The 13th Floor

Tara the Android Lives! Watch the Haunting Short BROADCAST SIGNAL INTRUSION

One of the earliest and most enduring viral mysteries (though it was “solved” many years ago) has ascended to classic status among the creepypasta community: “I Feel Fantastic,” a short video featuring a nightmarish mannequin-like robot known as “Tara the Android,” who is shown singing the surreal, synthesized title tune. [Read the full history of Tara here.]

Tara’s unsettling “performances” continue to resonate today — over a decade after “I Feel Fantastic” first surfaced — and the web is replete with Tara spinoff stories, fan art and music videos dedicated to her.

Tara also influenced the work of UK filmmakers Tim Woodall and Phil Drinkwater, who incorporated the essence of the chilling viral superstar into their short film BROADCAST SIGNAL INTRUSION.

Image Credit: BFI Network

Produced in partnership with Creative England and the British Film Institute, the short involves a film archivist (Rupert Hill) haunted by a recent tragedy, who becomes obsessed with a tape of a television broadcast interrupted by a pirate transmission depicting an extremely creepy moving mannequin — whose design the filmmakers based closely on Tara (though she’s not given a name here).

Image Credit: BFI Network

As a childhood sufferer of automatonophobia, I’ve since developed an obsession of my own with the concept of the “Uncanny Valley,” and the way the human brain may be hard-wired to respond with fear when faced with semi-realistic depictions of other human beings. BROADCAST taps into that innate phobia — and the effect is truly disturbing.

Image Credit: BFI Network

Woodall and Drinkwater intertwine this raw, primitive fear with the more complex emotion of grief — a powerful theme that drives classic horror films like THE CHANGELING, THE BABADOOK and many more. The result is a steady spiral into a nightmare world from which there may be no escape… not even through death itself.

Now you can watch BROADCAST SIGNAL INTRUSION right here: