New and upcoming horror on TV
- Henry Northmore
- 18 March 2015
The Walking Dead, Vampire Diaries, Penny Dreadful, Hannibal, Let the Right One In and many more compete for your viewing (dis)pleasure
TV has never been better if you are a horror fan, now television is crawling with all manner of nasties.
The most successful of the current generation of horror TV shows, The Walking Dead season five is just juddering to a close on Fox. While we don't want to get too spoilery, as per usual even your favourite characters aren't safe from the undead hordes, but has Rick (Andrew Lincoln) found a safe haven in Alexandria? The biggest news in the world of WD is that spin-off series, tentatively titled Cobalt and set in California, has been commissioned for two series. Expect to see it on Fox in the UK shortly after the American premiere later this summer.
If Walking Dead is just too gruesome, iZombie takes a more teen-friendly approach. Loosely based on comics by Chris Roberson and Michael Allred, it is developed by the team behind Veronica Mars and stars Rose McIver as a half-zombie who uses her powers to absorb the corpses memories after she eats their brains to solve crimes.
The Returned offers an offbeat and very French take on the undead. Series one screened in 2013 and we've been waiting ages for it's, ahem, return, and it looks like it's season two will be on Channel 4 before the year's out. In the mean time you can fill the void with the US remake that just launched on Netflix or try Resurrection season two (Watch, 19 Mar) which covers very similar ground.
Do Deadites count as zombies? Either way Bruce Campbell keeps things 'groovy' in comedy horror series Ash vs Evil Dead (UK channel and date tbc).
Blame Twilight, but since True Blood finished last year teenagers seem to have cornered the market in vampire shows. Vampire Dairies season six (Tue, ITV 2) and spin off series The Originals season two (Tue, SyFy) are both currently screening.
The newly announced TV adaptation of Let the Right One In by US cable network A&E should offer a more mature take on bloodsuckers, however don't expect to see anything before 2016 at the earliest.
If you can't wait that long Sky Atlantic's uber-gothic Penny Dreadful, mixing all manner of Victorian horrors (Dracula, Frankenstein, Dorian Gray), returns on Tue 5 May.
The Following season three has just started on Sky Atlantic. Kevin Williamson's drama has become increasingly outlandish but there's still a lot of fun to be had as Kevin Bacon pursues killer cults focusing on Mark Grey (Sam Underwood). Returning to Sky Living for season three this June (tbc), Hannibal is probably the best show no-one is watching, an incredibly classy, ultra-gory, deep, dark and intriguing show based Thomas Harris' Hannibal Lecter (played by Mads Mikkelsen). You can also witness the birth of a psycho in Bates Motel starring Freddie Highmore as the young Norman Bates, as season three premieres on Universal, Wed 1 Apr.
Part two of demon-hunting action series Sleepy Hollow season two drops on Universal, Thu 26 Mar; historical witchcraft drama Salem recently made it's UK premiere on iTunes, while werewolf show Bitten is already on season two in the States, but it's produced by SyFy, so we wouldn't be surprised if it appears on the same channel in the UK soon(ish).
Who'd have thought Glee showrunners Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuck had such a darkside? Each series of American Horror Story is a self-contained story. Season five, Hotel, returns in Oct/Nov on Fox with Lady Gaga(!) and Wes Bentley. They've also conjured up Scream Queens: a female-centric comedy/horror anthology starring Jamie Lee Curtis, Emma Roberts, Lea Michele and Abigail Breslin (dates tbc).
Not wanting to get left behind the UK is gearing up production on several new shows including Charlie Higson's Jekyll & Hyde at ITV and Sean Bean vehicle The Frankenstein Chronicles for ITV Encore. Sky also gets proper creepy, with urban poltergeists in The Enfield Haunting with Timothy Spall, Matthew Macfadyen and Juliet Stevenson.