Sunday, March 11, 2012

Comes the Slender Man

"The Slender Man" is an ongoing interactive horror project that has the unusual distinction of being truly open source. Anyone can contribute to the mythos, and the overall canonicity of new material depends on how much of the community embraces it. You can get a feel for how bizarre the results of that approach are by paying a visit to the Slender Man Wiki.

One of the things I find fascinating about the Slender Man community is how much it mirrors the UFO subculture. Both incorporate certain landmark events into the overall narrative (i.e. Roswell crash, Stirling library fire) and then add layer upon layer of interpretation, casting them into a new light. Inevitably, that leads to the development of cliques that go to war with each other, which in turn produces charges that outside agents are intentionally spreading disinformation. What's amazing is that it still happens when everyone knows it's all fake to begin with. Whether that's a sign of creative brilliance on the part of Slender Man's community, or an indictment of human nature, is open to interpretation.

Andrew Wishart brings us these artifacts that are sure to add to the debate. Where they came from is a bit sketchy, but their existence would seem to indicate that there is indeed a cult or group of followers devoted to Slender Man.


Phil said...

I've only seen bits and pieces of this online, but it sounds quite fun and creepy. A bit like The Blair Witch taken to the next level. Much more fun than your bog-standard ghost story or demonic possession tale.

Theres an odd and creepy video series on Youtube that I think is related to this called Marble Hornets. Have a look if you have some time to kill.

Propnomicon said...

@ Phil

Aye, Marble Hornets is one of the three ARG projects based on Slender Man. It also spawned the first of the aforementioned rifts, giving rise to the purist "Surgist" faction.

Cully said...

Oh, there are SO many more than three Slender Man ARGs. Marble Hornets, Tribe Twelve and EverymanHYBRID are often referred to as "The Big Three" since they dominate most of the form and have set the standard, but there are... hundreds? of others. They range from laughable attempts by bored teenagers to highly elaborate and well-filmed stories with some real sense of dread.

Come by the "Slender Man Mythos" section of the forums at unFiction for a taste. (Full disclosure I'm a mod there.)

Andrew Wishart said...

Oh awesome, I hadn't expected these to be put up! I'm something of a surgist myself, though not a rabid one. I appreciate a lot of good things have come out of the vlogs but I still like a lot of the original mythos concepts that don't normally show up, especially the more lovecraftian feel of it. As for the props, I think I overdid the paint on the face of the larger icon, and its just occuring to me just how many pages there are to fill out in that journal!

One small nitpick: It's Wishart not Wishman. :D

Bryant Dardin said...

Andrew, howdid you make those? I would love to have copies.

Andrew Wishart said...

Basic white air drying modelling clay and a small scalpel for the most part. Made the base as just a flat rectancgle, added sides and the raised bits with rolled up lines fo the stuff, then used a scalpel to make the lines(partly because I wanted the effect, but it was especially important at the join of each added bit of clay to merge the two pieces together). The markings were made with the scalpel and a pen lid. Then I sprayed it black and excessivly drybrushed with gold, and a little silver and copper.

The smaller token was just leftover clay that was drying so I rolled it into a ball, flattened the back, trimmed off some excess, then pushed the symbol in and painted in the same way. The cracked look is actually accidental, the clay had partly dried by that point.

The journal is just a cheap notebook left over night in a water, tea, cinnamon, and cocoa, that I'm not trying to write out.