With the month of October comes the celebration of Halloween, a holiday that rivals Christmas in popularity though for different reasons. Instead of celebrating togetherness and peace on Earth, Halloween is all about embracing the horrors of myth and fiction for the sake of entertainment.
So we may choose during this time of year to watch horror-themed TV shows on streaming services like Netflix. However, not all the shows that are available on Netflix are particularly good as indicated by IMDb ratings. Thus, it would be best to avoid these shows altogether for one’s sanity.
10 Diablero (6.6/10)
Before we get into the really bad shows, let’s start things off with the lesser evils, so to speak. In Netflix’s attempt to have more diverse programming from all corners of the Earth, last year, the streaming service introduced the Mexican horror-comedy series Diablero.
Spanning eight episodes in its first season, it tells the story of a priest a demon hunter and a superhero busting demons in Mexico City. Now as cool as that premise sounds, reviews have pointed out some notable flaws, such as being “flat in terms of pacing” and having “inconsistent design choices” for the monsters, as claimed by Man Of The Hour magazine.
9 Chambers (6.5/10)
In spite of its flaws, Diablero was renewed for a second season on Netflix earlier this year. However, the same wasn’t true for Chambers, which was canceled after only one season of 10 episodes.
Described as a body horror story, which tends to revolve around physical distortions or takeovers from unknown entities, the series is about a teenager that receives a heart transplant and is haunted by the donor’s spirit. While this seems like a perfectly fine set-up, especially with talented actors such as Uma Thurman being involved, the execution left something to be desired.
8 Black Summer (6.3/10)
Just when it seemed zombies had been (no pun intended) done to death in media, a new show titled Black Summer appeared on Netflix earlier this year. Taking place in the wake of a zombie apocalypse, a mother joins a group of survivors to go looking for her missing daughter.
Made by the same people that created Z Nation, it has many of the modern zombie tropes, including different types of zombies and one-note characters that are barely developed. Though a reviewer from Forbes claimed this was due to the editing, which resulted in the show “adding and subtracting new characters at will”. Whatever the reason, it’s unclear if this series will get another season or not.
7 Van Helsing (6.1/10)
In a post-Twilight world, vampires often struggle to be taken seriously. At least, that is until Syfy’s Van Helsing series debuted in 2016. Set in a post-apocalyptic world where vampires roam the Earth, the last hope for humanity lies in Vanessa, whose blood can cure vampirism due to being descended from Van Helsing of Dracula fame.
With a fourth season coming out, this show seems to be doing all right in spite of its mixed reviews. For instance, while CinemaBlend claimed it “starts off as a middling copy of The Walking Dead” the show supposedly gets better. Yet compared to other shows on Netflix, Van Helsing seems to be average rate-wise.
6 Darr Sabko Lagta Hai (6.0/10)
Like Van Helsing, here is another show that managed to get by on mixed reviews, lasting for two seasons on Netflix. Translating to ‘Everybody feels fear,’ this Indian horror series is similar to Night Gallery, in that it’s an anthology-style compilation of stories told by a single host.
What makes this show distinct is that it has many Bollywood actors, including its host Bipasha Basu who is particularly famous, though she only hosted the show’s first season. Yet as Bollywood Life points out, Darr Sabko Lagta Hai “has its flaws which are salvageable” in terms of storytelling logic and the overall scares.
5 The Mist (2017) (5.4/10)
Over the years, best-selling author Stephen King has proven himself to be quite the expert when it comes to telling scary stories. However, not all of the film and television adaptations of his stories have won people over. One such example was the 2017 TV series version of The Mist, which premiered on Spike and then became available on Netflix.
Telling the story of a family that gets separated while their town gets shrouded in a strange mist, The Mist got canceled after one season. The two main reasons for this was increasingly low viewer ratings and the Spike network being rebranded.
4 Two Sentence Horror Stories (5.3/10)
In the internet age, new forms of horror have been invented. These include the bizarre yet disturbing creepypastas to the more straightforward two-sentence horror stories compilations found on sites like Reddit.
Then CW decided to make an entire anthology series titled Two Sentence Horror Stories, which got placed on Netflix this year. The way it works is that the set-up consists of one-half of the sentence, while the punchline at the end is the second-half. Despite such a shallow premise and “sometimes way too loose” adaptations of such sentences according to Heaven of Horror, the series has earned mixed reviews overall.
3 Haunted (4.5/10)
Unlike the other shows discussed in this article thus far, Netflix’s Haunted is a documentary series where people tell supposedly real stories that are horrific and even supernatural in nature. These are then followed by reenactments of the events described using costumed actors and special effects.
As is the case with similar series, the show has garnered a lot of skepticism from viewers regarding whether the stories are true or not. In fact, the online backlash against Haunted led media companies like Mashable to do their own investigation into these accusations, though they didn’t come up with anything solid. So it’s no wonder this show isn’t highly rated on IMDb.
2 Demon’s Path (3.4/10)
Last year, Netflix acquired the rights to distribute the Hong Kong/Malaysian horror series Demon’s Path. Focused around a man that can see a person’s last moments before death, he teams up with the police to help investigate several homicide cases that are linked to three criminals.
Supposedly, the murders brought up in the show are based on real incidents, such as the infamous Happy Valley Cardboard Box murder. Yet in spite of the show’s low rating on IMDb, it’s gotten some praise with The Daily Beast calling it “a legitimately wild binge-watching experience.”
1 Don’t Watch This (3.2/10)
While the show’s title is meant to have a reverse psychological effect on the viewer, Netflix’s Don’t Watch This apparently doesn’t live up to its potential. Essentially, each episode consists of a short film that’s horror-themed and under 10 minutes long.
Now there’s nothing wrong with short horror films in of themselves, as movies like Lights Out were based on short films. With that said, the shorts largely fail to offer any genuine scares, often preferring to be weird rather than intense. Overall, the low IMDb rating seems appropriate.
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