Warning: Spoilers ahead for “The Haunting of Hill House” season one.
The debut season of “The Haunting of Hill House” is streaming now on Netflix. Although the show centres on the Crain family as they struggle with grief, the true mystery is around the supernatural beings terrorizing them in their home.
If all the jump scares and lingering dark figures left you with more questions than answers, we’re here to help fill in some of the gaps. Here’s who’s still lurking in Hill House and waiting for the Crain family to return.
Bent-Neck Lady is the first ghost seen in the series and haunts the youngest daughter, Nell Crain.
Throughout her life, Nell Crain is terrorised by a pale, black-haired woman with a broken neck that she calls the “Bent-Neck Lady.” She typically sees her when she’s experiencing sleep paralysis – making it impossible for her to move or scream.
We ultimately discover that the Bent-Neck Lady is Nell, haunting her younger self and possibly trying to warn her of the horrors to come in her future.
Olivia Crain is the matriarch of the Crain family.
Olivia Crain and her husband, Hugh, are house flippers who purchase Hill House to renovate over the summer. Things quickly take a turn for the worse when ghosts begin appearing and Olivia’s mental state starts to deteriorate.
It’s revealed that Olivia kills herself to escape the terrors she’s experiencing, after which her spirit continues to haunt Hill House.
Poppy Hill is a 1920s-era ghost who seduces Olivia to murder.
Poppy Hill married into the Hill family, the haunted house’s namesake. She met her husband, William Hill, in the asylum where they were both patients and took up residence in Hill House shortly after.
As a ghost, Poppy infiltrates Olivia’s mind and convinces her that her children need saving from the terrible realities of the world. She believes the only way to wake them up from their nightmares is to kill them.
William Hill is the husband of Poppy and tends to torment youngest son, Luke Crain.
When we first catch a glimpse of William Hill, he is an unusually tall man creepily floating just inches away from the ground. During his life, William drove himself insane from the guilt of his infidelity and used bricks to close himself into a basement wall, where Crain father, Hugh, finds his body fifty years later.
Today, he continues to haunt Luke for stealing his iconic bowler hat when he was a child living in Hill House.
Abigail Dudley is the Hill House caretakers’ daughter who isn’t allowed to leave her home.
When we first see Abigail Dudley, she’s Luke’s imaginary friend. But it turns out, she’s actually a very-much-alive little girl and the daughter of caretakers Horace and Clara Dudley. To protect her from the evils of Hill House, her parents keep her locked inside their home on the edge of the property and don’t let her step foot near the Hill House.
She still befriends Luke and fatefully spends the night on the evening of Olivia’s rampage. Abigail is a casualty of Olivia’s delusions and becomes stuck in the house for eternity.
Hazel Hill is a wiry-haired old woman and William’s sister.
Hazel Hill is a bed-ridden old woman who Clara cared for until her death. She’s typically seen as a spooky background ghost in Hill House, but she speaks up when Poppy is seducing Olivia.
She makes it known that they have a contentious relationship as sisters-in-law and she believes Poppy is a liar.
A ghost in a wheelchair is seen wheeling out of a room during the epic storm.
This ghost is one of Poppy and William’s children. He can’t walk or talk and bangs on the walls to communicate with his parents.
The Crain children hear lots of inexplicable banging in their rooms in the middle of the night, which is coming from this young ghost.
A clock-repairman ghost appears as a normal handyman to the oldest son, Steven Crain.
This ghost blends in with the live handymen seen repairing the house, but it’s revealed that he is a ghost, too. Steven Crain wrote about this clock repairman in his novel, but always believed he was a real man and claimed to never see any ghosts when he lived in Hill House.
His father later explained that the special antique clock couldn’t be repaired by an average handyman, and he never hired anyone to work on it. This proves that Steven did, in fact, see ghosts in his youth.
Toasting ghost is a man appearing to toast the oldest daughter, Shirley Crain.
This modern, suited man appears to Shirley Crain at random moments, toasts her with a glass of liquor, and disappears. It’s revealed that this one isn’t a true ghost, like the other permanent residents of Hill House.
He’s a real man who Shirley had an affair with at a mortician’s conference, and his apparition is a manifestation of her guilt.
Ghosts can be seen hiding in the shadows throughout the show.
It’s hard to say how many ghosts live in Hill House. There are many ghosts hiding under stairs, behind the curtains, and generally lurking around in the shadows of Hill House. They mainly appear out of focus in the background, but a bald man and a blonde woman are two of the reoccurring ghosts.
In the final episode, as Steven is leaving the house, all the resident ghosts gather behind him, showing there are dozens of people stuck inside.
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