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click to enlarge 'Muppets Haunted Mansion' premieres Friday, Oct. 8

Photo courtesy Disney+

'Muppets Haunted Mansion' premieres Friday, Oct. 8

‘Muppets Haunted Mansion,’ ‘Joe Bob's Halloween Hoedown’ and more streaming debuts this week 

Premieres Wednesday, Oct. 6:

Among the Stars — In an effort to reclaim space exploration from billionaire dilettantes, NASA presents a documentary series about good old-fashioned publicly funded astronauts who have to perform a critical repair to the International Space Station. Yeah, but can they build a rocket that looks like my junk? (Disney+)

Bad Sport — Hear some truly shocking stories in a docuseries that explores the intersection of professional athletics and crime. I'd pass a remark about that particular Venn diagram being a circle, but Ray Lewis might stab me to death. (Netflix)

Baking Impossible — The twist to this competition show is that each baker is teamed with an engineer to make sure their sweet creation has amazing structural integrity. Hey, Choo Choo Charlie was an engineer; could somebody win with just a box of Good and Plenty? (Netflix)

V/H/S 94 — The latest in this series of found-footage horror flicks ventures into the compound of an ill-fated cult who have all been found dead in front of their TVs. You know, just like you thought was going to happen to you when you watched Malignant. (Shudder)

Premieres Thursday, Oct. 7:

15 Minutes of Shame — Learn the sad truth about public bullying in a documentary co-produced by Monica Lewinsky — who paradoxically can't go 15 minutes without complaining that the public just won't leave her alone. (HBO Max)

Craftopia — Here comes a second season of the crafting show where the participants are all between the ages of 9 and 15. Speaking of which, you know why Matt Gaetz likes 29-year-olds? Because there's 20 of 'em! (OK, that joke worked better when it was about Michael Jackson, and it doesn't really make sense when it's written out instead of spoken. But what do you want me to do, just not mention the guy for an entire week?) (HBO Max)

One of Us Is Lying — The novel of the same name becomes a series about four teens in detention who are all suspects in the murder of a fifth. If this had happened to The Breakfast Club, that Ally Sheedy would have gone to juvie without so much as a trial. (Peacock)

Sexy Beasts — Lonely singles try to hook up from behind elaborate prosthetics in a second season of the dating show that was roundly lambasted as dull when it premiered last summer. But you were newly vaccinated then, and the world momentarily seemed rife with the potential for excitement. So happy bingeing, Spinster Sue! (Netflix)

Premieres Friday, Oct. 8:

Joe Bob's Halloween Hoedown — The films in this year's double feature remain a closely guarded secret, but Joe Bob promises appearances by experts in the field of carving. I assume that means pumpkins, although the ghosts of the Medellín cartel would be a hell of a get. (Shudder)

Madonna: Madame X — Speaking of "Medellín," expect to hear that and other hits as Madge struts her stuff in a concert film shot in her adopted home of Lisbon. Thirty years since Truth or Dare and Warren, and she finally admits she's a Lisbonian? (Paramount+)

Muppets Haunted Mansion — No, I don't expect it to be good — if you mean "good" in the sense of "genuinely funny." What I am anticipating is plenty of thoughtful fan service via a clever mash-up of two of the only things in this world that actually make me want to go on living. In other words, if you want shade here, go wake up Rex Reed. (Disney+)

Pretty Smart — Emily Osment plays a would-be novelist who moves in with her ditzy sister, a shirtless hunk, a healer and a social-media influencer in the latest sitcom to make you wish the world was made up entirely of Black people. (Netflix)

Premieres Tuesday, Oct. 12:

Bright: Samurai Soul — Ancient Japan is the setting for an anime spinoff from the 2017 live-action flick Bright, in which a cop played by Will Smith partnered with an orc to protect an elf girl with a magic wand. Honestly, that was a real thing that happened. (Netflix)

Convergence: Courage in a Crisis — Documentary cameras follow nine people who rose to the challenge of the pandemic by becoming passionate advocates for humanity. Meanwhile, Netflix would be happy if the rest of you just kept watching Netflix. (Netflix)

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