Let's Get Real: Is 'Castle Rock' Actually Scary?

With Season 2 about to premiere, is 'Castle Rock' a scary show that's perfect for the season, or is it just a bit suspenseful? Find out here


Apr. 27 2020, Updated 3:58 p.m. ET

castle rock hulu
Source: Hulu

If you're a horror junkie or just a Stephen King fan in general, chances are you've heard of Castle Rock. The anthology web series debuted on Hulu in July 2018, and revolves around King's stories as well as the fictional town of Castle Rock, Maine. As such, many of its episodes feature story threads from novels and short stories like It, Salem's Lot, The Green Mile, Misery, The Shining, Hearts in Atlantis, and more, but is it a scary show filled with jump scares?

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The show is more or less a mystery that you'll love solving along with the characters. The first season spans 10 episodes, and begins with the installment "Severance." This episode finds Sheriff Alan Pangborn in 1991 having found a missing child named Henry Deaver at the town's frozen lake. The show fast forwards 27 years later in its first big time jump. 

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castle prison
Source: Hulu

The warden of Shawshank State Penitentiary, Dale Lacy, commits suicide. The new warden decides to open up an old cell block after he passes to help make room for new inmates. A guard ends up counting the beds, when he finds an inmate they've never heard of before. They call him The Kid. He whispers Henry Deaver's name. Apparently, The Kid eventually escapes and murders a few guards – what's going on with The Kid and why all the secrecy?

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The first episode is a good example of the type of narrative that's being told here. But with that in mind, is any of that content going to offer any thrills and chills? That's what you came to find out here, anyway!

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Source: Hulu
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So, be honest: Is Castle Rock scary or not?

That's all going to depend on what you find scary to begin with. Obviously, some individuals can tolerate more creepiness than others, but that's not really the type of show Castle Rock is. If you're looking for a chilling series fraught with jump scares, you're not going to find it right away with Castle Rock. It's more of a slow burn that's more of a thriller than a show like Two Sentence Horror Stories or Channel Zero

castle prem
Source: Hulu
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If you're still concerned that Castle Rock may not be right for you, or if you want to avoid the jump scares that are indeed present in some of the episodes, there's an easy solution. Check out Where's The Jump? for a guide to every jump scare to be found in the first season. That should help make things a bit more bearable for you. 

If you think you can hang, you can get ready for Castle Rock Season 2, which starts Oct. 23. All episodes of Season 1 are currently available to zip right through, so you can make a weekend out of it and start watching the new episodes just in time for Halloween. Just make sure you bring a friend along in case things get unexpectedly terrifying – we haven't seen the second season yet, obviously, to tell you if it's scary or not!

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