In the horror movie aggregator, there have been a number of memorable visions used by famous fictional killers to stalk their prey. Halloween He is best known for using a modified William Shatner mask to make Michael Myers one of the most memorable pieces of the 1970s. Friday the thirteenth part three Giving Jason Voorhees an unforgettable visual identity, a hulking killer with a hockey mask, that lasted for decades. In the year 2023, evil gains a new face in the form of… a killer duck?
This is just one of the many strange things that separate Shipwreck, the new horror series is now streaming on Hulu, among others in the horror genre. Set aboard a luxury cruise ship, the show is a mix of horror and comedy as someone disguised as the ship’s cheerful duck mascot begins slaughtering staff and guests alike. At the same time, one of the workers, Jimmy Walsh (Oscar Kennedy), is trying to investigate his sister’s mysterious disappearance that happened months ago. Digital Trends I spoke to ShipwreckWriter and creator, Ryan J. Brown, on why he chose Duck to star in his show’s killer, why he hates the cruise ship industry, and how he instilled a comedic sensibility amid all the bloodshed.
Digital Trends: I only watched the first two episodes, but I had a lot of fun Shipwreck. It was so much fun. The show has, pardon the pun, a killer storyline: A brother tries to solve his sister’s disappearance on a luxury cruise ship while a mysterious killer dressed as a duck is killing people. How the hell did you come up with something like that?
And to me, the industry in which the show takes place is one of those dreaded industries that slip under the radar. Luxury cruise ships are exploitative and horrible and seem like the perfect setting for a horror story. So it started with the cruise ship and the duck came out because a lot of these cruise ships have mascots on board.
With the duck, bright and gleaming and smiling, I thought this was a perfect representation of a deceptively innocent company image. There is something sinister lurking under there. The funny thing is, the duck isn’t actually on the show much. He’s only in it for a few minutes here and there.
Sounds like you have experience working on a cruise ship because it informs a big part of why you’re doing the show.
Actually, no, I was lucky enough not to, but I know a lot of people who did and hated it. There was also at least four years of research done Shipwreckso I feel like I worked on a cruise ship.
After discovering the things I found out, I will never go back to them. There is a website called cruiseshipdeaths.com that tracks crimes, assaults, and deaths on older cruise ships. This was an essential source of information for me while researching the show. There’s all this hidden world going on on cruises that no one really knows about.
Shipwreck It’s gory, like any decent horror movie, but it’s also funny. This is a fine line to cross. How did you maintain that delicate tone? It’s really hard to make an effective and funny horror movie.
Yes, this is really difficult. You have to accept that horror and comedy are both very subjective. Everyone has a different idea of what is funny or scary. What unites them is the fact that you can explore uncomfortable truths through comedy and horror. I feel like they both exploit the same stress. Some of my favorite horror movies are dark comic.
You seem to be a huge fan of horror. One thing I liked about it Shipwreck is how it takes the normal horror tropes and kind of tweaks them a little bit. For example, instead of one last girl, Shipwreck He has one last son, Jimmy, played by Oscar Kennedy. Rather than being straight, he is a young out gay man. Can you tell me how you envisioned Jamie and why you chose Oscar for this role?
There’s a bunch of factors involved, I think. You write what you know, and I’m probably very similar to Jimmy, so that was my starting point. But I’ve also been very careful with everything I’m creating to have weird characters on the front and I don’t think we’ve really seen that in horror unless it’s in a very cryptic way. Gay characters are usually relegated to the lead or worse.
I think queer characters like Jamie make for really interesting heroes because they’ve had some kind of trauma in their past that makes them survivors. Jimmy has a great sense and understanding of fear and danger. Gays make really good heroes because we could smell danger in seconds because it was all we had to do.
What is your favorite murder taking place in it Shipwreck?
Oh, easy. This is a light spoiler, but in Episode VI, there’s a chainsaw death, which looks wild. You might be like, “How did they get to this point?” But yeah, there is a “chain saw in the face” death in Episode VI, which is probably my favorite. There is also a harpoon gun death in Episode III which is a close runner-up. Which one is yours? not in ShipwreckBut in previous horror films. Do you have a favourite?
Death of Rose McGowan Scream. Falling into a garage door and then crashing her head? harsh. You?
If I had to pick one, I think it would probably be the death of Casey Baker, Drew Barrymore’s character in Scream.
Yes. And again, that’s this great line, you know, we laugh with this person and we get to know her in a short amount of time and then we see her die in the most horrible way. You feel that loss, which is what all the great horror does to the audience.
All six episodes of Shipwreck Streaming now exclusively on Hulu.