Horror movies are great, but horror shows keep the screams going. Most people have heard of the binge-worthy classic American Horror Story, not to mention other shows like Scream: The TV Series, Scream Queens, and Supernatural. Many of these horror shows featured some of the most recognizable faces in the world such as Lady Gaga and Ariana Grande. Some lasted so many seasons that it was hard to keep track of them and some didn’t last as long but still gave viewers a terrifying ride.
So, what shows can everyone look forward to this year? Many had to halt production in 2020 due to the global health pandemic, but luckily, most companies announced they should premiere before the end of 2021 with many new horror TV shows still on their way.
Updated on October 12th, 2021 by Tanner Fox: While many of the most exciting horror series set to debut in 2021 have done so already, October’s release schedule is still loaded with potential ghoulish gold. Fans have already been treated to hits like Amazon Prime’s Them and the tenth season of American Horror Story, but interesting new series like Syfy and USA’s Chucky and the third season of Netflix’s You should keep creepshow aficionados at the edge of their seats.
I Know What You Did Last Summer (Amazon Prime Video)
Something of a modernized take on the 1997 horror favorite of the same name, Amazon’s I Know What You Did Last Summer appears to tread a lot of the same ground as the quarter-century-old original while adding quite a bit more panache in the process.
Focusing on a group of friends brought together by a tragic accident, things take a turn when a mysterious murderer claiming to be cognisant of their guilt embarks on a killing spree. One part serial drama and one part sanguinous slasher, I Know What You Did Last Summer may just be a must-watch for fans of late 90s horror.
American Horror Story (FX)
This fan-favorite may not ever die. AHS returned to the small screen in the fall of this year after being pushed back from film delays due to the global health pandemic.
Called “Double Feature” for this season, names including Macaulay Culkin as an official newcomer have been announced to star in the addicting horror show. Though some consider American Horror Story‘s newest incarnation to be somewhat disappointing, there’s no denying the appeal of the newest installment in one of the longest-running modern horror TV series.
Married couple Joe and Love have settled down in the suburbs, but their new life is upended when Joe begins to develop an unhealthy obsession with their neighbor. Love, desperate to keep their superficially perfect life from falling apart, must take some drastic measures to keep Joe in check.
A captivating thriller saga that’s had Netflix subscribers hooked since 2018, You comes across as Days of Our Lives by way of American Psycho. With the third season set to premiere this October, fans can’t wait to see the shocking twists and turns in the upcoming installment.
Chucky (Syfy, USA)
Chucky has never been, nor ever will be, just a scary doll; he lives in many viewers’ nightmares and now he is coming to their TV screens at home. According to IMDb, the synopsis for the show involves Chucky somehow appearing at a yard sale and causing mysterious murders throughout the area.
Filming for the new series reportedly started in March of this year and should end in August. Inspired by the original films, Chucky premiered in early October on both Syfy and USA.
Day of the Dead (Syfy)
Intended as an homage to the director who popularized the zombie apocalypse trope in cinema, SyFy’s new horror TV show, Day of the Dead, takes a look at a town desperate to survive against a sudden onslaught of flesh-hungry undead.
Though it features the same premise as the 1968 film on which it is loosely based, Day of the Dead takes a much more lighthearted approach. With a trailer loaded with cheesy one-liners and subtly sinister humor, this looks to be aimed at audiences who can’t stop rewatching Edgar Wright’s Shaun of the Dead.
Locke & Key (Netflix)
The second season of Locke and Key is set to premiere this year, and it’s already been renewed for a third. The children of the show—Bode, Tyler, and Kinsey—are moved into Rendell Locke’s home after he is murdered. This is where it all started, but what will season 2 bring?
That’s the question fans and new viewers will want to be answered as they grapple with what the demonic forces will bring next. Set to return to Netflix in late October, the second season of Locke and Key may just up the ante on what was already a fairly out-there series.
The Sandman (Netflix)
It’s been said by multiple sources that this show is expected to air sometime this year. The exact premiere date for Netflix, however, has not been solidified yet. As long as everything goes according to plan, horror fans can expect to see a new horror TV favorite come out soon, though there’s a chance it has been delayed to 2022.
Based on the comic book from the late ’80s to the ’90s, production for this horror creation was actually in development hell for years. Dream is the main character, who is the king of stories on the show and was held hostage for over 100 years until the year 2021.
Horror Noire (Shudder)
Using the service’s 2019 documentary of the same name as a basis, Shudder’s Horror Noire looks to be an exploration and celebration of black actors and actresses in the world of film. The documentary remarked on everything from John Romero’s Night of the Living Dead—a standout ’60s horror film that featured Duane Jones in the lead role—to Tony Todd’s legendary part in the candy man series.
The 2021 installment of Horror Noire will be taking an entirely different approach; a miniseries of six unique stories featuring many names and faces included in the original documentary, this ought to be a treat for hardcore horror fans.
Just Beyond (Disney+)
Disney certainly isn’t known for its body of work in the horror genre, and, while Just Beyond may not quite qualify as a series to contend with Chucky or American Horror Story, it certainly seems capable of delivering scares—particularly among younger viewers.
An anthology series based on the graphic novel of the same name by children’s novelist R. L. Stine, Just Beyond seems to blend the adolescent whimsey of the Halloween season with flashes of genuine terror. Available to stream on Disney+ in October, it may well stick out from the rest of Disney’s decidedly tame streaming lineup.
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