Season 1 | Episode 5 | ‘Harvest’ | Aired August 8, 2018
Horror, oh the horror. It’s finally arrived. We get more character for almost all the main cast of the show this episode, and it’s wonderful. We also get a lovely bit of horror to follow up last week’s shooting rampage at Shawshank prison.
We open in a time we haven’t seen yet, 2016, with Henry getting a cat scan and going through some concussion testing. He has heard things. Tas the nurse when says that nothing showed up in the scans that it might be tinnitus.
There is a forest fire outside of Castle Rock in Castle View, and it is closing in. King has featured Castle View in many stories before including; A Good Marriage, Needful Things, The Body, Lisey’s Story, and The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon. The fire has been mentioned on the show before, but they hammer it home in this one. There is an oncoming doom but characters who say the towns terrible past and generally peaceful years, since the boy has been locked up, don’t seem to equate the two. I think they have everything to do with each other.
Henry fearing for his mom’s safety as her dementia seems to be worsening installs an alarm system and cameras throughout the house. Alan isn’t a fan and equates it to chipping a dog.
Shawshank’s new warden finally has to admit to her boss what has been going on since the Kalewski massacre. He is pissed and tells her to get rid of the secret prisoner. The prison releases The Kid into Henry’s care who takes him to a similar doctor he had, specifically for amnesia. Probably what Henry was going for in 2016. We see that the shotgun that went off right next to Henry’s head is causing pain and ringing. The Kid appears to be fine, and the doctor thinks that a familiar place might turn his memories back on.
We get a flashback scene of Warden Lacy telling the boy in the cage that God told him on six consecutive nights to lock this boy in a cage. At his time his faith was absolute, but over the years it has waned. This could be a reference to The Stand in which two groups of people receive messages from two different “people.” One being a messenger for God and the other being the Devil.
Henry takes the boy in as the inpatient asylum “Juniper Hill” doesn’t take new patients until a few more days. This is the same asylum that is seen in IT and Gerald’s Game. Molly offers her large studio space which is an old T-Shirt printing factory.
We then get a curious scene in which Alan approaches Henry’s mother, Ruth, and she confuses him for her first husband. She says, “When in God’s name have you been. He’s got a fever. You’re gonna kill him out there.” This provides further clues about Henry’s father taking him to the woods. I speculated before that it was abuse and that is why Molly killed the Pastor. This scene implies that Ruth knew something was going on.
Now we get some good old Stephen King-like horror. The boy leaves the factory set up for him and walks into a random home in Castle Rock. We see a father holding an infant and a mother presenting a son with a birthday cake. When he begins to watch the scene, it immediately breaks down into the parents fighting and then the father murdering the mother with a knife. This is all off camera but with subtitles on you get the gist of it a lot better. The boy doesn’t show any emotion as the camera holds on him for this entire scene and he climbs to the roof of the house to sit atop it.
Through radio chatter voiceover we learn that the fire isn’t stopping with traditional methods and is picking up speed. They also can’t find out how it began. They even go so far as to say, “The unusually quick spread has many convinces it’s a harbinger of much worse to come.” A little on the nose if you ask me.
Next, we see that Alan is getting a bridge dedicated to him for his years on the force. From work, he did in Needful Things and The Dark Half, as well as rescuing Henry when he was a boy. During his speech, Henry begins to feel pain and hear ringing in his plugged-up ear and at the same time a large rottweiler, not the same breed as Cujo, starts to bark at no one in particular. Next thing we know Ruth is standing on the railing of the bridge and jumps into the water. Henry follows her, and we see later that he saves her and that she is hospitalized.
Molly returns to the warehouse to find that the boy made his cages like structure out of some shelving and other metal objects. He is missing, however, and we see, Molly doesn’t know that there is a wax figurine standing on a bridge railing of the town model she used on Local Color.
The boy is in Jackie Torrance’s car, and we get another dump of King cameos. While Jackie smokes pot, she complains about all the supernatural events in the town occurred before she was born. Serial killers and psychopathic dogs, The Dead Zone and Cujo, which are a series where the killer in The Dead Zone haunts the boy in Cujo and possibly possesses the dog as well. Jackie also reveals her real name is Diane and she is the niece of Jack Torrance from The Shining making her Danny Torrance’s cousin. She took his name to piss off her parents and because he was a writer like her. But like her, he didn’t write a thing.
Molly finds Jackie and outside where Jackie points her to the roof where the boy is now standing. We get a telling shot of the boy with the smoke from the forest fire and red sky behind him hearing all the pain in the town of Castle Rock, from car crashes to babies crying.
Molly goes to Henry at his house and explains her shining to him. The way she describes it makes it seem like she isn’t hearing the boy’s thoughts but everyone in towns pain and misery. Like he is a radio relay tower. The boy then shows up, and Henry puts him in the guest house to sleep because Molly is now scared of the boy.
We then see Alan removing the plaque commemorating the bridge to him, and he gets a buzz on his phone. It’s the motion sensors and cameras placed in the house, and he sees that the boy is there. Alan follows the boy into the woods and confronts him with a gun. He recalls the night Dean Lacy had the boy in his trunk and that Alan let them go. He also reveals that even though 27 years the boy hasn’t aged a day. He asks the boy if he is the Devil and the boy answers after thinking about it, “no.” Allen follows up by asking what The Kid is if he isn’t the devil. The answer The Kid provides?
“I can help her.”
Castle Rock airs Wednesdays at 12 a.m. on Hulu.