(Quick note: If you have not seen this film, don’t read this piece, unless you want one of the best “horror” movies of the last decade ruined) Cabin in the Woods was such a damn good film, and it was this post that reminded me how much I love it. I also feel it did what very few movies ever can do to me. It immediately made me want more. I wanted to see what had happened in all the experiments before. I wanted to see, in depth, all the other countries versions of the sacrifices.
I wanted to see how close they came to waking up the “Ancient Ones” in incidents before. And the movie was told in such a way that every other aspect is pretty much a clean canvas waiting to be painted on. The thing is, in movie form, we may get a great sequel, but we won’t get the story I want. What if I wrote out a pitch, though, and found a good number of supporters, and then sent that pitch to Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard myself? If the pitch was strong enough, could this actually happen??! Probably not, but still, what the hell, nothing to lose in trying, right? Mordecai would hint we would lose “our lives”, but we wouldn’t listen, anyway.
The beauty of a Cabin in the Woods show (which would have to be a cable show for it to be properly explored) would be that it would NOT have to take place at the cabin. If you remember the footage from the Japanese school, there are endless possibilities for the location. The cabin is a location that American horror fans respond to , so that is why the film was set there, but think about all the potential places they could set up a simulation for the show or comic book?
Imagine these “deadites” terrorizing an office building, for example.
The potential for settings and scenarios would never deplete. One week, put the people in a train. Another week, have it take place during a camping trip, with a particular section of the forest being sectioned off. From eerie, old abandoned farmhouses, to sleek, cold, impersonal cityscapes, I drool when I imagine all the locations Cabin in the Woods could tap for inspiration. How about a “boat” episode (or issue) so those much deserved “Mermaids” can get some more attention?
Where would YOU cast an episode? Leave some ideas in the comments.
Obviously, the people can’t “survive” like they did in the film, because then, the world gets destroyed by a giant God of War boss (sorry, couldn’t resist, my one and only complaint is that the “ancient ones” were not represented as Cthulhu, but that is a very minor nerd gripe) so with the show, the fun can be had handing us characters we WANT to see killed off. Certain demographics that most people hate, for example, like the douche. What about a FRAT HOUSE simulation, so we WANT to see all the people die?
That awkward moment when Kraven the Hunter from Spiderman goes full douche.
As much as the Chris Hemsworth bike jump was a hilarious and awesome death, give me more of that, but give it to me with characters I WANT to see die.
Another incredible way this could be explored is with the relationship dynamics between groups. How about four bank robbers, mistakenly hole up in a “simulation”, and they not only have to deal with the creatures, but also the lack of trust and stability in the group? From broken family dynamics, to a bus filled with exotic dancers, again, this is an unending well to pull from.
Don’t act like a bis filled with exotic dancers being terrorized by monsters is not awesome, because you would watch the shit out of that.
This is when I think most of you will (hopefully) know this is a decent idea, the timeline.
What we saw in the Cabin in the Woods movie was horror and creatures fairly relevant to today’s horror standards. So what if, in a comic or show, we could follow the simulation thorough time? They say in the movie this “simulation” process has been going on forever, so why don’t we jump around on the timeline, and as a result of that, we would have different things people find horrifying. Perfect example: A Grindhouse episode, playing out in 1977.
Ok, so the “mermaid” was a little Grindhouse, but still, gimme more!
You could even jump forward and do a future episode, set in 2050, and have ALL the creatures be variations on Sci-Fi beasts or technology. There has, literally, never been a universe more immediately open for exploration and unending possibilities as the Cabin in the Woods. From period horror (think Lady in Black), to psychological and body horror (think Shivers or Cube) a good writer would never run out of ideas with source material this open-ended and limitless.
Am I getting you guys excited yet, because I am getting almost TOO excited over this. Getting, what some would call, a “husband bulge”.
The biggest thing for me, that truly sold the Cabin in the Woods, was the betting they were doing in the office. From that moment forth, I was sold. Though, at first, we know little, it is easy to figure out, and once the “zombie redneck torture family” ends up returning as a result of the book being read, you get a glimpse of the board , and all the potential creatures (though this is shown more in depth at the climax of the film) that could have been summoned. Though we see a great deal of those creatures at the “purge” scene at the end of the film, let’s take a closer look at that board, shall we?
Please note there is a difference between “witches” and “sexy witches.” That could be an episode (or issue) within itself.
Let’s just talk about a FEW of the awesome beasts that are on that board. Dismemberment Goblins? Hell Lord? Huron???? Dafuq is a Huron??!?! How about an episode dedicated to how some of these creatures (which we are told are based off nightmares) came to be? Were they captured? Made? Materialized? I can tell you right now, just the Unicorn who gores people in this film deserves its own show or comic, so the fact that I, (or any writer, really) could make fantastic back stories for these creatures only makes the project seem that much more appealing. Who wouldn’t want more of this:
Is there a “mate” option to bet on here, because a Merwolf sounds life changing.
Think about all the possibilities for NEW creatures, too! And they could all be done old school (get me Tom Savini, now!) How about an episode (or issue) dedicated to a creature uprising, or some inter-creature feuds? Do they feed them? Do they have tasks, or do they just stay in those cells until they are summoned? ALL OF THIS could be explored. And worse comes to worse, I could do a few creature designs myself.
I could do the “crazy Muppet headed creature who asks if he is pretty”:
Only the truest of true Whedon fans will know why a Muppet is a perfect homage.
Or we could go with “I wear stuffed animals cuz I have no skin” monster:
You guys really don’t need to comment and tell me these suck, I already know.
Hell, we could even go with my “I am a baby with a cleft pallet and a penchant for killing” mask I made one night.
My girlfriend is still slightly unsettled that this hangs on the wall in my office.
Or maybe, if we’re really desperate, we could use my”scribbly-pen-burnt-monster-with-organs-on-the-outside” thingy.
Actually, I will leave the creature design to professionals.
My terrible art aside, I believe I made my point.
The myths and monsters you would both pull from, and create for this world, would be unrivaled. We can even mess with some urban legends, think Bloody Mary and Slenderman. You could even do an episode playing off certain TYPES of monsters. What about an episode where we have a standoff between movie slashers, like Jason, Freddy, and Michael Myers? How about an episode where the whole thing backfires, and employees get stuck in the simulation? I think you are all starting to see the potential scope for this project. Which leads us to…
Where It All Ends
If I learned one thing from watching LOST, it is you NEVER start an epic story, if you don’t have an epic ending. So what if I told you I had an idea for a way in which this WHOLE universe could come together and wrap itself up perfectly? And what if I told you that it would be perfectly fitting with the whole story, and would honestly do Joss and Drew Goddard proud? If you guys know Joss and are familiar with his material, you know, he doesn’t always end things the way we want him to, but he ends things in very memorable fashion none the less.
The stoner ends up being the hero, specifically BECAUSE of pot? Yes, that was awesome.
I know you are all sitting here, waiting for me to tell you how I would end the show (or comic, or book, or whatever this ends up never becoming) but I won’t do that. Let’s say, on the off chance, someone with some clout reads this, and this thing has the potential to happen? If I put the amazing summary of the show in my pitch that I published, everyone knows what is going to happen, and no one will be invested.
I can give you a hint,though.
Only fans of the show St. Elsewhere will understand this reference, but they will immediately understand how perfect it is.
So you see, this really is a perfect fit. I have it all mapped out in my head, I just need to get this into the hands Josh Whedon now. Speaking of which, remember how you said that your sister works that one guy who used to go the gym with that person who was in the fourth grade with Joss Whedon’s cousin? Yeah, you think you could forward this to them?
If not, no worries. Truth be told, whole article was a simulation to see how you guys would REALLY react to this article in the real word, if I ever choose to write it.
I think I would have kept the two way mirror, and kept my mouth shut. I know, I am a deviant like that.
By the way, if you guys liked this insane pitch, there are many more insane REMblings (wow, I just made that up, that was bad, sorry) over at my site, Better Than Bacon, so dip over and show some love if you have a minute or two.