It’s official, we’re now entering the spooky season. For some, it starts almost as soon as Summer ends but as a lifelong coward, I try to delay its arrival somewhat. I’m happy to declare it’s beginning however on the 12th of October, when Netflix adds a brand new series adapted from one of the founding fathers of frightful, Edgar Allen Poe.
The Fall of The House of Usher comes to the streaming service from acclaimed horror director Mike Flanagan who was also responsible for the terrifying Haunting of Hill House, The Midnight Club and who directed The Shining sequel Doctor Sleep. It sounds like the strength of the source material and the pedigree of the show’s creators has paid off too with an early Rotten Tomatoes score amongst critics of 97%. Metro’s review describes it as a “masterclass in how horror, suspense, and drama should be done.” so colour me intrigued (and still slightly pale from fear). Coupled with the likes of Luke Skywalker himself, Mark Hamill, in the cast, it looks like I’m going to have to start being brave.
Edgar Allen Poe’s original story is only a short one, a dark tale of family tragedy, but this miniseries will cover both it and other Poe works. Hamill’s character for instance is listed as Arthur Pym, the title character in the author’s only finished novel The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket. So now we finally know who the man from Nantucket is in the famous old Limerick.
Aside from Hammill, the cast is led by a handful of Hill House returnees including Carla Gugino, and Kate Siegel and I’m sure there will be more twists than a Charles Dickens orphanage.
Like I said I’m a grade ‘A’ wimp when it comes to horror movies and series, but Flanagan’s work, while truly scary, has been praised for not relying on cheap jumpscares and instead favouring genuine suspense and dread, so maybe I’ll be okay. Either way, I’m watching this one with the lights on, no apologies.