cast list is packed with future stars-Mary Tyler Moore, Elizabeth Montgomery, William Shatner, Leslie Nielsen and Cloris Leachman to name only a few.

    1. Thanks for your comment, Joel. These are all new to me, although I have, of course, heard of Hammer Horror Productions before. I might try and hunt out Hammer House of Horror.

  2. I’ve seen the first season and a bit of the second season of Twin Peaks as I own all 3 seasons plus the Criterion edition of Fire Walk with Me as I hope to finish the whole thing given my love for David Lynch. I did like True Blood but the last few seasons became unwatchable to the point that I chose to sit out the final season.

    1. Yes, I’m not sure I ever watched the last series of True Blood. My DVDs got lost over the years (probably loaned and never returned) so I might rewatch if it comes onto one of my streaming services.

  3. I’ve been wanting to see The Terror.

    I saw Buffy when I was growing up but I don’t think I manage to see the last few seasons.

    Finally completed the whole of True Blood a year or two ago after a long gap. It is a fun series.

    The Walking Dead…I gave up from season 7 or something. It was just too repetitive and likes to draaagggg on things.

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