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Amazon’s ‘Stranger Things’ competitor is from Sweden

You may not know the name, but you recognize the style of Swedish artist Simon Stålenhag immediately when you see him. He is an expert in what you might call dystopian realism, in which he crosses everyday scenes from rural Sweden in the 1980s with rock-hard sci-fi elements. Inspiring, they also found in Amazon . They have, according to Variety ordered a series based on that art for Amazon Prime Video.

Tales from the Loop

The series is called Tales From the Loop and is written by the maker of Legion. It starts as a basis with the stories that were developed in a (physical) roleplaying game by Stålenhag on Kickstarter. The artist describes this as stories from a fictional childhood. Does that sound familiar? Yes, that sounds exactly like Stranger Things, although the approach of Tales from the Loop will be more technological and have something less to do with demonic dimensions.

You may, however, assume that the approach will be largely the same. A group of teenagers in the Swedish countryside in the 1980s are confronted with all sorts of weird phenomena in the story of the game when a particle accelerator (called by the locals of Mälaröarna ‘The Loop’) gets a disturbance. Strange machines and weird creatures pop up, but how the Loop takes care of that and what can be done against all those strange things is not clear. Remarkably, it seems that the ‘foreign’ roots of the story will remain intact for the series, although during the writing process there may still be chosen for an alternative that takes place in the US.

Do not look for 2020

Assuming that the series is really just ordered you have to assume that we will not see this series before 2020. That means that Tales from the Loop, if everything goes well with the scenario and the casting, could go into production next year at its earliest. So it will take a while before Amazon Prime Video has this series off the ground. By that time Stranger Things already had a third season.

Although, perhaps the comparison is not entirely fair. Stålenhag’s artwork is fantastic and can be drawn much broader than a ‘four kids in a village in the’ 80s’ scenario where it now seems to go for the first season. If Amazon has found the right people to make the series, it could be very special.

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