<em>Castle Rock</em> recap: An old man is terrified by the ageless face from his past

Castle Rock

TV Show
Drama, Thriller
run date
Andre Holland, Melanie Lynskey, Bill Skarsgard, Sissy Spacek

Last week’s episode of Castle Rock ended with a mass shooting at Shawshank state penitentiary, but this week’s opens in a hospital — several years in the past.

Henry Deaver is getting an examination. He has a problem. He’s hearing things.

“I’m not supposed to tell you this but your scan looks clear to me,” the technician says. “Do you listen to loud music in your ears? Could be tinnitus.”

This calls back to something his father once said to him, and something that the mystery prisoner of Shawshank said: “Can you hear it now?”

But we still don’t know what exactly he’s hearing.

Back in the present, we hear a radio report recounting the mass murder at Shawshank and informing us of another looming disaster, a wildfire burning over the town on Black Mountain.

The local pastor calls Henry while he’s putting up the new church sign, indicating the funerals for some of the Shawshank victims — and shooter Dennis Zalewski.

But the reason the pastor is calling Henry is that his father’s recently unearthed casket is leaking in the church basement.

“It’s called exploding casket syndrome,” the pastor explains. “When there’s no oxygen to dehydrate the contents, the casket becomes a pressure cooker. I wouldn’t expect remains this old to be susceptible.”

Henry’s ear is ringing. We see a flashback to the gunshot that killed Zalewski exploding beside his head, but there is probably more going on here. Can you hear it now?

At Shawshank, Warden Porter is getting ripped by the voice of an administrator over not just the murders, but also the cover-up involving Lacy’s mystery prisoner. He makes it clear she will take the fall for all of it.

At Henry’s house, he’s installing cameras to track his dementia-stricken mother, and at the prison, the mystery kid is watching a different screen: with a video explaining how parole works.

Then, the kid walks free.

Henry is waiting for him with an outstretched hand — which the kid refuses to shake.

We see a flashback to the kid’s incarceration, and Warden Lacy is quoting a Bible verse. “When I brought you down here I was on fire with the holy spirit. Righteous and so strong. You looked so small next to my faith,” he says. “Now, you still look small. But I look old. I am old. After all these years, I still don’t know what you really are, or if I did the right thing. “

He’s wearing the rubber gloves for touching the prisoner. The Warden knows his man possess some malevolent strength that is transferred through touch.

“Remember that crazy story you told me on your first night in here?” the warden asks. But that story will have to wait for another time.

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