So, in my web serial, I'm starting to develop a pattern of creating side stories that are radically different from the rest of the serial. For instance, the first side story was called Crash! and it switched perspectives from my main character to a character who won't be seen until the week after next. Instead of being set in a hellish basic training camp as told by a sheltered boy from New England, it was the life of a special needs girl who dreams of becoming a doctor and her life since she was five. Instead of being 2,000-5,000 words long, it was 15,000.
The second one, which I am currently writing, touches on such happy sunshine like rape on campus, group-think, harassment, becoming worse than what you fight against, just exactly how awful the people behind the titular school are, and what goes on in that redshirt's mind before s/he finally retreats (or is killed in a horrible way.) The previous few chapters were of the protagonist and his friends killing these people in an (almost) straightforward series of action scenes.
The readers are also going to find out some things about the protagonist's friends (none of them good) without the protagonist having to learn them. Part of the reason I want it this way is because I'm interested in the above topics and they tie into my serial's main themes, another reason is that the main character not knowing what the readers know allows me to troll them mercilessly.
On the other hand, I'm afraid that this will end up making my story go pitch black too early. At this point, nothing can stop me, but, as with my previous side story, I'm worried. Any ideas/suggestions/thoughts on how to make this work? Also, as I said in the title, wish me luck!