Yes, yes, I’m breaking my hiatus already. NaNoWriMo’s going better than expected, and I’ve actually got a bit of spare time. So, I’m updating with another main blog post, this one about the specific powers/weaknesses/etc. that the Slender Man has.
First of all, I’d like to talk about trees. Yes, trees. They’re very important to the Slender Man Mythos, to varying degrees. In almost every story regarding him, he’s somehow involved with trees. This is less prominent in videos (and out of the stories I’ve followed, least prominent in EverymanHYBRID and Marble Hornets), but more prominent in blogs. The biggest example would be “Just Another Fool,” in which trees feature heavily and Yggdrasil, the Norse version of the World Tree, is mentioned. While the first images of him on Something Awful do not feature him in forests, consequent pictures do.
Some believe that the Slender Man is actually a tree of some sort himself, as his limbs resemble branches. In my opinion, that’s a stupid idea. Remember M. Night Shyamalan’s “The Happening?” Remember how everyone hated how stupid it was that the trees were killing people? Forests are scary. They’re dark, easy to get lost in, and hard to see in. That’s why the Slender Man is associated with forests. They’re inherently a bit creepy, and he blends in anyway. But trees themselves? About as scary as a towel slung over a chair. It’s not the object itself that you get scared of, it’s the shape they take on when they’re in the dark. It’s the dark. Slendy has an association with trees, but he is not a tree. That’s just dumb. It’s like the title for one of those Bailey School Kids books I used to read back in third grade: Trees Don’t Wear Business Suits.
However, that doesn’t mean that he isn’t tree-like in many ways. The parallel is obviously drawn because of his thin, twiglike limbs. It’s also due to the multiple limbs he’s said to have, which together resemble branches.
Which leads into the next point: the multiple arms. In some depictions, at least. It’s the depiction I prefer, and I think it makes him look more treelike (ironic, considering my hatred of him being portrayed as an actual tree, yesno?). On the other hand, sometimes the multiple limbs are used to make him look spider-like, like in “Just Another Fool” or a couple allusions in “Seeking Truth.” The times he doesn’t have multiple limbs, he has what are essentially tentacles—long, thin appendages that branch out of his body, constantly writhing. This shows up in EverymanHYBRID on occasion, and quite frequently in Tribe Twelve. It’s often believed that he usually has only the two arms, but branches into the multi-armed/tentacled mode when he’s going in for the kill. In other words, if he’s got more than just two arms and two legs, run. Although you should probably consider running even when he only has the two arms, for that matter.
As for other powers of his—some people believe that he has some control over shapeshifting, although I think that it’s limited to the multiple arms/tentacles theory. However, he very frequently is said to have teleportation powers. It explains why he’s apparently been spotted all over the world, but no one has really mentioned seeing him having to take a plane. His teleportation powers are perhaps most triumphantly displayed in Tribe Twelve. At one point in one of the videos, he is seen in the background, peeking around a wall. He moves behind the wall, and a few seconds later starts emerging from a completely different door, much closer to the camera.
So in conclusion: he’s linked to forests, but not a tree. Beware his multiple arms/tentacles, and don’t bother running, because he can go anywhere. See you in the next update, which details the more ambiguous attributes and powers he’s given.