Hulu’s Stephen King mashup ‘Castle Rock’ just premiered on Hulu but already the reaction has been overwhelmingly positive. Although the show doesn’t directly adapt one of King’s many works, it weaves together elements from several including ‘Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption’ (better known as just ‘The Shawshank Redemption’, the name of the movie based on the story), ‘The Body’ (better known as ‘Stand By Me’ for the same reason), ‘Children of the Corn’, ‘Christine’, ‘Cujo’, ‘The Dark Half’, ‘The Dead Zone’, ‘The Green Mile’, ‘It’, ‘Misery’, ‘Needful Things’, ‘Pet Sematary’ and ‘The Shining’. But you don’t have to be a King aficionado to appreciate the show. In fact, the horror icon says that the show works better as its own entity if you “put all that Easter egg stuff aside.” He took to Twitter with his reaction.
CASTLE ROCK is really good, each episode better than the last. But put all that Easter egg stuff aside and just enjoy it on its own terms. The cast is incandescent and they support a story worth telling.
— Stephen King (@StephenKing) August 1, 2018
Though ‘Castle Rock’ has gotten great feedback, some have expressed frustration partially because those viewers haven’t “put all that Easter egg stuff aside” and have been driving themselves batty trying to seek out every reference on the show and how they connect to King’s larger works. It’s also possible that some are disappointed that ‘Castle Rock’ isn’t a more on-the-nose adaptation, with the King references subtly peppered into a story that mainly revolves around new characters in a new story– one not written by King.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, showrunner Dustin Thomason stated:
“Our intention was always to tell an original story in the tune of Stephen King…The germ of the idea was to think about the kinds of people who have the grit to stick it out in a place that’s been terrorized over and over again. Who stays in a place like that?”
Hulu released the first three episodes at once and will release a new episode every Wednesday. There are ten episodes in the first season total.
Have you seen it yet? Do the Easter eggs help or hinder the viewing experience?