MTV is apparently developing a new series called The Experiment that will be shot in the style of The Blair Witch Project and the Paranormal Activity franchise, incorporating the scary, creepy element of found footage. I'd turn my nose up at this idea if I didn't think it was so groovy -- if it was executed well.
For those of you keeping score, NBC will attempt to revive the '90s through sitcoms, MTV will do it with horror. Advantage: MTV. I never thought that would happen.
While there isn't a wealth of information out about this show yet -- besides it being produced by Paranormal Activity's Jason Blum and based on a story by Brian Horiuchi (Terminal D) and Miguel Sapochnik (House, Fringe) -- I think it's fair to have some hope for another potentially good horror-themed TV show. We have The Walking Dead on AMC, True Blood on HBO, and while TV is no stranger to the supernatural, more legitimately scary content is always welcome. And the found-footage premise can be extra, extra creepy, especially when done just right. (Admit it: even if you didn't like everything about the Paranormal Activity movies, at least some of those scenes gave you the creepin' heebie-jeebies.)
My main concern with a show like this would be keeping the premise fresh on a weekly basis, unless we're talking about a short, six-week series that won't wear out its welcome. Then again, we don't even know what the titular "experiment" is yet; The Hollywood Reporter is also calling it a "mystery" series, so it could be broader than just horror. Back in the '90s, The X-Files provided its viewers all kinds of stories that kept them awake at night, whether it was about the extra-terrestrial or the supernatural. And for most of its nine-season run, it was very effective. With a name like The Experiment, there might be another opportunity for such a unique show, taking on a different element of horror and ghosties and beasties every week. (Gahhhh, this could be awesome.)
It's a big leap of faith, but I will be pretty disappointed if this isn't good. Like if MTV goes with pretty young things as a cast and not a bunch of science-loving nerds, or goes the teen romance-Twilight route like it did with Teen Wolf (which was supposed to be about sunshine and basketball and van-surfing). Come on, MTV. You're the channel that brought us Beavis and Butthead. Don't let me down.
MTV developing 'Paranormal Activity'-style drama [The Hollywood Reporter]
When she isn't nerding out that the holidays are coming, Jamie is a reader at Monday Night Fan Fiction at Fontana's in Chinatown, NYC (next date: TBA, 7:00 PM). All work is original, written by the readers, so if you have a brilliant fanfic idea stuck in your head, send it via Twitter: @jamielikesthis