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Huluween: The 5 Best Titles in Hulu's Halloween Selection

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> Huluween: The 5 Best Titles in Hulu's Halloween Selection

Grab a bowl of kettle corn, sit down on the couch, and turn out the lights. Hulu has stocked up on a library of titles that are sure to leave you disturbed and terrified. There's murderous aliens, ghosts, and demons--some of the best classics, and a whole host of new favorites, many of them based on franchises we all know and love. So prepare to get scared. Here's your guide to Hulu's Huluween selection, your ticket to a night of terror.

Courtesy of FX via Hulu

American Horror Story

Year after year, American Horror story has shocked us, brought us joy, and left us disturbed. The show is about more than horror and murder. It's a character-driven debacle, bent on sending us into the minds of the demented--human or otherwise, using a cast of some of the best actors on TV. Who didn't love watching Jessica Lange strut around the screen cigarette in hand, or Sarah Paulson showing off her matriarchal spirit and dogged nature? The players have changed over the years, but they're still working hard to bring us the best. 

This year's season, AHS: NYC, is no different. It's set in New York City in 1981, a time that has been called the bloodiest year in Manhattan. The season follows Gino Barelli, a reporter in the gay community who is bent on hunting down a man that drugged him, tied him up, and tortured him. It's a glimpse into a dying culture at its height, just before the AIDS epidemic took hold. 

That's just one season. There's 11 years' worth of material available, and every bit of it is worth watching. Why not check out Asylum, where Jessica Lange plays a disgraced nun that beats and tortures the patients, or Coven, the story of a group of witches in New Orleans? Even if you've seen every single episode, there's so many, and they've been around for so long, it couldn't hurt to rewatch them years later.

Courtesy of Hulu

The Patient

A recent addition to Hulu's library, The Patient follows a psychiatrist (Steve Carell) who was abducted by a killer who wants to rehabilitate himself. The psychiatrist is given the impossible task of treating the man while struggling to deal with being held hostage. 

The style of the 10-episode series is muted. There's no scary music, no flashing lights. The setting is bland and simple--a middle-American home with a carpeted downstairs den. There's a bed, board games, and a relatively normal mother. Nothing about it is dramatic. It's designed to make the viewer feel like it's a real situation. It works quite well, and it's unique. We don't feel like we're watching a story about a man held hostage by a serial killer. We're not made to feel like Sam, the killer is a monster at all. He's just an average guy with a problem. 

The series asks a question that has never been truly addressed by the psychiatric community or fiction in general. Can serial killers be rehabilitated? They do an amazing job of showing urges, like an addict who really wants to use, and what treatment might actually look like. It's not a model for a real life solution to the problem, but it does help us understand what that might look like. It's quite interesting.

Courtesy of Hulu

Prey

Prey is the newest film in the Predator franchise, all of which is available on Hulu. It does follow the basic hacker/slasher style that we're used to, but it's unique in many ways. Rather than follow a group of modern day humans or people from the future, they dive back to the Great Plains in the year 1719, where a tribe of Comanche going about their business, hunting and foraging. One young woman has been having trouble falling into gender norms. She wants to be a full-fledged hunter, and she fully plans on proving herself to the tribe. 

The predator in the film is different. He doesn't have the usual mask we're used to, and he appears to be genetically modified somehow--a technology the species is known for. 

The film has been lauded for its spirit of female liberation, its use of a mostly Native American cast, and a plot that centers around authentic Native American culture, not constrained by stereotypes or generalizations. It's definitely one of the best installments in the franchise. It's well worth the watch.

Courtesy of Newsnation

Salem

There's nothing out there like Salem. Most stories of witches are packed with telekinesis, candles, and herbs--studio magic with a twist. They find a way to show us that witches are kind, misunderstood women who are just trying to live their lives. They push past stereotypes, dispel stories about Satan worshipping and baby killings, and focus on love and heartfelt struggles. They say there's no devil in the craft, no religion, just magic.

Salem goes against all of that. They bring back the infant murders, the flying ointment, and broomsticks, and make use of all of the old tales about evil hags, familiars, and temptresses. They make you fall in love with evil, using antiheroes, true Luciferianism, torture, and wicked conspiracies. It's witchcraft as they saw it in Salem, and it is compelling.

Courtesy of 20th Television

The X-Files

When The X-FIles first came out it was a pop culture sensation, known for its gruesome imagery and compelling storylines. People weren't used to flipping past scenes of writhing worms and disturbing gore. It just wasn't done in the 90s. They were showing things that weren't shown on primetime television, and they were doing it in style. What made The X-Files so magical was the fact that they suspended disbelief, making use of old conspiracy theories, knowing full well how contagious their ideas were. They'd weave in elements like aliens and government plots, showing characters we loved investigating things that many people suspected to be true. It confirmed their suspicions so to speak to see their theories dramatized, and the show was always going on about empirical evidence, research, and addressing the impossible using the scientific method. They made it all seem so official and so real. We could almost believe that Mulder and Scully were in fact government agents. To this day there are people that think the show was dramatizing real events. It was well-designed, and it kept viewers going for years without giving too much away.

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