Tucked away in the shadows of Bly Manor are tons of creepy hidden details, secret ghosts
and Haunting of Hill House easter eggs you didn't notice on your first viewing.
Yippee-ki-yay, movie lovers, I'm Jan and in this video I'm revealing the spookiest things
you missed in The Haunting of Bly Manor.
Spoilers ahead, of course, so take care.
One of the most rewarding parts of rewatching The Haunting anthology series
is discovering all the clues laid out in the early episodes to the big twists and reveals
at the end of each season.
When Dani arrives in London, she stops to look at a map right in front of a huge clock
or chronograph display.
There are cogs and stopwatches nestled within the larger timepiece, hinting towards the
importance of time and the various time loops within the story that's about to be told.
And it also foreshadows the countdown or ticking clock that hangs over Dani
after she lets Viola possess her in the finale and the eternal fate that awaits her as the
Lady of the Lake.
Another detail foreshadowing the final destination of many of Bly Manor's characters is in the
small painting in Dani's room at the hostel.
There are three famous world landmarks in the picture;
the Eiffel Tower, Big Ben, and the Statue of Liberty.
Big Ben is, of course, in London, where Dani's haunted journey begins,
and the Statue of Liberty points to how in the finale Dani and Jamie leave England and
go travelling in America where they settle down together.
As for the Eiffel Tower, that's a pointer to Dani and Jamie visiting Owen in Paris where
he opens up the restaurant he's always dreamed about.
And Dani's room number at the hostel 2-1-7 pays homage to Stephen King's The Shining.
The number is the same as the haunted room in the novel, and fittingly Dani continues
to be haunted by the ghost of her ex-fianc in that room.
Of course, Haunting creator Mike Flanagan also wrote and directed Doctor Sleep, the
sequel to Stanley Kubrick's movie of The Shining.
Another Shining reference pops up later in the children's classroom at Bly Manor.
Look very closely at Miss Jessel's desk where there are a handful of Scrabble tiles that
spell out the word "REDRUM".
"REDRUM" is the creepy message that appeared in both The Shining and Doctor Sleep, and
which spells "MURDER" backwards.
This easter egg foreshadows how Peter Quint will later kill Rebecca when he takes possession
of her body and drowns her in the lake.
A particularly spooky Hill House easter egg in Flora's room is the smiley face on top
of a chest of drawers.
This is a nod to Mr Smiley who turns out to be the abusive foster father of one of Theo's
clients, as well as a terrifying apparition that appeared to Theo one night.
What's especially interesting about this is that the smiley face is positioned above Flora's
Lady of the Lake doll which lies beneath the cabinet.
In Hill House, the little girl explained to Theo that Mr Smiley lived below the house.
Similar to Mr Smiley, the Lady of the Lake is a malevolent monster who emerges from below
the surface and it's why Flora insists that Dani leave the ghostly doll where it is.
"Put her back.
She stays... there."
Another night, just after Dani tucks Flora into bed, she accidentally knocks into the
Lady of the Lake doll which has made a sudden appearance in the middle of the floor.
This little incident foreshadows how Dani will stumble into Viola's path at the end
of the eighth episode.
And when Dani then invites Viola into her body, watch the scene very closely because
you can see how the colour of one of Dani's eyes changes from blue to brown.
Prior to this, both Dani's eyes were blue; but from this point on, she has one blue and
one brown eye, a mark of the beast now living in her body.
The same thing happens to Miles in the seventh episode when he lets Peter take over.
Miles collapses, but when he wakes up, you can see how this eye has gone from blue to
And it also happens to Rebecca when Peter takes possession of her.
Because Rebecca has brown eyes to begin with, in her case the eye changes to blue.
The drawing with the words "Come Home" that Flora sends to Miles at boarding school, calling
him back to Bly Manor, is a sly call-back to Hill House and how Olivia
Crain both in life and death told her children to "come home"/to do just that.
"when I flash the porch light twice..."
"Time to come home."
"Come home, my love."
"Come Home Nell" was also a message that Theo uncovered underneath the wallpaper at Hill
There's a deep cut reference to Hill House when Peter gives Miles his dad's old lighter
and says "Just don't burn the house down, please."
This is a nod to how Luke, actor Oliver Jackson Cohen's character in Hill House, tried to
burn the place down with a lighter.
And you can spot an easter egg to the Bowler Hat Ghost which haunted Luke in Hill House
in the scene where Dani is waiting to be picked up by Owen.
Right next to her, is a hat shop which seems with a number of bowler hats on display.
An early clue that Peter Quint had been possessing Miles comes when the young boy presents Dani
with a bouquet of roses in the second episode.
In the next episode, during a flashback scene, we see Peter give Flora the same white and
red flowers in Rebecca's presence.
And the way that Jamie freaks out when she finds that Miles has taken the flowers
"They weren't ready to be cut!" is a subtle allusion to how Peter took Rebecca's
life too soon.
And perhaps also to how he killed Mrs Grose when he was in control of Miles.
As Peter Quint continues to develop his relationship with Miles, he explains:
"People are like locked rooms.
They've all got different locks, and you've got to guess the shape of their key."
And the different methods, or unique keys as Peter puts it, that he uses to manipulate
those around him such as Rebecca or Henry is reminiscent of how Hill House's Red Room
changes its appearance and function to appeal to different members of the Crain family,
and lure them into its trap.
"You found the key."
"You want to know the secret?
We are the key."
"But it was always the Red Room.
It put on different faces so that we'd be still and quiet while it digested."
Building on this theme of keys in Bly Manor, you can spot a key-shaped key holder by the
door in Peter's time loop scenes.
There are no keys on it though, perhaps a comment on how Peter can't escape from this
time loop that he hates so much.
Likewise, after she dies Viola finds herself locked away in a never-ending loop until Perdita
finds the key to the trunk that Viola had set aside for her daughter.
And it's no coincidence that Jamie is wearing a chain around her neck with a padlock attached
on the day that Dani brings her the rings they'll wear as a symbol of their love for
The Haunting of Bly Manor also plays around with the idea from Hill House that the manor
is alive and we can see this in the way the Narrator describes it when Dani arrives.
"..and it yawned open to welcome her home."
"The rooms were larger at night, as though the house itself had inhaled deeply."
And there's another nod to that when Dani sees Flora's dollhouse open up all by itself.
The dollhouse is a replica of Bly Manor and appears to have some kind of enchantment
as the dolls inside move around depending on where the characters and the ghosts they
represent are in the house.
Dani lives the rest of her days with differently-coloured eyes,
and another detail that represents how she's not entirely human any longer is the doll
that Flora gives her when they say goodbye.
"Are you sure you wanna give me this one?"
"You must have it.
Flora regarding Dani as a doll means deep down the little girl understands something
has changed in the au pair, because it contrasts sharply with what she
said to Dani when she first arrived at Bly Manor.
"Is that me?"
"Why, no, silly.
It's just a dolly."
When Peter reveals his plan for him and Rebecca to permanently take possession of Miles and
Flora, he explains how the children will be together with their parents forever.
"you're gonna be tucked away.
In the forever house, just like we said."
"With Mum and Dad?"
The idea of a "Forever House" is a throwback to Olivia Crain's dream home.
"This is our forever house."
Although after she died, that effectively became Hill House itself.
"This is our forever house.
It always was.
Nothing bad will ever touch them ever again."
In the sixth episode, there's a flashback scene where Dominic Wingrave confronts his
wife Charlotte about her affair with his brother Henry,
and we see a note on the fridge with the word "hello" written repeatedly.
This is a clever bit of foreshadowing of the reveal later in the episode that it's Henry
who's been responsible for the silent calls at the manor,
because this is exactly what Dani says when she picks up the phone.
There's a cunning clue to Henry's illicit relationship with Charlotte in some of the
early episodes via an advert for a production of Hamlet on a London double-decker bus.
Both the Haunting of Bly Manor and the famous Shakespeare play feature men who have relationships
with their brothers' wives and children who lose their fathers.
Also, in both the play and Bly Manor, the dead father's son finds himself tormented
by a ghost.
The Haunting of Bly Manor is the latest in a very long line of adaptations of Henry James's
19th-century novella The Turn of the Screw.
And creator Mike Flanagan has said that the 1961 film version of the story, The Innocents,
was a huge influence on his show, with Dani's surname Clayton being a tribute
to that movie's director, Jack Clayton.
Another notable homage to the film is the prayer-like pose of Mrs Grose's hands in her
opening credits portrait which tips its hat to the opening credits of The Innocents,
where the children's new governess played by Deborah Kerr clasps her hands in prayer.
Another seminal moment from The Innocents which Bly Manor draws on heavily is the song
'O Willow Waly', which pops up repeatedly throughout each adaptation.
Both Bly Manor's first episode and the film begin with the song and several seconds of
complete darkness, with the melancholy lyrics neatly alluding
to the final scene of Bly Manor.
But now alone I lie... ...till my lover return to me.
Where the elder Jamie waits to be finally reunited with Dani.
"O Willow Waly" is often used to indicate when Flora and Miles are being possessed by
Rebecca Jessel or Peter Quint.
The first instance of this is when young Flora is singing it when Dani arrives at the manor.
Till my lover returns to me "Oh, what a beautiful song!"
Flora responds that way, because it was Miss Jessel who was in control and singing the
song in that moment.
Miles whistles the song after acting inappropriately around Dani.
And the music box plays the tune when Miles grabs Dani around the neck and begins to strangle
The tune indicates that Peter Quint is in control of Miles at each of these moments.
In the Netflix show, it's shown that Viola is the origin of the mournful song as we see
her sing it when she performs her nightly walks to her daughter's bedroom.
Flanagan's series also draws on several key moments of animal imagery in the original
For example, the dove Miles kills at school recalls the one whose neck he broke at home
and kept under his pillow in the movie.
Then there's the many pictures of butterflies on Flora's walls and the butterfly hairclip
that Miles gives Dani that belonged to Miss Jessel,
which recall the stark image of a butterfly being eaten in The Innocents.
And there's the painting of a turtle on the classroom wall, which is a call-back to Flora's
turtle in The Innocents and, given the Stephen King easter eggs elsewhere
in this scene, possibly also an allusion to the cosmic turtle from King's Macroverse.
And, of course, the TV series also pays homage to the Turn of the Screw novella by Henry
James through its use of a prologue with a mysterious storyteller who name-checks
the book's title in their dialogue, as also happens in the original story.
"And if a child gives the effect, another turn of the screw...
...what do you say to two?"
In a deviation from the novella though, Flanagan's series returns to this storyteller in an epilogue
which reveals her true identity.
The ships on the wallpaper in Miles's room and in model form are a reference to the repeated
ship imagery and maritime metaphors in the novel,
such as the opening chapter where the children's governess compares Bly to a "great drifting
ship" lost at sea.
Miles, Flora, and Uncle Henry's family name, Wingrave, is a reference to the name of the
family from another of Henry James's short stories, "The Romance of Certain Old Clothes",
which the eighth episode of Bly Manor draws upon heavily for its tale of two sisters,
their husband, daughter, and a locked trunk filled with dresses and jewels.
And Viola and Perdita's surname Willoughby was the name that Henry James gave his characters
in the first version of that story before he revised it to Wingrave when it was
republished several years later.
Fans of the brilliant iZombie will remember actor Rahul Kohli who plays cook Owen as medical
examiner Ravi Chakrabarti and there's a nice nod to his post-mortem-performing
role in that show in the final episode of Bly Manor when the narrator explains what
Owen did after Hannah Grose died.
"some in the village said that the cook rode with her all the way to the coroner.
And there, he insisted on cleaning her himself."
And Owen's love of puns, including the name of his restaurant, A Batter Place,
"I mean, I've made some good cakes in my day, but this one is batter."
echoes iZombie's endlessly pun-loving ways from its episode titles to its comic-book
segues to its character names.
There are, of course, a stack of hidden ghosts lurking in the background of Bly Manor, and
to discover over 80 of them tap here to watch my full video
revealing all the ones I found including the Soldier, the Vicar, the Plague Doctor, the
Doll Face Ghost, plus the secret hostel ghost!
There's also a link in the video description.
So, did you spot any other interesting details or Hill House easter eggs in Bly Manor?
Leave your comments below!
And if you enjoyed this video, a thumbs-up is hugely appreciated.
Tap left for my full Bly Manor playlist with a breakdown of the ending and what that final
shot with Jamie really means or tap right for something else you're sure to like.
Thanks for watching and see ya next time.
Yippee-ki-yay, movie lovers!