A series of creepy screenshots surfaced online, shortly after Stephen King shared his thoughts on the hit horror series.
Do you believe in ghosts? Netflix’s The Haunting of Hill House has certainly challenged people to confront their own fears about the paranormal, with plenty taking to social to share their reactions to the newest adaptation of Shirley Jackson’s novel.
“One of the most terrifying, nail biting, hide behind the couch, don’t even breathe, I’m going to pass out from fear things I have ever watched. In. My. Life,” wrote one.
Another, in screaming capital letters, said: “WHY DID I DECIDE TO WATCH THE HAUNTING OF HILL HOUSE AND ESPECIALLY AT NIGHT I CAN’T SLEEP NOW I DON’T NORMALLY WATCH SCARY FLICKS WHY DID I DO THIS TO MYSELF.”
Among the show’s fans was none other than Stephen King – aka the greatest horror writer of all time (we’re big fans, OK?).
Using his official Twitter account, the Pet Sematary author wrote: “The Haunting of Hill House, revised and remodelled by Mike Flanagan. I don’t usually care for this kind of revisionism, but this is great. Close to a work of genius, really.
“I think Shirley Jackson would approve, but who knows for sure.”
Naturally, Flanagan – who is attached to direct upcoming King adaptation Doctor Sleep (a sequel to The Shining) – was overwhelmed to see his work praised by the master of the macabre, and retweeted the comment into his own feed.
“Someday I’ll figure out how to react things like this without shrieking like a little kid,” he added, “but today is not that day.”
The Haunting at Hill House is currently sat at 90% positive reviews on aggregator site Rotten Tomatoes, which describes the adaptation as “an effective ghost story whose steadily mounting anticipation is just as satisfying as its chilling payoff.”
However, some are convinced that there’s more to the spooky tale than meets the eye, after one user spotted a series of “hidden, unaddressed faces” in the series.
“Am I actually losing my mind or are there weird creepy faces hidden in the background of random scenes?” wrote Twitter’s @AWGregor.
Confused by the images, he began taking screenshots of the so-called faces and shared them to his own feed.
And, as it turns out, he isn’t the only one who’s spotted them: in fact, one of the show’s most frightening elements is the collection of ghosts you don’t see – because they’re so cleverly hidden.
“This isn’t even all of them,” teased Flanagan.
Relieved to find out he wasn’t losing his mind, @AWGregor tweeted: “I was a very, very scared little kid who constantly had nightmares, and I recall spending many sleepless nights trying to un-see faces I saw shifting in my window curtains.
“Anyway, I thought I was being paranoid about Ladder Face and didn’t go back to double-check until later…”
The Haunting at Hill House boasts a powerful ensemble cast that includes Henry Thomas, Michiel Huisman, Carla Gugino, Elizabeth Reaser, Kate Siegel, Oliver Jackson-Cohen, and Victoria Pedretti.
Based on the novel of the same name, it jumps between past and present as the Crain family recalls one terrible summer that they spent in the virulently haunted Hill House – which has led some people to dub it the horror version of NBC’s This Is Us.
One thing’s for sure, though: it’s not the sort of show you should watch on your own – or before bed. Unless, of course, you’re content to spend the rest of the night shivering in terror under the duvet. Happy viewing.
Feeling brave? The series is available to stream on Netflix UK now.