The Best Movies, TV, Books and Music for October

Including a scary follow-up to “The Haunting of Hill House” and all things accidentally Wes Anderson

October 1, 2020 8:55 am
accidentally wes anderson
Accidentally Wes Anderson, now in book form

Welcome to Culture Hound, InsideHook’s deep dive into the month’s most important cultural happenings, pop and otherwise. 

Note, due to the on-going COVID-19 pandemic, release dates are highly tentative. 

WATCH: The Haunting of Bly Manor

Not quite a sequel, this new gothic horror miniseries is an indirect follow-up to last year’s excellent and legitimately scary The Haunting of Hill House. Writer/director Mike Flanagan based this outing on the Henry James novella The Turn of the Screw. (Oct. 9, Netflix)

Other returning TV series and specials: Saturday Night Live (Oct. 3, NBC); The Walking Dead (Oct. 4, AMC); The Mandalorian (Oct. 30, Disney+)

WATCH: The Trial of the Chicago 7

A peaceful protest at the 1968 Democratic National Convention turns violent; in Aaron Sorkin’s new legal drama, he recreates the court trial of the protest organizers, who include Tom Hayden, Abbie Hoffman (played by Sacha Baron Cohen), Jerry Rubin and Bobby Seale. No modern parallels here! (In theaters now; Oct. 16, Netflix)

More new films coming to the small screen and big: Scare Me (Oct. 1, Shudder); Rebecca (Oct. 21, Netflix); Bad Hair (Oct. 23, Hulu); On the Rocks (Oct. 23, Apple+) 

STREAM: The Right Stuff

National Geographic (through Disney) adapts Tom Wolfe’s 1979 book about the American space race, the first astronauts and early aerospace heroes like John Glenn and Chuck Yeager. This dramatic series will eventually lead up to the moon landing. (Oct. 9, Disney+)

New TV series and specials: Monsterland (Oct. 2, Hulu); The Comedy Store (Oct. 4, Showtime); The Walking Dead: World Beyond (Oct. 4, AMC); Marvel’s Helstrom (Oct. 16, Hulu)

DOWNLOAD: No Time To Die: The Official James Bond Podcast

Hosted by film critic James King, this new six-part podcast is centered around the legacy of 007 and the upcoming film No Time To Die; it features interviews with Daniel Craig, Rami Malek, Léa Seydoux, Lashana Lynch, Jeffrey Wright, Naomie Harris, director Cary Joji Fukunaga, producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, Billie Eilish and Finneas O’Connell, along with several behind-the-scenes crew members. (Out now)

READ: Leave the World Behind

Rumaan Alam’s eagerly awaited new novel — already longlisted for the 2020 National Book Award in Fiction — revolves around two families thrust together at a remote house on Long Island during a blackout. It’s a thriller as well as a commentary on race, status and family. (Oct. 6)

More recommended new fiction and non-fiction: Is This Anything? by Jerry Seinfeld (Oct. 6); Zoey Punches the Future in the Dick by David Wong (Oct. 13); Billion Dollar Loser by Reeves Wiedeman (Oct. 20); Inside Story by Martin Amis (Oct. 27); 

PERUSE: Accidentally Wes Anderson

A photo tome on real-life quirky and memorable places that seem plucked straight out of a, well, Wes Anderson film … and based on a real-life Instagram account. (Oct. 20)

More photo books of note: Humans by Brandon Stanton (Oct. 6); The Rise: Black Cooks and the Soul of American Food by Marcus Samuelsson (Oct. 27)

LISTEN/WATCH: David Byrne’s American Utopia

The former Talking Heads frontman debuts his Broadway show in a filmed performance by Spike Lee. Expect newer songs, classics like “Once In a Lifetime” and a fair amount of monologue and political talk, all rounded out by a very large, very talented cast of dancers and musicians. (Oct. 17, HBO)

More televised music specials and concerts: Roger Waters Us + Them (Oct. 2 on Blu-ray); Run the Jewels (Oct. 10, Adult Swim)

LISTEN: Gorillaz

Song Machine Season One is the U.K. all-star band’s coronavirus-era collaboration album, featuring guest spots from Robert Smith, Beck, St. Vincent, ScHoolboy Q, Elton John and more. Available in all sorts of crazy-colored vinyl, cassette (!) and soon, a global livestreamed concert. (Oct. 23)

More new music: Future Islands (Oct. 9); Action Bronson, Matt Berninger, The Struts (Oct. 16); Pup, The Mountain Goats, Bruce Springsteen (Oct. 23); Elvis Costello (Oct. 30)

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