Finding good quality horror shows can be tough, especially if you can not justify spending bags of bucks on the never-ending list of streaming services out there. However, Netflix is the OG streaming platform, and it’s safe to say that the popular service still remains a staple among viewers. With beloved horror-themed shows like Supernatural and The Walking Dead either coming to an enddropping off in quality, or both, fans may be craving a new horror rabbit hole to go down.
Netflix boasts a wide selection of movies, including international-language featuresand binge-able Original series, but it’s the horror TV series options that are on point. As such, here are the best horror TV series to watch on Netflix, ranked.
7 The Haunting of Bly Manor (2020)
Though probably the least strong of modern horror master Mike Flanagan’s Netflix partnerships, The Haunting of Bly Manor is still extremely engaging and high-quality. The story involves a young au pair arriving at Bly Manor to tend to the needs of two children that had lost their parents. During her stay, she’s haunted by both the ghosts of her past and the spirits deep within the walls of the old mansion. Mike Flanagan brings in his Hill house regulars like Victoria Pedretti, Carla Gugino and Henry Thomas, but Bly Manor also boasts some incredible performances from newcomers T’Nia Miller and Rahul Kohli. The story does not feel as emotional and the scares do not hit as deep as Flanagan’s other projects, but the cinematography, editing and music are all top-notch.
6 Chilling Adventures of Sabrina (2018-2020)
Based on an Archie comic book series of the same name, and developed for Netflix by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Chilling Adventures of Sabrina follows a horror-filled coming-of-age story for Sabrina Spellman, a teen girl diving into her predestined life of witchcraft. Kiernan Shipka does a fantastic job portraying the teenage witch, and though the series relies on some cheesy undertones and dialogue, the theme and events are quite intense and horrific. Tons of great practical effects and makeup are used for the creatures and settings alike. Sabrina has four seasons currently available on Netflix, and although it was canceled due to COVID-19, horror fans are hopeful for its eventual return.
5 Castlevania (2017-2020)
Frederator Studios and Powerhouse Animation Studios came together to produce one of the best animated video game adaptations to the screen with Netflix’s Castlevania. The first two seasons adapt the 1989 NES classic Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curseand Alucard’s story is derived from the popular Playstation game, Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. This gory adaptation was created and written by comic book writer Warren Ellis, and the art style is highly inspired by Japanese animation and Ayami Kojima’s artwork from the original game series.
4 Ash vs. Evil Dead (2015-2018)
Developed by original Evil Dead trilogy creator Sam Raimi, Bruce Campbell is back in action as Ash Williams in Ash vs. Evil Deada continuation of the Evil Dead universe that picks up many years after 1992’s Army of Darkness. Originally airing on Starz, fans of the popular horror franchise were delighted to get practical effects-heavy reprisal of the series that captured both the slapstick comedy and gross out horror that the original films produced. The new series introduced new beloved characters, and monsters from the universe that had never been seen before. Unfortunately, the series was canceled after three seasons due to poor ratings. Many fans and even Bloody Disgusting have petitioned for Netflix to revive the series to finish out the originally planned fourth and fifth seasons, but Bruce Campbell released a statement saying that he was officially “retired” as Ash.
3 The Haunting of Hill House (2018)
Widely regarded as one of actual scariest horror tv shows of all time, Mike Flanagan hit a home run with The Haunting of Hill House. This loose and modern adaptation of Shirley Jackson’s classic novel features an incredible cast that come together as a collective to give amazing performances all around, especially by Carla Gugino, Henry Thomas, and Kate Siegel. The camera work and editing-style is fantastic, doing things that no other show has done before, and even bringing Flanagan out to break down specific scenes and how they were done to the viewers. The jump scares and eerie moments are aplenty, so be warned, that this show is not for the faint, and the emotional moments pack quite a puch to the gut.
2 Midnight Mass (2021)
Another powerhouse from Mike Flanagan, Midnight Mass wash our pick for the best horror series of 2021. Where Hill house focused more on the creep factor of the supernatural along with jump scares, Midnight Mass features the more terrifying aspects of humans and their beliefs. The story came straight from the heart of Flanagan and his personal experiences with religion, and he had been writing it for years while popping hints of the story in his other films and shows. This show dives deep into the horrors of small-town bigotry and the religious cliques within. Those aspects are so uncomfortable that the weaved supernatural element of Midnight Mass is more of an added bonus rather than a main focus. This show is the definition of slow burn horror, but the excellent performances from the entire cast, and especially Hamish Linklater, Samantha Sloyan, and Kate Siegel will have you invested until the blood flows.
1 Stranger Things (2016-Present)
Stranger Things is one of the top-10 most-watched series ever on Netflix, and with good reason. The show is like if Stephen King and Steven Spielberg got together to create a coming-of-age horror and science-fiction art project, and had John Carpenter score the film. Of course, none of those talents worked on Stranger Things, but the Duffer Brothers along with score writers Kyle Dixon and Michael Stein have done an amazing job capturing that classic 80s aura with their popular release. The series has won seven Emmys, and features iconic performances from not just the adult actors like Winona Ryder and David Harbor, but the child actors too, like Millie Bobby Brown and Finn Wolfhard, who have since gone on to star in other huge-budget projects, like IT and Godzilla: King of the Monsters. Stranger Things has not just solidified its placing as the best horror series on Netflix over the last few years, but also as one of the best shows of all time, period.
It’s the beginning of the end for Stranger Things as the fifth season will serve as the last of the popular Netflix Original.
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