I don’t know about you, but I’m relatively sure this Stephen King guy knows horror. The author of, according to Google, “at least 95” novels—almost all of them dealing in the dark, unsettling, and macabre—is one of history’s greatest nightmare-makers. So when Halloween season arrives, you can’t really find a better source for the books, TV shows, and movies you should be watching to get your frights in. Which is exactly what EW did, and the mastermind behind IT and The Shining offered up his #1 movie, TV, and book recommendation for October.
Let’s start off with a suggestion I 100% agree with: Netflix’s Marianne, a terrifying series out of France that follows a horror novelist whose witchy creations are coming to life. (Extra points for Stephen King basically being like “I like it because it reminds me of me.”)
“I love the series that’s on Netflix now, Marianne. It’s a French series and it’s very, very scary,” King said. “There is something in there from Stranger Things, so a little bit of that vibe, and a little bit of the Steve King vibe as well.”
Then there’s the author’s movie rec, which I can’t exactly get on board with, but much like the case of Martin Scorsese‘s Marvel movie opinions I’m also not gonna’ tell a master of the craft he’s “wrong”. King recommends the Child’s Play remake, which features Mark Hamill as the voice of iconic homicidal doll, Chuckie.
“I didn’t go see it in the theaters, because I thought, ‘Well, this is just another warmed-over sequel,’” says King. “Mark Hamill does the voice of Chucky and I just fucking loved that movie. I laughed and I cried at the things in there. Everybody who’s in the movie does a terrific job. It’s a smart script and it’s just a load of fun. It really is. It’s gruesome as hell. There’s this scene where this guy is [laughs] hanging some Christmas lights on his house, and Chucky does something to the ladder, and he falls off and he lands on his feet, and his bones come right out the side [now convulsing with laughter] of his legs. And you know, it’s not funny, but at the same time it is funny.”
Finally, there’s the book Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo, a dark tale that weaves through the secret societies of Yale University.
“There’s a wonderful book called Ninth House, it’s by Leigh Bardugo,” King said. “It’s like Harry Potter but for grownups. That’s the kind of book, you read that, you say to yourself, it’s scary, it’s smart, it’s imaginative, and you hope that there’ll be more.”