What Creepypasta Should “Channel Zero” Adapt Next?
If you haven’t checked out SyFy’s unexpectedly delightful new series, Channel Zero: Candle Cove, now is the perfect time to start. As the month of Halloween draws to a climactic close, we’re halfway through the anthology series’ bold retelling and expansion of Kris Straub’s iconic Candle Cove creepypasta. Luckily for us, Syfy has already confirmed a second season based on another classic online tale, Brian Russell’s The No End House.
While a third season isn’t guaranteed at this point, especially since the first one is yet to finish airing, this had me thinking of other creepypastas that might benefit from a small-screen adaptation on Channel Zero. Naturally, the following tales were chosen according personal tastes, but we’d love to see your suggestions in the comments as well!
The Slender Man Mythos
In a way, the character of Slender Man can be held responsible for bringing creepypastas to the mainstream, as there are very few people out there that haven’t at least heard of this iconic horror villain that’s yet to star in a full-fledged adaptation of the original story. The low-budget Marble Hornets web-series masterfully presented the character to Youtube audiences back in 2009, and we’ve had a few indie reimaginings of the story as well, but there’s yet to be a definitive version of the tale.
Created by Eric Knudsen (known as “Victor Surge” online), the Slender Man began as simple internet meme created for a contest on the Something Awful Forums, with a series of photoshopped photographs that claimed to have caught a glimpse of this terrifying entity with a bad habit of kidnapping unwary children. Of course, the story caught on, and the internet soon spread the character around so frequently that many began to consider it a nuisance, especially with the rise of cutesy fan-art and nerdy Slender Man merchandise (which is oddly similar to what happened to Lovecraft’s infamous creation, Cthulhu).
Nevertheless, despite the apparent overexposure of the character, the Slender-Man has even been involved in real life controversies, with several crimes having been linked to avid “fans” of this internet sensation. It’s not hard to see how this would make for some compelling television, and it could be even better if SyFy managed to bring in the THAC team behind the original Marble Hornets series.
The Russian Sleep Experiment
The origins of this macabre tale of unethical science can be traced back to 2010, but no one’s really sure about who wrote it. The Russian Sleep Experiment concerns a strange study on sleep deprivation, allegedly conducted on political prisoners back in the 1940s. Using a mysterious gas-based stimulant, Russian scientists managed to keep a group of five people awake for over two weeks before realizing the horrors that they had unleashed.
While the story is almost certainly a work of fiction, it taps into a universal fear of the unknown, not unlike some of H.P. Lovecraft’s best work. It’s hard to imagine a show like Channel Zero having the budget (or interest) in making a season-long period piece describing the horrors that the prisoners went through, but maybe they could take the story in another direction. Perhaps one of the prisoners survived, or a modern-day journalist could embark on an ill-fated quest to uncover the truth behind the horrific experiment. Either way, I would definitely watch something based on this terrifying yarn.
The SCP Foundation
Like the Slender Man mythos, the SCP Foundation isn’t so much a single story as it is a collection of atrocities that make up a larger universe. SCP stands for Special Containment Procedure, so you can imagine what purpose the Foundation serves. Stories within the SCP universe are usually presented as filed reports concerning the capture of all sorts of terrifying entities, and the subsequent experimentation that the organization conducts on them. Not to mention a few cases of escaped subjects.
Featuring bizarre “characters” and locations, such as a seemingly infinite staircase inhabited by an otherworldly being, sentient Betamax tapes and even entities that make you forget their characteristics after observing them, the sky is the limit with this one. An adaptation could focus on a single captive/escaped subject, or maybe even a handful of them as they terrorize the unsuspecting populace. With a larger budget, we could even follow the adventures of a researcher at the foundation, and how he deals with the cosmic terror he’s confronted with on a daily basis.
Of course, these aren’t the only good creepypastas out there, but it’s fun to imagine what an adaptation of our favorite scary internet stories might be like. If Channel Zero manages to keep up the current quality in future seasons, I wouldn’t be surprised if it turned into a yearly romp akin to American Horror Story, that us horror fanatics could enjoy as an annual ritual celebrating the best (or worst) that the internet has to offer.
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