Often the most bone-chilling horror stories are derived from tales of average people having to cope with extraordinary circumstances.
Capitalizing on this fact is what has helped make Stephen King one of the world's most successful authors.
Director Scott Klein has followed suit with his creation Haywire: The Series. The result is a very unsettling tale of a suburban community gone mad.
This project has a very unique and compelling premise: one bright, sunny Saturday afternoon in the city of Monroe, NY, an explosion of brilliant light occurs high in the sky.
Everyone who witnesses this strange phenomenon immediately suffers a horrible side effect: their minds becomes acutely fixated on the last task they were involved with.
No matter how routine or mundane the task is (walking the dog, mowing the grass, jogging, etc.), the victims are compelled to perform it over and over.
What's even more bizarre? Those affected will become homicidal with anyone who attempts to interfere.
Those unaffected by the light phenomenon must deal with a world gone completely "Haywire."
The series follows various groups of survivors as they attempt to navigate their new, terrifying existence.
A Disturbing Vision Well Executed
I found the compelling premise to be the chief selling point of this series. Director/Series Creator/Executive Producer Scott Klein has constructed almost every episode to end with a mini-cliffhanger, which gives the project a sense of forward momentum.
The acting is often wildly uneven, with some performers far more convincing than others. But as a whole, the cast succeed in conveying a sense of disorientation, paranoia, and fear essential in selling the central premise.
The makeup effects for the victims, or "raccoons" as they are referred in the series, is minimal yet very effective in serving as a visual cue for their madness.
Another production highlight is the use of comic book inspired artwork for the fantastic opening title sequence.
Haywire: The Series is an independent production of the Lights Out! Film Group.
So far, two seasons have been completed - 19 episodes in total. This alone is quite an achievement for a sci fi web series produced with a limited budget.
I enjoyed this ambitious series, and want to continue to explore the mysteries presented. My hope is there will be more episodes produced so the journey can continue.
Below are two series previews:
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