zombie10tvf-1-webHalloween isn’t the greatest occasion for subtlety. But when a good chill is required, here comes a French import that takes such an understated start on the zombie thing, you might not even think it’s a zombie series.

“The Returned” (Sundance, 8 p.m.) looks at a small mountain town still rattled by deaths in the past, particularly with a school trip bus crash, only to find the departed suddenly appearing in town again.

Loved ones are happy to see them of course, but more than a little freaked out. And because of the nature of the series, which plays like a sly foreign movie than a TV thriller, we have no idea of where this is all leading, but there are plenty of things to be intrigued about, not the least of which is a small, wordless boy with a creepy look on his face.

Family dynamics are at the center of this thing, which may be the scariest thing of all. The smart rock band Mogwai provides the eerie music.

There’s a grownup sensibility to “The Returned” that doesn’t pause for the kind of cheap  shock in which shows like “The Walking Dead” specialize. It’s more along the lines of the networks other alluring, slow-burning series from “Top of the Lake” to “Rectify” that make you think it is leading the way in creating a whole new kind of great TV.

“It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” (ABC, 8 p.m.) makes its annual return, filling out an hour with the lesser known “You’re Not Elected, Charlie Brown.”

After having success combining old “Saturday Night Live” Christmas sketches for holiday specials, here’s the “SNL Holloween” (NBC, 8 p.m.), though they probably didn’t get much from Saturday’s show, except maybe the fake Wes Anderson horror film.

Of more interest is “Tim & Eric’s Bedtime Stories” (Cartoon Network, 12:30 a.m.), a new series that begins with a haunted house episode.

Halloween naturally plays a part in “The Millers” (CBS, 8:30 p.m.); and they dress up as “Star Trek” characters on a rerun of “Big Bang Theory” (CBS, 8 p.m.). And all manner of daytime TV shows get into the mix, in a kind of cheerless way. They are adults, after all, with production-sponsored costume budgets and makeup staffs. Meant to surprise, those on “The Talk” (CBS, 2 p.m.) have already showed their hand in promos: a “Peter Pan” themed cast.

The day calls four double features including “The Addams Family” (ABC Family, 7 p.m.) and “Addams Family Values” (ABC Family, 9 p.m.) and “Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers” (AMC, 8 p.m.) and “Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers” (AMC, 10 p.m.), “Saw III” (IFC, 8 p.m.) and “Saw IV” (IFC, 10:15 p.m.), “A Nightmare on Elm Street 4” (Syfy, 7 p.m.) and “A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child” (Syfy, 9 p.m.). and “Paranomal Activity” (FX, 10 .m.) somehow preceded by “Paranormal Activity 2” (FX, 7:30 p.m.).

 “Vampires Suck” (FXX, 7 and 9 p.m.) and “Monsters vs. Aliens” (Fox Movie Channel, 7 and 9 p.m.) each get double plays.

Plus there’s “Gremlins” (CMT, 8 p.m.) and “Ghost Busters” (Comedy Central, 8:30 p.m.), “Warm Bodies” (More Max, 9 p.m.) and “Children of the Corn” (TV Guide Network, 10 p.m.).

Some shows deal with this kind of fare all the time, such as “Ghost Adventures” (Travel, 9 p.m.).

A day of Halloween fare on Turner Classic Movies from “The Mummy” (7:30 a.m.) to “Dracula has Risen from the Grave” (3:45 p.m.) ends with the final night of the month-long Thursday night Vincent Price salute with “Pit and the Pendulum” (8 p.m.), “the Haunted Palace” (9:30 p.m.), “The Masque of the Red Death” (11:15 p.m.), “The Abominable Dr. Phibes” (1 a.m.), “Twice-Told Tales” (2:45 a.m.) and “The Tomb of Ligela” (5 a.m.).

A more heartfelt reaction to death is the Corey Montheith tribute, repeated on “Glee” (Fox, 9 p.m.).

How many murder cases does Investigation Discovery have to recreate? Enough to divide them by murderers’ names in their newest series. Hence, “Bloody Marys” (ID, midnight).

The top 12 finalists on “The X Factor” (Fox, 8 p.m.) start singing.

Daytime Talk

The View: Theresa Caputo, Jeff Ross, Audra Kunkle & Wednesday Mourning, Mario Cantone. The Talk: Michael Weatherly, Billy Gardell, Reno Wilson, Anne Burrell. Ellen DeGeneres: Alison Sweeney. Wendy Williams: Brian Balthazar.

Late Talk

David Letterman: Harrison Ford, Holy Ghost! Jay Leno: Matthew McConaughey, Eli Roth, the Fray. Jimmy Kimmel: Mindy Kaling, Rob Zombie. Jimmy Fallon: Kerry Washington, Jason Schwartzman, Flynn McGarry, Amel Larrieux. Craig Ferguson: Ben Kingsley, Anne Rice. Carson Daly: Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Pierce the Veil. Tavis Smiley: Mary Steenburgen, George Wallace. Jon Stewart: Mark Fainaru-Wada. Stephen Colbert: Bill Bryson. W. Kamau Bell: Sheng Wang. Conan O’Brien: McAdams, Norman Reedus. Chelsea Handler: Kat Dennings, Dan Levy, Fortune Feimster, Loni Love.