What to watch and listen to this weekend: 'The OA' on Netflix, Homecoming podcast
Watch this weekend
The 85th Annual Hollywood Christmas Parade, 8 p.m., CW: Olivia Newton-John is grand marshal of the holiday procession with celebrity appearances, floats and marching bands. Hosted by Erik Estrada, Laura McKenzie, Dean Cain and Montel Williams.
SEASON FINALE: The Exorcist, 9 p.m., Fox: Marcus and Tomas try to save the Rance family when the demon attempts to destroy it.
The OA, Netflix
Netflix is killing us with its secret shows. The trailer for the mysterious The OA dropped just days before the 8-episode series premiere Friday. Like its secret summer show Stranger Things, The OA looks to dabble in sci-fi, mystery and a little bit of horror. A woman returns to her family seven years after she mysteriously disappeared. The weirdest part: she was blind when she went missing, now she can see. You know you'll be tuning into this one.
In 1981, a young Barack Obama, known to his friends as Barry, comes to New York City to start his junior year at Columbia University. Barry finds himself pulled between various social spheres in a crime-filled, racially-charged environment. He also feels the struggle to maintain strained relationships with his Kansas-born mother and his estranged Kenyan father.
More: The Adventures of Puss in Boots, Season 4, Call Me Francis, Season 1, Crazyhead, Season 1, No Second Chance, Season 1, Rats
I Want a Dog for Christmas, Charlie Brown, 8 p.m., ABC: Lucy and Linus's little brother, ReRun, tries to avoid the Van Pelt family's Christmas madness by going to hang out with Snoopy and Spike.
Frozen, 9 p.m., Freeform: If you missed the TV premiere of the Disney movie last week, here's another chance. The animated film is based on The Snow Queen fairytale by Hans Christian Andersen.
A Christmas Carol, 8 p.m., AMC: A cherished adaptation of the Charles Dickens story of Ebenezer Scrooge, who's visited by the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future to deter him from his miserly ways.
The Sound of Music, 7 p.m., ABC: A high-spirited nun leaves the convent in pre-WWII Austria to look after seven children, whose father is a bit of a grump. The hills are alive in this delightful classic musical that is perfect for the holidays.
Disney Mickey Mouse, 8 p.m., Disney Channel: Duck the Halls: A Mickey Mouse Christmas Special sees Donald Duck refusing the head south for the winter with Daisy so they can enjoy Christmas with Mickey and the rest of the gang.
Holiday Baking Championship, 9 p.m., Food Network: The three finalists make snacks for North Pole characters (not Santa Claus) in the third season finale.
There are plenty of fictional podcasts out there. I've even written about a few of them — Limetown, Alice Isn't Dead, Lifeafter. But Homecoming, another new series from Gimlet Media, stands above the rest.
For one it has serious star power behind the mics. And it feels as if you're watching a movie with your eyes closed. You can just picture Catherine Keener as Heidi Bergman and Oscar Isaac as Walter Cruz talking in Heidi's study with the gentle bubbling of the aquarium in the background.
It really does sound like you're listening in on a phone call between Heidi and her boss, Colin (David Schwimmer) as he constantly talks over her and demeans her intentions.
Creator Eli Horowitz has crafted an intimate form of storytelling that tells of Heidi's job at a facility that re-acclimated veteran soldiers to civilian life. The facility is based "just outside Tampa." The series jumps back and forth between her time working with veteran Walter and after she left the program, which is under investigation by the Department of Defense.
Gimlet Media is on fire with a trio of superb podcasts released this fall — a newsy listen in Undone, a true crime tale of corruption in Crimetown and now a psychological mystery with Homecoming.
Listen on iTunes and gimletmedia.com.
Contact Chelsea Tatham at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow @chelseatatham.