This summer, AMC is bringing to life the epic tale of Vic McQueen and her discovery of a supernatural ability that puts her at odds with a very sinister force of evil. One that also bears supernatural gifts of his own. At SXSW in Austin, Texas, AMC premiered the pilot episode of NOS4A2 (review), giving fans and festival goers a tease of what’s to come. Showrunner Jami O’Brien, lead actors Ashleigh Cummings and Zachary Quinto, and executive producer Joe Hill stuck around after the premiere for a lengthy Q&A. Both the Q&A and premiere revealed some very key details about the series that makes this a must see this summer.
Joe Hill’s novel, NOS4A2, gave readers a new take on the vampire with Charlie Manx, an aged immortal who feeds off the souls of children, forever warping them into twisted shells of who they once were. From the comfort of his Rolls Royce Wraith, he and his child-victims slip in and out of the real world and onto hidden roads that lead to the menacing holiday themed space Manx calls Christmasland.
In the sprawling 692-page novel, readers are eventually given a map of just some of these hidden roads Manx uses to get to Christmasland undetected, and they feature some rather intriguing locations that give nods to other works by Hill and his prolific author dad, Stephen King. Notably, “Pennywise Circus” in Maine and “Lovecraft Keyhole” in Massachusetts, which means that the novel’s universe connects to Hill’s Locke & Key and Stephen King’s It. Both are in very close proximity to NOS4A2’s central location of Haverhill, Massachusetts.
While the pilot episode that premiered at SXSW kept most of Charlie Manx’s secrets hidden, to be parceled out over future episodes, it did feature that very same map from the novel. This means that the series, like its source material, exists in the same world. In the Q&A, though, it was revealed by O’Brien that the first season will only cover roughly a third of the novel’s epic story. It will take multiple seasons to deliver heroine Vic McQueen and Charlie Manx’s full journey.
Though Hill’s novel never really explores the other hidden locations, that they exist at all in a world filled with supernaturally gifted people means that the door is always open. And Locke & Key and It aren’t the only two King and Hill stories that share a universe with NOS4A2 either.
Tune in this summer for the premiere and look for Manx’s map that he pulls out on his way to Christmasland to find more Easter eggs in this shared universe.