'Castle Rock' Killed Off Major Stephen King Character

Early episodes of Castle Rock saw Stephen King fans seeking out every detail about how the show [...]

Early episodes of Castle Rock saw Stephen King fans seeking out every detail about how the show connected to various corners of the author's library. Now that we're up to episode seven, the series has established its own mythology that isn't predicated on King lore, allowing the creators the freedom to explore any avenue they see fit. This week's episode sadly killed off a beloved King character in a heartbreakingly emotional moment.

WARNING: Spoilers below for Episode 7 of Castle Rock

Alan Pangborn (Scott Glenn), the former sheriff of Castle Rock, Maine, was shot and killed in this week's episode, titled "The Queen."

Audiences are still hoping to learn more about "The Kid," played by Bill Skarsgard. Ruth Deaver, played by Sissy Spacek, is left home alone with The Kid, who torments her by channeling her dead husband. Ruth was previously described as suffering from dementia, though this episode saw that either her mind or her actual corporeal form seems to have come dislodged from a linear timeline, with Ruth jumping back and forth in time to important moments in her life.

As Ruth shifts between her present, in which The Kid is stalking her around her house, and various memories from her past, she finds a gun and loads it to protect herself. In a moment where she thinks she is being confronted by The Kid, she fires, only for it to be Alan, the man she's been romantically involved with since her husband's death.

Making the event even more tragic is that, in the moments after Pangborn is shot, Ruth is transported to a moment in which he showed up on her doorstep to confess his love and devotion to her. As he makes the confession, Ruth hugs Pangborn tightly, asking him to not leave her. While Ruth's words fit this specific moment in her life, it also serves as Ruth's plea to the reality of knowing that she has just killed him in the present.

The show has offered audiences countless nuggets of King connections, with Pangborn's existence being the strongest use of King's source material. Rather than merely being a passing reference to an event or a location, Pangborn is a character that has appeared in multiple King novels, such as Needful Things and The Dark Half.

Find out how the loss of Pangborn impacts the characters when a new episode of Castle Rock lands on Hulu next Wednesday.

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