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The nominees have been announced, and theaters all over the
country will be screening Oscar hopefuls

Intro | Visual Arts | Film | Stage | Dance | Comedy | Literature | Music | SJZ Winter Fest

Neil Patrick Harris plays bad old Uncle Monty in the new Netflix adaptation of 'A Series of Unfortunate Events.'

The nominees have been announced, and theaters all over the country will be screening Oscar hopefuls like Moonlight, La La Land and Manchester By The Sea. And then, after all the golden statues are passed out, and we all begin seriously putting off our taxes, that's when the horror begins. Like, bad horror. Rings recycles a killer clip for the third time, the Fifty Shades franchise ignores the consent conversation and forces itself upon us all over again and then there's Trainspotting 2. Um... Why?

With the exception of a few titles, winter 2017 at the multiplex looks rather dull. Fortunately, there's plenty to stream. So, stay home for a spell and work that Roku remote. Here are some of the more promising shows on tap:

A Series of Unfortunate Events
Woe to the Baudelaire children, orphaned and given over to the custody of a moldy actor (Neil Patrick Harris) who only wants their money. Diving for the wreck, director Barry Sonnenfeld (The Addams Family) and author Daniel Handler adapt the latter's series of poignant books for arch children. A vocabulary-builder, to be sure, but an adult schooled in Edward Gorey and Roald Dahl may feel that they're listening to the Baby Einstein version of those worthies. (Netflix)

Schitt's Creek
A millionaire (Eugene Levy) of majestic cluelessness, Moira, his former soap opera actress wife (Catherine O'Hara), and their two drastically spoiled offspring are reduced to life in a motel in a small town with an unfortunate name. Here are two of the best comedic actors alive, harmonizing as only they can. Levy is aging into agelessness, like Johnny Cash, if the Man in Black wore starched boxers. O'Hara is still magnificently self-obsessed, the voice getting more molasses-y with money, fermenting into a well-bred nasal quack.. (CBC, on Amazon Prime).

Shut Eye
Leslie Bohem's promising series about an overreaching suburban patsy (Jeffrey Donovan), his bisexual wife, and the ruthless family of gypsies who oversee his fortune-telling racket. After a blow to the head, he becomes a real psychic. Isabella Rossellini can't pepper-up this San Fernando Valley-based goulash much as the silky matriarch. It's a bit over done and lines like, "Am I your first trip down Lesbo Lane?" don't help. But give it a go. (Hulu)

The Tick
Wally Pfister, who shot Nolan's Dark Knight trilogy, directs this gritty relaunch. The nigh-invulnerable Tick first migrated from independent comic books to one of the last good Saturday morning cartoons (1996), and then, later, to live-action on Fox in 2002 (in a show that sought to be Seinfeld for superheroes). In this telling, small, meek Arthur (Griffin Newman) is horribly traumatized in youth by a seemingly long-dead supervillain The Terror. Enter The Tick (Peter Serafinowicz), a warrior in the battle against "Light and darkness, up and down." Is he just a Harvey-like figment from Arthur's tormented imagination? Hopefully not, since his jovialness is needed in this era of tragic superhero glut. The Tick laughs at a machine gun fusillade, bellowing "Enough of your hot little bullets!" (Amazon Prime)

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