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An attempt to fulfill a ReQuest


Tribe Twelve is one of many mockumentary-style horror video webseries that revolves around everyone's favorite creepypasta character and artificial urban legend, Slender Man. It was created by Adam Rosner and can be found on YouTube Here, with fan wiki here.

The Plot

Noah Maxwell was a regular high schooler working on a class project on the Twelve Tribes of Israel-- hence the title of the channel. However, before he could actually upload any of it, the teacher canceled the project. Shortly after, his cousin and close friend Milo Asher dies of an apparent suicide via drug overdose. Struggling with grief, Noah decides to turn the YouTube channel into a memorial page and upload all the videos of him and Milo. However, as Noah rewatches the videos, he starts to notice strange things about them that he hadn't noticed during filming. Things like how Milo is acting more and more erratic as the tapes progress, as if he's seeing something Noah couldn't. Like how there are some videos Noah has no memory of being in. Like how there's a lot of strange distortion, and a. . . man following them? A man in a suit who appears not to have a face, and seems to be far taller than a man should be. . .

Thus begins the story of Noah Maxwell digging into his family's past and trying to find the connection between Milo's apparent suicide, his grandfather's monster sightings in World War 2 and the journal he found there, the madness of Milo's mother Mary Asher, and the strange man in the videos. Unfortunately, as he delves deeper and deeper into the mysteries, someone calling himself the Observer begins tormenting Noah-- leaving him strange messages and strange packages, hacking into his twitter and YouTube channels, a little light kidnapping and assault. Like Milo before him, Noah begins compulsively recording himself, starts coughing uncontrollably, and starts being followed by a mysterious tall man who is aided by a group of equally strange individuals calling themselves "The Collective".

What starts as a story about Noah trying to uncover the truth about Milo's suicide and find the connection between Milo's family and Slender Man turns into a tale about cultists, time travel, demonic possession, and alternate dimensions.

The Rest

Like other webseries in the Slender Man mythos, the main story is hosted on YouTube with side-information spread throughout twitter, formspring, and other social media websites as characters interact with one another in an ARG style of storytelling. It's not nearly as spread out as some others-- Everyman HYBRID is notorious for needing an extensive guide to keep up with, for example-- but it still requires a bit of site-hopping if you want every bit of content. However, the wiki's episode guides do a good job of summing up any callbacks, split-second clues, and other details that are not immediately recognizable in the main show.

When the series first started, it was criticized for following the lead of Marble Hornets; the setup of Tribe Twelve was very similar to that of the other Slender Man vlog-horror series, and the first few episodes are unremarkable. However, the series eventually found its own voice and became one of the stand out Slender Man series thanks to the quality of video editing and the emergent story arc.

Tribe Twelve has since done several crossovers with other notable Slender Man series, including Dark Harvest and Everyman HYBRID.

Why's it your favorite?

The first video of this series was published June of 2010. I probably didn't see it until around 2011, though I don't remember exactly when, or what video was the most recently released of the time.

Me and my BFF Megan had really gotten into the Slender Man mythos, mostly reading the short stories and blogs people wrote. The best ones were always the ARG-style ones where the blog entries were written as though it was all real, giving the narrative that extra layer of immersion. Megan was the one who went out looking for fiction to consume, I was just the one she shared her findings with, and I remember her hitting up the TvTropes recommendations list for Slender Man fiction.

Eventually, we found Marble Hornets, which was nice and mostly self-contained. We tried Everyman HYBRID at some point, but even back then, it was too convoluted to keep up with casually. The third one we tried was Tribe Twelve.

I don't know why we liked Tribe Twelve so much. We still liked Marble Hornets, too, but found ourselves more interested in Noah's struggle than Alex's. When Megan moved to the Nevada highlands, her house on top of a forested mountain, we made it a tradition of sorts to binge-watch the entire Tribe Twelve series whenever I would visit. Large, quiet house + spooky woods + seclusion + two giggly cowards = spooky fun. We would also try to go through Marble Hornets, and we had several false starts with Everyman HYBRID, but Tribe Twelve was our jam, even if it only updated once in a blue moon. if anything, that actually helped us make a tradition of it; usually by the time I visited, there would be one or two new episodes out, and so we'd have to go through the whole series in order to remember what the hell was going on and understand the new content. I have vivid memories of her at her computer desk, broadcasting the episode onto the large TV, me on the sofa chair, and her reading out episode trivia from some guide or other between episodes.

So, uh. I guess that's why. Tribe Twelve is my favorite internet myth-series-thing because it's pretty good in its own right, but it also reminds me of my friend.

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