Tomorrow during the mid-season finale of The Walking Dead, AMC is debuting a sneak peek of its next major foray into televised horror: The Terror. Based on Dan Simmons’ horror novel of the same name, the ten episode series will make landfall with a two-hour series premiere on March 26, but this weekend AMC is breaking the ice with a brief teaser trailer and some promotional images.
Based on true events, The Terror chronicles the lost 19th century expedition of Captain Sir John Franklin to chart the last remaining bits of the fabled Northwest Passage on two ships: the HMS Erebus and (the titular) HMS Terror. Both ships, Franklin, and the other 128 men on the expedition were lost, and it is in the historical gaps of this tragedy that Simmons builds a thrilling and horrific tale of mutilation, isolation, cannibalism, and the supernatural. It’s a tried and true method for creating chilling horror – filling in the uncharted territory of history’s unanswered questions in the mode of classic horror authors like Lovecraft and Hodgson. In fact, Simmons’ The Terror often feels like a northern companion to its Antarctic predecessor, At The Mountains of Madness.
The Terror is executive produced by Ridley Scott, who seems like a natural fit for a story that feels very White Squall meets Alien meets meticulous period drama. And judging from the footage in the trailer, we can expect to see a lot of ice, blood, boats, and dismemberment – all wrapped up in lavish sets and costumes. AMC has proven itself as a champion of both network horror and period pieces, thanks to the gory special effects on both Walking Dead series, and the production design on Mad Men, so while the terrors of the cold unknown Arctic may loom large, one thing is for certain: The Terror is set to fully realize the aesthetics of its source material.
The Terror premieres Monday, March 26 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on AMC.
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