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What is Slender Man?

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Quick Answer

Slender Man is a fictional supernatural villain depicted as a tall, faceless man in a black suit with long, extendable arms. He was created by Erik Knudsen during an online Photoshop contest to create creepy images. Slender Man has since appeared in many horror-themed stories, videos and computer games. The character inspired an attempted murder plot when two young girls mistook it for a real entity.

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The first video project to use the Slender Man character was the alternate reality game "Marble Hornets," an immersive storyline played out on Internet forums and through YouTube videos. The character's appearance in multiple seasons of the series increased its popularity, eventually leading the creators to announce plans for a feature film based on the property.

On May 31, 2014, two 12-year-old girls in Waukesha, Wis. attacked a classmate, stabbing her 19 times. After their arrest, they claimed that they had done it to appease Slender Man and become his disciples after discovering the character on the Internet. On Sept. 4, 2014, a 14-year-old girl in Port Richey, Fla. set her home on fire after reading a number of the online Slender Man stories, leading authorities to link the crime with the fictional character.

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