In recent weeks, the Merlina series has experienced a popularity boom on Netflix, and it is that the new story of Los Locos Addams, focused on the eldest daughter, has drawn deep attention among viewers not only for the character she plays, but by their excluded companions, among which are included the so-called faceless.
Merlina: The so-called excluded without a face
In the television universe of the production, there is a school for the excluded where all kinds of monsters can be found, called Nevermore Academy. Place where Wednesday Addams is sent after being expelled from a school for “normies”.
This academy houses the excluded from the town of Jericho. Where there are children with special abilities or who are some kind of monster.
As Enid Sinclair (played by Emma Myers) explains to Merlina when showing her around the school, that the school is divided into social groups. The one with the Fangs (vampires), Skins (werewolves), Dense or Smokers (gorgons) and Scales (mermaids and mermen).
But that’s not all, since you can also see faceless students, shapeshifters, psychics like Merlina and Xavier Thorpe and even monsters like Hyde.
Among the strangest monsters in Nevermore on Merlina, are the Faceless. Who could be based on the Slender Man.
The origin of this disturbing character, a monster with a thin complexion that has no face and wears a black suit, goes back to paranormal stories that have been on internet forums since 2009.
Who is Slender Man and how did the internet myth come about?
This was created in a Something Awful forum thread, in order to edit photographs to contain supernatural entities.
On June 10, 2009, a user by the name of Victor Surge (real name Erik Knudsen) contributed two photos taken in 1926 of groups of children, to which he added a tall, thin, ghostly figure dressed in a black suit and a dark tie without a face.
While these were just photographs, the netizen supplemented his with snippets of text and witnesses. Describing the kidnappings of the groups of children, and giving the character the name of Slenderman.
“We didn’t want to go, we didn’t want to kill them, but their persistent silence and outstretched arms horrified us and comforted us at the same time.” He captioned indicating that the year was 1926, and that the victim was presumed dead.
Meanwhile, the quote from the second photograph said the following. “One of two photographs recovered from the Stirling Library fire. Notable for being taken on the same day fourteen children went missing and we have seen a humanoid shaped demon known as the Slender Man. Deformities cited by officials as camera defects. Library fire occurred a week later. Actual photograph confiscated as evidence.”
While these posts were a work of fiction, other users expanded on the character. Adding your own visual or textual contributions.
In an interview with Know Your Meme (via Heavy), Eric Surge claims that he was inspired to create Slender Man by the legends of “the shadow people”, the writings of HP Lovecraft, Zack Parsons, and Stephen King (particularly the book The Mist), and the surrealism of William S. Burroughs.
This in order to “formulate something whose motivations can barely be understood, and that would cause concern and terror in the general population.” He also cited the tall man from the Phantasm film series as an inspiration.
Although it is not confirmed that this character directly inspired the so-called faceless merlinmany users on social networks caught their attention.