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We Can All Thank This Classic Novel For Eric Kripke's Supernatural

While Amazon Prime's superhero satire "The Boys" has garnered showrunner Eric Kripke a number of fans, he was by no means an unfamiliar name to TV viewers. Prior to the streaming show, he was best known as the creator of the horror series "Supernatural," which ran for 15 seasons on The CW.

The show, which starred Jensen Ackles and Jared Padalecki as monster-hunting brothers Dean and Sam Winchester, respectively, expanded its world over the course of its run. When all was said and done, it included everything from vampires and shapeshifters to angels and leviathans and even God. The show's success led to The CW greenlighting a prequel series titled "The Winchesters," which focuses on Sam and Dean's parents, Mary Campbell and John Winchester.

In an interview, Eric Kripke noted a formative moment in his childhood when he was introduced to a particular book that began the domino effect that ultimately led to "Supernatural." This is the classic novel that Eric Kripke credits for the creation of the popular show.

The House with a Clock in Its Walls inspired Supernatural

In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Eric Kripke revealed that John Bellairs' novel "The House with a Clock in Its Walls" was key to the development of "Supernatural."

Kripke elaborated that, as a child, he was a big fan of the book, drawn to it after seeing a 10-minute adaptation made by CBS. The allure of family members working together to fight danger and discover magic stuck with him, ultimately leading to "Supernatural," which revolved around two brothers learning about — and dealing with — harmful and not-so-harmful supernatural entities.

Kripke went on to mention that the general framework of the story wasn't the only influence the novel had on the show. He continued that every aspect of lore in "Supernatural" was pulled from actual legends that existed in the world rather than being made wholesale for the show itself. That aspect was heavily inspired by "The House with a Clock in Its Walls," which also follows a similar rule of every magical artifact and fantasy detail being pulled from existing folklore.

Kripke also told Entertainment Weekly that the tone of the show matches the tone of the novel, in being "a balance of genuine scares, genuine humor, and genuine heart," finishing with the observation that the existence of "Supernatural" can be owed to "The House with a Clock in Its Walls."

He went on to make a film adaptation of the story

Eric Kripke, however, did elaborate that he didn't want too many elements of the novel to make it to the show, because he always hoped to make a film adaptation of "The House with a Clock in Its Walls" — a wish that came to fruition in 2018.

Kripke established his love of the novel by noting that he still has a letter John Bellairs wrote to him when he was 10 in response to fan mail that Kripke sent him expressing his love of the book. Kripke admitted that Bellairs' letter wasn't noteworthy on its own, simply telling Kripke the year the CBS special was made and thanking him for reading the book. But Kripke was awestruck by the fact that Bellairs took any time to write him a letter and continues to cherish it.

In an interview with Collider, Kripke noted that it was very important to his 10-year-old self that he be the one to write the film adaptation. He added that the tone of the book led him to believe it would work well as a film adaptation. In particular, he noted that the story was all about a magical world thinly hidden under the veneer of a seemingly normal town and that it carried real stakes where lives were in danger.