Shadow Puppets

Today I want to talk to you about an SCP that has stuck with me for a long time after I read it.

SCP-205 also known as Shadow Lamps


Photo by cottonbro on

SCP-205 is a pair of flood lamps, the kind that are usually used by professional photographers. The light they put out behaves in a very strange way, basically it passes through objects instead of being stopped by them.

Unless the object is covered by something white, like a sheet. If the object is white, or covered by something white then the light put out by SCP-205 behaves like normal light and loses all unusual properties.

If the light put out by SCP-205 goes through an object it will cause the object to cast a strange shadow, the shadow will not be that of the object itself but rather one of an unidentified young woman. Even through there are two lights there is only one shadow. The owner of the shadow is completely unknown, they may be a living person a deceased person, the shadow may not correspond to a person living or dead.  

The shadow repeats a series of movements which cumulate in the young woman’s death. As long as the lamps are kept plugged in the shadow will continue to repeat the same series of movements, which always end on April 30th and October 31st of each year. Both lamps will turn off at the end of the cycle and if anyone is in the room when this happens, they will be assaulted violently by an unseen assailant. Their assault matches that of the shadow woman.

At the start of the cycle SCP-205 the shadow woman will be portrayed in a provocative pose. During the last week of the first month the shadow will move slightly, as if the woman is getting uncomfortable. By the end of that last week, she will move. The way she moves gives the impression that she is posing for photos. She will take a pose, hold it, then move into a new pose. She will change clothes and eat during this time.

Over the next five months the shadow will be in almost constant motion, giving a show of the last days of the woman’s life before she is brutally murdered at the end of the cycle. Towards the end of the cycle, in the last month the shadow woman experiences over sixty sexual encounters which is different to the prior months where she has intimate moments only once. Implying a drastic lifestyle change.

The last month also includes other shadows which come and interact with the woman, they are male and they are warped, being bigger and buffer than real life and they all have horns, giving them a devilish look, perhaps reflecting how the young woman sees them. Though there is one male figure she engages positively with.

Om the last week prior to her death the shadow woman, who has been taking pictures herself during this time, will develop the film and react with horror at the pictures she produces. She even tries to flee them. A horned figure emerges and she is assaulted constantly until the end of the cycle.

My thoughts

Photo by Lisa on

I really enjoy this SCP; it gives me full on ghost story vibes. This is just my interpretation of the SCP and is not confirmed. If you interoperate it differently then please comments below I’d love to discuss.

The display of the woman’s final few months of life being constantly repeated with the addition that anyone present at the final moment suffers the same fate is immense.

I love the unique spin on the ‘ghost story’ aspect by making the ‘ghost’ a shadow.

I love the mystery element of the story, how nothing is confirmed for sure, but we can infer certain things. I like to think that the shadow woman was an aspiring model and photographer who fell on hard times, perhaps was guided by a dodgy agent etc to engage in sex work. But found herself in a relationship and wanted out but was killed for trying. Or there could be a much more literal interpretation which takes into account her reaction when she saw the photos, that something supernatural was going on and the photos revealed the aspects of the men that she couldn’t see with the naked eye. I really enjoy the fact that we won’t know for sure and that it’s up to the reader.

I also enjoy the interactivity of the shadows, if you read the full SCP on the wiki, not just my short summery here you’ll find that the shadows react to things in the real world on occasion. This isn’t a mindless group reacting the past, but entities that are conscious of the world outside them.

It’s a wonderful SCP I strongly recommend giving it a read.

I'd love to hear what you think, please comment below.

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