Spooky stuff to air in October: sci-fi thread “Peripheral”, exciting “Midnight Club”
Here’s a look at some of the most notable TV series and movies set to debut on subscription streaming platforms in October:
In a small town set in the near future, a young woman played by Chloë Grace Moretz plugs into the beta test of a virtual reality headset on the advice of her brother. She hopes to earn some extra money to support her family by wandering the streets of futuristic London. But she soon discovers that not everything in the cyberworld is artificial, and that the online world she inhabits could be a portal to a real future.
Based on William Gibson’s 2014 sci-fi novel, “The Peripheral” is a slick, intense, and violent eight-episode series from “Westworld” creators Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy. (Prime Video, October 21, weekly episodes)
“The Midnight Club”
At a hospice for the terminally ill, eight teenage patients come together every night to tell scary stories. But long-held secrets linger in the shadows of the facilities, including the mysterious death of a former patient. One night, the friends promise each other that the next to die will come into contact with the others from beyond the grave. But even before that happens, the group faces the possibility that someone is already hiding in the afterlife.
Christopher Pike’s 1994 teen horror novel is adapted into a 10-episode thriller filled with eerie landscapes and plenty of mind-jumping scares from Mike Flanagan, best known for “The Haunting of Hill House” and ” Midnight Mass” from Netflix. (Netflix, October 7)
A terrifying and eclectic selection of spooky movies and TV shows are heading to streaming platforms for Halloween. Horror platform Shudder explores the colorful LGBTQ history that crosses the genre with the docuseries “Queer for Fear: The History of Queer Horror” (out now, new episodes weekly), while the anthology film “V/H/S/99” becomes the fifth installment in the franchise to feature found footage of supernatural incidents (Shudder, October 20). Disney Plus invites the whole family around the cauldron with “Hocus Pocus 2” (September 30).
The Criterion Channel is traveling to the vaults with three movie collections all debuting October 1st. Its ’80s Horror’ lineup compiles dozens of modern classics from famous authors, including Michael Mann’s ‘The Keep’, Paul Schrader’s ‘Cat People’ and Bigelow’s Kathryn ‘Near Dark’, while nine films make up the lot “Universal Horror Classics” of 1930s monster movies. And undead fans can sink their teeth into “Vampires,” a set that includes the glam erotica of 1971’s favorite “Daughters of Darkness.” the 1972 blaxploitation “Blacula” and the 1995 Canadian black comedy “Blood & Donuts”.
“The White Lotus”
Mike White’s Hawaiian social satire “The White Lotus” has fascinated viewers and critics alike. With its second season, the creator takes the story to Sicily where another branch of the White Lotus resort welcomes a new cast of vacationers, including characters played by Aubrey Plaza, F. Murray Abraham and returning favorite Jennifer Coolidge from the first season. Although the plot has been kept mostly under wraps, expectations are high for plot surprises and top-notch performances, especially since the first season won 10 Emmys in September. (Crave, October 30, weekly episodes)
ALSO THIS MONTH:
‘Reboot’ – Amid the streaming boom, the failed cast of an early 2000s family sitcom are rehired for a revival that quickly goes awry. With Judy Greer and Keegan-Michael Key. (Disney Plus, available now, weekly episodes)
‘Saloum’ – A trio of mercenaries find themselves in a world of trouble when they’re forced to land an emergency plane in this action-horror-thriller mashup. (Shutter, now available)
‘Catherine Called Birdy’ – Lena Dunham directs the story of a teenage girl in medieval times who rebels against her father’s matchmaking plans. (Prime Video, October 7)
‘The Mole’ – Twenty years after its premiere on ABC, the competition series returns for a three-week showdown. Contestants win cash for a $1 million pot that only one can win, while a traitor lurks to throw a spanner into the scheme. (Netflix, October 7)
‘The Raccoons’ – A digitally restored version of the beloved 1980s Canadian primetime animated series is coming to streaming for the first time. (Crave, October 8)
‘The Playlist’ – The rise of Daniel Ek, the Swedish entrepreneur who helped forever change the music industry with the founding of his Spotify streaming service, is chronicled in a dramatic limited series. (Netflix, October 13)
‘Guillermo Del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities’ – As host of his own anthology series, the ‘Pan’s Labyrinth’ director channels Alfred Hitchcock as he presents eight horror stories from filmmakers that include Canadian directors Panos Cosmatos, known for Nic Cage’s thriller “Mandy” and Vincenzo Natali, who rose to fame with the sci-fi thread “Cube.” (Netflix, October 25)
‘The Good Nurse’ – Jessica Chastain is a nurse who fears patients will die at the hands of her new colleague, played by Eddie Redmayne. (Netflix, October 26)
“All is Quiet on the Western Front” – A stark retelling of Erich Maria Remarque’s 1929 novel about German soldiers near the end of World War I. (Netflix, October 28)
“High School” – Tegan and Sara’s semi-autobiographical series about adolescent musicians in Calgary. (Prime Video, October 28)
RETURNING SHOWS: Netflix is launching new seasons of its coming-of-age comedy “Derry Girls” (October 7), adult animated oddity “Big Mouth” (October 28) and Asian-American reality show “ Bling Empire” (October 5). This month also marks the return of the dating contest “Love is Blind” (October 19), the food showdown “Nailed It” (October 5) and new adventures from globe-trotting foodie “Somebody Feed Phil” (18 october). On Crave, Hugh Laurie’s space comedy “Avenue 5” returns (October 10) and six new docuseries episodes “The Vow” follow the US trial of NXIVM, a “benefit” organization with an undercurrent dark. Apple TV Plus picks up with the tropical romantic comedy “Acapulco” (October 21) as its cabin boss strives to achieve his dreams.
—David Friend, The Canadian Press
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