Netflix scared horror fans silly on Halloween 2018 with Haunting of Hill House, and ever since fans have been asking for Season 2. For a while, the show’s creators played coy, but in February 2019, Netflix finally confirmed Haunting of Hill House Season 2 along with a release date window.
Here’s everything we know about Haunting of Hill House Season 2, from the latest announcements to every little clue, theory, and rumor we’ve come across in our research.
Spoilers for Haunting of Hill House Season 1 below.
Did Haunting of Hill House Season 1 Set Up Season 2?
The first season of the horror series is an adaptation of the Shirley Jackson 1959 novel of the same name. It follows the Crain family, who grew up in the most famous haunted house in America and are forced to confront the ghosts from their past (and the house) after their youngest sister commits suicide.
The first season doesn’t exactly end on a cliffhanger. The remaining Crain family members move on with their lives, though their father and sister remain ghosts in the house.
Creator Mike Flanagan ruled out the possibility of Season 2 revealing that ending was anything but what it appeared to be, (i.e., the family was still trapped in the Red Room).
“The ending can be read at face value,” he told TVLine. Otherwise, “it robs Hugh’s sacrifice (and the show itself) of any meaning.”
However, actor Henry Thomas, who played Hugh Crain, has seemingly contradicted the creator and suggests it’s not crazy to think that the Crain family’s story didn’t end with Season 1. He even gives credence to the popular fan theory, given the red objects prevalent throughout the Red Room and in the real world after they presumably escaped.
“If you keep thinking along those lines, I think it’s a good indicator of, perhaps, what Season 2 will bring,” he told LADbible.
Whether that means they never escaped or their lives just aren’t as great as they look remains to be seen. What is clear is we won’t see those characters again, so if we do find out what happened to them, it will have to be through other characters or perhaps even newspaper articles.
“We tied up all of those threads exactly how they should be,” Flanagan told TVLine. “I don’t really see a need to revisit those characters, even in cameos.”
Will There Be a Haunting of Hill House Season 2?
Yes! Netflix confirmed Haunting of Hill House Season 2 on February 21 via Twitter, sharing a short video that teased a new title that begins with “The Haunting of” followed by two blurred-out words.
This is definitely good news, but it’s not exactly a surprise. Netflix released a “The Shows We Fell in Binge with This Year” list, which is its series between January 1 and November 28, 2018 with the highest average watch time per viewing session. Haunting of Hill House Season 1 was seventh on the list, ahead of Insatiable and Orange Is the New Black Season 6. Insatiable has stirred up a lot of controversy (and has been out since August) but was renewed for a second season, so it wouldn’t be surprising if the popularity of Haunting of Hill House earns it some points in the pro column for a renewal.
Google also released its “Year In Search” for 2018, and Haunting of Hill House took the third spot for TV shows, behind Roseanne and Altered Carbon.
The creator and actors who worked on the show also expressed interest in returning, even if a continuation doesn’t follow the Crain family.
“Mike Flanagan said he would be interested in the notion of an anthology, where some actors come back to play different characters,” Carla Gugino, who played Olivia Crain, told The Hollywood Reporter. “If I was invited and I was able to, I would really love to, just because I do love to collaborate with him.”
If some actors do return play different characters in Season 2, it’s possible that the cast won’t include Henry Thomas. It would depend on filming, scheduling, and contracts, as the actor has a recurring role as Dr. Mid-Nite on DC Universe’s Stargirl, according to Entertainment Weekly.
When Could the Haunting of Hill House Season 2 Release Date Be?
In the tweet announcing Season 2, Netflix reveals that the show will return in 2020 with not set release date. However, it seems likely that the series will stick with what works and return for Halloween 2020.
Then again, it could come sooner. Season 1 started filming in October 2017 and released a year later, so Season 2 could potentially arrive in time for Halloween 2019. So it’s possible the series could return as soon as February 2020, assuming Netflix doesn’t care about coinciding with Halloween.
Why Haunting of Hill House Season 2 Could Mean An Anthology Series
The new teaser also seems to confirm a brand new story, especially since the title no longer includes the words “Hill House.” Again, this doesn’t come as a huge surprise. The first season did wrap the Crain family’s story up as neatly as could be expected, and according to series creator Mike Flanagan we probably won’t be seeing them again.
“As far as I’ve ever been concerned with this, the story of the Crain family is told. It’s done,” he told EW.
However, that doesn’t necessarily mean the show needs to end just because the Cain family is no longer the focus.
“I think that there are all sorts of different directions we could go in, with the house or with something completely different,” Flanagan said. “I love the idea of an anthology as well. The show is about haunted places and haunted people… So, there’s any number of things we could do, in or out of Hill House.”
While you might not get to see what comes next for the Crain family, you can rewatch the first season to see if you spot clues you missed the first time. Flanagan even recommends doing so.
Because they wrote the entire season before they started filming, “we were able to go back and make sure that a lot of the threads that are coming from the back half are really well settled in the first half, and some of them are so slight and so subtle, I do think it’s gonna be a really interesting view on a second pass,” he said to EW.
So at least that’s something to do while you wait for the show’s possible Season 2 return.
Is There a Trailer for The Haunting of Hill House Season 2?
For now, all we have is that short teaser video, but the accompanying tweet suggests there may be a clue to the new plot in the audio. So give it another listen and maybe you can figure it out.
How to Read the Original Haunting of Hill House Book
While we remain in limbo regarding a Season 2, you can always check out Jackson’s original novel.
As redditor u/Fhlux notes, the ebook version is on sale for $1.99 on Apple iBooks. Other fans added that it’s the same price on Amazon and Google Play in the thread. So no matter which platform you prefer, you can check out the source material for cheap.
Why You Should Read the Book and Watch the Series
The two are very different, and Flanagan told EW his version is “more of a remix” than an adaptation. He didn’t want to “out Shirley Jackson Shirley Jackson” or “one-up Robert Wise,” who directed the 1963 film based on the book, he explained.
“It was about opening up the book, going through it line by line, and picking out the moments and the characters and the themes and even lines of prayers that really spoke to me in trying to take all those pieces and put them together in a new order and build out around them,” he said.
That means you won’t be spoiled for one if you check out the other. In other words, the novel “won’t ‘compete’ with the show,” redditor u/S0noPritch says, calling it “its own story.”
Instead, reading the novel can enhance the experience of watching the Netflix series. “The story is different but the overall message is very similar and whole lines of dialogue from the book are in the show, as well as the characters (though they may be slightly different),” redditor u/BrandonW77 writes.
“In the show, there are lots and lots of Easter eggs and nods to the original story,” they continue.
So, if you have watched the series already, why not read the book and then rewatch the first season and see what you missed the first time while we wait to hear about a Season 2?
The Haunting of Hill House is now available to stream on Netflix.
Related video: A Neuroscientist Explains What Horror Movies Do to Your Brain