We have only one week left until all the teasing stops and American Horror Story finally reveals what the theme for this season will be. After five seasons of a variety of delightfully spooky and historical premises, the many teasers Season 6 has released these past few months only remind us that in the wide world of horror, there are far more stories than air-time in which to view them.
Add to that the wider world of horror originating from the internet and the scope of untold scary stories is astounding. Because of the plethora of these sorts of stories, a term (and, later, a few sites) was coined to unite them: "creepypasta" — basically any short horror story having origins solely on the internet.
American Horror Story might have perfected the craft of a miniseries-style anthology show telling a new scary tale each season, but they can't cover them all (no matter what there teasers want us to believe.) Lucky Syfy, a channel providing better and better content every season, will be cashing in on that cow with their new miniseries anthology show Channel Zero: Candle Cove.
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This six episode Season 1 starts September 27 and the teaser (below) looks a lot like the sort of eerie taunting AHS has been throwing at fans lately.
Don Mancini, the show's director tweeted out the first poster for the series, which is based on a popular creepypasta posted online about four years ago by a writer named Kris Straub. It's certainly intriguing, especially if this tooth-covered creature is meant to be some sort of take on the Tooth Fairy. We thought AHS's hint of spooky children this season was promising, but a tale that focuses on childhood fears and memories has even more potential for freaking us out.
So what is Candle Cove and why is it worth being Syfy's first creepypasta undertaking? Let's dive into the story behind this season's show.
'Candle Cove': Viral Internet Horror Story
"Did you ever wonder where nightmares come from?" That's the tagline seen above in the new poster for the show, and it definitely heralds to the basic creepy core of the original Candle Cove creepypasta story. Kris Straub's story is cleverly written in the format of an online forum for TV nostalgia where a user named Skyshale033 asks if anyone recalls a children's show he has vague memories of watching as a child in the '70s.
He remembers the name of the show, Candle Cove, and that it was a local access show in Idaho. A few other users chime in with vague memories and after a seemingly long time on the forum another user also recalls the show and adds further details. The show featured a little girl named Janice who lived in Candle Cove and imagined she was friends with pirates, their leader being Pirate Percy, a rather cowardly captain of the ship Laughingstock.
It all sounds weird, but not especially frightening as Skyshale033 and three other forum users all chime in with more details that start to resurface int heir memories. Creepy puppets, a ship with a mouth that appears to swallow the ocean, and then they recall the show's villain: Skin-Taker. Now there's a horrifying name, for a child's show or any other. He was a skeleton with a top hat and cape who's mouth only moved from side to side, the better to grind skin with he claimed.
Skyshale033 gets personal with the other three forum participants, describing the repeating nightmare the show gave him. The other participants' responses are alarming to say the least. I won't reveal the story's end, but its implication about these adults' separate but shared experience alludes to a source for fear. A source that may just feed off children's fear especially.
So while it's hard to say where the Tooth Fairy fits in exactly, he's not mentioned in the creepypasta tale, as a childhood fantasy tale that could easily skew toward the horrifying side that myth certainly fits in here. The child seen on the show's poster in front of a television implies that they will indeed use the original story's premise. We'll see how they spread it out over six episodes.
The story provides plenty of material to pull at our nostalgia, childhood fears, and be straight visually frightening. I can already imagine how they might portray the puppets from the show.
So, are you ready to jump in on September 27 and see what new nightmares television has in store for you? And if you're curious about where else the show might go, Syfy has already announced the title for Season 2: Channel Zero: The No-End House. Let the internet sleuthing begin.
At least they don't leave us guessing the way American Horror Story does.
What's the most terrifying creepypasta you've ever read? Share it in the comments!