Shows that'll mentally prepare for Stephen King and JJ Abrams' dark psychological horror - 'Castle Rock'

Shows that'll mentally prepare for Stephen King and JJ Abrams' dark psychological horror - 'Castle Rock'
J.J. Abrams (Source : Getty Images)

After a wildly successful first and second season, the news of Netflix's hit series 'Stranger Things' being picked for the third season amped viewers' anticipation. However, the announcement of the season's premiere been pushed to 2019, left fans pretty much disheartened. The anticipated psychological sci-fi drama was taking a back seat for a full year. Fortunately for thrill lovers, Hulu's upcoming new show 'Castle Rock' - a Stephen King original - can just be the thing. The psychological-drama series will make you forget the experience of everything you've ever watched. Since the show won't air until July 25, we thought of getting you mentally prepared for what's about to come. 

1. American Horror Story

Ryan Murphy's horror series has pushed boundaries for the genre, delivering some serious messed up and gruesome plotlines, led by a terrific troupe of actors. The show is currently spread across seven seasons and was recently renewed for the eighth and ninth. The viewers have shown some discontentment right in the middle of the anthology but what's been constant are the creepy and off-beat stories. Fans have heartily revered the first ('Murder House') and second ('Asylum') seasons that deals with a contemporary haunted house in a non-traditional way and a sanitarium circa 1964, respectively. In addition, the first two seasons feature vampy work from Jessica Lange.


Where to stream: Hulu, Netflix, FXNOW 

2. The Exorcist

Always a classic, but now it's a TV series on Fox. The plot follows the story of two priests, Father Tomas Ortega and Father Marcus Keane, who hail from very different backgrounds and lead different parishes but come together in their shared pursuit of exorcising the devil. Critics have pointed out that the 10-episode season takes a little while to warm up, but once it hits the climax, it becomes an impressive binge-worthy horror show. Though the show was canceled only after two seasons, it still deserves your time because this reboot is an original and does not reflect the 1973 film, but there are some links to it, the one that you hadn't anticipated. Those who watched the show believe that it was underrated because The Exorcist really excels at the genre.  

Where to stream: Hulu, Yahoo View

3.  Bates Motel

Adapted from the 1960 film 'Psycho,' the show was well-received by the horror fans and critics alike; hailing it to be universally acclaimed by the end of the fifth and final season. Unlike its remake, the TV series forged its own path in the genre following the lives of Norman Bates and his mother Norma before the events portrayed in the novel and film. This particular series takes place in a different fictional town named White Pine Bay, Oregon, as opposed to Fairvale, California and is given a modern-day setting. The show begins in ArizonaIn with the death of Norma's husband. In order to start a new life, she moves out of Arizona with son Norman, and purchases the Seafairer motel located in a coastal Oregon town. Everything was going fine until Norman's mental illness becomes dangerous. Norma is shown struggling to protect her son, and those around him, from himself. 


Where to stream: Netflix

4. Penny Dreadful

Given that the show would star all the monsters from the past including vampires, werewolves and Frankenstein's monster, fans were skeptical because 'Van Helsing,' the movie, was a massive disappointment. But when Penny Dreadful aired, all criticisms vanished into thin air. Playwright John Logan had combined an array of "classic monsters" in a playful, smart and fun way without overrating Van Helsing. Explorer Malcolm Murray, American gunslinger Ethan Chandler, and medium Vanessa Ives joined scientist Victor Frankenstein in a combat against  supernatural threats in Victorian London, and the killer isn't human.

Where to stream: Showtime Anytime, Netflix

5. Veronica

Netflix's new horror film 'Veronica' was dubbed "scariest ever" and the thing that makes it scarier - based on a real-life event. The Spanish flick was available on the streaming service on February 26 and viewers were immediately hooked, and some are still raving. The story narrates the story of a young girl, who has to raise her younger siblings since the mother is absent. While taking a break from her duties, she plays with the Ouija board during a solar eclipse, and all hell breaks loose. Directed by Paco Plaza, the story will make you forget what reality is.


Where to stream: Netflix

6. Twilight Zone

This American science fiction horror-fantasy series dates back to 1952 when the anthology was created and presented by Rod Serling. The show ran for five seasons on CBS from 1959 to 1964 and immortalized the line; "This is the dimension of imagination. It is an area which we call the 'Twilight Zone.'" The show can still blow your mind today with shocking supernatural scenarios such as talking dolls and death masks.

Where to stream: Netflix, CBS

7. Masters of Horror

This is more than just a horror TV series as this anthology is a mini-movies collection from the likes of John Carpenter, Dario Argento, Tobe Hooper, Stuart Gordon, John Landis, Joe Dante, Mick Garris, Lucky McKee, Larry Cohen, Tom Holland, Ernest Dickerson, Brad Anderson, and Takashi Miike. The coming together of greatest horror writers and directors have resulted in an astounding two seasons with 26 one-hour-long episodes. 

Where to stream: Amazon Prime


8. X-Files

The 1993 science fiction series that started airing in 1993 on Fox still intrigues and terrifies. The success of the show has lead to revivals and reboot films. Following two FBI agents, one who believes in extraterrestrial life forms and the paranormal while the other, a skeptic, investigate the strange and unexplained happenings with hidden forces impeding their efforts. The show won five Golden Globes and returned 26 years later this January. 

Where to stream: Hulu, Fox 

9. Outcast

The supernatural horror-drama is based on the comics of the same name by Robert Kirkman and Paul Azaceta and first debuted on Cinemax on June 3, 2016. The show deals with cases of demonic possession. The plotline revolves around the life of Kyle Barnes, who is rejected by the people of Rome, West Virginia, for allegedly hurting his wife and daughter. The show opens with a cliché of a possessed child staring at a cockroach on his bedroom wall before violently crushing it with his own skull. 


Where to stream: Cinemax, Netflix

10. Stranger Things

In case you haven't watched, here's a reminder. The show is Netflix's smash hit for a reason. Set in the early 80s when sci-fi captivated people, the story follows a group of children who go around the town on a bicycle is stalked by monsters. As the hunt for a 12-year-old missing boy begins, the plot unravels the mystery of a secret government experiment, unnerving supernatural forces, and an unusual little girl, possessing supernatural powers. The show is not only a psychological thriller but is very much an endearing homage to the gnarliest pop culture of the '80s.

Where to stream: Netflix


Share this article:

 Stephen King JJ Abrams Castle Rock Horror shows Thriller streaming now