Children of the Corn
started out with a 1984 horror film based upon the 1977 short story of the same name by Stephen King
. Set in the fictional rural town of Gatlin, Nebraska, the film told the story of a demonic entity referred to as "He Who Walks Behind The Rows" which entices the children of the town to ritualistically murder all the adults to ensure a successful corn harvest.
The film was harbinger for a many sequel to come.
The film series consists of:
Children of the Corn contains examples of:
- Adults Are Useless: And dead. So... justified?
- Adult Fear: Mentioned in the tag line of the first movie.
- Affably Evil: Isaac, most likely in the original though.
- All There in the Manual: As revealed in The Stand, He Who Walks Behind The Rows is implied to be Randall Flagg, a Stephen King villain from The Stand and the Dark Tower series. This is never mentioned in the short story or any of the adaptations.
- Bigger Bad: He Who Walks Behind the Rows is always the one influencing the ones acting as Big Bads.
- Creepy Child: All of them!
- Dark Messiah: All but one films features a preaching kid/teen acting as a leader to the other children.
- Dawson Casting: All the actors were 18 and older in the original; however, the 2009 remake casts younger children.
- Direct-to-DVD: Fourth film and onwards.
- Downer Ending: The original short story.
- Eldritch Abomination: He Who Walks Behind The Rows, possibly. It's implied that this is actually Randall Flagg, who, throughout King's various works, shares more than a few traits with Nyarlathotep, the Crawling Chaos.
- Final Girl:
- Vicky in the original.
- Grace in The Gathering
- Alison in Fields of Terror
- Hannah in Isaac's Return
- Jamie in Revelation saved by Armbrister
- Allie in Genesis.
- Ghost Town
- Gorn: Urban Harvest has several weird, gross deaths, while the remake has a number of excessively brutal ones.
- Kids Are Cruel
- Lost in the Maize: The Quintessential Example.
- Names to Run Away From Really Fast: All the leaders of children and and their right hand men have Biblical names.
- Numbered Sequels
- Sinister Scythe: A reappearing weapon in children's hands.
- Teenage Wasteland: Self-inflicted.
- Teens Are Monsters: The original group of "children" in the short story are actually in their teens when they kill the adults.
- Too Dumb to Live: Burt in the original short story. He dies.
- Town with a Dark Secret
- Ultimate Evil: He Who Walks Behind The Rows. In the original short story, the implication is that his true identity is Randall Flagg, Stephen King's meta-villain.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: It's unknown what happened to Burt, Vicky, Job and Sarah after they escaped Gatlin in the original movie, albeit the second movie does briefly mention that a couple (Burt and Vicky) went to Hemingford (a town near Gatlin) and told about Gatlin and the cult.