‘Castle Rock’ is an American psychological horror anthology series that airs on the Hulu network. It first premiered on July 25, 2018. The series has elements of mystery, science fiction, thriller, and the supernatural, which is pretty obvious, given that the show attempts to “combine the mythological scale and intimate character storytelling of King’s best-loved works, weaving an epic saga of darkness and light, played out on a few square miles of Maine woodland.” It has been created by Sam Shaw and Dustin Thomason, and the show is based on stories by Stephen King and heavily draws from his novella collection revolving around the town of Castle Rock.
What viewers might not be aware of, unless you are avid fans, is the fact that most of King’s works tend to be situated in the same universe, and have some link or the other. Over the movies and the shows, and of course in the texts, we have seen that King likes to leave little links which weaves all his stories together and places them within the same universe. Naturally, King has his own fan following and is considered a master of horror. Thus, a show based on his characters and settings has automatically developed a strong fan base. Critics too have lauded the series saying it is “A meticulously crafted mystery brimming with allusions, Castle Rock is bound to please even the pickiest of Stephen King fans — though mileage may vary for casual viewers.”
Castle Rock Cast: Who is in it?
The main cast of ‘Castle Rock’ is led by Bill Skarsgard, who has appeared as the terrifying human-eating clown in ‘It‘, which has also been adapted from a Stephen King novella. In this show, however, he plays the role of “The Kid” who is an enigmatic prisoner locked up in the Shawshank State Penitentiary. And yes, in case you were wondering, this is the same Shawshank that Andy Dufresne broke out of in ‘Shawshank Redemption‘, one of the finest films ever made, and which is also based on Stephen King’s book ‘Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption’. Apart from him, the other characters include Andre Holland of ‘Moonlight’ fame as Henry Matthew Deaver, a criminal attorney who specializes in capital punishment cases.
Melanie Lynskey, best known for playing Rose on ‘Two and a Half Men’ appear as Molly Strand, Henry’s childhood neighbor, who also possesses empathic and telepathic abilities. Jane Levy of ‘Don’t Breathe’ fame appears in the role of Diane “Jackie” Torrance. She is an aspiring writer and in case her surname sounds familiar, that is because she is the niece of Jack Torrance, whose character was excellently portrayed by Jack Nicholson in Stanley Kubrick’s masterful adaptation of King’s work in ‘The Shining‘. Notably, it appears as though Diane takes her uncle’s name to spite her parents. Sissy Spacek appears as Ruth Deaver. She is Henry’s estranged mother and struggles with dementia, which often causes her to spill some of the town’s deep dark secrets.
Since ‘Castle Rock’ is an anthology series, we do not expect many of the cast members to return in the upcoming season, though there is always a chance of there being some overlaps, since the stories are all set within the universe that King has created. The cast members we know of include Lizzy Caplan as Annie Wilkes, who plays the role of a mentally disturbed nurse who gets stuck in Castle Rock. To refresh your memory, Nurse Wilkes appeared as a major antagonist in the acclaimed movie ‘Misery’.
Tim Robbins of ‘Jacob’s Ladder’ fame appears in the role of Reginald “Pop” Merrill, the dying head of his crime family. Garrett Hedlund who recently appeared in ‘Triple Frontier‘ plays the role of John “Ace” Merrill, Pop’s nephew and heir apparent to the crime family. Yusra Warsama appears as Dr. Nadia Omar, a Harvard educated Somalian doctor. Barkhad Abdi of ‘Captain Phillips‘ fame appears as Abdi Omar, Nadia’s brother who is looking to strengthen Somali ties in the community. Matthew Alan appears in the role of Chris Merrill, Ace’s brother, and someone who is caught between the Merrills and the Somalis. John Hoogenakker of ‘Jack Ryan‘ fame has been cast as someone with complicated links to Nurse Wilkes, which makes him sound promising. Obviously, there are plenty of recurring and guest characters, considering that King’s universe is as exciting as it is intricate.