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SideReel Isn't Afraid of the Dark

Television is an incredibly effective ghostbuster (except where  Poltergeist  is concerned)! Halloween can be a scary time, what with ghouls, maniacally grinning pumpkins, and roving bands of little kids. (Yes, that's right, kids can be creepy.) But there is a surefire way to banish dread into the shadows — and that way is to watch comedies! True, Halloween episodes have a less illustrious history than those for Thanksgiving or Christmas, but all the cool kids/shows are doing them now, and it's always enjoyable to see funny people in dumb outfits. So take a break from chowing down on candy corn and have a laugh or eight while waiting for that Sassy Rick Grimes costume to arrive.   Home Movies  S3E13: Coffins and Cradles This sardonic cartoon never really got its due (even on its second home of Adult Swim, whose offerings are increasingly stoner bait), but it was the most meta comedy in existence prior to the launch of  Community . The Halloween edition, however, ditched the high concept in favor of accessibility. That doesn't mean it's stupid or unfunny (it is, in fact, the complete opposite of those things), but it manages to cram cults, identical costumes, heart attacks, and births into 22 minutes, and never once feels rushed.   Friends  S8E6: The One With The Halloween Party Also known as the one with the worst costume in the world, namely Ross's attempt at a visual pun in Spud-nik (Half-potato. Half-satellite. All terror.). Concept: Chandler and Monica throw a party and all of the titular friends show up and have inoffensive and adorably funny concerns and arguments... it's a whole thing. I'll admit that this one is an office favorite, and not necessarily a personal pick, but it's enjoyable in the same way that all  Friends  episodes are. So there you have it.    The Office  S8E5: Spooked Holiday episodes of  The Office  were always series highlights, maybe because in a show that so often took its characters out of their comfort zones for no real reason, theme parties (Christmas, Halloween, birthdays) put them in  identifiably  awkward scenarios — after all, everyone who has ever been a corporate citizen can identify with the stilted interaction prompted by executive decree. Regrettably, "Spooked" takes place during James Spader's odd 15-episode run, but it's saved by the plight of Dwight, who must surrender parts of his costume in the name of office safety.   Community  S2E6: Epidemiology The paintball episode might have been the first time that we see Dean Pelton as having no real plan (he just wants to be a good dean!), but this is the episode that truly solidifies that trait. Greendale's Halloween party is pure Pelton: non-stop ABBA; rancid Army-surplus meat (with zombifying properties); and the willingness to lock all of the students inside at the request of men in uniform. So no, the Dean might not have a plan, but Harmon surely did, setting "Epidemiology" up as the start of the long game of Shirley's pregnancy, Jeff and Britta's secret sex, and Annie's infatuation with Rich.   NewsRadio  S3E5: Halloween Another show that deserved more praise and credit than it ever got was  NewsRadio , a powerhouse comedy from the mid-90s NBC hit machine. After being disinvited from the company Halloween party for being "too cool for school," the WNYX crew acquiesces to dressing up with eyes collectively rolling the whole time. Dave Foley gets back into drag in a callback to his time on  The Kids in the Hall , while, in an unintentionally tragic scene, Bill (Phil Hartman) is given an early date with death by a psychic. It's truly uncomfortable and sad in retrospect, but take my advice: ignore the pathos and join the cool kids radio club.   The Simpsons  S6E6: Treehouse of Horror V And so we come to the grande dame of Halloween specials.  The Simpsons  started doing its Treehouse of Horror episodes in its second year and its first entry was strong right out of the gate. While each year has had its own particular strengths (1996's highlight, a Clinton/Dole-inspired vignette, still gets widely quoted every election cycle), this fifth edition is the most emblematic of the series between Homer's time travel travails, a terrific parody of  The Shining ,  and the underrated closer, "Nightmare Cafeteria."    How I Met Your Mother  S1E6: Slutty Pumpkin More than any other season 1 episode up to this point, "Slutty Pumpkin" crystalized the  How I Met Your Mother  gang's individual characters. Ted spends his time pining for a woman he barely knew (the titular Slutty Pumpkin), Barney shows him the error of his ways in the meanest way possible, while Marshall and Lily try overzealously to combat Robin's fear of commitment. But despite showing all of their worst traits, the episode is light and sweet, like Halloween candy.     Curb Your Enthusiasm  S2E3: Trick or Treat Look, Larry David's awkward-a-thon of a series is not everyone's cup of tea, but it is  my  cup of tea and I identify with it totally and completely, so it should come as no surprise that I've got LD's back on this one. Why should he have to give candy to sarcastic teenage trick-or-treaters who won't even dress up? And why should they be allowed to spraypaint "BALD ASSHOLE" on his house? Sure, he might be a bald asshole, but not for the reasons they indicate!     Leah E. Friedman  is the editor of SideReel.com. She went as  Star Trek  characters for Halloween decades before it was cool. You can follow her musings on  Twitter .

TCA: Jeff Garlin Thinks There's a 'Decent Chance' for More 'Curb Your Enthusiasm'

At the ABC Television Critics Association panel on Sunday for new sitcom "The Goldbergs," star Jeff Garlin said that there is a "decent chance" for more of his other show, "Curb Your Enthusiasm." "I'm not trying to figure out Larry David, I'm just appreciating what we've [done]," Garlin said in response to a query about the future. He added, "I think there's a decent chance we'll do more."   http://www.thewrap.com/tv/article/tca-jeff-garlin-thinks-theres-decent-chance-more-curb-your-enthusiasm-108316

Larry David's HBO movie sounds very 'Curb Your Enthusiasm'-esque

Larry David's movie for HBO is not officially a "Curb Your Enthusiasm"-related project, but it shares a lot of common traits with the show.The untitled movie, which HBO officially announced last week, will star David as a guy named Lenny, who spitefully gives up a share of ownership in a new electric car, reports the Los Angeles Times, which got its hands on a copy of the outline for the film. The car, of course, goes on to be a huge success, and Lenny ends up losing everything.Several years later, he's living under a different name when he runs into the car's inventor, who's now fabulously rich, and Lenny plots his revenge.The Times notes that the movie, which will also star Jon Hamm, will be partly improvised a la "Curb." David's character, like his fictional self on "Curb," also has a very hard time dealing with the little things in life, which in turn brings... http://blog.zap2it.com/frominsidethebox/2012/08/larry-davids-hbo-movie-sounds-very-curb-your-enthusiasm-esque.html

Larry David puts 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' on hold for an HBO movie

You'll be getting more of Larry David on HBO soon, but it won't be in the form of another season of "Curb Your Enthusiasm." At least not for the time being.David's next project for the cable channel will be a movie that he'll write and star in and which Greg Mottola ("Superbad," "The Newsroom") will direct. That's about all HBO executives Richard Plepler and Michael Lombardo could say Wednesday (Aug. 1) at the Television Critics Association press tour.They do say that the movie won't be about the Larry David viewers know from "Curb" -- and that it doesn't necessarily mean David won't return to the show in the future."We always say he has essentially carte blanche with us -- don't quote us on that, but he does," says Plepler, the co-president of HBO. "When he wants to come back and do 'Curb,' we'll be thrilled. Right now he wants to do the movie."Adds Lombardo, the... http://blog.zap2it.com/frominsidethebox/2012/08/larry-david-puts-curb-your-enthusiasm-on-hold-for-an-hbo-movie.html

'Modern Family', 'Curb' and '30 Rock' Nominated at 2012 DGA Awards

Demi Moore, Jennifer Aniston, Alicia Keys, Patty Jenkins and Penelope Spheeris also get a chance to win a prize at the annual event through the directorial stint in TV movie 'Five'. http://www.aceshowbiz.com/news/view/00046809.html

Curb Your Enthusiam To Fix Middle Eastern Conflict?

In what could quite possible be either the greatest decision ever made, or the stupidest, a season 8 episode of Curb Your Enthusiasm could be shown to Israeli officials to ease the Middle-Eastern conflict. Visionary lawyer Alan Dershowitz told the Columbia Current  that he has sent the episode "Palestinian Chicken" to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, with the hope that he might "invite [Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas] over to watch it together. And maybe if they both get a good laugh, they can begin a negotiating process." If Dershowitz were to succeed would that mean that Larry David would receive an assist for the Nobel Peace Prize this year? And who better to finally resolve the conflict than the writer of Sour Grapes? Read More... http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/tvovermind/tvnews/~3/ewSMHLWOcgw/109247

Top Moments: Ringer Is on a Boat and Bachelor Pad’s Squirmy Awkwardness

Our top moments of the week: 15. Orange You Glad You Did This? Award: Now that  Anderson Cooper  has come out of the closet about  his admiration  for  Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi , it's only fitting that they go out on a proper date. On his  new daytime talk show , the Jersey Shore  star takes Cooper for his  first spray tan . "I had no idea that Mr. Anderstand had muscles," Snooki says, as a sheepish, shirtless Cooper undergoes the process. "So when he took off his shirt, he had, like, a huge peanut muscle. Cool." Cooper, at least, seems pleased with the results: "Wow! I've never had a tan line like that." Does anyone speak Guidette? Please tell us that a "peanut muscle" isn't what we think it is. 14. Best Save:   Al Gore  makes a big no-no when he refers to  Stephen Colbert 's uber-conservative TV host alter-ego as "your character" while appearing on  The Colbert Report . Yes, everyone knows deep down that Colbert isn't  really  like his truthiness-loving persona, but he refuses to break. "I forgot for a moment; I'm so sorry," Gore explains. "You forgot what? You have completely lost me!" Colbert exclaims, before putting air quotes around Al Gore's name and bidding him adieu.  13. Least Self-Aware Reality Show Contestant (a highly competitive category):  Look, we all find overconfident reality-show contestants infinitely entertaining, but when it crosses over into the delusional, a line must be drawn (see No. 11). On the  Big Brother   finale, Adam is peeved that Rachel took Porsche instead of him to the final two, but tells Julie Chen that the fiery redhead, who eventually won, made the right choice for herself. "If I was in the final two, I would've won," he says emphatically. For what exactly? Being useless in practically every single challenge? Ambling through the whole season without any game plan whatsoever? Shaving your beard? Knowing 90210  trivia? In that case, yes, Adam, yes, you definitely would've won. Read More... http://www.tvguide.com/News/Moments-Ringer-Bachelor-Pad-1037371.aspx?rss=breakingnews

Larry David To Auction Off 20 Minutes Of His Time

Funnyman Larry David is auctioning 20 minutes of his time to raise money for Michael J. Fox's charity. The highest bidder will win a 20-minute one-on-one 'pitch meeting' to discuss ideas with the... http://www.starpulse.com/news/index.php/2011/09/15/larry_david_to_auction_off_20_minutes_

Michael J. Fox Is a Formidable Opponent on 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' (VIDEO)

For the season finale of 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' (Sun., 10PM ET on HBO), Larry David tapped one of New York's most famous citizens in Michael J. Fox. As he was playing a version of himself, FOX didn't shy away from his Parkinson's. In fact, it was a major part of the conflict between him and Larry. But Parkinson's wasn't the only potentially controversial subject broached on this episode, as Larry gave a fantastic gift to a 7-year old "pre-gay" boy. Now the give was incredibly well-received and loved by the child, but his mother -- who also happens to be Larry's latest girlfriend -- was none too pleased, accusing Larry of trying to make her son gay. http://www.aoltv.com/2011/09/12/michael-j-fox-formidable-curb-your-enthusiasm-video/

'Curb Your Enthusiasm' Season Finale: What the Viewers Are Saying

Larry David  is getting high praise from viewers for the season finale of his HBO show,  Curb Your Enthusiasm,  which aired Sunday night. In the episode, David manages to anger  Michael J. Fox  by drawing a Hitler mustache on Fox’s father-in-law on the cover of BusinessWeek , leading to his accusation that Fox was using his Parkinson’s disease to harass David. In another potentially controversial story line, the star suspects a 7-year-old kid of being gay – and his mother perceives it as somewhat of an insult. Talking to the mom, David calls the kid "flamboyant" and tells her "it must be challenging to have a son like that." He later gifts the child with a sewing machine, which angers his mom, who asks:"Are you trying to turn him gay?" The mom insists that her child is happy and "normal," to which David responds: "I think he might be gay." (Incidentally, the episode follows last week’s story line in which David and guest star  Rosie O’Donnell  were vying for the same bisexual woman.) Read More... http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/thr/television/~3/h61qYvtUOxs/curb-your-enthusiasm-season-finale-233957