R.L. Stine’s Goosebumps books spawned a ’90s television series and two feature films. Stine’s stories will soon make a return to the small screen.
I was in sixth grade when the first books in R.L. Stine’s best-selling Goosebumps series were published. This was long before I was allowed to rent R-rated horror fare, so I looked to books as an outlet to satiate my craving for the scary stuff.
Something I liked about Stine’s series was the eye-catching cover art that teased at the story inside: it was the lure that led many an eager kid down a dark narrative path. The perforated title on each cover was another neat touch; I often scratched at the literal “goosebumps” until the color flaked off.
Content aside, Goosebumps was made even more appealing by having numbered spines. As a result of this convention, the books became a “collect ’em all” phenomenon that lined up well on a shelf. (Sort of like the Criterion Collection, long before I had any idea what the Criterion Collection was.)
And enabling all of this was the Scholastic Book Club, a mini “book order” catalog that was a staple in many elementary-school classrooms. Stine seemed very aware of the cool factor of being able to pick up a scary book that met the Scholastic seal of approval. After all, he was once a kid, too.
Now, after a book series that spanned 235 tomes, a five-season TV show in the 1990s, and two successful feature films, Goosebumps is making its way back to the small screen.
According to Deadline :
"“Scholastic Entertainment…is teaming with Neal H. Moritz, producer of the Goosebumps and Goosebumps 2 films, and Sony Pictures TV, where Moritz’s Original Film is under a deal, to develop the series.”"
As was the case with many of the Goosebumps books, Stine took dark themes and wove them into something approachable for curious younger readers. The first book in the series, Welcome to Dead House, holds a special place in my memory, as it readied me for future viewings of haunted-house fare like The Amityville Horror and The Legend of Hell House.
It would be pretty neat if the series took a chronological approach to the adaptations, as the parents who grew up with the books could share them with their kids prior to watching.
Are you excited for a new Goosebumps TV series? What was your favorite book? Let us know in the comments.