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The series is somehow a sequel to Candle Cove.
Due to sharing the eponymous channel that Candle Cove aired on.
  • Kris Straub confirmed on Reddit that it would indeed have aired on the station in the 1970s. This would also suggest that Candle Cove, Local 58 and Broodhollow are all ultimately tied together around the same narrative.
An anticipated use of the contingency message is the United States' allies turning on the country.
As the main page notes, the contingency message (from "Contingency") is vague in its discussion of "the enemy". It's an all-purpose message with no one dedicated trigger aside from an "insurmountable force".

However, one threat that fits the mould of the message (besides the series' obvious threat of general supernatural events) is a betrayal of the U.S. by its allies. It would have to be most or all of the allies, and it would have to be simultaneous, but if those conditions were met, it would be a serious threat to the United States. The allies would know better than any "pre-established" enemy what the U.S.'s war tactics are. An en-masse betrayal would also leave the U.S. to fight completely for itself—after all, it would have no allies. The tactical and combative advantages of the former allies combined with the intelligence and weapons of the existing enemies would leave the U.S. at the mercy of its attackers.

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The whole world would have to turn on the United States to leave it as defenceless as the contingency message makes it out to be. That might have been what the government at the time was fearing would happen. Consider that Lyndon B. Johnson was president the year after the Cuban Missile Crisis. That was bad enough. The Johnson Administration wanted to have plans in case something worse were to happen. Cue "Contingency".

The threat in Contingency must be supernatural if the message is sincere.
After World War II it was common knowledge among superpowers that the USA was too vast and powerful to be conquered by conventional means, just as was the case with the Soviet Union until it collapsed from economic stress. Even if this were not the case, it surely would be judged a better use of the lives of its citizens to engage in partisan tactics until it would be too costly for an occupying force to remain on American soil than to assume the Victory Position. The only case wherein suicide makes any sense on a national scale is if the enemy is some sort of threat that cannot be resisted through conventional means, implying something that exists beyond human understanding.

Every video is interconnected.
With the possible exception of "You Are On The Fastest Available Route", each video seems to connect to an invasive force and, especially, the moon. There is also an emphasis on differing time periods between episodes (with "Contingency" taking place during the late 60's and "Show For Children" obviously taking place during the 80's), maybe each episode documents how a hostile alien (or something worse) takeover occurred? "Weather Service" would likely be first, with "Contingency" taking place during or after the events occurred (a Freeze-Frame Bonus in "Contingency" states that the final message calling the announcement a hoax was in case the message was publicly broadcast), with "Show For Children" and "Real Sleep" taking place during an apocalyptic future where these entities control the media entirely.
  • Considering the alien creature we see on “You Are On The Fastest Available Route,” it may be around the time Weather Service occurs. If the aliens can control mirrors like in Weather Sevice, GPS isn’t much harder.

The "Grave Mistake" we are watching isn't the original cartoon.
In
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Broodhollow, Cadavre is shown to be a popular cartoon character in the early 1930s, with his comic strip likely spun off from a Captain Ersatz Mickey Mouse theatrical cartoon series. "A Grave Mistake" dates to 1929, prior to Broodhollow, and likely had a more typical adult-friendly plotline befitting early 1930s pre-Code animation than Cadavre getting depressed and dying at the end. There do exist real-life examples of cartoons from this era passing into public domain, and being redrawn for coloring and/or having a totally different ending written in by the new animators.

Couple this with the animation error of the realistic skeleton being incorrectly overlaid on top of the original animation, the sudden change of the moon's appearance, and the abrupt loss of the audio track two-thirds of the way through... and it's easy to see that this is a heavily doctored cartoon. Either by someone already infected by the Eldritch Abomination or by the DPAD in Contingency.

We won't get a complete answer to what is going on.
If Kris Straub's philosophy with Candle Cove is anything to go on, we probably won't ever get a definitive answer to all the videos and their connectedness (or lack thereof) or what the driving force is behind them. This isn't to say that the picture won't become somewhat clearer or hints laid, but it seems that the point of these videos (which have shown no explicit gruesome imagery — with the borderline exception of the skeletons in Show For Children) is to use Nothing Is Scarier to its fullest extent — no answer that Straub could provide could compete with what we might be able to dream up as to just what is going on.

The moon in Weather Service is actually Leliel.
The moon in Weather Service is implied to be an eldritch abomination, so dangerous that merely looking at it is fatal (or worse). Not much unlike Leliel from Neon Genesis Evangelion, who's also a spherical-shaped entity that can communicate with humans by entering their minds. In fact, it might even be a fusion between Leliel and Arael, a la Rebuild of Evangelion, since the latter has a much stronger mind rape power along with being associated with light.

It's an alien invasion.

According to Game Theory, aliens have been hijacking signals from Local 58 and been using its programs in order to manipulate humanity into killing themselves. The video states that during the moon landing in 1969, Neil Armstrong and his crew encountered these aliens and angered them by either invading their territory or some other reason and have decided to attack Earth by using broadcasted signals to manipulate mankind into turning on each other and killing each other. They supposedly tried to create a PSA to convince the American population to commit suicide, taking away people's dreams to increase their aggression and even use subliminal messages in cartoons. But apparently they haven't been successful in that regards and are now taking things into their own hands by using the moon to drive people insane or even attacking people directly by hijacking sat navs to lure them to their deaths.

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While the notion of an alien invasion has been debunked by Kris, this doesn’t mean that there isn’t some interference or hijacking by the apparent Eldritch Abomination on, or by, the moon. It’s just “alien” to our understanding.

Just for fun - shows on ''Local 58''
There are many shows we seen glimpses of, but what they may be?
  • Focus on... - A documentary series of various topics. Possible episodes:
    • Culture - art, shows and television
    • Faith - religions and what they teach; mostly focusing on Mason County and the accepted religions, what they believe and how the people believing them with a bias towards whoever paid for it.
  • Community Roundtable - A talk show, featuring the most important people in the county, talking over specific topics of the week.
  • The TRI Presents - Infrequent documentaries including various, mostly neurology-based, science videos, with an added service: home VHS videos, which includes the video Real Sleep. The on-air show mostly presents the main bulk, with the cassettes holding personalized experiences.
  • Public Eye - local talk show and news, from around the county and neighbors. Early 70s-90s.
  • Still Life - vignettes collected in the veins of Night Gallery and Twilight Zone. Ran from the 50s to the early 70s.
  • Mason County News

Other possible shows:

  • Know yourself - history serial, from the 60s to the 80s.
  • Highlights of Mason County - infrequent documentaries about Mason County and their most proudest, be it natural, built, or just people.

''Local 58'' is a Stealth Parody of the Found Footage genre and "creepy TV hijacking" videos like The Wyoming Incident
Would explain everything, and also would explain why the Moon of all things is a Big Bad that's driving people insane.
A Grave Mistake is itself a Stealth Parody of Suicide Mouse and similar "Missing Episode" creepypastas.
Those familiar with Cadavre in Broodhollow can see right away that not only is he in an obvious Out-of-Character Moment, it was produced right before Cadavre became a famous cartoon character within the strip's universe.

When taking those into account, the general plotline almost reads like "lost episodes" for Arthur and Wile E. Coyote... and the art shifts and morbid tone directly echo a classic creepypasta surrounding a "lost" Mickey Mouse cartoon.

''Local 58'' actually is a hoax... but not in the way you'd think.
Based off of Nexpo's theories. If we take everything that was said in STATION ID as canon and not just as some Real Life advertisement, this would mean that ''Local 58'' really is an Analog Horror channel at 476MHz in-universe. Which would actually be a pretty brilliant parody of the whole Analog Horror "genre".

''Local 58'' is a perfectly normal TV Station.
In the early 90's a bored station employee found themselves tasked with providing content for a late night timeslot on a West Virginian TV station that almost nobody watched. Inspired by The War of the Worlds and other hoax broadcasts they used archive footage and a personal camcorder to produce short horror themed content. The station management was so apathetic and viewership was so low that nobody really noticed. Contingency was considered way to dark to actually be broadcast but it was accidentally played anyways. The station signed off after the switch to digital in the early 2010's and the footage was forgotten.
  • Dude, it would be a epic twist if this WMG theory was made canon by Kris.

This is shockingly very plausible. UHF stations in the United States (that is, channels 14 through 79) struggled to survive until the advent of cable television, some needed network affiliations or owners with deep pockets to keep them afloat, and in many cases that still wasn’t enough. On the surface, had a tiny little independent station like “WCLV-TV” signed on in the late 1950s or 1960s, it honestly would have been shuttered in a year or two due to losing a lot of money trying to serve a small, remote area like Mason County, West Virginia with a few live programs and a small assortment of public domain films and travelogues. Logically, it would have probably signed on in the early to mid 1980s in order to have had any chance of success.

Low-power television stations in the United States (which “WCLV-TV,” given its’ apparently very limited coverage area, honestly could have been note ) were not mandated to switch to digital in 2009 like their full-power counterparts. Moreover, some LPTV stations had no choice but to sign off for good after the FCC made channels 52 and above unavailable for broadcasting (but a digital station can still be mapped out to such a high number). And even if “WCLV-TV” had converted to digital, the FCC held an auction starting in 2015 and ending in 2018 where television stations could sell off their broadcast spectrum and either shut down operations, or enter a sharing agreement with a neighboring television station in the same market.

It wouldn’t be too much of a stretch for a station staffer to create this bizarre set of retro-themed horror vignettes and insert it on the overnight lineup as “Paid Programming,” knowing no one would actually watch it. What’s to say that the owners of “WCLV-TV” didn’t cash in on their spectrum sale and close down for good as this Found Footage started to surface?

  • A lot of the background material seems to imply that Local 58 was a public station funded by public money, donations and focused mostly on local issues. (although seemingly not affiliated with NET/PBS)This makes its survival from the fifties to the early 2000's a little more plausible. In real life a station in Mason county would serve about 60,000 people in two counties and Mason county in some of KS's previous works has some fictional towns inside of it. So it wouldnt be much different from your typical mid sized city PBS stations IRL.
  • To be fair, Kris has said that KLCS-TV - an educational station in Los Angeles at channel 58 - is very much the inspiration for the “58” in both here and Candle Cove, with “Local” as a "local to you, the viewer" Captain Ersatz of sorts for PBS note . If the copyright at the end of “Skywatching” is anything to go on, the station license belongs to the “Community Television Foundation of Mason County.” It still doesn’t explain the “paid programming” (a term more common in commercial television) but it’s possible if an outside provider produced a community-related or public affairs program and paid for its’ airing. Regardless, what we’ve seen in that time slot so far sure ain’t Ronco informercials...
  • Maybe the CTFOMC is strapped for cash/donations and decided to add other types of paid programming (such as, well, infomercials) to the overnight slots to make money. And the "short horror themed content" was paid for out of the bored station employee's own pocket.

The Moon is an Eldritch Abomination
Arguably the most common and most likely theory of the series. The moon within the Local 58 universe is vastly different from our own. It has a fleshly and organic surface, can teleport closer to the Earth at will and when viewed by the human eye it makes people Go Mad from the Revelation. It appears to be the source of all the bizarre edited broadcasts coming from the channel and wishes to either commit genocide on the human race or convert them into worshiping it as their god.
  • Another possibility is that the Moon is just said Eldritch Abomination's domain and that its true form is sleeping underneath the celestial body. Skywatching takes note of a arrow shaped crevice which is referred to "HIS THRONE" which could literally mean it is the unseen god's throne and seat to observe the Earth from.
  • Perhaps the Eldritch Abomination is actually Apocolothoth, the Moon God and one of the Great Old Ones from the Cthulhu Mythos.
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