1. Life & Culture

To whet our appetites, Sharknado Week brings Sharktopus, tarantula volcano

Ian Ziering as Fin Shepard in Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!
Ian Ziering as Fin Shepard in Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!
Published Jul. 16, 2015

In the slow circling swim before Florida-centric Sharknado 3 (subtitled: Oh Hell No!) premieres on Wednesday, the Syfy channel is unleashing Sharknado Week to showcase original weird gory movies featuring bloodthirsty creatures and B-list heroes saving humanity.

The lineup brings a return of Skarktopus, as well as a volcano that spews lava-breathing tarantulas and a three-headed shark. And in between, we get the schlocky-on-purpose Sharknado 3, which will look familiar to Florida residents because this time the cloud of sharks blows through Orlando.

Starting Saturday, the network premieres Roboshark at 7 p.m. about a great white shark in the Pacific Ocean that devours an alien space probe and ends up terrorizing Seattle. Then Megashark vs. Kolossus premieres at 9 p.m. in which the mega shark and a reawakened Kolossus go head to head, starring Illeana Douglas — a genuinely good actor from To Die For and Six Feet Under.

Sunday brings Sharktopus vs. Whalewolf at 9 p.m. about a washed-up baseball player under the care of an anti-aging doctor who is turned into a half-whale, half-wolf creature starring Casper Van Dien (Starship Troopers) and his real-life wife Catherine Oxenberg (Dynasty).

But wait, there's more, as 3 Headed Shark Attack premieres Monday at 7 p.m., in which a mutated shark tears through an island research facility before attacking a party boat. That's followed at p.m. by Zombie Shark at 9 p.m.

This is all just to whet our appetites for Sharknado 3, completing the trilogy of logic-defying disaster movies about a swirling cloud of killer sharks that are so bad they're gold.

The final confrontation takes place in Orlando where it was filmed at the Universal Orlando theme park in February with Ian Ziering and Tara Reid back in the leads. They will be joined by '80s bombshell Bo Derek, Irish pop twins John and Edward Grimes, better known as X Factor stars Jedward, TV personality Jerry Springer, David Hasselhoff and Shark Tank's Mark Cuban among what promises to be a frenzy of celebrity cameo appearances.

This third Sharknado got its order from Syfy two months before Sharknado 2, The Second One even premiered. As expected, it demolished the ratings bringing in 3.9 million viewers, which not only broke the record for any Syfy original film, but it more than doubled the audience of the first Sharknado.

But it is the following Saturday on July 25 that Syfy will lay before us the most delicious after-dinner mint of terrible flicks, one that might just be more satisfying than Sharknado.

In Lavalantula, premiering July 25 at 9 p.m., a volcano erupts in Los Angeles, spewing lava-breathing tarantulas. Even better: It reunites Police Academy stars Steve Guttenberg, Leslie Easterbrook, Michael Winslow and Marion Ramsey.

By Sharon Kennedy Wynne, Times staff writer, Follow @SharonKWn.