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Halloween Horror Nights 26: Reviews & Photos

Discussion in 'Halloween Horror Nights 26' started by Brian G., Sep 16, 2016.

  1. ralphoutloud

    ralphoutloud Veteran Member

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    Just came back from 3 straight nights of HHN 26....here is my rankings/review.

    1. The Exorcist - Wow. What a house. I'm not even scared of the movie but I felt genuinely uncomfortable in this house. They knocked it out of the park. The actors were all intense, very into their roles, the sets and facade were both beautiful. The only weak part was the black hallway but the rest of the house is so good it doesn't detract too much. That smell in the soundstage is just so creepy...just smells like death.

    2. American Horror Story - I was looking forward to this one for a bit. I was a big fan of Murder House but not so much Freak Show and Hotel. The actors in this house are incredible. The costumes, makeup and everything was just perfect. They even included the shootout scene from Hotel complete with Hotline Bling. Great house and just a ton of fun. Looking forward to seeing it return. Only weak points is the transitions I thought could've been full facades (Murder House, Freak Show Circus entrance, and Hotel Cortez).

    3. Tomb Of The Ancients - Yo the creative team absolutely killed it with this one. Detailed sets and costumes, unexpected scares, and just an overall dope premise. I loved this house.

    4. Halloween 2 - Continuation of the first one, and just as good for me. A little bit better actually because this house was more fun with the sheer amount of Michaels. Was an absolute blast.

    5. The Walking Dead - On par with 2014's End of the Line...I really enjoyed this house. It was just TWD Fatigue that held it back. They really packed it full of Walkers and got a little creative with the placement. Sewer zombies gave me the best scare of the event.

    6. Ghost Town - Beautiful sets, amazing atmosphere, you've all heard it before. Good house, but a little forgettable for me due to the lack of scares. Would love to see Ghost Town's theme return at some point fused with another HHN legacy idea, say....Body Collectors or Nightingales?

    7. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre - A bit disappointing considering the absolute fire that Universal was slinging in this tent location. A few of the Leatherfaces are excellent and others are pretty mediocre. It's possible to have a great run in this house, but for more, it fell a bit short (and felt short too). Love the after house scene and hope they continue to utilize the outdoors in future houses.

    8. Krampus - This house was fun...and cool to go through. I loved the movie but was really disappointed by the final product. I also think the Blogger darling hype got to me. The costumes are ridiculously repetitive, no real Krampus. The facade smells and the attic scene are really the only saving grace for this house. It wasn't terrible...just not as good as I expected. Most of the house feels like a missed opportunity.

    9. Lunatic's Playground - It was okay. No better or worse than the overrated Asylum in Wonderland from last year. Standard 3D house + Chance. Definitely not as bad as it was made out to be but would've preferred a regular house over 3D. Nothing memorable.

    Scarezones

    1. Vamp '55 - Best street cast of the year by far. This was my most anticipated zone and it lived up to the hype. Dope interactions, loved watching the actors play off each other. The music was perfect. Everything was perfect aside from the size, wish it was a little bigger.

    2. Dead Man's Wharf - Amazing setting, the lightning and fog were top notch. Costumes great. Lacked a little energy but really effin' cool to walk through.

    3. Survive or Die - Fun interactions with the cast, but overall about what you expect from an apocalyptic New York scarezone. Not great.

    4. Lair of the Banshee - Generic. Average. Really hope they start changing it up here or expanding it into central park. It is what it is.

    5. A Chance In Hell - We all knew what it'd be from the jump. Just a cluster you know what. Actors are doing what they can and try to have fun with it though.

    Shows

    Academy of Villains - I was actually looking forward to this. Jabbawockeez really surprised me last year at Hollywood's HHN and I saw how cool dance and horror themes could turn out when combined. I was not disappointed. Loose theme, great moves, fast pace. This is a great show and I hope they come back with a new theme. Maybe dedicate Animal Actors to a new AOV show every year.

    Didn't see Bill & Ted, but I'm sure it was hot garbo per usual.

    Overall had a blast like always, loved the event, thought it beat out 25 by a little bit. Excited for next year.
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2016
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  2. Andy

    Andy aka Hatetofly V.I.P.

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    Updated House Count after a ton of nights so far..

    1. Krampus
    2. Tomb
    3. Halloween
    4. Exorcist
    5. AHS
    6. Ghost Town
    7. The Walking Dead
    8. TCM
    9. Chance
     
  3. Frank Drackman

    Frank Drackman Premium Member

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    so much for me is about moments. On Sunday we were leaving TWD and heading towards the Chance zone around 11 or so. The BGM started kicking digital errors and was just stuck. I was thinking to myself have annoying it was that it sounded like a jackhammer and that just brings back some not so good memories of annoying sounds. it kept doing it...then some comic relief from the actors in Chance's zone. Smiley started gathering other actors and said 'hey, we're doing construction now' and he started to get folks to help him pretend to jackhammer....I love off the cuff stuff like that:

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  4. acquaz

    acquaz Newcomer

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    Lol that cast is the best cast for the scare zone. I know people say they don't like A Chance in Hell, but if you talk to some of the actors for a few minutes, they do a great job with what they were given.
     
  5. Mr. EPCOT

    Mr. EPCOT Veteran Member

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  6. CTank

    CTank Newcomer

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    I just wanted to post my review, as a first time HHN attendee and a big ole scary kitty, that I had SO MUCH FUN! I was slightly terrified (and a little intoxicated) but I had a really great time at all of the houses. I did not do The Exorcist, because my little heart can only take so much. But I was able to conquer the other 8 houses and 2 shows! Ghost Town had my favorite sets (and was the least scary). Tomb of the Ancients was the one house that gave me heart palpitations, but I really enjoyed it. Krampus was also really run. The only house I really didn't like was the 3D house, because it made me super dizzy. But overall, I had a great time. And I'm looking to book a trip for next year already. :dance:
     
  7. Shucker

    Shucker Rookie

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    I will start off by saying this is the best year I have attended (6 total years). There is only one weak house and the other 8 are great. In addition the scares zones were very diverse and well themed. Best event attended for me and the only complaint was the themed drinks. Man those are really bad and tasted like cough syrup. Got to sample all 3 and I would not recommend any of them unless you love extremely syrupy / sweet drinks. On to the house reviews:


    1. American Horror Story - 10/10. This was almost a perfect house. I have not watched the series, but did know the premise of each season. The sets were very elaborate and the scares were great. I was able to experience the house 3 times and every time got a different scare. The transitions between each series were done in a way that flowed seamlessly. I have been going for 6 years now, and this was the most complete house I have walked through.


    2. Texas Chain Saw Massacre - 10/10. Another home run. If you had asked me after the first time I went through I would have given this house a 7/10. The reason, we got caught in a shift change. So there were hardly any scare actors as we went though. However the next two times bumped this up. Every single Leatherface actor is enormous. I always get startled, but was actually scared in one scene. Another great representation of the series and the sets were spot on.


    3. Tomb of the Ancients - 9/10. Probably the best themed house I have ever been in. You could walk through this house 10 times a see something new each time. The reason this is a 9 was I really didn’t have many scares at all. Plus the Crocolion is in such a strange place its hard to get a look at him. Its like the Yeti!! But on my last run I stopped in front of him and checked him out for about 5-10 seconds. Very solid.


    4. Ghost Town: The Curse of Lightning Gulch - 9/10. If Tomb of the Ancients is one of the best themed houses, Ghost Town is right behind it. My first two runs through I got 0 scares. However the last two were much better (be careful of the piano). Not a lot of scares but the theming makes up for it. Just a really fun overall house. Give me the Gold!!!


    5. Halloween: Hell Comes to Haddonfield - 9/10. I really enjoyed the first house; however I thought this house was a little better. Followed the movie perfectly and really captured the final death scene with Michael. I got caught between Michael and the police office in the first scene and almost needed an underwear change.



    6. The Walking Dead - 8/10. If this was the first incarnation of The Walking Dead I would easily give it a 10. However, it really is a rehash of all the sets they have used in the past (both in houses and scarezones). But the house flows really well and there are tons of scares. I am a Walking Dead fan and this is how they should send the series off.


    7. The Exorcist - 8/10. I was really curious how they were going to get an entire house out of this property. The interpretation Universal created was very thought out and (again) a great representation of the movie. It would be hard to have a better house for this movie based on how little content the movie provided. The power of Christ Compels You!


    8. Krampus - 7/10. Overall a really good house. Sets and costumes were nice but didn’t get a lot of scares. In another year it may have been ranked higher for me, but being 8 in this line up is not a bad thing.


    9. Lunatics Playground 3D: You Won't Stand a Chance - 2/10. I had very low expectations on this house based on the reviews, but the reviews were right. This is just a bad house. The only reason this house got a 2 was because it was 3D. Some of the 3D effects were pretty cool, however the overall house lacked in every aspect. Little to no scares and plan boring sets. I am ok with a house not being scary, but at least make it fun then. The house really felt like they spent more time constructing the tent than the actual house itself. I was hoping based on reviews that they would be adding more to the house, it does not appear that way. It was so underwhelming we actually skipped it one night and we had express.
     
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  8. Joel

    Joel Premium Member

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    This is the same for me, I'm just too lazy to write up a review. Although I would switch Lunatics with The Walking Dead. :thumbsup:
     
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  9. JunoSynth

    JunoSynth Rookie

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    Awesome! I go next week on the 13th-22. I can't wait!
     
  10. Brian G.

    Brian G. Staff Member Administrator

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    Individual Videos of each Zone:









     
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  11. Brervixen

    Brervixen Premium Member

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    Ok. I've been home from Florida for nearly a week so I though it's time I gave my opinion of the houses!

    1. American Horror Story - I have to admit, I FAN-GIRLED so much in this house, it was fantastic... true to the show and I damn near lost it when I saw Dandy and James March in the flesh. Good god it was amazing. 10/10

    2. Exorcist - Freaking terrifying. I am SO scared of Regan, I don't know why, nothing else scares me... just her. She repulses me. Even though I'd been through this house on UTH before I walked through it, I was still terrified. Terror & Disgust are the 2 emotions I recall when thinking about this house. It effected me badly! 9/10

    3. Ghost Town - LOVE anything to do with western lore, and this didn't disappoint, yeah it's a bit campy and fun, but the characters are great, the detail is amazing and the rain!! That is so cool 8/10

    4. The Walking Dead - Whomp Whomp. The only cool things in this house were the "Doors", The Governor's heads, Darrell's Crossbow and Lucille. Otherwise this lacked in scares, actors and tension... meh. 4/10

    5. Lunatic's Playground - I enjoyed this house, not only because it's just FUN but also cause it's the only house we got to walk through ON OUR OWN! It's crazy, loud, bright and has Chance in it so I liked it, but it did lack scares and intensity! 7/10

    6. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre - Faithful to the film, but not at all scary. I didn't get scared once in this house, again... detail amazing, scares... not so much. Can't really say much more on this house.... I don't find chainsaws remotely scary 7/10

    7. Tomb of the Ancients - I'm gonna be honest, I did NOT enjoy this house the first time we walked through, I think we were in a rough place for scares and it seemed like there was not many actors, so maybe we caught a cast change! HOWEVER 2nd & 3rd times were MUCH more fun! The level of detail is astounding and that Crocodog thing is way cute! 8/10

    8. Halloween 2 - I haven't seen the film (shame on me) but I really enjoyed this house (I think going through on UTH before HHN helped!) The scares were good and it was a little tongue in cheek too, an all round decent house 8/10

    9. Krampus- Ahhh Krampus, how I was disappointed, another house that I walked through on UTH before HHN and I was SO pumped for walking through, only to be left sour, we had NO scares, we seemed to be on the reset for every scare actor. Even on our 2nd trip through we missed almost everything.... ugh. I so wanted to like this house a lot as the film is a lot of fun... and whilst it's fun, and faithful to the film, I don't feel it captures the film's spirit all that well. 7.5/10

    Scare Zones:

    A Chance in Hell - This was utterly my fave, great interaction, character and of course Chance! We sat here for at least 30 mins every time we went to HHN during our trip! (5 times...)

    Vamp 55 - another great interactive zone with cool characters, loved the little show that happens every 15 mins or so on the float. Very cool.

    Lair of the Banshee - Visually amazing but too cramped to spend any time, shame as I like the woodland aesthetic!

    Deadman's Wharf - Shame, shame, shame. I was really excited for this and was let down, it was TINY and all the masks looked so fake and "party city" move over Sharon Needles.... dead man's wharf is in town.

    Survive or Die - Eh, I wasn't too assed about this, kinda cool looking but the interaction seemed a bit forced and unnatural.

    Random Chainsaws... like I said before, they don't scare me so... can't really comment!

    Unmasking The Horror;

    I went on this on the 17th All day and it was worth EVERY SINGLE PENNY - thank goodness I went whilst pics were still allowed! We toured AHS, Krampus, Ghost Town, Halloween, TCM, & Exorcist. Taking in all the detail was overwhelming and I think it's something I'll remember for a long time!

    Scare Actor Dining:

    We did the dining on the 16th, after a rooster up with the roast potatoes (Waiting AGES for them) the dining was really good, all the characters visited our table and spent a good deal of time with us! The food was great too, and the apple pie was gorgeous! I just wish I could have eaten more but I was stuffed! I also didn't realise we go a free photo so missed out on picking that up :(

    So, all in all HHN is a fantastic event, I wish I could stay in Orlando for all of October to see how the event develops, but unfortunately... work and being a zombie myself gets in the way!
     
  12. JohnnyKapustahead

    JohnnyKapustahead Newcomer

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    Dropping in to add an update ranking from 5 time going:

    Exorcist- 5/5
    AHS- 5/5
    Tomb- 5/5
    Krampus- 4.5/5
    Ghost Town-4/5
    TCM- 4/5
    TWD- 4/5
    Halloween- 3.5/5*
    LP3D- 2/5

    *I haven't had a good timed walk through of Halloween the past three times I went through it. I think if I hit another perfect walk through the rating will spring back up.
     
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  13. Frank Drackman

    Frank Drackman Premium Member

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    some of our fun with 'my Universal photos':

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  14. Brian G.

    Brian G. Staff Member Administrator

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  15. Hockeyman55

    Hockeyman55 Premium Member

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  16. Nick

    Nick Staff Member Moderator

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    So I finally made it out to HHN tonight. Hell, I finally made it over to Universal tonight. With most of my family and friends not renewing their UOAPs (for now), I find myself going to the parks a lot less these days. So much so that I still hadn't been on Kong or the refurbished Hulk before today. I had a friend I was able to go with today so I finally decided to go.

    I actually showed up later than I would've liked for HHN (6:45), but oh well. Since I have a FFP and I plan on using it to it's fullest extent over the last few weeks, I was more in a go with the flow type mood, while also not really stopping much (besides for alcohol) throughout the night. I decided to head over to IOA for a quick bit to do Kong and Hulk. Kong definitely beat my expectations, although i'm not sure what mine really were going in.

    So anyway, after that, we walked into USF at 8:15. I didn't have a game plan going in, hell, I hadn't even looked at a map so I was a bit lost at first. For less than 6 hours of park time though, I feel like I did pretty good. I got 7 of the 9 houses done and also saw both shows - the 8:15 Academy of Villains and 12am B&T. The only houses I didn't get to do were Chainsaw and AHS.

    I definitely need at least a second night (likely Sunday) before I can fully judge. I honestly wasn't overall that impressed with too much besides Tomb of the Ancients, although my walkthroughs were a bit wonky. I hit some bad luck and went into Halloween during a cast change, so I came away just thinking it was overly long and not scary. I also did a lot of houses late. I did TWD, Exorcist and Krampus all within the last hour - and I literally closed down Krampus, as the only person in the house (was a bit weird). TWD seemed better than most houses based on the IP in the past, of course that's not saying much. I really enjoyed Academy of Villains, I can see how many may not like it though. Bill & Ted I thought opened strong in the first half and closed fairly weak.
     
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  17. Brian G.

    Brian G. Staff Member Administrator

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    Prepare for the onslaught of photos:

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  18. UNIrd

    UNIrd Premium Member

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    Awesome pictures.
     
  19. Cschaaf

    Cschaaf Newcomer

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    Our short review.

    We went Friday (10/14) and Sunday (10/16). No EP and we did Stay and Scream in the Hello Kitty area (Friday) and Finn's on Sunday.

    General note - I tend to rank based on the look and feel of a house rather than scares.

    Friday:

    We got in the HK S&S line around 4:20 and were maybe 30 people back. I'd guess by the time we got to AHS, about 70 more had shoved their way in front of us. They let us out of the area around 5:55.

    AHS - no wait, just the long walk. We have never watched the show, but we loved the house. A lot of good scares - the ones that get me the most are the actors that jump out right in front of you and block your path. This house had a few of those.

    Exorcist - showed a 10 minute wait. We probably waited about 8. I thought all the Regan's were great. The vomit scene was well done and the priest at the end was twisting and moving around in ways that didn't seem possible for a human. Great cast in this one.

    Halloween 2 - Showed 15 minute wait. We probably waited 10 min and went in right after a shift change and I think we missed a few Michael's, but there were still a ton of them. The Michael's were all really good. Got a few path blockers in this one, too. We liked the house, but not as much at the original 2 years ago.

    Tomb - I think this one showed a 25 minute wait and we waited maybe 5. Loved this one. It was a bit too dark to see the details, but the cast was great. I've seen a lot of complaints about the stuff in face in this one, but we loved it. Totally missed the crockolion or whatever it is.

    We took a break in Fast Food Blvd for about 20 minutes.

    Last, we went to TCM - showed 25 minute wait, we probably waited 15. Good house, wasn't great. The Letherfaces were all big dudes and fit the part, but weren't very scary.

    We walked through Vamp and Lair a few times and they were both fine.

    We took another break and sat outside Mel's, then headed over to City Walk for dinner. We were back in our Portofino room by 8:30.

    We could have easily done Lunatics and TWD before we left, but we got up at 5am that morning to move to Portofino and get to USF for the early park admission. We were pretty beat.

    Sunday
    We did the S&S at Finn's. Got there around 4:30 and were up near the front of the line. They let us out around 5:30 and we went straight to TWD and stood and waited for that to open. It was almost 6 before they opened the queue.

    TWD - we had only been to HHN one other time and the line for TWD was too long that time (we were able to do that house on the lights on tour) so this was our first time through a TWD house with the lights off. We really liked this one. Had a few good scares and the sounds of the house were pretty good.

    We went to Lightning Gulch after that. The queue wasn't open yet, so we grabbed a seat and kept an eye on the queue. Once that opened, we got in line and waited for a bit before they opened the door.

    Lightning Gulch - the sets in this one are amazing, especially the bar scene. We got a few scares in this one - but they were quality scares.

    A Tech crew went in just before us and threw off the timing otherwise this one would have been a lot better, I think. The Tech crew was soaking up a few of the scares lol. About 2/3 of the way through, they paused in an area for about 10 seconds and that really threw off the rest of the timing.

    After that, we walked over to Krampus. I think the wait said 10 minutes, but the line looked a lot longer than that. We probably waited 15 - 20.

    Krampus - Got a few scares, but not many. This house had the least amount of Stuff in Face, and I think it really missed it. Loved the cold and snow. The kitchen scene was so detailed.

    Last, we went over to Luntics Playground.

    Lunatics Playground - I think this showed a 30 minute wait and we probably waited about that long. This was our least favorite house. It wasn't terrible, but it felt thrown together. The cast seemed to be trying hard, but there was no real flow to the house. There was nothing 'familiar' to latch on to.

    Again, we were done by about 8 or 8:30 even though the crowed seemed pretty heavy. We ate in fast Food Blvd, then went to ride Mummy one more time.

    Overall, Tomb, AHS, Exorcist, and Lightning Gulch were probably our favorites. TWD, Krampus, and H2 were in the middle of the pack. I guess TCM could go there, too - wasn't great, but doesn't belong in the next category.

    Lunatics Playground just didn't do it for us.

    Scarezones - we didn't go through these very much, so I don't have a lot of notes.

    Vamp
    - probably walked through this one the most time. We aren't they type to interact with the actors, so this one was just okay for us. There were no scares.

    Banshee - walked through this one the second most number of times. We liked this one. I have heard a lot of people that go year after year that feel this was too similar to other years and I can see that point. However, for people like us that don't go often, I think this one worked pretty well. The stilt walkers were amazing and despite their stature, were able to get us a few times. You'd think you could see them a mile away, but they hid themselves very well.

    Survive or Die - walked through 2 or 3 times and it felt pretty boring. Didn't see many actors, but we may have just timed it wrong. There was one chainsaw guy that got about 20 people at one time - they all ran in different directions.

    Chance - no scares and didn't stand around long enough to watch Chance.

    Warf - never made it over there.

    Roaming Hoards - another one that I've seen complaints about, but they were effective in scaring people. The big dudes were too big and easy to pick out, they had to work a lot harder to get scares, I think.
     
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  20. JungleSkip

    JungleSkip Premium Member

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    Was there on Friday and Sunday.

    Houses:
    1) Ghost Town - Amazing sets, decent-to-good scares, fantastic effects, and great costumes. This is why I come to Horror Nights. Loved everything about this house, and was the house I went through the most.

    2) The Exorcist - I had low expectations going into this one, because I didn't think there was any way it could be turned into a good house, but man I loved this so much. I had a ton of perfectly timed scares here, and I loved how some scenes were deconstructed from the movie to fit into a HHN house.

    3) American Horror Story - I hate this show. With a passion. But at least for one year they delivered a good house on a bad show, something it took them 5 years to do for TWD. The cast was great, and the scares were really good. Pigman FTW

    4) Tomb of the Ancients - Good scares, some cool interactivity, and CROCOLION. A bit repetitive set-wise, but still good.

    5) Krampus - I absolutely loved the movie, and the house delivered for me. I would have ranked it higher if there was a moving Krampus puppet in the house, but everything that was there was great.

    6) Texas Chain Saw Massacre - Man, when the cast in this one brought it, they brought it hard. The Leatherfaces were great.

    7) The Walking Dead - TWD finally got a good house! Lots of scares here.

    8) Halloween II - What a bad house. Awful scares, disinterested cast, and boring sets.

    9) Chance - Why? Just...why?

    ...

    99) Repository - Rip-off-itory

    Zones:
    Vamp 55 - Best scarezone I've ever personally seen. I never find them particularly scary. I feel they're there for atmosphere, and Vamp had that in spades. Great cast, great interactions with said cast, and just a ton of fun. I'd LOVE to see this one make the jump from scarezone to house.

    The rest of the zones were fine, but nothing spectacular.

    Shows:
    Both were pretty lackluster in my opinion. Bill & Ted was listless and boring for long stretches, and Academy of Villains was just repetitive outside the admittedly fantastic dream sequence part.
     
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