This Scary Show on Netflix Is Keeping People Up All Night — Expert Shares Advice

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Woman annoyed by insomnia

We all love a nice scare once in a while, but fans raving about the Netflix series “Marianne” say this one is taking horror to the next level. 

The series was released in September of 2019 and, to go the extra mile, Netflix decided to make the premiere date Friday the 13th. Even though its premiere was four years ago, fans are still watching the series and expressing their inability to sleep at night after indulging in the show. 

So if we enjoy horror movies so much while we’re watching in the moment, why do they leave us struggling to sleep at night? 

What is “Marianne” About?

It’s probably best to know where all this hype is coming from about this show before you decide to watch the show and end up in an endless cycle of sleep paralysis

“Marianne” is a French supernatural horror series that follows the story of character Emma Larisom, who is a successful horror story writer — think of her as a female Stephen King. 

Emma soon finds out that the characters she has been writing about soon come to life, including an evil witch “Marianne,” who begins to haunt Emma and her hometown. 

With its atmospheric and chilling tone, fans are hooked to the psychological and horror elements throughout the eight episode series, each lasting 45 minutes. 

“I ate a lot of sushi and am ready to tell y’all what shows to watch. Listen up! #Marianne on #Netflix She’s chaotic, cool, and French,” one fan on Twitter said.

Can Watching a Scary Movie Affect Your Sleep?

Along with the popularity of this series, fans are also expressing how this show haunts them at night in recent Twitter posts. 

#Marianne is some of the best horror I’ve seen on #Netflix in a while. The scares are nothing new but they’re done in such a deliberate and meaningful way so it doesn’t feel cheap and is ACTUALLY creepy,” a Twitter user recently said

If we enjoy watching horror movies and TV shows so much, why do they have an adverse affect on our sleep

Sleepopolis spoke with Dr. Dave Rabin,  MD, PhD & co-founder of Apollo Neuroscience, to learn more about why those scary movies are keeping us up at night. 

Rabin said the most common reason for struggling to fall asleep is we fear that what we saw on the screen will end up in our dreams, causing a nightmare

“What we see in people who watch a scary movie before bed is that they have trouble falling asleep because many people become afraid of what might come up during their dreams,” Rabin said. 

Also, he said our bodies’ fight-or-flight response is to blame for those sleepless nights after watching a TV series like “Marianne.”

“The main reason why people have difficulty sleeping after scary movies is because these kinds of experiences activate the fight or flight or sympathetic stress response system in our bodies,” he said. “Usually, this system is responsible for running from predators and escaping to safety and making sure we have enough air, water, food, and shelter to survive. However, our mind and body doesn’t realize that a scary movie is not a real threat.”

With this, Dr. Rabin suggests keeping the scary movies for the daytime and something a little more heartfelt and enjoyable before bedtime.  

How to Not Let a Scary Movie Get In The Way of Your Beauty Sleep 

That pure adrenaline rush is an enjoyable feeling for most after watching a scary movie. No wonder we all enjoy a nice horror movie once and a while, but don’t let it impact your productivity for the next day because you didn’t get any sleep. 

So before you log onto Netflix and start watching the thrilling “Marianne,” consider some ideas of how you can get a good night’s rest after watching the movie. 

Rabin suggests preparing yourself ahead of time to remind yourself that what you’re about to watch is not real. 

“You can prepare yourself  before watching by decreasing your sensitization to the threat,” he said. “In some cases, if people prepare themselves ahead of time, the scary movie won’t have the same negative impact on their sleep.” 

Consider practicing some breathing exercises, stretching, meditation, or listening to some soothing music to aid in ignoring those unforgettable images from the film before you call it lights out. 

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  • Rabin, Dave. Personal Interview. June 13, 2024.

Ava Girardi

Ava Girardi

Ava Girardi is an Editorial News Intern for Sleepopolis. She loves writing about all things sleep from viral bedtime routines on TikTok to studies on sleep quality that will help you get the most helpful information to achieve that perfect bedtime routine. Ava is currently studying at Elon University where she is a double major in journalism and media analytics. When she is not writing, Ava is spending time with friends or family, running, or trying new yummy foods.

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