“You have no idea what’s happening here, do you?”
Proving that he can be just as creepy playing a human character as he can be playing a nightmarish dancing clown, Bill Skarsgård has been commanding the screen as a silent and unsettling character known only as “The Kid” on Hulu’s “Castle Rock,“ a young man who had been secretly kept prisoner deep beneath the bowels of Shawshank by Dale Lacy, the former warden of the prison; Lacy, who killed himself before “The Kid” was found, believed he was doing the town a service, capturing the Devil responsible for the darkness that looms over it.
But who the hell is “The Kid,” and is he really the singular force responsible for Castle Rock’s enduring nightmares? This is the mystery that lies at the center of “Castle Rock,” a box that’s opened up a little bit more each week. This week’s new episode, ‘The Harvest,’ set “The Kid” free into Castle Rock, and it also revealed a bit about the character’s backstory.
In the final moments of ‘The Harvest,’ former sheriff Alan Pangborn and “The Kid” have a conversation in the woods, wherein Pangborn reveals to us that he had actually encountered “The Kid” many years prior, when he pulled over Dale Lacy one Winter night. Lacy, he explains, convinced him that “The Kid” was evil, and he allowed Lacy to hold him captive at Shawshank. It’s during this conversation that Pangborn makes clear the series’ timeline: his first encounter with “The Kid” was 27 years prior to the present day events, back in 1991.
Creepiest of all, “The Kid” hasn’t aged a day since then.
As we learned in the very first episode of “Castle Rock,” 1991 was the very same year young Henry Deaver mysteriously vanished for several days. Same time “The Kid” arrived in Castle Rock. 27 years after his arrival in town, he’s back. And things are getting weird once more, as “The Kid” is *seemingly* able to influence the world around him in evil ways.
Twenty. Seven. Years.
Obviously, “27 years” is incredibly significant in the world of Stephen King, as “IT” returns to feed every, well, 27 years. Was this week’s episode setting up the mind blowing twist-reveal that Bill Skarsgård’s “The Kid” is actually “IT” in the form of a human being? He sure seems to be an inhuman force trying to *act* like a human, doesn’t he?
From the minute Skarsgård was cast in “Castle Rock,” so soon after the release of Andy Muschietti’s IT, King fans began to wonder if he’d somehow be playing Pennywise in the Hulu series. And as crazy as that idea may still sound, this week’s episode damn sure furthered those alluring fan theories by establishing a 27 year timeline that’s certainly no coincidence. Granted, it could just be the show’s writers having a little fun with our expectations, but everything in the series has to date meant *something* beyond a mere “Easter egg” wink.
Just this week, for example, it was revealed that Jane Levy’s Jackie Torrance is indeed related to Jack Torrance; her real name is Diane Torrance, and she’s Jack’s niece.
It’s also worth noting that IT is one of King’s stories that brushes up against the town of Castle Rock; not only does the novel reference the town, but Castle Rock, Maine is not too far from Derry, Maine, the fictional setting of IT. The opening credits of “Castle Rock” even make mention of IT, suggesting a link between King’s story and the Hulu series.
Is “IT” the evil force who’s to blame for Castle Rock’s troubles? Was the demon captured 27 years ago? Did he lie dormant, underground, until 27 years passed? And is he now free?
Yes or no, we’re thinking all Hell is about to break loose…