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Arkham Horror, TV series


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#1 Gary Manning

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Posted 30 March 2013 - 09:59 AM

Hello all,

 

So its four days of Easter holidays here in South Africa/Johannesburg. Perfect for getting a few games of Arkham Horror underway, with a splash of Innsmouth, Kingport or Dunwich….. Had a good game yesterday with some friends. Over dinner we discussed the game, and all the 'what if's'…… One topic that was raised, and discussed at length was the need for an Arkham Horror TV Series. At first we thought a updated movie, but there are just so many potential stories, locations, characters, topics, etc, etc, so we thought an ongoing tv seies within the town of Arkham. The series would need:

 

1. good actors

2. a good director

3. a good writer

4. money/budget

5. money/budget

 

The idea is a good series, where each episode is a story within itself, possibly 60minutes long, with overlapping locations and characters from one week to the next, with visits to Dunwich, Kingsport and Innsmouth from time to time. A good director and writer so that its ensured a good series is created, capturing the true essence of the game and the mythos. unlike the tv series Eureka, that started with a bang, and soon went into the toilet (as with so many potentially good tv series…….). It made for interesting conversation. Tomorrow, its AH with Kingsport and Black Goat in the Woods…….. and more discussions……..

 

Let me know your thoughts on an Arkham Horror tv series…..

 

Yours thankfully

GM

 

 



#2 The Professor

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Posted 30 March 2013 - 11:00 AM

I love the idea…unfortunately, I'm not a director, actor, or someone with the funding to back this idea financially.  However, as someone who has run a successful Kickstarter Project, this may be something you want to consider.  Recently the fan base of a very popular show that went off the air has had the backing of several million dollars, so there's always a chance that many sould comitted to the same idea could make it happen.


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#3 The Professor

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Posted 30 March 2013 - 11:01 AM

Since I can't edit my post, I'll add it here…I'm a decent writer and currently working on two short stories for publication based on the game, using several of the characters from the game…based upon the actual games I played in the past.


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#4 Wolfgar

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Posted 03 April 2013 - 06:03 PM

The biggest problem is I have no idea who we get to play Deputy Dingby with Don Knotts dead.



#5 Dr.Faust

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Posted 04 July 2013 - 02:44 PM

If Tim Curry is not a character in the show, it will be doomed to failure from the start. Maybe Minh? BD

 

But all kidding aside (though yeah, Tim Curry should be involved in this show somehow), I don;t see why this doesn't have the potential to fall into the same group that made Buffy and Supernatural popular. Hell, give a little bit of sex appeal and you could probably get the True Blood crowd into it too.

 

The biggest issue would be like you said, casting and writing. The show could work like an anthology series, like Tales from the Crypt, and you could probably bring in a new director for each episode. Funding wouldn't be an issue since even people like Asylum (heh, ironic, no?) can make at least a relatively meh movie with a low budget.

 

So yeah, the thing that would make or break the show would be the casting and writing more than anything else. A lot of Lovecraft isn't what you see anyway but what you imagine, so you wouldn't need incredible visuals for monsters and the like--costuming and sets might be the money-dump.



#6 Wolfgar

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Posted 04 July 2013 - 03:11 PM

I figure for something like Arkham Horror specifically, we would follow around one set of characters per season, eventually culminating in a fight with the great old one in the climax.



#7 Kerrin2

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Posted 04 July 2013 - 05:03 PM

Guillermo del Toro for writer or director.
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#8 Dr.Faust

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Posted 04 July 2013 - 10:12 PM

I would say let him direct, but maybe co-write with someone else (Neil Gaiman anyone?) who is used to writing vignettes if that's the direction the show decides to go. If it's going to be like Wolfgar says, then yeah, let Guilmermo (or Gaimen) write it themselves. I would almost say go with Gaimen since he did such a great job with making the ideas of Ancient beings and the like much more realistic and far more human. Torro is excellent for atmosphere so perhaps let him run the visuals and Neil take the dialogue and writing?


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#9 Steve-O

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 07:31 AM

I'd love to see a TV show like this hit the airwaves, though I would prefer a show based on Lovecraft's work directly, rather than one based on this board game.  A minute difference, perhaps, but significant.

 

I'd also prefer the show as a series of short stories (in the style of Twilight Zone) rather than a serial with a continuous plot (ie: Buffy/Supernatural.)  Don't get me wrong, I love serials, I just think that the Lovecraftian setting plays better as a bunch of not-necessarily-connected short stories.  A few overlapping references and in-jokes might be cool, though.

 

Of course, making the show a series of short stories also means you aren't going to have any regular cast members.  At best you'll have a few recurring roles.  Tim Curry could totally do an Alfred Hitchcock-esque intro to each episode, though.


Edited by Steve-O, 06 July 2013 - 07:32 AM.

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#10 The Professor

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 08:38 AM

2nd that, Steve-O ~ a series of short vignettes much better than a long story arc over multiple seasons


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#11 Julia

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 10:17 AM

Aye, agreed. Definitely more interesting :)


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#12 Dr.Faust

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Posted 06 July 2013 - 05:44 PM

The main issues raised by this, as much as I agree, is that it's been done a bit and hasn't been too successful. Vignettes, for some reason, just aren't done well anymore--let's face it, their prime was in the black-and-white and radio era when folks were used to singular stories.  Hitchcock, Twilight Zone, Outer Limits and Tales from the Darkside all are fantastic but people, especially in America I think, prefer to have characters they can latch onto and grow with, rather than one-shot. It's kinda sad (but also good ) at the same time.



#13 Steve-O

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Posted 09 July 2013 - 08:02 PM

Hitchcock, Twilight Zone, Outer Limits and Tales from the Darkside all are fantastic but people, especially in America I think, prefer to have characters they can latch onto and grow with, rather than one-shot. It's kinda sad (but also good ) at the same time.

 

Maybe the Kids of Today ™ prefer long-running story arcs, and I can't say as I blame them for that.  I like story arcs, too.  Seriously, I'm all up in that game.  It doesn't mean that I can't enjoy a vignette format, too. 

 

I remember TV shows being mostly episodic when I was a teenager.  Even today, the predominance of "Last Week on Our Show" recaps at the beginning of each episode speaks to the short attention span of the viewers in North America (or at least to the perceived short attention span on the part of TV producers.)

 

However, I don't think you intended to start a debate about vignettes versus serials, and I don't particularly want to get embroiled in that either.  I'm just saying I don't think serials are all that entrenched in the American psyche that a well done vignette series couldn't hold its own in today's market.  More importantly, I feel that if you're going to take a shot at making a show like this, you should do it right.  It doesn't have to be popular to be worthwhile, and a proper Lovecraftian series should be in the vignette format, to heck with the ratings. =P



#14 Kerrin2

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Posted 09 July 2013 - 08:19 PM

I wouldn't mind having the same four-ish core characters throughout the series with each half season a complete investigative story from beginning to end. So two "investigations" or "stories" per season, kind of like novellas.

Edited by Kerrin2, 09 July 2013 - 08:19 PM.


#15 Manishtusu

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Posted 10 July 2013 - 04:54 AM

They could go halfway. Having the same core characters survive sane and alive for multiple seasons is unthinkable in a lovecraftian universe. Still, it wouldn't have to be vignette. Supernatural would be an example for a non-lovecraftian series (Why are those guys still sane anyway?), and I personally think that the style of GoT could come close - lots of characters; multiple lines running next to each other; characters have a tendency to die like flies; plus they have proper character development (if they manage to live long enough). Not to mention the slow and steady addition of fantasy elements, they just creep on you. But less nudity and more eldritch abominations of course! They have to win over 'the audiance' (that would be the *Kids of Today* :-) ) too for a decent budget. And a decent budget means great actors/actresses and nice CGI.



#16 Dr.Faust

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Posted 10 July 2013 - 12:01 PM

They could go halfway. Having the same core characters survive sane and alive for multiple seasons is unthinkable in a lovecraftian universe. Still, it wouldn't have to be vignette. Supernatural would be an example for a non-lovecraftian series (Why are those guys still sane anyway?), and I personally think that the style of GoT could come close - lots of characters; multiple lines running next to each other; characters have a tendency to die like flies; plus they have proper character development (if they manage to live long enough). Not to mention the slow and steady addition of fantasy elements, they just creep on you. But less nudity and more eldritch abominations of course! They have to win over 'the audiance' (that would be the *Kids of Today* :-) ) too for a decent budget. And a decent budget means great actors/actresses and nice CGI.

 

They're still sane because they're hot. XD If they were ugly, or wimpy, or scrawny, they'd be bonkers and around the bend by now. The laws of Hollywood top all, even Cthulhu.

 

And yeah, I like both formats. In fact, I LOVE vignettes better. I am just saying that, since nowadays everyone in Hollywood/TV are terrified of breaking the mold, they will go serial if it ever did happen.

 

But that begs the question--if we stuck with say, two investigators for half a season, who would you want first? Truth be told, I wouldn't mind seeing Roland and Rex as the first pair to work together--the intrepid but cursed reporter following on the heels of the no-nonsense federal agent. It's a standard plot for a common detective/crime show but with the Arkham twist!



#17 Chronicles

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Posted 10 July 2013 - 04:29 PM

HBO's "Carnivale" was set during the depression and dealt with the supernatural. Not quite Arkham Horror but it could be pretty creepy. The "traveling circus" format of the show let it deal with both episodic "monster of the week" type stories and an overarching story. I'd recommend checking it out (although it was cancelled after only 2 seasons and ends on a cliffhanger   :( )






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