Item #: SCP-1640
Object Class: Safe
Special Containment Procedures: SCP-1640 is to be kept in a climate controlled locker at Site-70. Due to Incident 44-Golding and the systematic negligence that caused it, research has been discontinued at this time.
Description: SCP-1640 is a 35mm film recording of the 1950's PSA film "Duck and Cover", used in schools throughout the United States in a way to educate children in methods of mitigating personal injury during a nuclear attack. The case containing the film has the name tagged with a label gun, along with the words SECOND PRINT, US ARMY PROJECT CADUCEUS. No records of any project under the name have been found, and actors involved with the film have expressed no knowledge of any additional footage being shot.
The film exhibit unusual properties when watched by anywhere between one and ten people. Screening by eleven or more has yielded a film identical to the released copy, with some slight differences in word choice and animation. Adding people during the film, or having them leave to reduce the number below eleven during viewing will similarly nullify the anomalous properties of SCP-1640. Observers watching the film through a camera are not effected, and can safely record iterations of the film. The reason behind this is unknown. All iterations, anomalous and non-anomalous, will begin to deviate from the version in circulation after the initial animated introduction of Bert the Turtle. SCP-1640 lacks the information crawl attributing the film to the Federal Civil Defence Administration that appears, and the music cuts in and out for the first 23 seconds, replaced intermittently with a low hum at approximately 29 Hz. Afterwards, the non-anomalous version continues as the release print, with some minor differences in scene duration and word choice by the narrator. The final animation is also missing, the film cutting off abruptly when the narrator says "And now, you're on your own!"
If the audience contains less than eleven people, the anomalous effects of SCP-1640 manifest during playback. Duck and Cover contains several live action segments designed to demonstrate the lessons being imparted by the narrator. These segments will be played, but with the image of a member of the audience replacing one of the original cast. They will not perform the cast member's original role, and instead will show confusion and panic at their presence in the film. Despite this, efforts by the images to find the camera or leave the set have proven fruitless, indicating that they have not been transported into a recording of the scene, but into the narrative itself. Attempts to likewise interact with the images of the audience by either their real life counterparts or other observers have been unsuccessful, and although the images of the audience member appears aware that they are in the film, they are hindered in various ways from preventing a scene's completion.
The scenes themselves take on different themes and purpose from the original. These deviations will be longer than the original scene, in some instances longer than the original film in total. Most often they involve graphic depictions of bodily harm caused by nuclear weapons, including the blast wave, thermal shock, flash blindness, and auditory damage. The film does not, however, place emphasis on the potential damage of radioactive fallout, implying on multiple occasions that all meaningful radiation dissipates after 48 hours. Other topics the film instructs on include instruction on basic first aid, wilderness survival tips, firearm operation and maintenance, and the locations of areas in the continental US devoid of potential targets for nuclear strikes. In addition, there are scenes involving the often fatal actions of "Enemy agents", while the narrator espouses ways to detect treason in their friends and neighbours. These scenes appear much more frequently, and are longer in duration, when the audience includes children under the age of fifteen. Long term study of the effects of SCP-1640 on subjects in multiple age groups is being performed at Site-70.
Testing Suspension As of ██/█/201█, all tests involving SCP-1640 are suspended. Further information is located in the following document.
Addendum: Further investigation has yielded more information about the potential source of SCP-1640. After they school where SCP-1640 was closed, a search of the premises was undertaken under the guise of a check for asbestos prior to demolition. A false compartment in the Grade Five classroom was uncovered, with several documents potentially pertaining to SCP-1640.
Addendum II This telegram was found crumpled in the corner in the same room SCP-1640-N1 was found. The address portion has been torn out, but most of the text is legible.