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Youtube Series that Challenge Big-Screen Ghosts

Youtube has really come a long way since it was created in 2005. Initially, videos never went longer than 2 minutes and most of the videos were silly little skits or parodies. But here we are, 15 years later, and Youtube has its own version of a streaming service, and it is rare to find videos that go under 10 minutes. I don’t think anyone would have guessed that in 2020, people would be making careers out of posting videos on the internet, but people do. There are countless things to watch and find from gaming videos, family vlogs, and full-blown episodic series that have professional quality. Since it is Spooky Season™, I want to share some channels that have made and continue to make spooky content that I would advise you to not watch at night. 

 

Marble Hornets is a Youtube channel dedicated to one thing alone: Slenderman. It spawned after the mythological persona was introduced to the internet in 2009. The videos on Youtube are uploaded as different entries from one man’s experience with this figure, foregoing the introduction video that consists of B-roll and text vaguely explaining what is going on. From this into, we know that the person uploading the videos is not the one recording them. Instead, they are videos that his friend from college named Alex recorded while he was supposed to be working on his student film for school three years prior to the Youtube creator uploading them to Youtube. Under strange circumstances, Alex quit his project and switched schools without contacting his friends. The Youtube creator claims that he has forgotten about the tapes until now and will use Youtube to upload anything interesting that he may find. After the introduction, we get “entry #1” that is relatively terrifying considering that it is only the first one. Captions explain that there is no audio and then the video begins with someone pointing the camera out the window and recording a Slender-Man type creature standing outside and looking over to the camera quickly (read about Slenderman here).


person looking at street lamp
Photo by Artem Kovalev from Unsplash

There are 87 entries on the channel and it would take about 9 hours to watch everything published. The way that the channel presents the videos and information adds to the eeriness of the videos and situation. Since Youtube is a website used by gen-pop to create and upload, it is hard to imagine that this is anything but real. The creator doesn’t even allow comments to be made under the videos even though they have gotten millions of views. I don’t know if this helps it feel more real or if it acts as a way to create doubt. Either way, it is confirmed that the series is fictional and was only supposed to be form entertainment. Regardless of the legitimacy, some of the videos have kept me up late at night and avoiding looking outside windows lest I catch a glimpse of something (or someone) I don’t want to see. 

Check out the Channel here

 

The best way I can describe The Haunting of Sunshine Girl Network is by saying it is like a Young Adult fantasy novel come to life on the internet. Similar to Marble Hornets, The Haunting of Sunshine Girl follows a girl, Sunshine, as she experiences weird paranormal activity in her home. This series leaves little to be desired in a homestyle ghost hunting documentary. From the beginning, we are introduced to Sunshine, her mother, and their spooky life. The small family has just moved into a new home and Sunshine believes it is haunted (her mother not so much). She begins videotaping bits and pieces of her day and experiences and there are noises, shadows, and many other things that cannot be explained. It is similar to Paranormal Activity but I would argue that it is even scarier, albeit [SPOILER ALERT] nobody dies. There is something unique about this series considering it is not a television show and instead was published on a platform that is primarily everyday people. 


purple ribbon domestic violence awareness month
Photo by Kat Jayne from Pexels

The creator has uploaded several “seasons” of her journey and even made spin-off segments of the original season one. The way the channel is introduced and the fact that it is on a unique platform, it seems as if these are real-life experiences we are witnessing. Much to my dismay, however, Sunshine and her crew are professional actors. Regardless, this Youtube channel is definitely worth visiting and binge-watching, and perhaps, for a moment, you can believe it is real. 

 Visit the Sunshine channel here

 

When I first watched these channels, I definitely believed that they were real–though I knew it was probably only wishful thinking. When I researched to try and find more answers, my bubble was burst and I was back in a world void of paranormal escapades. I certainly wish these channels would get more attention from award shows or even just the entertainment industry because these creators were surely ahead of their time. Youtube was a baby when these were posted to the site, arguably paving the way for more and more creepy and well-conceived content to be published nowadays. I encourage every who enjoys horror movies and scary stories to go and watch all the episodes for this Halloween season! 

Mandilyn McMillan

Louisiana Tech '20

I am a Senior at Louisiana Tech University and I have spent my years studying Literature and trying to learn some Spanish. I enjoy sneaking around with 'non-scholarly' books in my purse wherever I go and having strong opinions where they matter.
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