By Alex von Campe and Sean Bellefeuille, VI Form
CHOSEN: The TV Pitch Project Winner (A Contest in Mr. Camp’s Getting LOST VI Form Elective)
As an unknown disease ravages the world, outsiders fight to gain entry to the one safe place where the chosen people live.
A group of people is chosen to restart society, but they are unaware of this, and they are trapped in a never-ending underground system with no sunlight. Families of the missing people fight to find their loved ones and eventually find others in similar situations. They come close a couple of times, but soon, an incurable disease ravages the world. It dawns on the outsiders that they were deemed not worthy of restarting the human race. The people realize that their missing loved ones, the chosen ones, are in the only safe place on earth.
Society was struggling as a whole. Natural disasters were ravaging poor countries and levels of corruption were at its highest. Governments were struggling to support their citizens financially. The world was in need of hope, something or someone that could turn society around.
One day, a small number of people in the world woke up with a strange mark on their right hand. They were all from different countries and did not know each other. The mark was a strange symbol combining the letter “C” and the number “1”. The mark was jet black and could not be washed off. Later, that same day, each individual that had been marked fell into a deep sleep and could not be woken up. The next morning, all of these people were gone–they had disappeared. Families of the “Marked” rushed to police stations all over the world to report these disappearances. Soon information about the missing people spread all over the media and news.
Meanwhile, the “Marked” slowly regained consciousness and woke up in dark and rustic room. The main character is a man named Gabriel, and the story is told in his perspective for the most part. They were all strangers to each other and did not understand how they had gotten there. The environment in which they woke up was an ensemble of rooms and corridors. It was very gloomy, and there was no sign of natural light. After searching for others in the surrounding rooms, they find themselves in a group of around 40. None of the people had any idea why they were there or how they had gotten there. Upon further exploration, the Marked discovered a necessary amount of supplies for a rustic lifestyle.
While the missing people were getting accustomed to their new environment, their families were frantically searching for them everywhere. The authorities were struggling with these disappearances and had no leads. They did not believe the families when they said their missing family member had a strange mark on the right wrist. Gabe’s family in particular was involved in many verbal altercations with the authorities because they were not finding any leads and were beginning to lose interest in these disappearances.
In the underground system, a leader emerged. His name was Ken Jackson, and he took charge of administering jobs. He also organized small groups to explore the tunnels and the group grew to almost 50 as more and more people were found. Life underground was difficult and the Marked struggle to keep a positive attitude. Many of them found hope in talking with Gabriel, who kept his composure and was very optimistic about their situation. He did not fear the dark and the unknown and believed that they were there for a reason. He was not a very vocal leader but was caring and always there to listen.
The world on the outside was then taken aback as every living human on the planet woke up with a strange mark on their left wrist. Nobody knew what the symbol was or what it meant but they feared it, and this began a general panic throughout the world. This concern was amplified when a strange illness started to develop. It started near the mark. The skin around it would start to turn black and numb. This would continue to spread up the arm and the rest of the body. The body parts that had turned black could no longer be used and lost feeling. This disease killed humans limb by limb. It was not very painful but losing certain basic bodily functions soon became a problem that needed to be addressed quickly. It was not a disease that could be spread because every human had gotten it when receiving the mark. It spread quicker in some and symptoms sometimes only appeared later, which made it very difficult to analyze scientifically. Epidemiology specialists throughout the world tried their best to find a vaccine without luck. The families of the missing people with the “C1” mark began to think that maybe they were chosen to live and that was why they had not gotten what was now called the “Mark of Death.”
As the disease continued to spread in the real world, the “Chosen” or “Marked” roamed corridors oblivious as to what was happening on the outside. Their morale was low and they were losing hope. Their group had reached 47 and they had mastered basic survival skills in the system. The group continued looking for other C1s and figured there were only 50 of them. Much to their surprise they found 4 more of the Chosen, a total of 51. This was a pivotal point as the group had to decide whether they would venture deeper into the system to attempt to find others despite the assumed danger. Ken was frightened by the depths of the system and thought it was too risky. It was at this moment that Gabe, who had been quiet for the majority of the time and only observed, stepped up. He seemed to have a special connection with the system and believed they had been brought there for a good reason. He decided to lead the search parties and had a lot of support from his fellow C1s.
Death slowly progressed through the world. Patterns were noticed in the path of the disease. It was amplified in South America and seemed to be concentrated around the Amazon Rainforest. It was believed to be the source of the disease and was inspected by many scientists. Upon further investigation it was discovered that the disease progressed and spread quickly around the rainforest, but there was some source of life that was coming from underground that had not been hit by the disease. Panic spread through the world as the population learned about this possible safe zone. People from different countries travelled to Brazil to explore the rainforest but nobody was able to get into the underground system where the Chosen resided.
There was one little girl that was a Brazil native that did not have the mark of death. She was a C1 but kept it hidden, fearing the repercussions that would happen if someone found out. Her mom became very ill and in her last words she told Eva to go to the rainforest and find the safe zone. Through pain and determination, the little girl explored the jungle and ultimately found a giant door. Little did she know, she was the last human alive on the planet and when she swung the door open, 99 other humans, of all races and ages, ran outside: together, all 100 of them, were the ones chosen to recreate society. They were the C1s.
Gabriel wakes up with a mysterious mark on his forearm, resembling the characters “C1.” He starts to freak out and his family becomes worried, but soon after, he disappears. Gabe regains consciousness and wakes up in a dark room he has never visited before. He starts wandering around the dimly lit corridors and encounters other people with identical marks on their forearms. After a couple of hours, 40 or so people have been found, none of whom have any idea how they got to where they are or why they are there.
Back in the normal world, Gabe’s family goes to the authorities with his absence. An investigation begins, but little is found, and no one else believes the story of the strange mark ever being there. They go into a frenzy, but settle down when they realize there is no hope. Or at least not yet…
In the system of corridors and rooms, the group marches farther through them, discovering more and more people but never any windows or exits. All of the rooms and hallways seem to be of random design as if they were all made separately and then pieced together. They theorize about the marks and this place in which they now realize they are trapped. Answers range from being dead to being kidnapped in order to conduct social experiments. Paranoia also climbs as the members realize they have no idea who these other people are and if one of them is a mole. A key moment would be when a character enters a room that he recognizes from his childhood. It would scare him, but he would try to remain calm and not alert anyone. The reason for this room being there would not be explained, but rather left to the interpretation of the viewers.
About halfway through season one (potentially a mid-season finale plot twist), Gabe’s family, while researching online about his disappearance, finds postings from another family describing what happened to their loved one as almost identical to what happened to Gabe. His family contacts this other family, and together they start a chain of events that would change everything. More and more families come forward online about what happened to their spouse, child, parent, or sibling, thus starting a network of people looking for the same place.
Back in the underground, the group has expanded to almost 50. They have found food in kitchens and storage-type rooms, but still no sign of any access to the outside world. Survival has finally kicked in as the primary objective over escaping, as every attempt to leave has just resulted in more and more random assortments of windowless rooms and hallways. More and more character development will be established through flashbacks to the C1s’ previous lives. These flashbacks will depict what type of people they are.
As the season draws to an end, the major plot twist and season finale cliffhanger appears. Every single living human in the world (minus the C1s in the underground) develops an interesting mark on their left forearm resembling something like an ankh with a cross through it. A day goes by and the world has gone into a complete frenzy, because, with no one to point fingers at, the world is left helpless. The catastrophe takes a dark turn when everyone starts to feel ill and the mark is labeled as the “Mark of Death.” Widespread crime, looting, and general wrongdoing consume the world, bringing out the worst of humanity. Meanwhile, in the underground, the C1s still believe themselves to be the unfortunate ones.
At the beginning of season two, the disease still runs rampant, taking its toll but not killing anyone. Or at least not yet. Scientists all over the world are conducting experiments and test to determine the cause of this disease. They do this in hopes of finding a cure, but there is no end to the disease . About a month goes by and a new study appears with some troubling information. It seems that the worst of the disease is concentrated in South America. The researchers create a map of the world that shows where the worst concentrations of the symptoms are found. The most heavily affected area is in Brazil around the Amazon Rain Forest. People interpret this information in varying ways but one main theory prevails: this is where the source lies.
The C1s continue their journey through the underground, searching for a way out. All the while, episodes focus on specific characters, showing who they were and why they qualify to be a chosen one. Various tasks and dilemmas will test these characters as they pass through the underground, proving them worthy. As a midway season finale (season 2), Nico, a C1 with a reputation of being quiet, nerdy, and smart, realizes something of massive importance to the group. When compared to the overall percentages of race and gender in the world, their group comes pretty close. The group starts thinking about this and eventually determines it cannot be just a coincidence. They perform a census but something troubling comes up. With 47 people in their group, they realize that they are missing three. If they can find one Asian female, one Caucasian male, and one Latino female, their group of 50 would be a perfect representation of the world based on gender and race. With this in mind, the group, under the direction of their leader, hurries to find the missing people.
Out in the main world, it has become generally accepted that whatever this problem is, it is coming from Brazil. In a desperate move, the Brazilian government, at first adamant to not let other countries interfere, relinquishes their ban and gives all their power and resources to scientists and researchers in order to find the problem. With the sickness worsening little by little everyday, the scientists and researchers struggle to operate at their maximum ability, but they push forward into the field. A specialized team of surveyors is called upon to find the source. Seeing as nothing is found above ground, they focus their search efforts on whatever may be below. Initial scans reveal unidentified pockets deep below the surface. Further investigation reveals that they go miles in any direction, with no end in sight.
36 hours pass and the group has found two other people; the Asian women and the Caucasian male. The group is excited at the notion of finding the last person and continues to search, but they get a big surprise when they find two people together. Neither is a Latina female–one being an African man, the other a Caucasian female. The group is a little uneasy and perplexed, and they make the newcomers feel slightly unwelcome. Ideas and thoughts are thrown out, most of them revolving around the stats just being a coincidence. A few minutes later, Gabe chimes in, saying, “Maybe there’s supposed to be more than 50. Maybe there’s 100, and we’re not the only group down here.” This idea resonates with the group, although most of them are mildly frightened by the notion. The group rests, and then the search continues, concluding the second season.
Season 3 starts with a flashback to the day the chosen ones woke up with a mark. We see a quaint Spanish village and watch as a young innocent-looking girl named Eva, maybe six or seven, goes up to her mother’s bed and shows her the new mark on her forearm: C1. The mother, clearly worried, tries to act normal and not scare her child, even though she believes it is a curse. Concerned not only for her daughter, but for her family’s name and reputation, she decides to keep her daughter’s mark a secret. Flash forward to the disease outbreak. As everyone goes into panic mode, the little girl’s family, especially her mother, strive to keep her safe, as they realize now she is the only one that is immune to the disease.
While the group welcomes the two new members, some hopeful information is revealed. The African man says that they were with another group at one point, about ten people, but got separated. He explains that retracing your steps is almost impossible in this place, and he does not know why. With no way to tell direction, the group just pushes forward, hoping that they will come in contact with more people. Throughout their time in this place, everyone has noticed a distinct lack of staircases, so when the group stumbles upon one, they are not sure at first what to do because they have never needed to make this kind of decision. They decide to go up on the assumption that they are currently underground and that going up will lead to their salvation.
More general panic and confusion sweeps the world as the disease worsens. Millions have died already and many others are deathly ill. Reports on the world flood what is left of television and news. Many pray for themselves and their family, and many try to make the best out of the little time they have left. Unfortunately, there is still a large number of people taking advantage of the situation and trying to benefit themselves in any way possible. People rarely feel safe in this apocalyptic culture. Leaving the home often results in unnecessary conflict and stolen goods. In addition to all this, many people from around the world have flocked to Brazil in attempt to find the origin, as it is now being called. They search and dig but all efforts prove futile.
Back in Eva’s village, Eva tries to help everyone she can. With her marked covered, she trots down back alleys, doling out food and aid to those in need. She is later discovered by her mother and quickly ushered inside. A conversation ensues, consisting of her mother explaining that she is important and therefore needs to stay safe. Eva reacts by saying that because she is able to, she shouldn’t be doing anything else.
The group down below continues their exploration. While on their way, they find a door. Normally this would mean nothing but they haven’t encountered any doors down there before. All the rooms and hallways were just connected. After attempting to open it, they realize it is likely impossible without a key. They decide to keep pushing through as the door can do little for them right now. After overcoming some difficult obstacles, they come into contact with more people. They say they can lead them back to the main group. At this point both groups had realized the proportions of people and considered there being more. The small group, maybe three of four people, follows a long strand of string, ribbon, and cloth tied together to find the rest of their people. They had remained stationary, only sending out patrols with ropes to find their way back. Awkward greetings ensue as the groups get to know each other. The first order of business is to take a full census. Everyone is surprised when they hear the total number of people is 99. Although no rule ever said that there had to be 100 people, they all assume this means that one person is still missing. It should be a Latina female. The first group’s leader also informs the rest of them that they had found stairs, and that they think if they keep finding more and going up, they could eventually escape.
The world is in ruins. Most people that are left consider the apocalypse near complete, with only their lives separating the world from a total post-apocalyptic state. We see Eva standing next to her mother on her deathbed. As she dies, Eva grows immensely sorrowful, especially considering she is now the last one alive in her village. With no guidance or reason for anything, she wanders out of the village toward the jungle.
The race is on underground. The large group quickly searches everywhere they can for a staircase. They find two more, but soon realize their search efforts do little. They have spent hours searching with minimal reward, and now everyone is tired and hungry. Unknown to them, up in the real world, the last disease survivor slowly drifts away, his life being the last one claimed by the horrific plague. At this moment, when the group sees no reason to go on, the lights go off. Stranded in almost complete darkness, the group is worried. Then, as their eyes slowly adjust, Gabe sees a small sliver of light peeking through one of the doorways. He tells them to look at it and then he takes off, chasing the light. The others follow easily as this is the only light in the entire system now. A couple minutes later the group finds themselves at the door they had encountered before. After trying the handle again, the door swings open easily. Now at the bottom of a long and wide staircase, they see the light clearly coming from the top. With nowhere else to go, they start climbing.
Out in the world, Eva is running through the jungle. The landscape is beautiful, appearing untouched by human hands. She keeps running until she finds a door sticking out of the ground rather awkwardly. Perplexed, she slows and approaches the door with caution. She steps forward, grabs the handle, and turns.
Cut to the group sprinting up the stairs. They are nearing the top, only twenty or thirty feet away when a door at the top swings open. They are all startled. Before them stands a young Latina girl, maybe six or seven, dressed in white. “Hola, me llamo Eva. Soy el último persona viva.” This translates to, “Hi, my name is Eve. I am the last living person.” Of course she meant in her village but her mistake is actually more accurate. Gabe steps forward to inspect her arm and finds the same symbol there. They are finally free. The group basks in the sunlight and the beautiful nature around them as they realize that this young, innocent girl has led them to their salvation. They do not know it yet, but she has also led them into the new world. End series.
Gabriel Fletcher: Main character, rather quiet, keeps to himself, has a religious background, wears a cross, is the only person who thinks that the group is down there for a reason.
Ken Jackson: Strong man, tall and bulky, handsome, outgoing, American, has a background in the sciences.
Lauren Fletcher: Wife of Gabriel, strong-willed, passionate, spends the show searching for Gabriel
Stacey Martin: Attractive girl, blonde, not very smart, uses her looks to get what she wants
Nico Aminev: A nerdy Russian man in his 40s, quiet, smart, scrawny.
Enrico Palermo: Italian man in 20s, talkative, provocative, generally annoying but kind-hearted
Dualism: life and death, the chosen vs. the sick, light vs. dark, Gabe vs. Ken
Isolation: feeling of being trapped, nowhere specific to go, no friends or family
Leadership: as shown by Ken, Gabe, and the leaders of the world during the disease outbreak
Family/Love: families of missing people searching desperately love between Lauren and Gabe, family developed between the C1s
Fear: facing your worst nightmares, fear of dark spaces, claustrophobia
Darkness: seen in the underground physically, also representative of the force killing all humans