October is one of the gayest months of the year. With queer Christmas (a.k.a. Halloween) and it being LGBTQ+ History Month, it’s literally our time to shine! Whether you’re looking to kick back or celebrate, here’s a diverse list of things to keep you entertained throughout the month, including TV shows, movies, film festivals and even some postponed Pride celebrations. From a 2004 Chucky sequel and comedy/horror drag movies to a livestream of Chicago’s legendary Pride parade, enjoy this list of spook-tacular and super gay events, shows and films coming to your screens this month.
Death Drop Gorgeous
Streaming now on Amazon Prime
Death Drop Gorgeous is a 2021 film directed by Michael J. Ahern, Christopher Dalpe and Brandon Perras. The comedy/horror chronicles a dejected bartender and an aging drag queen trying to survive the eccentric and hostile nightlife of a corrupt city as a masked maniac slaughters young gay men and drains them of blood.
Online on The Guardian
A new Guardian documentary, Saintmaking, directed by Marco Alessi, is available to watch on The Guardian’s website now. The documentary tells the story of a group of queer nun drag queens in ’90s London who decide to canonize the legendary filmmaker Derek Jarman as an act of political protest.
Diana The Musical
Beginning Oct. 1 on Netflix
Diana The Musical, directed by gay American stage director Christopher Ashley, will be available to watch on Netflix starting Oct. 1. With music and lyrics by David Bryan and Joe DiPietro, the heartfelt musical follows the life of Diana, Princess of Wales—one of the most beloved women of modern time.
Oct. 1 on iTunes
The 2020 documentary Dog Valley tells the harrowing story of Gordon Church, a 28-year-old gay Southern Utah University student who was tortured and killed by two parolees in 1988. Dog Valley is an attempt to raise awareness about hate crimes against LGBTQ2S+ people and to honour Church’s memory in what was one of the most brutal hate crimes in U.S. history. The film features insight into his killers’ minds and reenactments of the crime—all shot on the real-life locations where they took place 32 years ago. The documentary will be available to watch on iTunes and Apple TV starting Oct. 1.
Oct. 1 on Netflix
The 2006 Taiwanese film Eternal Summer, directed by Leste Chen, will be available on Netflix viewers from Oct. 1. The film follows three high school students who are experiencing the agonies and ecstasies of love and struggling with their sexual orientations as they navigate new relationships, societal pressures and their next steps after high school.
My Name is Pauli Murray
Beginning Oct. 1 on Amazon Prime
The 2021 American documentary My Name is Pauli Murray, directed by Betsy West and Julie Cohen, is viewable on Amazon Prime starting Oct. 1. The film follows the life of queer lawyer, activist and trailblazer Pauli Murray, who was instrumental in arguing that the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment outlawed discrimination based on sex. As Xtra contributor Ilana Masad previously explained, “Pauli Murray is the most incredible activist, poet, lawyer and priest—not to mention a Black non-binary queer role model—you’ve probably never heard of.” The documentary also features a nuanced analysis of Murray and her relationship with her gender and sexuality. The films serves as a portrait of their impact as a non-binary Black luminary who transformed our world.
Nightmare on Elm Street Series
Oct. 1 on Peacock in the U.S.
U.S. streaming service Peacock is releasing the Nightmare on Elm Street movie series for viewers to watch on Oct. 1. The iconic horror franchise by Wes Craven is also one of the only mainstream horror films to feature an LGBTQ2S+ lead: out actor Mark Patton as Jesse Walsh. The 1985 film Freddy’s Revenge is heralded for foregrounding its gay subtext.
Seed of Chucky
Oct. 1 on Peacock in the U.S.
When you think of the Chucky movie franchise, queer representation might not come to mind. Gay director Don Mancini however, wanted to take the franchise in a gayer direction. In the 2004 sequel Seed of Chucky, the protagonist is a non-binary character—a doll named Shitface. Also known as Glen/Glenda, Shitface is the child of the killer dolls Chucky and Tiffany, and was unknowingly born with a twin sister, Glenda. But she remains dormant in her brother’s body. Condemned for their androgyny, Shitface runs away to Hollywood to find their parents and find out more about themselves.
Scottish Queer International FIlm Festival (SQIFF)
Online from Oct. 2 to 10 (and in-person)
The Scottish Queer International Film Festival (SQIFF) is showcasing LGBTQ+ films and directors, some available online for U.K. residents Oct. 2 to 10. One online program is called Sanctuary Shorts and features the 16-minute Canadian short film The Way We Are, directed by Amanda Ann-Min Wong. The 2020 film shares excerpts of stories from audio interviews with four queer Asian women: Katherine Chun, Wenda Li, Tamai Kobayashi and Nancy Seto. Told in the present-tense, these stories immerse viewers in the real, lived experiences of a different generation. The Way We Are will be premiering at SQIFF on Oct. 3.
Livestream on Oct. 3
With COVID-19 restrictions easing in certain areas, some regions are finally able to safely celebrate Pride in 2021. Chicago is holding their Pride on Oct. 1 to 3. The iconic Pride parade will be held on Oct. 3 and will be livestreamed on local television network ABC7, with full coverage of the whole parade also available via a live online webcast stream on the channel’s website. Some of the performers at this year’s Pride include Shangela, Jamila Woods and VINCINT. You can watch ABC7 live streaming online here.
Sort Of (Season 1 premiere)
Oct. 5 on CBC Gem
The first season of the upcoming Canadian sitcom Sort Of premieres on CBC Gem on Oct. 5. Created by Bilal Baig and Fabrizio Filippo, the series stars Baig as Sabi Mehboob, a non-binary millennial trying to balance their various identities as a child of Pakistani immigrant parents, a sexy bartender at an LGBTQ2S+ bookstore and café and a caregiver to the young children of a professional hipster couple. U.S. air dates to be confirmed.
Muy Gay Too Mexicano
Oct. 6 on HBO
The 2020 comedy short film Muy Gay Too Mexicano is being relesed on HBO on Oct. 6. The film follows J.D. as he works through the duality of being gay and Mexican. He realizes he needs advice from his two wildly different roommates in order to have a successful third date and find some self-acceptance.
Oct. 8 on demand
The new film Knocking, based on a novella from 2016, is director Frida Kempff’s debut feature. The Swedish horror flick follows a lesbian, Molly (Cecilia Milocco), who leaves a psychiatric ward after a nervous breakdown. She hears mysterious knocking sounds and begins seeking the truth behind the noises from the apartment above her. Available on demand starting Oct. 8.
Oct. 11 at8 p.m. EST on PBS
The documentary film Cured chronicles the campaign that led the American Psychiatric Association to remove homosexuality from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders in 1973. Previously, doctors often forced cruel treatments like electroshock and lobotomies onto queer “patients” but the film showcases the LGBTQ2S+ activists and allies who fought back—and won. Co-directed by Patrick Sammon and Bennett Singer, Cured will broadcast on PBS on Oct. 11.
Canada’s Drag Race (Season 2 premiere)
Oct. 14 on Crave in Canada and WOW Presents Plus elsewhere
Who will be the next Queen of the North? The second season of Canada’s Drag Race premieres on Oct. 14 on Crave in Canada and WOW Presents Plus in the U.S. This season, Brooke Lynn Hytes is set to return as a host and judge, but Brad Goreski, Amanda Brugel and Traci Melchor will replace Stacey McKenzie and Jeffrey Bowyer-Chapman behind the judging table. This season’s cast includes Canadian queens Adriana, Beth, Eve 6000, Gia Metric, Icesis Couture, Kendall Gender, Kimora Amour, Océane Aqua-Black, Pythia, Stephanie Prince, Suki Doll and Synthia Kiss.
We’re Here (Season 2)
Bob the Drag Queen, Eureka O’Hara and Shangela are back for Season 2 of HBO’s We’re Here, premiering on National Coming Out Day on Oct. 11 on Crave in Canada and HBO in the U.S. The weekly episodes follow the renowned drag queen trio as they continue to spark connection, self-expression and love through the art of drag. The queens recruit local residents from across the U.S. to participate in one-night-only drag shows, and inspire their “drag daughters” to express their genuine selves in front of their families, friends and communities.
The Boulet Brothers’ Dragula (Season 4)
Oct. 19 on Shudder in the U.S.
American streaming service Shudder is getting spooky with their 61 days of Halloween streaming now throughout October. Included in their lineup is Season 4 of The Boulet Brothers’ Dragula, premiering on Oct. 19. The Shudder original series follows 10 drag artists from around the world competing for a $100,000 grand prize. The latest season features a new lineup of guest judges including Vanessa Hudgens, Orville Peck, Poppy, Ray Santiago, Bob the Drag Queen and more.
Calgary B!G Pride Festival
Online events throughout October
Calgary’s B!G Pride Festival features multiple online events happening throughout the month of October. Included in their Pride calendar is Virtual Reading with Royalty on Oct. 6, which is a family-friendly storytime program presented in partnership with the Calgary Public Library, led by local drag performers over Zoom. Albertans, keep your eyes peeled for more online Pride events being offered throughout the month.