The Slender Man (also known as Slenderman) is a fictional supernatural character that originated as a creepypasta Internet meme created by Something Awful forums user Eric Knudsen (also known as “Victor Surge”) in 2009. It is depicted as resembling a thin, unnaturally tall man with a blank and usually featureless face, wearing a black suit.
Stories of the Slender Man commonly feature him stalking, abducting or traumatizing people, particularly children.The Slender Man is not confined to a single narrative, but appears in many disparate works of fiction, typically composed online. Fiction relating to the Slender Man encompasses many media, including literature, art and video series such as Marble Hornets. Outside of online fiction, the Slender Man has had impact on popular culture, having been referenced in the video game Minecraft and generated video games of his own, such as Slender: The Eight Pages and Slender: The Arrival. – Wikipedia
Slender Man took the internet by storm, his story was shared by millions of people, each adding to his terrifying tale. Who is The Slender Man?
He was originally created on June 10, 2009 on a thread in the Something Awful Internet forum by poster Eric Knudsen, under the pseudonym “Victor Surge”. Something Awful hosted a Photoshop contest in which users were challenged to edit everyday photographs to appear paranormal. Eric uploaded two images to the thread. Although the other posts only included photographs, Eric went a step further adding a small amount of text to each image, giving them a back story and also naming his fictional character, Slender Man.
Slender man very quickly went viral as each person added their own part to the story in the form of fan art work, cosplay and short stories known as “creepypasta”: scary stories told in short snatches of easily copy-able text that spread from site to site.
A forum user named “Thoreau Up” created a folklore story set in 16th-century Germany, involving a character called Der Grossman, which was implied to be an early reference to the Slender Man. By adding a folklore story it confused some people to believe that the Slender Man could actually be real, adding to the impact that the fictional character had on people.
Because the Slender Man’s fictional “mythology” has evolved without an official “canon” for reference, his appearance, motives, habits, and abilities are not fixed, but change depending on the storyteller. He is most commonly described as very tall and thin with unnaturally long, tentacle-like arms (or merely tentacles), which he can extend to intimidate or capture prey. In most stories his face is white and featureless, but occasionally his face appears differently to anyone who sees it. He appears to be wearing a dark suit and tie. The Slender Man is often associated with the forest and/or abandoned locations and has the ability to teleport. Proximity to the Slender Man is often said to trigger a “Slender sickness”; a rapid onset of paranoia, nightmares and delusions accompanied by nosebleeds.
Early stories featured him targeting children or young adults. Some featured young adults driven insane or to act on his behalf, while others did not, and others claim that investigating the Slender Man will draw his attention. The web series Marble Hornets established the idea of proxies (humans who fall under the Slender Man’s influence) though initially they were simply violently insane, rather than puppets of the Slender Man. Marble Hornets also introduced the idea that the Slender Man could interfere with video and audio recordings, as well as the “Slender Man symbol”, which became a common trope of Slender fiction. Graphic violence and body horror are uncommon in the Slender Man mythos, with many narratives choosing to leave the fate of his victims obscure. Shira Chess notes that “It is important to note that few of the retellings identify exactly what kind of monster the Slender Man might be, and what his specific intentions are- these points all remain mysteriously and usefully vague.” – Wikipedia
The Slender Man stories were a good source of entertainment for a lot of people online and many Youtube videos were made about the fictional character. Some of them in the form or real documentaries, that if you didn’t know his origins could lead you to believe he is real. This could end up disastrous and in this case, it almost did.
In Waukesha, Wisconsin on the 31st of May, 2014, two 12 year old girls allegedly held down and stabbed a 12-year-old classmate 19 times. When questioned later by authorities, they reportedly claimed that they wished to commit a murder as a first step to becoming proxies for the Slender Man, having read about it online.
Morgan E. Geyser was allowed to have two friends over each year for her birthday. This year, she’d celebrate on May 30. That is the day she and Anissa E. Weier would try to kill their friend during a sleepover.
The girls believed that “Slender,” as Weier called him, lived in a mansion in the Nicolet National Forest in northern Wisconsin. The plan was to kill the victim and walk to Slender’s mansion. After school, Weier told police, she and Geyser went to Weier’s house, where she packed a backpack with clothes, granola bars, water bottles and a picture of her mother, father and siblings. She didn’t want to forget what her family looked like after leaving for Slender’s mansion.The girls then went to Geyser’s house. With Geyser’s father, they picked up their friend, Payton Leutner and they all went to Skateland. They came home around 9:30 p.m. and went to sleep in Geyser’s room.
Geyser and Weier originally had planned to commit the murder at 2 a.m. Saturday, they’d duct tape their victim’s mouth, stab her in the neck and pull the covers up to make it look like she was sleeping. Then they’d run.
But the plans changed after they’d been out rollerskating that night. Instead, they’d try to kill her in a bathroom at a nearby park the next morning, where Weier knew there was a drain in the floor for the blood to go down.
The next morning, Geyser’s mom said they could go and play in David’s Park, on S. East Avenue, just north of Les Paul Parkway. As they left, Geyser lifted up the left side of her white jacket; the knife was tucked in her waistband. They eventually ended up in the park bathroom where Weier planned to stab her friend. Once in the bathroom, Geyser handed Weier the knife, and she tried to restrain the victim, but Geyser had a “nervous breakdown” and Weier had to calm her down.
Weier then suggested they go for a walk, pointing out a wooded area near Rivera Drive and Big Bend Road. They could play hide and seek, distract the victim, then kill her. Geyser was the first “seeker,” and Weier and the victim hid. Weier told Payton where to hide and told her to lie facedown in the dirt. The girl refused so Weier then pushed her and sat on her, thinking Geyser could stab her. But Payton began to yell and complain that she couldn’t breathe. She was attracting attention, so Weier got off her.
Geyser gave Weier the knife, but Weier said she told Geyser she was too squeamish and gave it back.
Weier said that once Geyser got the knife back, she told Weier, “I’m not going to until you tell me to.” Weier said she started walking away from Geyser and then told her, “Go ballistic, go crazy.” Geyser said she would go ballistic, and Weier said, “Now.”
Weier said Geyser then tackled the victim and started stabbing her. Payton was screaming. Weier said when Geyser got off the victim, Payton screamed, “I hate you. I trusted you.”
Weier said Payton tried to walk toward the street but she was stumbling. They didn’t want anyone to see her, so Weier grabbed her arm and pulled her away from the street causing Payton to fall. Weier said the victim couldn’t breathe, see or walk. Weier told Payton to lie down and be quiet — she would lose blood more slowly. Weier told police she gave Payton those instructions so she wouldn’t draw attention to herself, and so she would die. Weier then told Payton they were going to get her help; but they never planned on actually doing so. They hoped she would die, and they would see Slender and know he existed. With the victim lying on the ground, they began to back away.
Later that day a bicyclist found Payton Leutner, lying on the sidewalk and covered in blood, with injuries to her arms, legs and torso. She had managed to crawl out of the woods, where the girls had stabbed and left her. She was rushed to a hospital, where she was in stable condition, but fighting for her life. A Waukesha County sheriff’s deputy found Geyser and Weier hours later, walking near I-94 in Waukesha. A knife with a five-inch blade was in Weier’s backpack and they were arrested.
Both suspects explained the stabbing to police referencing their dedication to Slender Man, the character they had discovered online. Weier told police that Slender Man is the “leader” of Creepypasta, and in the hierarchy of that world, one must kill to show dedication. She said that Geyser told her they should become “proxies” of Slender Man – a paranormal figure known for his ability to create tendrils from his fingers and back – and kill their friend to prove themselves worthy of him. Weier said she was surprised by Geyser’s suggestion, but also excited to prove skeptics wrong and show that Slender Man really did exist.
It was soon discovered that Morgan Geyser, like her father, suffers from schizophrenia, a serious mental condition. The two girls will be sentenced later this year.