I don’t want to put a lot of pressure on you to change whatever plans you might have for this week, but there is a lot of good TV on the schedule for Oct. 4 through Oct. 10. As in, there’s pretty much something worth watching every single night (and this is in addition to both the MLB playoffs and NBA finals). From the return of The Walking Dead for its long-awaited Season 10 finale on Sunday to the broadcast premiere of DC Universe’s Swamp Thing on Tuesday and the debut of Netflix’s The Haunting of Bly Manor at the end of the week, there is a lot to go around. And not all of it is scary or creepy either!
Our full list of editors’ picks for the week are below, but if this isn’t enough and you’re looking for even more hand-picked recommendations, sign up for our free, daily, spam-free Watch This Now newsletter that delivers the best TV show picks straight to your inbox, or check out the best shows and movies in October on Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime.
The Walking Dead
Season 10 finale Sunday at 9/8c on AMC
The Walking Dead returns for one night only to finish out the original run of Season 10 with an episode that got postponed due to the pandemic. “A Certain Doom” will mark the end of the Whisperer War, as Beta (Ryan Hurst) mounts one last attack on the survivors, who are barricaded in an abandoned hospital. Not everyone will make it out. It’s also the return of Lauren Cohan, who will be a series regular as Maggie when the extended tenth season returns next year. The Walking Dead‘s endgame is officially beginning. “A Certain Doom” will be followed by the series premiere of spin-off The Walking Dead: World Beyond, which isn’t as good as the other shows in the franchise. –Liam Mathews
The Good Lord Bird
Series premiere Sunday at 9/8c on Showtime
Ethan Hawke gets to go absolutely wild as abolitionist John Brown in this miniseries adaptation of James McBride’s 2013 book of the same name. The series is told from the point of view of a formerly enslaved boy named Onion as he follows Brown into battle in Virginia, which would serve as one of the instigating events that led to the Civil War. Hawke’s performance will be the centerpiece, but don’t forget about the rest of the cast: Daveed Diggs plays Frederick Douglass, and Wyatt Russell is on board as Marine officer J.E.B. Stuart. And, as Liam Mathews says in his glowing review, it’s unexpectedly funny despite its serious subject matter. It may just be the best thing to watch this fall. –Tim Surette
Season 1 continues Sunday at 11:30/10:30c on Adult Swim
One of the strangest, most emotional shows of 2019 was Genndy Tartakovsky’s silent miniseries Primal, about a caveman’s bond with a dinosaur as they both try to survive a harsh prehistoric world. Though nary a word is spoken, Tartakovsky, just as he did in his cult favorite animated series Samurai Jack, manages to convey more emotion and stakes than most scripted dramas that cheat with dialogue thanks to excellent direction and stunning animation. It won three Emmy awards and is intended for adult audiences, with bouts of violence dripping from the screen, so keep the kids away. The five new episodes will wrap up Season 1; a second season has already been ordered. The first five are available on AdultSwim.com and HBO Max. –Tim Surette
Broadcast premiere Tuesday at 8/7c on The CW
A small good thing to come out of quarantine is that shows that weren’t able to get much visibility on lower-profile streaming services are now getting primetime slots on broadcast networks that need to fill their schedules that have been turned to Swiss cheese by pandemic delays. The CW is giving Swamp Thing, one of DC Universe’s first original series, a shot at the big-time, and it was a series that really surprised me when it debuted last year. It’s a superhero series only by association; Swamp Thing is more of a horror show as it tells the ominous origins of the vegetable vigilante and the creepy creatures that populate a toxic swamp in Louisiana. And for all of you out there who talk to your house plants, there’s a convincing romance between Swampy and a sexy scientist. –Tim Surette
Final season Wednesday on Netflix Now on Netflix!
The sixth and final season of the Emmys-sweeping comedy Schitt’s Creek finally arrives on Netflix this week (it also hits CW Seed the same day). Season 6 is the most romantic and heartfelt season of the show, as the Rose family is getting back on its feet and making big moves. David (Dan Levy) is preparing for his upcoming marriage to Patrick (Noah Reid), Alexis (Annie Murphy) is finding her path to happiness, Moira (Catherine O’Hara) experiences a career resurgence, and Johnny (Eugene Levy) and Stevie (Emily Hampshire) go all in on the motel business together. It’s a season that will remind you that there is still good in this world, so if you haven’t seen it yet, now is the perfect time to settle in and watch it. [Update: Netflix released the final season early!]
Final season returns Thursday at 8/7c on The CW
The Winchesters’ last ride in Baby is kicking off this October after the final episodes of Season 15 were delayed by the pandemic. In a way, it feels right that Sam (Jared Padalecki) and Dean (Jensen Ackles) are heading off into the sunset this month (yeah, yeah, the series finale itself will air in November), because when this show premiered approximately 76 years ago, it definitely leaned into its horror roots. So even though the CW show might be less scary than it once was, what could possibly be better than watching Supernatural‘s swan song (not to be confused with Supernatural‘s “Swan Song”) during Official Spooky Season?
The Right Stuff
Friday on Disney+
You’ve probably already seen the movie or even read the best-selling book by Tom Wolfe. But now the iconic story of America’s first astronauts, known as the Mercury Seven, is coming to TV. The Right Stuff, which was produced for National Geographic before moving to Disney+, stars Patrick J. Adams as Major John Glenn and Jake McDorman as Lieutenant Commander Alan Shepard and examines the early days of the U.S. Space Program and the space race that gripped the country during the Cold War. It also reveals how the astronauts and their families (shout-out to Annie Glenn!) were thrust into the spotlight and became celebrities overnight, whether they were ready for it or not.
The Haunting of Bly Manor
Friday on Netflix
After the success of The Haunting of Hill House, writer-director Mike Flanagan turned the Netflix show into an anthology known as The Haunting. The newest installment of said show, The Haunting of Bly Manor, features several cast members from Hill House taking on new roles, including Victoria Pedretti, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, Kate Siegel, Henry Thomas, and Catherine Parker. The chilling nine-episode season draws its inspiration from Henry James’ classic works, largely the 1898 horror novella The Turn of the Screw, but there are some others in there as well. We can’t say much more, but here’s everything we know about it.
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