We’re calling it. TV these days can be just as good as – if not better – than the movies, which opens up a massive dialogue. In previous decades, the notion that a movie was “made for TV” was something that felt a little insulting, and you might wince hearing that descriptor. Now, in the age of subscription services and binge-watching, the calibre of television shows across the board is massively improving. Horror is a genre which is not exempt from this, and it works for both the big and little screen.
The evolution of horror
The horror genre has always been about pushing boundaries, and as such, it’s not been “fixed”. When we’re seeing it attracting new audiences and working equally well for television as for movies, that’s because of its creative abilities to challenge its fans and thus to adapt to various sizes of screen. Lottoland’s article on the evolution of horror films is a great stroll down memory lane for those who don’t know much of the genre’s detailed history – taking us from the times of “silent stalkers” through to slashers and the blockbusters of the age.
The constant ability to change is what keeps horror on its toes, and horror is a product of its time. Some of the best horror movies remain the classics to this day – sure, the special effects don’t really hold up to those created in modern studios today but the writing, use of dramatic devices and psychological torture is timeless and keeps us gripped.
The changing nature of horror audiences
Now, we’re seeing that horror is increasingly appealing to younger audiences, and it’s more accessible, too. Arguably, anyone can watch anything they like at home, and of the 137 million Netflix subscribers out there, it’s definitely likely that many of them are younger, or that they perhaps haven’t been exposed to horror before. We’ve seen a successful reboot of the high-school show Sabrina The Teenage Witch, for example, which was rebranded as a gruesome horror-lite for teenagers and renamed The Chilling Adventures of Sabrina. Sure, it’s not the scariest thing in the world – but it’ll get fans from Gen Z curious for more.
We’re also seeing “fandoms” of shows increasing, too. It’s now more than possible to leave the realm of the passive viewer and to take your love of the genre with you wherever you go. The internet creates a hype and gives viewers plenty of talking points and other avenues to explore with a particular character or franchise that they love.
The most hyped crossovers of 2018
The recent news about The Walking Dead’s Rick Grimes is a classic example, highlighting audience’s involvement at its peak. The show, which is now in its eighth year, has had fans around the world completely gripped, and boy, did they get trolled! Apparently, the character wouldn’t be seen on screen again and yet – what do you know – there’s actually going to be a movie trilogy of Walking Dead spin-off movies. We sure can’t wait for that crossover!
Going back to our earlier point about Netflix, there have been some fantastic horror adaptations lately which have smoothly crossed over both classic and indie horror movies to the small screen, showing that crossovers can be done either way. Consider the show on everyone’s lips, The Haunting of Hill House. It has enjoyed immense popularity, and it’s based on both a novel (of the same name) and the 1999 movie called The Haunting starring Liam Neeson. Consider also the TV show Scream, which pays homage to the slasher movies it gets its name from (which we love by the way, here at Scream Horror mag, which you might be able to tell)!
The ability of this genre to “work” for big screen and small can only be a good thing when introducing more and more fans, and we’re excited for whichever crossovers come next.