Haunting of Hill House: Was the ending more ominous than it appeared?


When the hit Netflix horror series The Haunting of Hill House ended, it showed what has to be an optimistic ending for the Crain siblings.

The surviving Crain siblings were shown in a flash forward celebrating the anniversary of Luke’s sobriety. However, there was something in that scene that hints to a darker ending.

First, look at the Red Room to see where much of the horror rested. That is the room that really helped drive the Crain family insane.

It is basically the stop between the land of the living and the dead. Remember, that is where the kids saw the shadows and heard the sounds — which included the twist that showed that the ghost of Nell resided there and haunted the house as The Bent Neck Lady.

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Their mom said that every room in Hill House was like a part of a body — the eyes, bones, skin and face. The Red Room, Nell explained, was the stomach. It metaphorically devoured those who entered it.

There was also an interesting thing that many eagle-eyed fans noticed. Whenever the Crain siblings were in the Red Room, there was something in there that was also red — something that stood out.

An example is the Converse shoes that Luke wore. They were normally white but when he was in the Red Room, the shoes were red.

Now, move back to that scene at the end — the happy ending for the Crain kids. They were all celebrating moving forward from Nell’s death — except for father Hugh Crain, who gives his own life to save his kids.

The Crain siblings then celebrate the second anniversary of Luke’s sobriety with a cake — a red cake.

Now, showrunner Mike Flanagan said that to read that the red cake means that the kids are still trapped in Hill House means that Hugh’s sacrifice meant nothing, and that is not what he meant by adding the red cake.

Flanagan said that the Crain siblings deserve peace after their experience with Hill House.

With that said, there is still one mode of thought. The kids, as Flanagan said, escaped the confines of Hill House.

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However, does the red cake mean that, while they escaped the house, they will never truly escape the memories of that Red Room?

The Haunting of Hill House is still streaming on Netflix.