2017 was a stellar year for Stephen King fans, as the author put out two books, and we got a whopping four feature film adaptations of his work, with two TV series adaptations also getting released. 2018 won't be nearly as stacked, but we now have our second big look at Hulu's Castle Rock, which is bringing a host of King's characters and locations together for a fright-filled and star-studded show like no other. Check it out!
Now, it's only 30 seconds long, and it doesn't exactly give us a whole lot to go on as far as storylines go, but it's a doozy of a teaser when it comes to visuals that should speak volumes to Stephen King fans. Specific plot points have been kept under wraps -- not uncommon for a J.J. Abrams-produced project -- but we know that the cast is filled with stars such as Daredevil's Scott Glenn as King regular Alan Pangborn, Sissy Spacek as Ruth Deaver, André Holland as Henry Deaver, with other cast members including Bill Skarsgård, Terry O'Quinn, Jane Levy, Melanie Lynskey and more.
So without a whole lot of big plot issues to discuss, let's focus our attention on the selection of Stephen King-flavored shots that pop up throughout the trailer. And what better way to start off than with one moment that resembles one of 2017's biggest box office hits?
Creepy Bill Skarsgård
The big screen IT adaptation should have immediately come to mind during the Castle Rock trailer, specifically when we see Bill Skarsgård's prisoner character, who can be seen through the small rectangle slot of a metal cell door. Though he doesn't have clown makeup or glowing eyes here, the moment still resembles the opening scene from IT, in which just the face of Skarsgård's Pennywise can be seen in the sewer drain as he's talking to Georgie. Perhaps it's not overtly intentional when seen in the show itself, but that's gotta be the case for this trailer moment, right?
And where is Bill Skarsgård's character imprisoned? Why, Shawshank, of course. The famed penitentiary at the heart of The Shawshank Redemption looks to play a sizable role here, with Henry Deaver paying the inmate a visit after mysteriously being contacted. We know some particularly dark things have gone on inside Shawshank's walls, and Castle Rock will likely add a few more entries onto that list.
A Mysterious Sink Drain
In another possible IT reference, or perhaps a shoutout to a zillion other horror movie moments, we see a drain just as some kind of red liquid makes its way down the sink. This clearly isn't blood, as it usually goes in situations like this, but it could very well be someone washing off a bloody wound. Everybody take a shot of V8 if something other than water starts coming out of that faucet during that scene.
Sissy Spacek Under Duress
"Stressed-out Sissy Spacek" is O.G. live-action Stephen King, as the actress took on the titular role in the telepath-gone-rogue horror Carrie. She won't be attending any proms in Castle Rock, but she's obviously going to face one horrifying threat or another over the course of the season, even though we're unclear what "It's happening" refers to. In any case, we're not all going to laugh at her, we're not all going to laugh at her.
Now that Sissy Spacek herself has been covered, what about that dog that obviously has Ruth uncomfortable, what with it making itself at home in her bed and all? Even though this dog looks more happy than murderous, and though it's clearly not a St. Bernard, it's hard not to think about Cujo anytime a dog shows up in a Stephen King story or adaptation. Hopefully this animal will have a more noble purpose than killing folks.
A Dark and Foreboding Tunnel
Since Castle Rock is based on Stephen King works, that means there will probably be monstrous entities and pests lurking just beneath the surface of, well, everything. Specifically beneath the surface of the streets, though, since sewers and tunnels and spooky caverns are right up the author's alley. (As are dark alleys.) What will be at the bottom of whatever this hole leads to? Probably that notebook, now. And speaking of that notebook, will the person writing in it be one of King's various writer characters? Could it be The Dark Half's Thad Beaumont, since Sheriff Pangborn is around?
That Mist-like Thing
No, we're not putting this one because Stephen King's name shows up, but rather because of the atmospheric conditions happening behind his name. This is almost definitely just a heavy fog day for Castle Rock, Maine, but there's one particular King work that should come up here: The Mist. I doubt there are any creepy bugged-out monsters hanging out within that fog, but I won't be surprised if some people come up missing after it rolls through.
At one point in the trailer, we see a lot of (assumed) people in masks, and there are all manner of hypotheses to be made there, but I wanted to focus in on this monkey mask. Why? Partially because of Stephen King's short story "The Monkey," even though this isn't the cymbal-bashing kind. Partially because it has fangs for teeth, and King has definitely tapped into the vampire world for works such as 'Salem's Lot and The Night Flyer. And then also because of the short story "Chattery Teeth," even though these aren't those kinds of teeth. So it's basically a hodgepodge of tangentially relevant points to several different King stories. But it counts!
Though Castle Rock doesn't yet have a premiere date on Hulu (opens in new tab), we can expect to see it premiering this summer. In the meantime, head to our midseason premiere schedule to see what other new and returning shows will be around before the summer starts.
Nick is a Cajun Country native, and is often asked why he doesn't sound like that's the case. His love for his wife and daughters is almost equaled by his love of gasp-for-breath laughter and gasp-for-breath horror. A lifetime spent in the vicinity of a television screen led to his current dream job, as well as his knowledge of too many TV themes and ad jingles.
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