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Maybe it’s a belated reaction to Halloween being canceled five months ago, or maybe it’s just me, but for some reason the internet has been even more troubling than usual over the past week. There were ominous stories on the news, a terrifying viral video and the singular horror of being so old you can’t even understand what a celebrity is. So, let’s dig for the creepy ones right away.

Illustration for article titled The Adult's Guide to Child Culture: Flirting With Death on TikTok

In disturbing news this week: Haunted train, surprise skull and a real candyman

I don’t have time to sit by the fucking campfire, but I still enjoy telling ghost stories. Here’s a trio of macabre stories told by creepy children. The first takes place at the notoriously haunted Cecil Hotel in LA, where Elisa Lam met her terrible end of 2013 in a water tank on the roof. Internet ghoul Khris Star recently visited the Cecil on a ghost hunt and stayed there Elisa Lam’s room, saw that famous elevator opening by itself, heard a voice saying Lam’s name, and posted videos on her TikTok to prove it. *

Our second scary story comes from YouTube, where UK paranormal investigators and urban researchers Danny and Felicity Duffy were looking for the supernatural in an abandoned pub in the woods. Contrary to most mystical inquiries, they actually found something scary – but it wasn’t Haunted, Ghost, Will-o-the-Whisp, or CHUD. It was a actual corpse!

“It’s as real as it gets,” says Danny on his YouTube video while holding up a stranger’s skull. “That’s someone’s head. I’m not joking right now. “The couple called the Manchester police who were quick to investigate. The cops don’t know how long the skull has been there or who it once belonged to, but hopefully answers will come soon.

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Our third scary story is the scariest of them all. It started last week in New York City when TikToker Samantha Hartsoe noticed a strange breeze behind the bathroom mirror in her apartment. She had to investigate, so she lifted the mirror off the wall and found a whole room beyond. I would have moved out immediately, but Hartsoe, who had never seen Candyman, Parasite, Crawlspace, Bad Ronald, or really any horror movie, climbed through the hole and found an entire unfinished apartment. Fortunately, the deformed cannibals who live behind her bathroom mirror were outside for the night so Hartsoe got away with her life. You can check out the entire four part saga on Hartsoes TikTok.

* Ghosts are not real and nothing happens after you die.

Celebrities You’ve Never Heard Of: The Weird World of CodeMiko

When I fell into CodeMiko’s rabbit hole, I felt like I’d wandered away from Grampa Simpson’s retirement home and into a distant future where nothing makes sense and I have an onion on my belt. CodeMiko is a “virtual streamer” on Twitch, a 3D digital avatar who dives into a video game-style world, chatting with fans, and doing live interviews with other streamers and the occasional mainstream celebrity. She’s not the first to do this – that’s probably Max Headroom – but CodeMiko is taking the VTube genre in a new and meta-direction.

First, there is the fan interactions. For a little money, her fans can change CodeMiko’s environment in real time in chat rooms – flash messages on her chest, blow things up in her room, and even murder her with an atomic bomb – while she showered her guest with rapid fire, bat – crazy interview questions.

To add another layer to the craziness, there is “The Technician,” who is reputed to be CodeMiko’s creator, the woman who codes Miko’s world and dons a motion capture suit to portray it. Unlike most VTubers, CodeMiko makes no secret of their “real” identity and publishes frequent, informal videos that step through the fourth wall and show you how the virtual sausage is made … if you believe what the technician says, of course .

It seems sincere enough, but the whole thing is so recursive and postmodern that I don’t trust any of it is more “real” than anything else. Overall, I don’t really know what to make of it other than it makes me feel incredibly old. But Give it a try if you want to look into the futurebut do it quickly. CodeMiko’s aggressive style could have her banned from Twitch … unless that’s part of the plot, too.

Illustration for article titled The Adult's Guide to Child Culture: Flirting With Death on TikTok

Viral Video of the Week: Teaching Jake about the Camcorder, January ’97

The videographer and actor Brian David Gilbert has sporadically published clever, engaging videos on YouTube for the past four years. He has a fan base of nearly a million subscribers with semi-absurd comedy videos like “Buy my bed” and “Let’s get good at darts, ”But lately Gilbert has turned to darkness and horror. His latest video, “Teach Jake about the camcorder, Jan ’97” is a horror film told in a single shot by a camcorder from the 1990s. Measured by the number of people who share it, this story of grief, existential terror, and outdated technology resonates with people in a viral way. I don’t want to spoil it with a description, but if you love storytelling this is for you.

This Week In Movies: ‘Space Jam: New Legacy’ Details Revealed

Weekly entertainment has released tons of details about the long awaited sequel to Space Jam: New Legacy. The follow-up to the 1997 hit Space Jam stars basketball stars LeBron James and Don Cheadle, as well as the entire collection of Looney Tunes favorites like Bugs Bunny and Daffy Duck.

Whether James can fill Space Jam star Michael Jordan’s sneakers is an open question, but the sequel seems at least one of a kind. James is drawn into the virtual world of Warner Brothers servers, where he interacts with WB intellectual property such as Wonder Woman, Mad Max and Casablanca. There will also be a climatic basketball game against strange cartoon monsters, bet on it.

The movie hits theaters and HBO Max on July 16, but you should see it on the big screen when it’s safe around you. It may be too much to expect the magic of Space Jam to repeat itself, but seeing LeBron Dunk on cartoon monsters should be seen in as large a format as possible … and I haven’t been in a movie in a year, so definitely i hope to leave my house for this one.