Welcome to Culture Hound, InsideHook’s deep dive into the month’s most important (pop) cultural happenings.
WATCH: The Big Sick
Kumail Nanjiani (Silicon Valley) pines for his girlfriend in a coma in this indie drama, which wowed at festivals — and then got picked up by Amazon for a whopping $12 million. (June 23)
A wrestling drama-comedy based on the real-life exploits of the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling circa the 1980s. Starring Alison Brie — the Community actress who is also (fact) a national treasure — it’s a mishmash of sparkly costumes, copious drug use and poofy '80s haircuts.
CHILLAX: Sound Healing Symphony
If you're looking to massively up your meditation game, drop by the Sound Healing Symphony at Grace Cathedral, the last event in the church's celebration of the Summer of Love. The symphony encourages meditation with ancient Tibetan instruments — it's trippy in the cathedral space, which seems entirely appropriate. (June 23)
LAUGH TO: Colossal Clusterfest 2017
VIP tickets are still available for this weekend's comedy festival — pick up the three-day ticket, and you can do anything from see Seinfeld live (Sunday night) to — our top pick — hang out in a recreation of Paddy's Pub. (Through June 4)
READ: Peak Performance
An Olympic coach and a former McKinsey consultant turned science writer demystifies the ideas behind peak human performance, be it athletic, artistic or academic (turns out they all share the same processes). If you’re a lifehacking fan or watch a lot of TED Talks, this is for you. (June 6)
GET RILED UP AT: The Bay Area Book Fest
This year's theme is activism — with plenty of attendees looking to shift some paradigms. Our top pick is Walter Mosley, but we're also looking at Ayelet Waldman's take on microdosing and the introduction to The Secret Garden with firefighter-turned-author Caroline Paul, who you might remember from her TED talk.
ENJOY: Blood Drive
A cross-country death race (“in the distant future of 1999”) where cars run on human blood? Sign us up for Syfy’s cheesy grindhouse depravity. (June 14)
REMEMBER: Your favorite albums
It’s a good month for digging deep into your musical past. Bob Marley’s new box set of Exodus (June 2) includes son Ziggy’s “restatement” of the original record, with previously unheard mixes and recordings. U2 revisits The Joshua Tree (June 2) for its 30th anniversary, which features 25 previously unreleased tracks and a hardcover photography book by the Edge. The late great Prince sees his musical nadir Purple Rain (June 23) re-released with a whopping 26 unreleased tracks (including “We Can Fuck” and “Wonderful Ass,” because Prince) and a 1985 live performance. Finally, Radiohead’s OKNOTOK (June 23) celebrates 20 years of OK Computer with 11 b-sides and unreleased tracks; a larger box set in July also features a cassette mix tape of studio sessions and a 104-page notebook chronicling the making of the album.
LISTEN: Our monthly Spotify playlist
Thirty new songs this month, including big returns (LCD Soundsystem, Broken Social Scene, Roger Waters) and soon-to-be-big newcomers (Aldous Harding, The Dirty Nil, The Big Moon).
New from Viscous, the publishing house where Emily Ratajkowski got a start, Visceral is a scantily clad ode to the city and its vices. Available now for preorder, we recently spoke with the book’s creator, artist/model Amy Hood.
And don’t forget: Bong Joon-ho (Snowpiercer) crafts an odd tale of a girl, her mutant animal pal and an evil Tilda Swinton in Netflix’s Okja (June 28) ... Jack White, Beck and the Avett Brothers (among many others) replicate a 1920s recording session in the soundtrack to PBS’s American Epic (June 9) ... In a console world filled with endless sequels, a synthpop-flavored isometric assassin game like Tokyo 42 feels like a revelation (out now) ... Aussie Jim Jeffries is the latest topical comic to land his own late-night talk show (June 6, Comedy Central) ... Scarlett Johansson, Zoe Kravitz, Kate McKinnon, Jillian Bell and Ilana Glazer throw a deadly and hilarious bachelorette party in Rough Night (June 16) ... Finally, it’s the welcome TV return of Orange Is the New Black (June 9), Idiotsitter (June 10) and Preacher (June 25).