It’s true; no matter what certain networks may claim about their “winter finales,” winter doesn’t actually start until December 21, and isn’t over until March 20. Syfy, at least, understands this, and has announced their appropriately-titled winter schedule accordingly.
Happily this means that, starting on Monday, January 14, 2013, we will have some great television to get us through the cold months, including the return of Being Human and Lost Girl, and the premiere of Continuum, and later in the week, the return of Ghost Hunters and Face Off.
Here’s the schedule of premieres, along with series synopses:
SYFY’S 2013 WINTER PROGRAMMING HIGHLIGHTED BY SERIES PREMIERES OF GHOST MINE, ROBOT COMBAT LEAGUE, STRANDED AND CONTINUUM
SEASON RETURNS OF HITS BEING HUMAN, FACE OFF, TOTAL BLACKOUT, GHOST HUNTERS, LOST GIRL, HAUNTED COLLECTOR AND FINAL SEASON OF MERLIN
NEW YORK – December 4, 2012 – Syfy will kick off the New Year with a robust winter programming slate of hit series and new programs led by the series premieres of unscripted shows Ghost Mine (January 16), Robot Combat League (February 26) and Stranded (February 27), and the time-traveling police drama Continuum (January 14).
The popular series Merlin (January 4), Being Human (January 14), Lost Girl (January 14), Face Off (January 15), Total Blackout (January 15), Ghost Hunters (January 16) and Haunted Collector (March 6) will all return for new seasons.
Highlights of Syfy’s 2013 Winter Programming Schedule (All Times ET/PT)
MERLIN (SEASON 5 PREMIERE)
Returns Friday, January 4 at 10PM — With Queen Guinevere and the Knights of the Round Table at his side, Arthur has never felt stronger. But even as Camelot flowers, the seeds of its destruction are being sown. Merlin returns for its fifth season and final season of 13 all-new episodes with its core cast of Colin Morgan, Bradley James, Katie McGrath, Angel Coulby, Richard Wilson and John Hurt, along with newest cast member Alexander Vlahos as Mordred. Special guest stars in season five include Lindsay Duncan (Alice in Wonderland), Janet Montgomery (Entourage), Liam Cunningham (Game of Thrones), Josette Simon (Cry Freedom), Sophie Rundle (Episodes) and the return of Anthony Head (Buffy the Vampire Slayer) as Uther Pendragon. Merlin is produced by Shine TV Ltd and BBC Wales, and distributed by FremantleMedia Enterprises. Johnny Capps and Julian Murphy are co-creators and executive producers.
CONTINUUM (NEW ORIGINAL SERIES)
Premieres Monday, January 14 at 8PM — The time-traveling police drama Continuum stars Rachel Nichols (Star Trek, Criminal Minds) as Kiera Cameron, a cop from the future who finds herself trapped in the present day. When a group of fanatical terrorists escapes their planned execution in 2077 by vaulting back in time to 2012, they inadvertently sweep along Kiera, a dedicated City Protective Services officer. With unexpected assistance from teen tech genius Alec Sadler, played by Erik Knudsen (Jericho, Scream 4), Kiera infiltrates the local police department and forms an uneasy alliance with her new partner, detective Carlos Fonnegra, portrayed by Victor Webster (Castle, Melrose Place). Though desperate to get back to her husband and son, Kiera concentrates on bringing down the terrorists before they change the course of history. Executive producers of Continuum are Simon Barry (The Art of War), Jeff King (Stargate SG-1, White Collar), Tom Rowe (Tin Man), Pat Williams (Smallville) and Reunion Pictures. Writer: Simon Barry. Director: Jon Cassar (24, Terra Nova).
BEING HUMAN (SEASON 3 PREMIERE)
Returns Monday, January 14 at 9PM – Syfy’s original series Being Human stars Sam Witwer as Aidan, Meaghan Rath as Sally and Sam Huntington as Josh with Kristen Hager as Nora, joining this year as a series regular. The season will consist of 13 episodes. In the Season 2 cliffhanger Aidan found himself six feet under after being banished and buried as punishment from vampire leader Mother. Sally became lost in a state of limbo and for Josh, events went horribly wrong when his plot to break the werewolf curse by killing his Maker Ray backfired, endangering Nora. Now, as the new season begins… be careful what you wish for! Season 3 also features a stellar lineup of new and returning guest stars including: Mark Pellegrino (Lost) as Aidan’s vampire mentor Bishop; Amy Aquino (Big Love, Harry’s Law, ER) as Donna, a witch whose supernatural spells are sought to help Sally; Xander Berkeley (24, Nikita) as Liam, the father of purebred werewolf twins who is intent on locating his missing children; Bobby Campo (Final Destination) as Max, a young mortician who develops a connection with Sally; and Kyle Schmid (Copper) returning as Aidan’s vampire protégé/”son” Henry. Season 2 of Being Human delighted both fans and new viewers, seeing its audience increase 10% over its first season. The second season averaged 2.115 million viewers per week. Being Human is a Muse Entertainment production in association with ZODIAK USA and is based on the acclaimed series created by Toby Whithouse and produced by Touchpaper. Executive producers are Michael Prupas (The Kennedys, Pillars of the Earth), Anna Fricke (Men in Trees, Everwood) who is both writer and showrunner, Jeremy Carver (Supernatural), and Rob Pursey and Toby Whithouse. Irene Litinsky (Human Trafficking, The Phantom) is series producer.
LOST GIRL (SEASON 3 PREMIERE)
Returns Monday, January 14 at 10PM — The victory in the final battle of Season Two has created new alliances for Bo along with reinvigorating old enemies, like “The Morrigan,” played by Emmanuelle Vaugier (Two and a Half Men, Human Target), whom Bo crossed in an attempt to bring peace to the Faedom. Now Bo, who until now has refused to pick a side, will be forced to make a deadly decision. Among the guest stars will be Linda Hamilton (“Terminator”). Joining the Lost Girl cast this season is Rachel Skarsten (The Vow; Flashpoint) in a recurring role as “Tamsin,” a thrill-seeking, sexy new Fae who ruffles many feathers. Returning for season three are Kris Holden-Ried (The Tudors, Underworld 4) as “Dyson”; Ksenia Solo (Life Unexpected; Black Swan) as “Kenzi”; Zoie Palmer (The Guard, Instant Star) as “Lauren”; Rick Howland (Billable Hours, Murdoch Mysteries) as “Trick” and K.C. Collins (Owning Mahowny, Doomstown) as “Hale.” Lost Girl is a Prodigy Pictures Production in association with Shaw Media. Executive producers are Emily Andras, Plato Fountidakis, Paul Rapovski and Jay Firestone. Co-producer: Vanessa Piazza,
FACE OFF (SEASON 4 PREMIERE)
Returns Tuesday, January 15 at 9PM — Hit competition series Face Off returns for its fourth season with a special 90-minute premiere episode. The new season features guest appearances from notables including Bryan Singer and Lightstorm’s Jon Landau. Dwight D. Smith, Michael Agbabian and Derek Atherton of Mission Control Media will return as executive producers. Face Off is a competition/elimination series exploring the world of special-effects make-up artists and the unlimited imagination that allows them to create amazing works of living art. McKenzie Westmore hosts. Judging the Face Off competition are some of the most renowned names in the SFX world — three-time Academy Award winner Ve Neill, famed special make-up effects artist Glenn Hetrick and feature film creature designer Neville Page. In a surprising new twist, the contestants will have a mentor. Joining the series this season will be world-renowned Hollywood makeup artist Michael Westmore. Westmore is a member of a makeup dynasty that dates back to Hollywood’s golden age. Westmore has earned a record 42 Emmy nominations and nine wins. The Motion Picture Academy has honored him with four nominations and the Oscar in 1986 for his artistry on the film Mask starring Cher and Eric Stoltz. In addition, Westmore supervised 18 years of Star Trek. He is also the proud father of Face Off host McKenzie Westmore.
TOTAL BLACKOUT (ALL NEW EPISODES)
Returns Tuesday, January 15 at 10:30PM (SPECIAL TIME) — Hosted by Jaleel White (Family Matters), Total Blackout resumes its second season at the special time of 10:30PM after the 90-minute, season four premiere of Face Off. The following Tuesday, January 22, Total Blackout returns to its regular 10PM time slot. In the premiere episode of the half-hour extreme game show. four teams must overcome their imaginations as they attempt to identify four skin-crawling items placed in tanks, using only their sense of touch. Those who survive must move on to the Walk of Terror, where items below their feet aren’t always what they seem. The final two remaining teams are then tasked with collecting mouse traps hidden amongst unknown objects set inside creepy coffins in order to win the $5,000 prize. The international hit series is produced by FremantleMedia North America (American Idol, The X Factor) and was created by Henrik Nielsen (Can You Duet?, Danish versions of The X Factor, Got Talent and Pop Idol). Nielsen and Scott St. John (Deal or No Deal, America’s Got Talent, The Choice) are executive producers and Noah Bonnett (101 Ways to Leave a Game Show, BrainSurge) is co-executive producer.
GHOST HUNTERS (SEASON 9 PREMIERE)
Returns Wednesday, January 16 at 9PM — Ghost Hunters, Syfy’s longest-running unscripted series, returns for a ninth season. To kick off the 16 all-new episodes, TAPS (The Atlantic Paranormal Society) – led by Jason Hawes – heads out West to investigate some of the most (in)famously haunted locations in California and the Midwest. They’ll continue to travel around the country throughout the season, using their investigative expertise to bring aid and comfort to clients at both public institutions and private homes alike. Ghost Hunters is produced for Syfy by Craig Piligian’s Pilgrim Studios (Dirty Jobs, The Ultimate Fighter, Top Shot). Piligian and Thomas Thayer, along with Mike Nichols and Alan David, serve as executive producers.
GHOST MINE (NEW ORIGINAL SERIES)
Premieres Wednesday, January 16 at 10PM — Forgotten in the remote woods of Oregon is one of the richest gold mines in the United States that was abandoned 80 years ago when a series of tragedies gave it an infamous reputation for being haunted. Now, a new owner has decided to take on the notorious legend and reopen the mine, assembling a rag-tag group of miners – both seasoned and new – to battle the elements in hopes of finding their fortune and teaming them with a pair of experienced paranormal investigators. In each of the six hour-long episodes, this strong-willed and historically superstitious group of miners will face the day-to-day challenges of mining, aided by the paranormal investigators who unravel the mysteries surrounding the mine, including historic Masonic connections and a spirit who has been known to haunt the area for generations. Ghost Mine is produced by 51 Minds with Mark Cronin (Celebrity Paranormal Project, Flavor of Love, Rock of Love with Bret Michaels), Dave Caplan and Jay Bluemke (Ghost Hunters, Ghost Hunters Academy) serving as Executive Producers.
TASMANIAN DEVIL (NEW ORIGINAL MOVIE)
Premieres Saturday, January 19 at 9PM – In Tasmanian Devil, starring Danica McKellar (The Wonder Years) and Olympian medalist Apolo Ohno, a group of daredevil base jumpers in New Zealand confront oversized Tasmanian devils determined to kill them.
ABOMINABLE SNOWMAN (NEW ORIGINAL MOVIE)
Premieres Saturday, January 26 at 9PM – In Abominable Snowman, friends go on a snowy adventure and come face to face with a deadly creature. The movie stars Adrian Paul (Highlander) and Chuck Campbell (Stargate: Atlantis).
ROBOT COMBAT LEAGUE (NEW ORIGINAL SERIES)
Premieres Tuesday, February 26 at 10PM – Now, through ground-breaking engineering, the fusion of a human’s fighting spirit with a powerful machine built for destruction has become reality in Robot Combat League. This gripping new high-octane unscripted series puts a 21st century spin on gladiatorial combat with tournament-style battle between eight-feet tall, state-of-the-art humanoid robots whose movements are controlled by exo-suit clad human “robo-jockeys.” Twelve teams of two contestants – a fighter (the “robo-jockey”) and a robotics engineer (the “robo-tech”) – are paired with unique robots that clash in the ring for three rounds of intense action, with the winning team advancing in the tournament. Robot Combat League is hosted by Chris Jericho, the famed WWE wrestler and multifaceted performer. Mark Setrakian (Hellboy, Men in Black, The Grinch) created and designed the robots. Robot Combat League is produced by Smart Dog Media, with Craig Plestis serving as executive producer.
STRANDED (NEW ORIGINAL SERIES)
Premieres Wednesday, February 27 at 10PM — Ping Pong Productions (Destination Truth, Finding Bigfoot) joins forces with Josh Gates (star of Syfy’s travel-adventure series Destination Truth) and Jason Blum’s Blumhouse (Paranormal Activity, The River) to create Stranded, an all-new six-episode reality series that documents an unconventional – and terrifying – paranormal and psychological experiment. Each hour-long episode features the self-recorded footage of a diverse group of every-day paranormal enthusiasts – from newlyweds and a brother-in-law to a trio of roommates. Each team of three will be stranded at one of the most haunted locations in America and record the entire experience with hand-held cameras. The footage from the subjects’ cameras will be supplemented by strategically-placed security cameras at each location, creating a suspenseful, completely unscripted first-hand account of each group’s stay. Over the course of the confinement, the subjects contend with increasingly pervasive feelings of fear and desolation, resulting in an experiment that represents a unique combination of psychology and the paranormal. Stranded is executive produced by Brad Kuhlman, Casey Brumels and Josh Gates (who also serves as showrunner) for Ping Pong Productions and Jason Blum for Blumhouse (the production company behind the Paranormal Activity feature film franchise and movies like Insidious and Sinister). Gerard Bocaccio who heads up Blumhouse TV will be a consultant on the project.
HAUNTED COLLECTOR (SEASON 3 PREMIERE)
Returns Wednesday, March 6 at 9PM — Haunted Collector, which demonstrated significant viewership gains during its second season by jumping 18 percent in Adults 18-49, returns with 12 all-new episodes in season three. Eminent paranormal collector John Zaffis and his team of investigators respond to SOS calls from around the country by individuals and businesses who’ve been terrorized by items that have been taken over by paranormal spirits and/or energy. Through careful research, Zaffis works with the owner to find the best solution to the ghostly problem, such as returning the item to its owner, burying the object in its place of origin or storing it in his paranormal museum in Stratford, Connecticut. Haunted Collector is produced by Gurney Productions. Executive producers are Scott Gurney and Deirdre Gurney.
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