The devil is getting some solid gigs lately. The Satanic panic that swept the U.S. through the ’80s seems to be gaining renewed media focus. Add that to the popularity of Stranger Things 4‘s beloved metalhead character Eddie Munson, and you can understand why Peacock, NBC’s streaming TV service, wants its own show that capitalizes on the era of devil hysteria and ’80s metal.
So it emerged on Friday (Aug. 5) that Peacock has greenlit a new series, actually called Hysteria!, set when America was covered in wide-sweeping but unfounded ritualistic abuse claims, as many religious groups tried to claim heavy metal was an evil influence.
The Hollywood Reporter said the show centers around a high school heavy metal band. “When their school’s beloved varsity quarterback disappears, the band members capitalize on their town’s sudden interest in the occult by building a reputation as a satanic metal band,” a synopsis says. “Until, that is, a bizarre series of murders, kidnappings and reported supernatural activity sparks a witch hunt that leads back to the group.”
NBCUniversal president Liza Katz remarked, “Our upcoming thriller series Hysteria! will explore the complex world of the Satanic panic, set amidst ‘80s nostalgia, mystery, heavy metal and an all-American setting.” It’s directed by John Francis Daley and Jonathan Goldstein (Dungeons & Dragons: Honor Among Thieves).
Satanic panic still exists in the U.S. In July, organizers of the Tennessee Metal Devastation Music Festival faced with the wrath of local residents who opposed the music they planned to bring there. Per WBBJ News, some wanted the festival canceled, worried over associations with the occult.
“There are a lot of deeply religious people in that town who feel like we are going to be opening a portal to hell, and summoning Satan, and corrupting their children, which is pretty funny because we’re all really nice people,” said Raven Moonla, co-owner of the promotion company behind the fest.
15 Artists Associated With Witchcraft, Satanism + the Occult
Below is a gallery of 15 prominent artists in the rock and metal world who have been associated with witchcraft, Satanism and the occult in one form or another. Some may seem obvious and others may completely take you by surprise.