Castle Rock: Season 2, Episode 3 Recap and Review

As a horror fan, and especially as a Stephen King fan, ordinary things can  become…

Well, not so ordinary.

Or they can become terrifying.

Storm drains are a prime example.

Or summer camps located in remote, secluded lakes with a  colorful past.

Tricking or treating.

Humans bound together to make one big centipede.

Or innocuous things.

Like being tied to bed posts

Things that should be fun, yanno?

In case you can’t tell, I just  finished watching the third episode of the second season of the show Castle Rock.

Hilariously enough, this episode is titled The Ties That Bind.

In other words, yes, it was about family, kin, blah blah.

And being tied up in bed.

But not the fun kind of tied up.

Nope, the cuckoo for cocoa puffs kind of tied up, so no fun to be had at all.

But, I digress.

So, I present to you my recap and review of the third episode of the second season of Castle Rock, titled The Ties That Bind.

And, as always:



After seeing the supposedly dead Ace Merrill alive and well, Annie rushes inside her home.  She feels that her medicine is not working and that she is losing her sanity.

Abdi is able to break free of his restraints.  He rushes Pop to the hospital, and we learn that Pop has suffered a stroke.

Annie drives to construction where she had dumped Ace’s dead body.  She explores The Marsten House, and catches a glimpse of Abdi’s friend who had disappeared earlier.  The man is covered in some unknown substance and does not behave normally.

In the meantime, Chance drops by Joy and Annie’s house.  Chance convinces Joy to join her and her friends in their search for Ace Merrill’s dead body.  Joy lets loose a little, having fun with her new friends.

In a panic, Annie calls Dr. Nadia and tells her that something is wrong with her medication.  Nadia cuts off Annie, telling her that she is in the midst of a family crisis and will call Annie back later.

Joy comes back home and finds her mother in a deep depression.  She also receives a text message from Chance informing her that Ace is still alive.  Annie confesses to the murder of Ace Merrill and to seeing his dead body.  This worries Joyce.  Annie is also convinced that Dr. Nadia has poisoned her.

Joyce also learns that Annie has not been taking her medicine.  Joyce plants a syringe in Annie, knocking her unconscious and tying her to the bed.

Ace pays a visit to Pop and taunts him.  Ace also speeds down a road in town, purposely drinking and driving so that he can taunt one of the local cops.

Annie awakens and begs to be untied.  Joyce refuses, as Annie has not taken her medication.  Annie gives in and appears to take her medication.

Ace meets with a realtor to take a look at the Marsten house.  The realtor enters the house and hears something inside.  The realtor then discovers that cop who Ace had taunted earlier.  The cop is covered in maggots and some other unknown substance.

Annie experiences terrible dreams, in which Joyce is murdered by Ace.  When Annie awakens, Joy asks her about the contents in a box.  Annie tries to avoid the subject by discussing Joyce’s father.

There is a knock on the door.  Joy answers it to find Dr. Nadia, who has dropped by out of concern for Annie.  Joy tells the doctor that her mother is fine and does not require assistance.

As Joyce is speaking to Dr. Nadia, Annie attempts to escape her constraints.  She nearly frees herself by cutting the ropes with a piece of broken glass, but accidentally cuts Joy as well, in her attempt to escape.  Joy rushes out of the house.

Annie steps outside to look for Joy.  Joy is nowhere to be found, but a tall man appears to be waiting for Annie.  The unknown man cryptically tells Annie that she “will kill her.”

My Thoughts

This season of Castle Rock has threads.

They are seemingly unrelated:  a haunted house, a mentally ill woman, Somalian refugees, etc.

But, they are quickly coming together.

And I love it.

The creepiness factor has also been upped this season.

And you won’t hear me complaining about that, either.

Again, The Marsten House.

People often forget that ‘Salem’s Lot is not just a story about vampires.

It is also a haunted story as well.

In fact, that house plays as much a part in that story as Barlow and bloodsucking (literally) friends.

The Marsten House is almost as much a character in ‘Salem’s Lot as Ben Mears, Kurt Barlow, Dr. Cody or anyone else in the story.

And the Marsten House is shaping up to being a character in this show as well.

It’s intriguing.  I’m hooked.  I need to know more.

What is going on in that house that causes large Somalian men to be covered in goo and get the urge to get in touch with his inner Rocky Balboa and suck down raw eggs?

We were even given a brief history of The Marsten House, courtesy zombie Ace.

(Perhaps being un-dead has made the ole Ace-ster a little smarter, even if he is maybe even a bigger asshole than the non-zombie Ace-ster.)

Hubie Marsten, who in one story led a certain infamous vampire to ‘Salem’s Lot, did bad things there.  Then he killed himself and also killed his wife.

The Marsten House has obviously had some kind of hold over people, probably for many, many years, although it does seem to attract non-savory people.  Hubie and Ace are prime examples of that, as Hubie was a retired mobster, and Ace is well…Ace.

And Ace is building some kind of army, with the help of the house and who knows what else.  Several people have now fallen victim to it, so the plot thickens…

Oh, and speaking of having a hold over people…

Let’s talk about Annie for a few minutes.

Me:  Well, at least I won’t have to see another de-gloving scene…

Castle Rock producers and writers:  Lolz.  Let’s just have Annie use her mouth to try to cut her self free…


(It does seem that any show I recommend comes with a warning of “Don’t watch while eating.”)

Oh, and thanks Castle Rock writers and producers…

I am gonna have to re-think my bedroom fun, as being tied to a bed is now somehow no longer erotic fun…

But, seriously.

Annie Wilkes tied to a bed, and being force-fed pills?

What the Earth 2 is this?

Such a nice inversion.

And so tense.

Apparently, this was planned by Joy and Annie, just in case Annie ever really went off her rocker.

The rats Annie gave her pills to…


I wanted more of the Annie-Joy dynamic, and I got my wish in this episode.

Joy is pulling away and becoming her own person.  This is not good for Annie.

Joy is no longer the malleable little girl.

She has her own opinions and her own hopes and dreams.

Joy is pushing back, in many ways, not just yelling out f-bombs to spite her mother.

And now, her mother is tied to the bed, and Joyce has the power, for once.

This could get scary.

Come on episode 4, hurry up and get here, post haste!

Well, that’s it for The Ties That Bind.

Join me next week for the recap and review of episode 4, titled Restore Hope.

Tune in next week…

Same bat time, same bat channel!


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