Top Horror TV Shows to Watch on Netflix
Not every scary shows on Netflix are of equal quality, and it can be difficult to sort through them all to find the perfect choice for your next binge. That’s why we have selected our Tipstor? Picks from Netflix’s library to select the very best horror TV shows to watch.
Initially created as a limited series, the show was such a success that Netflix and creator?Mike Flanagan?decided to continue it as an anthology, with each new season tackling a different haunted locale. The first season,?The Haunting of Hill House, was based on the Shirley Jackson book of the same name and followed the lives of the Crain siblings, whose experiences growing up at Hill House continue to haunt them into adulthood. The show is one of the most?provocative examinations of grief and trauma, while also being genuinely scary and delivering some of the most devastating twists on TV in recent years. The second season,?The Haunting of Bly Manor, based on the Henry James novella?The Turn of the Screw,?will hit Netflix later this year, making this the perfect time to catch up on?Hill House.
Starring?Freddie Highmore?as a young Norman Bates and?Vera Farmiga?as his mother, Norma, this critically acclaimed A&E series is a must-see for?Psycho?fans or for anyone who simply loves well-made horror. This psychological drama explores the Bates’ lives after they buy a rundown motel in a small town following the sudden death of Norman’s father. With Norman only a teenager when the show begins,?Bates Motel?chronicles the evolution of a killer with meticulously plotted suspense, all the while building out original and engaging stories about the Bates family and the locals who have the misfortune of crossing their paths.
It’s pretty maddening that?Ghoul?wasn’t a bigger hit when it premiered on Netflix in 2018. Starring?Radhika Apte?as Nida Rahim, a loyal interrogator who works for the fascist Indian regime ruling in a dystopian future,?Ghoul?follows Nida as she questions a terrorist (Mahesh Balraj) whom she begins to suspect is more than human. This atmospheric monster story is?a gripping tale?about social change, religion, and the dangers of unchecked political power. And while?Ghoul?gets off to a slightly slow (but never boring) start, the three-episode miniseries quickly builds to an insane, twist-filled finale that will stay with you long after the credits have rolled.
American Horror Story
If you’re looking for hardcore horror, FX’s?American Horror Story?isn’t for you ? certain seasons, such as?Murder House?and?Asylum, are far more frightening than others, but overall,?American Horror Story?is less interested in actual scares and more in finding entertaining (and unpredictable) ways to play with classic horror tropes. So if you want to be titillated, shocked, and occasionally grossed out, you can’t do any better than?AHS. And with each season tackling a different theme, you’re sure to find something that fits your mood. Although, we’d recommend starting with the holy trinity:?Murder House, Asylum,?and?Coven.
The Walking Dead
While there were a few seasons during which?The Walking Dead?famously?got a little lost, if you stick through the rough spots (or just outright skip Seasons 7 and 8), the show finds its footing again and is well worth your time. Filled with gnarly kills and genuinely moving character moments,?The Walking Dead?is not only about what people will do to survive, but?what you need to live for beyond just surviving. The zombie show all other zombie shows will be measured against, the AMC drama’s impact and influence can’t be understated when it comes to horror series. And once you start watching, it’s easy to see why the show has already spawned?two TV spin-offs?and an upcoming?movie trilogy.
Brace yourself before starting?Ares?because this Dutch series doesn’t waste any time before getting into the gore. The story of a biracial college student, Rosa (Jade Olieberg), who joins a clandestine (and mostly white) student society with seriously twisted secrets,?Ares?is suspenseful, intriguing, and at times outright grotesque. As the series unfolds and Rosa becomes more engrained in Ares, the society is plagued by a series of suicides tied to the mysterious creature that lives beneath the society’s headquarters. While any show that hinges so much on answering a complex web of mysteries risks underwhelming the viewer, the reveals are well worth waiting for in the spine-chilling season finale ? especially when you consider?Ares?is only eight, 30-minute episodes.
Marianne?wastes even less time than?Ares?before testing your limits with one of the most hard-to-stomach opening scenes we’ve ever seen. This is not a condemnation of the French drama, but a sign of its confidence in?delivering captivatingly unsettling horror?? the kind that seeps into your bones and feels like it may never leave. The French series follows horror author Emma Larsimon (Victoire Du Bois), who rose to fame for her book series about a witch named Marianne. But when a bored Emma decides to end the series, the witch manifests in the real world ? played with chilling conviction by Mireille Herbstmeyer ? and haunts Emma in vulgar and terrifying fashion until she picks up the pen to continue to tell Marianne’s story.?Marianne?is a disturbing, claustrophobic tale made all the more powerful by the grounded relationships at its center, and you’d be remiss to skip out on this one-season watch.
This Showtime drama is so much better than it has any right to be, and that’s largely a credit to its cast, especially?Eva Green, who plays the medium Vanessa Ives. Other than Vanessa and a few other key figures ? such as the werewolf Ethan Chandler (Josh Hartnett) ? the world of?Penny Dreadful?is largely populated by new takes on iconic horror characters, including Victor Frankenstein (Harry Treadaway), the Bride of Frankenstein (Billie Piper), Dorian Gray (Reeve Carney), and Dr. Jekyll (Shazad Latif). While the plot can be somewhat illogical, this stylized series tackles themes of otherness and the Victorian fear of women’s sexuality without ever losing its sense of fun or straying too far from its gory horror core. It’s a delightful modern take on classic horror that never quite earned?the respect it deserved?during its three-season run.
Requiem?didn’t generate much buzz after its 2018 premiere, but it left us wishing Netflix world produce more shows like it. After Matilda’s (Lydia Wilson) mother, Janice (Joanna Scanlan), kills herself in front of her, the young woman discovers Janice had a mysterious connection to a cold case of a missing child who disappeared from a small Welsh town. Matilda decides to uncover the truth with the help of her friend Hal (Joel Fry), but when they arrive at the village Matilda feels an eerie sense of familiarity and realizes that the conspiracy is far more personal ? and stranger ? than she ever could have predicted. This supernatural thriller is a mix of?Rosemary’s Baby,?Sinister, and?Wicker Man,?and while?Requiem?never reaches the heights of any of those films, it’s a pleasantly surreal (albeit,?sometimes perplexing) quick binge.
Ash vs. Evil Dead
Starz’s cult sequel series to?Sam Raimi’s original?Evil Dead?trilogy,?Ash vs Evil Dead?is a three-season horror comedy that finds?Bruce Campbell?reprising the role of Ash Williams, the beloved chainsaw swinging antihero of the franchise. Picking up 30 years after the events of the last film, the caddish Ash must once again take up his fight against the undead, giving the show ample opportunities to deliver multiple?electrifying action scenes?in each episode. Outrageously violent and always fun,?Ash vs Evil?Dead?raised the bar when it comes to horror-comedy shows and it’s impossible to watch the campy series without having a good time.
This Australian drama is definitely more spooky than it is scary, but it’s a compelling, moody mystery that’s definitely worth a watch. The series follows six people who come back from the dead in perfect health but with little memories of who they are or what happened to them. A policeman James (Patrick Brammall) ? whose late wife is one of the returned ? and a local doctor Elishia (Genevieve O’Reilly) hide the Risen from the world while working to uncover the mysteries behind their resurrections, including why an invisible barrier prevents them from being able to leave the small town. While it pales in comparison to?Les Revenants,?Glitch?admirably unravels conspiracies and the Risen’s many secrets throughout its three-season run, resulting in a mesmerizing ensemble drama that takes great advantage of the stunning bushland backdrop.
From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series
Robert Rodriguez’s cult?From Dusk Till Dawn?film franchise was expanded to the small screen for this El Rey Network series, which continued the stories of Seth (D J. Cotrona) and Richie Gecko (Zane Holtz), the Fullers, and Santanico Pandemonium (Eiza Gonz?lez). The show’s slick direction and snappy one-liners will please fans of the original film from the start, although new viewers to the franchise might not be charmed by the hyper-stylized series right away. However, if you stick it out, each season of?From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series?improves upon the last, culminating in a third and final season that embrace’s the shows inherent silliness without sacrificing the action-packed, bloodsucker horror.
Netflix’s zombie show is the pretty much the antithesis of?The Walking Dead. As opposed to poetic mediations on humanity and morality,?Black Summer?is built solely?on adrenaline and chaos. The series premiere drops viewers into the middle of the action, as a group of survivors in a zombie apocalypse must fight to make it from an evacuated suburb to a sports stadium where refugees are being taken to safety. While?Jaime King?is arguably the lead, you’ll likely never bother to remember the name of her character, or anyone else’s for that matter. But the thing about?Black Summer?is that this doesn’t even matter! The eight-episode first season is a fast-paced study in mayhem, keeping the viewer perpetually off-balance through its fast-paced storytelling that immerses the viewer in the world’s anxiety.