The talented and creative mind of Mike Flanagan has taken on a lot of horror-themed concepts, and in his newest hit series, Midnight Mass, we received an easter egg that keeps his projects loosely connected.
The 43-year-old filmmaker has previously helmed major genre staples, including The Shining follow-up film Doctor Sleep, The Haunting of Hill House, Gerald's Game, Oculus, and more, with an approach that acknowledges his prior work. Whether it's a Midnight Mass book in the background of Gerald's Game, or a recurring actor, Flanagan clearly appreciates nods to his other projects, and his newest endeavor is no exception.
In the new Netflix series Midnight Mass, we briefly hear Carla Gugino (Gerald's Game and Hill House) voice a character to slightly make her presence known – but also an unexpected gem regarding Flanagan's beloved film Oculus. There are a few recurring rec room scenes in the series, and select eagle-eyed viewers picked up on an all too familiar mirror, as in the actual object behind the madness of the 2013 film.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Flanagan spoke about some of these connective creative choices, and when the topic turned to Oculus, he explains, "It's behind them in the profile [shots] on stage. It's all becoming incredibly convoluted, really connected. That's our goal. I want all of [these projects] to just be a big ball of rubber bands by the time we're done, just impossible to extricate from each other."
On a budget of just under $5 million, Oculus went on to earn over $44 million during its box office run and an impressive 74% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Oculus, starring Titans alum Brenton Thwaites and Avengers star Karen Gillan, may feel like a distant memory for many at this point in time. Still, at least longtime fans get to see timid reminders of this well-made moment in cinema through other titles moving forward.
Did you manage to spot the Oculus easter egg in Midnight Mass?