‘Simpsons’ Plays ‘It’ with King, ‘Dragon’ Finale, ‘Power Book’ Ends and ‘BMF Documentary’ Begins, Stars Do Magic with Criss Angel

In a departure from the usual “Treehouse of Horror” trilogy format (which returns next week), The Simpsons devotes an entire Halloween episode to a spoof of Stephen King’s classic opus It. HBO tees up a war of the Targaryens in the season finale of House of the Dragon. Starz closes the book on Power Book III: Raising Kanan’s Season 2 finale, then launches a docuseries inspired by its BMF (Black Mafia Family) drama. Illusionist Criss Angel welcomes celebrities to try their hand at magic in a new competition series.


The Simpsons

SUNDAY: In a first (which is saying something for a show now in its 34th season), The Simpsons devotes an entire Halloween episode to one story, and it’s a doozy: Stephen King’s It, which took two whole movies to adapt. “Not It” begins in Kingfield—aka Springfield populated by numerous King in-jokes—with a young Barney falling victim to the sewer-dwelling menace of Krusto the Clown, forcing a confrontation with a Losers Club populated by young Homer, a tomboy Marge, Carl, Moe and Comic Book Guy. Flash forward 27 years later, and they’re all at it again, in a bizarro world where even the personalities of Bart and Lisa have flipped. If you miss the old format, not to worry. A traditional “Treehouse of Horror” trilogy airs Oct. 30.

House of the Dragon

Season Finale

SUNDAY: It’s game on in the War of the Targaryens, or so we’ve been led to believe as the tension has built in recent weeks toward the Season 1 finale of the darker-than-dark Game of Thrones prequel. Rejecting the late king’s desire for first-born daughter Rhaenyra (Emma D’Arcy) to assume the Iron Throne in favor of his loathsome eldest son Aegon (Ton Glynn-Carney), the rulers of Westeros set up a conflict that’s destined to play out in spectacular fashion in Season 2.

Power Book III: Raising Kanan Starz

Power Book III: Raising Kanan

Season Finale

SUNDAY: Family strife is also a theme of this spinoff crime drama, closing its second season with title character Kanan Stark (MeKai Curtis) pulling further away from his Queens drug queen-pin mother Raq (Patina Miller) to start his own street business in South Jamaica. Raq is also not having much luck healing her spat with brother Lou-Lou (Malcolm Mays). Followed by the premiere of a half-hour docuseries, The BMF Documentary: Blowing Money Fast, with insiders telling the story of the Black Mafia Family (inspiration for Starz’s Detroit-set drama BMF, returning for a second season next year). The first episode is set in 1980s Detroit as the Flenory brothers, Demetrius “Meech” and Terry, turn to the drug trade to boost their fortunes.

Magic With the Stars

Magic With the Stars

Series Premiere

SATURDAY: He was a runner-up during his season on Dancing with the Stars, but how will High School Musical alum Corbin Bleu fare when he tries his hand at magic? Famed illusionist Criss Angel trains two celebs each week to perform magic before a judging panel, competing for a Golden Wand and a spot in a season-finale showdown. Eddie Griffin hosts, with Criss joined by comedian Loni Love and magician Lance Burton as judges. Bleu’s rival in the series premiere: black-ish star Miles Brown.

Magpie Murders - Lesley Manville and Tim McMullan
Nick Wall/PBS

Magpie Murders

SUNDAY: The mystery-within-a-mystery deepens in the second chapter of the Masterpiece Mystery! adaptation of Anthony Horowitz’s clever novel. “Was there anyone (he) didn’t argue with?” wonders book editor and amateur sleuth Susan (Lesley Manville) about her murdered prize author Alan Conway (Conleth Hill), who left behind a final whodunit, Magpie Murders, with the final chapter missing. Susan discovers that all of Alan’s notebooks have also vanished, convincing her that Alan’s death was foul play. She gets more validation from surreal visitations by Alan’s fabled fictional detective, Atticus Pünd (Tim McMullan), who reminds her, “Everyone who read Alan Conway loved him. Everyone who met him did not.”

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