Here's the greatest tumblr page to grace the Internet: Stalking Guts
In short, it is the quest to track down the social media accounts of Guts contestants, most of it is pretty brutal (see Drew "The Rebel" whose current day follow up is a statement from an arrest report), but it flows well with the essay: the glory days of childhood that we hold onto even now.
In other news, vindication! Years after the essay was published and Kirk Fogg gives an interview confirming my theory that contestants in the Temple won/lost based on the availability of prizes, the producers deciding who would win or lose. He even confirmed the weirdness of the guards, the pleasure they got in terrifying children:
It's amazing to me that my theory was so on-point. I mean, it's fair to say in writing this essay I was reaching for absurdity, so to see the truth in that blows my mind a little bit. But at the same time there is a bit of sadness: these shows were my life for a time, and this gets us perilously close to the argument surrounding the nonfiction writing world that I despise: does a story lose meaning if it didn't really happen? If so, what has been lost? The only thing I've lost here is a bit of myself: a sadness to discover my cynicism of the temple was warranted.
If anything, it's weird to have these interviews at all. The period between and event and nostalgia for that event is apparently closing quickly due to the over saturation of information available to us, the relative access of the people involved through social media. It's weird that Kirk Fogg is doing interviews on this, that he's not the only one. Every lineup at the local Comic Conventions finds me equally excited and sad for everyone involved. It's likely that someday soon we will reach a point of having an event and its nostalgia occur simultaneously. I think of this while I wear my Orange Iguana T-shirt.
Speaking of nostalgia, Legends of the Hidden Temple was rebooted as a made-for-tv-movie that seems to have been tailor-made for my kind of crazy, and perhaps yours as well. Hell, they even give the kids a trip to Space Camp as consolation at the end, which was a pretty deep pull for a dumb production like this! It's easily found through a Google search. I hope this is your own adventure through the Shrine of the Silver Monkey, into a vomit-filled Pit of Despair. I hope you seek this adventure, I hope you make it Legend.