Goosebumps was a huge hit in the 90s but as the years went by the franchise started to slow down a bit and to re-energize it the original run ended and was immediately replaced by Goosebumps Series 2000 which sparked a bit more interest into the series though the trend of Goosebumps slowing down as their original target audience kept growing up. Still, Scholastic had no intention of letting go and they had planned for a new series to take over Series 2000 in October 2001 with Goosebumps Gold.
R.L. Stine’s contract was ending and Scholastic was in a legal dispute over Goosebumps with Parachute Press, add to that the declining sales and the scheduled Goosebumps Gold series was cancelled and not seen again for a few years. But what exactly was Goosebumps Gold going to be like? Besides a few press releases what we mostly have to go by is the artwork of the first two books as well as the title for the third from Tim Jacobus’ website.
Goosebumps Series 2000 was likely going to continue until September as Goosebumps published monthly even when it made the switch to series 2000. So because of this R.L. Stine was likely still writing the other Goosebumps Series 2000 books and Goosebumps Gold weren’t exactly written yet though they may have been outlined according to R.L. Stine and artwork done since they would need to market these ahead of time than normal since it was a new series. The logo made for it took a very different direction looking very 90s and without any creepy factor in it, the Gold moniker was also an odd choice for a scary books series.
Goosebumps Gold meant to tell sequel stories to the most popular Goosebumps books, which was a contrast to Goosebumps Series 2000 which mostly avoided telling sequel stories doing only 4 in its entire run. The titles that we know are The Haunted Mask Lives!, Happy Holidays from Dead House, and Slappy New Year. The Haunted Mask was easily one of the most popular titles and it only ever got one sequel book so this story would’ve had Carly Beth back along the famous Mask and while we’ve gotten other Haunted Mask sequels since then we’ll never know what this sequel story was. Welcome to Dead House was the first Goosebumps book and yet it never got a sequel, even with the newer series of books we’ve yet to see a sequel to it.
Slappy New Year came out many years later in the Horrorland series though R.L. Stine has mentioned this version had nothing to do with the Goosebumps Gold book. The Horrorland book series featured sequels to most of the most popular Goosebumps Books and was the first series of its revival so in a way you can say it was what they were planning with Goosebumps Gold if you take the overarching story parts of it. It would’ve been interesting to see the original Goosebumps Gold series though and see what books would’ve gotten sequels, some like Monster Blood were likely but as we saw with Dead House even other books without sequels coudld’ve been chosen like Attack of the Jack-O-Lanterns.
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