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October Click List | Entertainment Editors’ Picks For The Month

best series to watch

The air is crisp. There are orchards and pumpkin patches begging for weekend excursions. But you need things to watch en route to said orchards and patches, and once the apples have been plucked and pumpkins carved, you’ll want to hit the multiplex to hear Lady Gaga wail “Shallow ” in A Star Is Born. Or curl up at home for the witching hour with Sabrina.

Here’s what to put on your pop culture agenda for October, courtesy of the Refinery29 entertainment team.

best series to watch
Kathryn Lindsay, Entertainment Writer

Chilling Adventures Of Sabrina (Netflix, Oct 26)

As a diehard Sabrina The Teenage Witch fan, I had many varied emotional reactions to the news that Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa was bringing his own take on the original Archie comic to Netflix. It’s more of a Riverdale spinoff than it is a Teenage Witch reboot, but fans of the sitcom won’t be disappointed. It’s a dark, spooky version of the Sabrina you may be picturing, but it still has a lot of warmth to it in the form of Kiernan Shipka as Sabrina Spellman, her delightful aunts, and of course, Salem the cat (he doesn’t talk, but he does protect her from demons, which is just as good).

Camping (HBO, Oct 14)

While Camping seems a far cry from Girls, I have no doubt that Lena Dunham’s newest TV venture will be just as addicting. She has a real talent for telling stories, especially those that reflect the things about us we aren’t quite willing to face. Plus, I never knew I needed Jennifer Garner and David Tennant to play a couple, let alone one who goes for a camping trip in the woods, but the cast of characters seems just intriguing enough that I have to tune in.

best series to watch
Lauren Le Vine, Senior Entertainment Editor

The Romanoffs(October 12 on Amazon)

Mad Men ’s Matthew Weiner brings his talents back to the small screen, although with six episodes that are actually movie-length, you’ll almost wish you could see The Romanoffs in theaters. They’re well-shot and elegant, and the plot in each varies wildly (among the first three episodes made available for critics, the Christina Hendricks one is a highlight). The common thread between sagas is that at least one character believes they’re a descendent of Russia’s Romanov family. Descendants of the royal family do exist (hi, Princes William and Harry), but not any direct posterity of Tsar Nicholas II, who was murdered by Bolsheviks with his wife and children in 1918.

Charmed (October 14 on The CW)

I surprisingly loved the original Charmed on The WB, and I’m really not someone who likes shows and movies about witchcraft (don’t tell my coworkers). Seeing three sisters work together and support one another was really great to see on TV during a time when network executives weren’t really focused on delivering shows for women (especially teen girls), so I’m excited to see the reboot. I’m also PUMPED for Roswell: New Mexico in 2019. Actually, if they could just bring back the whole WB lineup from the late’90s/early aughts, that would be great.

best series to watch
Elena Nicolaou, Entertainment Writer

Doctor Who (October 7 on BBC America)

As a devoted Whovian, to say I’m “excited” for the new season of Doctor Who would be massive understatement. Rather, I’m practically vibrating with anticipation. This is a momentous moment for the long-running TV show, which has been on the air since the 1960s. Jodie Whittaker will play the first-ever female iteration of the Doctor, the time-traveling alien who, time and time again, saves humanity from crisis, and in doing so reminds us of our humanity. With a new Doctor and a new showrunner (Chris Chibnall of Broadchurch is taking the reins), season 11 of Doctor Who is the perfect place for prospective Whovians to jump into the fandom.

The Proposal by Jasmine Guillory (October 30)

Life is short. Read a lot of rom-coms. Guillory’s debut novel, The Wedding Date, came out in January. While that book was a delight, I connected with the characters in The Proposal even more — perhaps because the main character, Nik Paterson, is an entertainment writer. After Nik’s boyfriend proposes to her at a baseball game and she outright rejects him, Nik becomes the immediate recipient of unwanted ire. Her seat-mates, Carlos Ibarra and his sister Angela, help usher Nik out of the stadium. Is that a spark Nik feels with Carlos? It is indeed.

best series to watch
Anne Cohen, Senior Entertainment Writer

A Star Is Born (October 5)

I was ready to dismiss this movie as hype. I was primed to hate it. But roughly 15 seconds in, I was already blown away. Bradley Cooper’s directorial debut may be the third re-invention of the fabled Hollywood tale, but it’s definitely one of the best.

Bad Times at the El Royale (October 12)

Can you imagine a world in which American Horror Story: Hotel meets Pulp Fiction? Welcome to Bad Times At The El Royale, where seven strangers’ fates collide at a run-down motel near Lake Tahoe. Come for the thrills, stay for Chris Hemsworth dancing to Deep Purple.

best series to watch
Sesali Bowen, Senior Entertainment Writer

The Hate U Give (October 19)

When Angie Thomas’ novel, The Hate U Give, was released in February 2107, it was considered the first young adult novel for the Black Lives Matter generation. It garnered such great reviews that it got the movie treatment this year with Amandla Stenberg playing lead character Starr. On a daily basis, Starr grapples with the realities of racism and power as she commutes from her working class, Black neighborhood to attend a mostly-white school. Her dissonance is intensified when she is the sole witness of her friend’s murder at the hands of a police officer. With additional appearances from Issa Rae, Regina Hall, and Common, The Hate U Give is primed up to bring us together for an important conversation.

The Neighborhood (October 1 on CBS)

There’s a new family in town in this sitcom starring Cedric the Entertainer. The Johnsons move into an affluent, Black neighborhood as the only white family. This does not sit well with his next-door neighbor Calvin Butler, who prides himself on the community he helps foster in the neighborhood. Tichina Arnold — the queen of Black sitcoms who’s appeared in Martin and Everybody Hates Chris — plays Calvin’s wife, so it’s guaranteed to be good.

best series to watch
Rebecca Farley, Editorial Assistant

Big Mouth(October 5 on Netflix)

Big Mouth, Andrew Goldberg and Nick Kroll’s raucous ode to puberty, aims for — and smashes — the lowest-hanging fruits. The first season tackled periods, sexuality, and masturbation. It also featured a pitbull named “featuring Ludacris.” (As in, this is our pitbull, Featuring Ludacris.) The second season sees some important additions, like a new character voiced by Gina Rodriguez, as well as the addition of some anthropomorphized pubic hair. Does this show get dirty? Yes. It is also somehow gleefully innocent? Yes. Does the first episode have an extended montage dedicated to lactose intolerance? Yes!

The Haunting of Hill House(October 12 on Netflix)

I don’t have the stomach for new-school horror, which is to say: The Nun trailer scared the shit out of me. Add to that It, which kept me awake for months. But The Haunting of Hill House is something different. It’s based on classic novel — the one of the same name by Shirley Jackson — and it’s explicitly trope-y. This is the original “haunted house” tale, the one that maybe provided inspiration for The Haunted Mansion. Which isn’t to say that Haunting of Hill House is campy or silly. It’s quite scary — but it’s also thoughtful, careful, and really, really patient. For all you horror dweebs out there, this one’s for you!

best series to watch
Maia Efrem, Associate Entertainment Editor

First Man (October 12)

This film is one small step for man, one giant Oscars leap for Ryan Gosling. Despite right-wing controversy over a missing flag-planting scene, Damien Chazelle’s First Man is rocketing to its opening weekend with stellar reviews from the festival circuit. The film tells the story of astronaut Neil Armstrong’s (Gosling) moon landing without the sweeping melodrama that so often follows biopics and space epics like The Martian, Armageddon, and Gravity. Gosling’s sobering portrayal of Armstrong has top critics crying Oscar for the already nominated La La Land actor and director.

Can You Ever Forgive Me?(October 19)

Melissa McCarthy sheds her comedic roots to flex her acting muscles in this biopic about celebrity biographer Lee Israel. Based on a memoir of the same name, the film follows Israel as desperate financial straits push her to, as she gently puts it, “embellish literary letters by prominent writers.” That’s an understatement, Israel makes a killing selling forged letters from Fanny Brice and Ernest Hemingway, among others. McCarthy is also getting buzz for her prickly and haunting performance.

best series to watch
Ariana Romero, TV Writer

All American (October 10 on The CW)

The fall TV crop is filled with lots of prestige, high-brow offerings (looking at you, The Romanoffs, King Lear, and Homecoming — and that’s just on Amazon). But, none of them stole my heart quite like the pilot for All American, the CW’s high-octane mashup between Friday Night Lights and The O.C., complete with a little bit of racial politics tossed in.

I knew I loved All American, about a teen football prodigy’s (Daniel Ezra) move from Compton to Beverly Hills to excel in his sport, the moment a buzzing party scene was backed by Calvin Harris’ Frank Ocean collaboration “Slide.” “Slide” is one of the best party songs ever written and All American recognizes this! The teen drama also features Teen Wolf ’s most fascinating villain, Cody Christian, as the resident smirking bad guy and under-used 13 Reasons Why newbie Samantha Logan as a complicated dream girl. Long live All American.

Elite (October 5 on Netflix)

There has never been a better time for teen shows. Five days before the debut of All American, we get Netflix’s Elite, about a different wealthy high school trapped in a culture clash. The Spanish-language series follows the goings-on of Las Encinas, Spain’s most exclusive boarding school, which is shaken up when a group of working class teens enter the institution’s hallowed halls. Juuling, sexy parties, and, naturally, a murder mystery ensue.

best series to watch
Kaitlin Reilly, Entertainment Writer

Suspiria (October 26)

Yes, Dario Argento’s original film is an assault on the senses, but it, apparently, is downright tame compared to what’s happening in this Dakota Johnson-starring remake. Fans who viewed a particularly disturbing clip at Cinema Con found the scene nearly vomit-inducing — that’s how high the level of intensity at this movie-going experience should be. Though I was burned before by Mother!, another film that promised to be equal parts pretty and disturbing, I have the utmost faith in Call Me By Your Name director Luca Guadagnino delivering a visually stunning, if grotesque, flick. Call it morbid curiosity, but this is one film I’ll see opening weekend — likely squinting through my hands.

Halloween (October 19)

The slasher franchise that basically invented the slasher franchise is as immortal as its villain Michael Myers. What makes this 2018 movie unique is that it completely ignores all of the sequels that came after the 1978 original, streamlining a confusing continuity that involved one particularly shoehorned-in “secret sibling” plot point. The new Halloween looks more like a revenge thriller than it does a typical slasher, with Jamie Lee Curtis’ Laurie swearing to avenge her friends who were murdered that Halloween night. Adult Laurie is no longer running scared, but determined to defeat the Boogeyman once and for all, so that he never harms another person again. It’s a pretty empowering message in today’s Time’s Up climate.

best series to watch
Morgan Baila, Associate Entertainment Editor

Beautiful Boy (October 12)

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: Give me a movie that is just Timothée Chalamet nodding and crying, and I’m there. This movie is no exception. Chalamet stars as the “beautiful boy,” a teenager, and later 20something, who finds himself addicted to a laundry list of drugs, with crystal meth starred, bolded, and underlined at the top of it. With the help of his father, played by a caring and passionate Steve Carell, the two try to find a perfect world in which Nic (Chalamet) and David (Carell) are able to reconcile with Nic’s addiction, and move on from it. It’s easier said than done, and this film thoughtfully breaks down what it’s actually like to deal with addiction, from both perspectives.

Mid90s (October 19)

If Maniac left you hungry for more Jonah Hill, then I have good and bad news. The good news is that the funny guy turned earnest fashion king has another promising project coming out this month with A24. The bad news is that Hill himself doesn’t star in the film, but instead finds himself on the other side of the camera in his directorial debut about a young kid whose life is changed by a local skate crew. Mid90s is a passion project for Hill (he also wrote the script), and stars two of my favorite actors right now: Sunny Suljic ( Killing of a Sacred Deer) and Lucas Hedges ( Lady Bird). One last thing: After the summer indie hit Skate Kitchen, it’s abundantly clear that the world really wants me to learn how to skateboard.

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