Don’t worry, no spoilers here!
Many of you have already binge-watched Netflix’s spooky ghost story, The Haunting of Hill House, but aside from the intricate story and hidden ghosts, did you know some of the ghosts are based on true phenomenon?
The two iconic ghosts members of the Crain family see while living in Hill House is the Bent Neck Lady and (the one that actually manages to freak me out and give me nightmares) the Bowler Hat Man. Many fans have deemed the Bowler Hat Man (or the Floating Man as he is also known) the creepiest ghost in the Netflix series. We first see him through Luke’s eyes, larger than life, floating just inches above the ground, banging his cane on the ground, searching for the bowler hat that Luke unknowingly stole from him. Cue the nightmares.
It may seem too fantastical to be based on an actual ghost, but that is exactly where the creators of the show took their inspiration.
According to claims, Hat Man is a shadow person. Now there are different theories about what shadow people actually are. Some paranormal investigators say that shadow people are just like regular ghosts–the spirits of human beings trapped on earth–but they’re (for lack of a better word) “emo.” For other investigators and psychic mediums, shadow people are far more malevolent than just your average ghost, anything but human, and feeding off of emotional turmoil while you sleep.
Hat Man is said to be over six feet tall, wearing a trenchcoat, and a fedora or a top hat (not a bowler, but close enough). Occasionally, claims include the chilling detail that he has a pair of red glowing eyes that watch you.
But that’s all he seems to do: watch you while you’re fast asleep in bed. Despite that, people who have been visited by the Hat Man have reported an extremely dark and negative feeling in their room, and it is believed that Hat Man likes to visit people experiencing trauma, aggression, or depression, feeding off the negative energy.
The Hat Man phenomenon has been experienced all over the world, even by the secular exorcist, RH Stavis, and yet no one knows who he is or even what he is. But there are plenty of stories from people on the internet who have been visited by the mysterious apparition, making him one of the most (in)famous spirits out there.
Sometimes knowing that a horrifying ghost story–like The Haunting of Hill House–is based on real-life experiences, makes it that much scarier. Sweet dreams!
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