“It’s you. It’s me. It’s us.”
- Title: The Haunting of Bly Manor
- Creator: Mike Flanagan
- Release date: 9th October 2020
The Haunting of Bly Manor. Is it as good as its predecessor?
Released just in time for the Halloween festivities, Netflix graced us with the presence of a new season of ‘The Haunting’ series. After two years of anticipation, I had the popcorn at the ready and was excited to tune in.
I don’t know if I was the only one, but when I initially heard that ‘The Haunting’ series would be making a return to our screens, I believed it was going to be a direct sequel to The Haunting of Hill House, which in my opinion is one of the best Netflix Originals to date. But unfortunately, that wasn’t the case as creator Mike Flanagan made it extremely clear in his interview with Entertainment Weekly that “the story of the Crain family is told. It’s done”. Unfortunate, I know, but at least I still had the excitement of new story that I could sink my teeth into. Or so I thought…
The Haunting of Bly Manor is a gothic fiction drama tells the tale of a young au pair named Dani Clayton who begins to care for the young niece and nephew of businessman Henry Wingrave. Soon after starting her duties at the manor, she soon begins to realise that Bly harbours the secrets of many. Both dead and alive…
Sadly, one thing that The Haunting of Bly Manor didn’t seem to harbour was my attention. On the whole, the storyline was fairly intriguing and if you’re a sucker for a jump scares then this might be the show for you, but there was just something missing as it was not able to draw me in the way in which The Haunting of Hill House did (not to mention some of the episodes became extremely confusing as the season progressed. I know I can’t be the only one who thought this!)
In its defence, it did include some splendid on-screen imagery, with nearly every scene from Dani’s point of view exhibiting a ghost of some form in the background.
Little elements such as this, as well as sly references to the previous season, did make for a better viewing experience, but overall the storyline was just not as intriguing as its predecessor, and for that, the series earned a 3-star rating from me.
PS. If you do decide to watch The Haunting of Bly Manor, then I suggest prepare yourself for episode 5 ‘The Altar of the Dead’. Trust me, you’re going to need it.