Review: Castle Rock: The Complete First Season (4K Ultra HD Combo Pack)

Warner Bros. Home Entertainment provided me with a free copy of the 4K UHD I reviewed in this Blog Post. The opinions I share are my own.

CASTLE ROCK is based on characters and settings created by Stephen King. The series was created by Sam Shaw and Dustin Thomason who serve as executive producers along with J.J. Abrams, Stephen King, Ben Stephenson, Mark Lafferty and Liz Glotzer. The series stars André Holland as Henry Deaver, Bill Skarsgård as “The Kid,” Melanie Lynskey as Molly Strand, Jane Levy as Jackie Torrance, Noel Fisher as Shawshank correctional officer Dennis Zalewski and Adam Rothenberg as Reverend Matthew Deaver, with special guest stars Sissy Spacek as Ruth Deaver, Scott Glenn as retired Sheriff Alan Pangborn and Terry O’Quinn as Shawshank’s Warden Dale Lacey.

The first season of Castle Rock follows Henry Deaver (André Holland), a Death Row attorney who returns to Castle Rock, Maine, his hometown, after he receives an anonymous phone call from the infamous Shawshank State Penitentiary. The call is about a nameless young man (Bill Skarsgård) who is found locked in an underground cage that’s located in a long-abandoned cell block beneath the prison. Upon his discovery, the mysterious young man, with a sinister and unnerving presence, whispers Henry’s name. Curious about how and why someone left this boy imprisoned, Henry is drawn into the case and attempts to help him. But there are reasons why “The Kid” was imprisoned. And reasons why he should never be set free. Permeated with a sense of foreboding and dread, the haunting small town of Castle Rock is not willing to let Henry leave. Aside from now having to deal with the strange young man found in the prison, Henry is faced with the fact that his adoptive mother (Sissy Spacek), who lives in Castle Rock with retired Sheriff Alan Pangborn (Scott Glenn), is struggling with the onset of dementia. Reluctantly, Henry stays to figure out just who “The Kid” is and how he wound up imprisoned under such appalling circumstances.

The series takes place in the ficticious town of Castle Rock, Maine and serves as the Stephen King multiverse as many of the iconic author’s other works intertwine into this all-new psychological anthology. The series follows Henry Deaver who travels back home to Castle Rock after he receives an anonymous phone call about this young man who’s discovered living in a cage underneath the infamous Shawshank Prison. Henry doesn’t get much of a warm welcome once he returns home because of his own dark past but he’s not alone because it appears every person in this small setting has their own deep, dark secrets and shady history.

There’s a lot going on with a handfull of characters but they’re all connected in one way or another to Henry and “The Kid” but it’s these two characters who are connected the most. The mysterious young man stays quite through so much of the season but he finally reveals that he may be from an alternate reality, which makes sense, and this is what’s causing the bad things to happen in Castle Rock. There’s obviously a trust issue when it comes to Henry believing his new client but is the young man telling the truth or is he pure evil that’s set on destroying the small town one person at a time? Or could this small town just be cursed?

The packaging comes with a nice slipcase – the same kind all of the other home video release like this from WBHE come in. The front features the artwork you see up top and the back includes season one details and list of special features. There’s also an insert inside that includes a list of the episodes with synopsis and original airdates. All four of the discs are etched black and feature the series logo. Inserting each disc, the menu screens were simple and easy to navigate. The picture and sound quality for this high-definition release were crisp and clear. I didn’t have any issues with the video and audio.

Bottom line is, I enjoyed revisiting Castle Rock which is the kind of series that viewers will catch things they miss each time they rewatch it because there’s so much going on in this small town that’s full of dark secrets. The only flaw, if it is one, is that it’s a slow burn which might turn some viewers off but what kept my interest and attention, especially this second go around, was the mystery surrounding all of these characters as well as the town that sort of plays a character all its own. The writing for this atmospheric drama is extremely smart for this character driven anthology series plus the writers took the time to throw in all kinds of easter eggs throughout the watch. The entire cast did such an amazing job with their characters but it’s easily Bill Skarsgård who steals the show with his creepy and unsettling character. It’s all about execution and detail for Castle Rock, a mysterious town that serves as the home to some mysterious people. Castle Rock: The Complete First Season will be available on a 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack (plus Blu-ray and Digtial HD) on January 8th.

Distributor: Warner Bros. Home Entertainment

Run Time: 4 Discs (2 UHD and 2 Blu-ray) / 10 Episodes / 500 Minutes

  1. Severance
  2. Habeas Corpus
  3. Local Color
  4. The Box
  5. Harvest
  6. Filter
  7. The Queen
  8. Past Perfect
  9. Henry Deaver
  10. Romans

Rated: Not Rated

4K Ultra HD Video: 2160p Ultra High-Definition 16×9 Widescreen (1.78:1)

4K Ultra HD Audio: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 / French and Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1

Blu-ray Video: 1080p High-Definition 16×9 Widescreen (1.78:1)

Blu-ray Audio: English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 / French and Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1

Subtitles: English SDH, French and Spanish

Special Features: The extras include two new featurettes exclusive to this home video release, behind-the-scenes featurettes for each episode and a digital copy of the first season.

  • New – Blood on the Page (19:40)
  • New – A Clockwork of Horror: Merging the styles of Stephen King & J.J. Abrams (04:51)
  • Inside the Episode: Severance (03:44)
  • Inside the Episode: Habeas Corpus (02:54)
  • Inside the Episode Local Color (03:21)
  • Inside the Episode: The Box (02:48)
  • Inside the Episode: Harvest (02:55)
  • Inside the Episode: Filter (03:24)
  • Inside the Episode: The Queen (03:03)
  • Inside the Episode: Past Perfect (02:24)
  • Inside the Episode: Henry Dever (02:36)
  • Inside the Episode: Romans (03:12)
  • Digital HD Copy
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