Fandom Recommends: What to Watch and Play in August

TV Movies
TV Movies Games

Superheroes, super wrestlers, sausages, and scares — here are our August entertainment picks.

Playing Batman: The Telltale Series on Aug. 2

Telltale has done incredible work with comics like The Walking Dead and Fables, and now the developer is working on one of the most famous comic book characters of all time. Telltale’s first of five Batman episodes hits consoles and PC this month, and it takes the character to places he’s never been before. Set early in the Dark Knight’s career, you easily spend as much time as Bruce Wayne as you do Batman, and balancing those two identities isn’t simple. Can you lead the Caped Crusader to victory at this early stage in his career? It’s not as easy as just punching The Joker into unconsciousness. [Henry Gilbert]

Watching Suicide Squad on Aug. 5

David Ayer takes his gritty sensibilities to the DC Universe in a PG-13 effort that once seemed like a nice diversion. Now, much of DC’s momentum on the silver screen is dependent on Suicide Squad. Marvel’s success with Deadpool and the lukewarm reception to Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice changed the entire game. Luckily, the film has been cast perfectly and marketed with extreme precision and cunning. While it’s hard to consider a movie that cost just shy of 200,000,000 a plucky little underdog, Suicide Squad is just that. If it’s even close to as fun as the trailers suggest, we’re in for a treat. [Nick Nunziata]

Playing No Man’s Sky on Aug. 8

Exploring the universe in your own spacecraft has been the dream of folks since they first looked to the stars, and No Man’s Sky wants to channel that sense of discovery into a video game. Hello Games’ ambitious title wants to create an infinite world of planets and creatures created procedurally by the engine, and if it can even pull off half of what it promises, it’ll be a triumph for gaming. Hitting both the PS4 and PC this month, it looks like the stars will be the destination for many gamers in August. [Henry Gilbert]

Watching Hard Knocks on Aug. 9

HBO’s Hard Knocks gives fans an all-access look at training camp with the Los Angeles Rams as the NFL returns to Southern California after 22 years. No other show on TV offers such an intimate look at the daily lives of the coaches, star players, veteran free agents, and rookie hopefuls all trying to make the team. As with every season of Hard Knocks, look for the show to focus on a few of these rookies and free agents in particular to see who survives the weekly series of cuts made before the Rams settle on their final roster for the season opener. [Matthew Allen]

Watching The Get Down on Aug. 12

Baz Luhrmann takes his grandiose approach to Netflix in a hugely expensive period musical set in the Bronx in the ’70s. At ten million dollars an episode, the stakes are high, and though there’s no real buzz yet for the show, it’ll be one under the microscope for a variety of reasons. Take any one element and it’s a challenge. A cast mostly comprised of unknowns? A period musical? Even Luhrmann himself doesn’t have the most reliable success rate. Whether a car crash you can’t not watch or a transcendent experience, The Get Down will be one to keep your eye on. [Nick Nunziata]

Watching Sausage Party on Aug. 12

This animated comedy from the high minds of Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg is anything but family friendly. It’s R-rated, raunchy, and stars a talking sausage, a sexy bun, and a whole slew of supermarket food that all long to be taken home. However, they soon find out their forever home is a murderous nightmare of sharp kitchen utensils and hungry stomachs to feed. The movie features a veritable line-up of voices: Rogen, Kristen Wiig, Michael Cera, Edward Norton, James Franco, Jonah Hill, and Nick Kroll (voicing a douche…yes, a literal douche). Bon appetit — you may never look at food the same way again. [Lesley Chen]

Playing Grow Up on Aug. 16

Grow Home was one of 2015’s best surprises. The platformer from Ubisoft featured an endearing hero, B.U.D. (Botanical Utility Droid), a unique control scheme, and a retro-polygonal art style that perfectly complemented the whimsical animation of B.U.D. as he puttered and wobbled around the game’s environs. One of the only complaints players had was that the first game was too short. Grow Up seeks to remedy that by giving players everything they loved about the first game, just a whole lot more of it. B.U.D. also has a few new tricks at his disposal this time around, including a ball mode and a power glider to bounce, roll, zoom, and zip around the planet trying to put his M.O.M. (B.U.D.’s literal mothership) back together. [Matthew Allen]

Watching SummerSlam on Aug. 21

WWE has a full head of steam coming off an excellent Battleground PPV and the recent Raw/SmackDown brand split. It is still early, but SummerSlam already features compelling matchups, including Dolph Ziggler vs. WWE World Champion Dean Ambrose and Seth Rollins vs. newcomer and NXT phenom Finn Bálor. The Biggest Event of the Summer also features the return of Randy Orton and Brock Lesnar as the Viper seeks to take down the Beast Incarnate, who will be looking to make Brooklyn Suplex City on Sunday, Aug. 21. [Matthew Allen]

Playing Deus Ex: Mankind Divided on Aug. 23

The bionic hero Adam Jensen is back in Deus Ex: Mankind Divided. This is a series that prides itself on diverse gameplay choices, from stealth to heavy combat. You can even talk your way out of many situations and complete the entire game without killing anyone. Mankind Divided carries on this tradition, putting Adam Jensen in the middle of a global conflict between “augs” like himself and the normal population scared of what they can do. [Jorge Albor]

Playing Madden NFL 17 on Aug. 23

There are few guarantees in life, certainly when it comes to sports, but one thing football fans can rely on is a new Madden game every August. This year’s entry features a redesigned Franchise Mode that EA Sports is calling the deepest to date, new ball carrier special moves and tackle breaks, and improved defensive AI. Fans of the series should be extremely happy with some of these tweaks, while newcomers will find a game that is easier to get into than ever. [Matthew Allen]

Watching Don’t Breathe on Aug. 26

Fede Alvarez (watch our interview) already managed to pull off an Evil Dead remake without invoking the ire of horror fans so his follow-up already has tremendous goodwill. Add genre vet Stephen Lang and a plot that is the ultimate high-concept horror idea in ages and it’s all gravy. It’s probably best going in dark to see Don’t Breathe (pun intended), but it’s almost as safe a bet as there is. Plus, Sam Raimi produced it! [Nick Nunziata]

Watching You’re the Worst Season 3 on Aug. 31

FXX’s You’re the Worst is back for a third season beginning Aug. 31. The show — a modern look at love and happiness told through the eyes of two people who haven’t been very successful at either — will absolutely bring a smile to your face if you’ve ever struggled with fear, heartbreak, romance, sex, and friendship. Season 2 saw Jimmy (Chris Geere) and Gretchen (Aya Cash) continuing to learn how to live with each other when they could barely live with themselves. Geere and Cash are perfectly matched in this 30-something dramedy, and the show’s supporting cast (Desmin Borges and the wonderful Kether Donohue) are on point as well. ICYMI the first time around, there’s still time to binge the previous seasons before the premiere later this month. [Brian Linder]

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