Halloween Horror Nights 30 Speculation Thread

Legacy

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Jul 27, 2015
5,282
The theme of those years was presented through a media campaign detailing the backstories of those characters. As someone who didn’t attend those years, but paid attention to the event from a far, I took 12 as Islands of Fear presented by The Caretaker, and 13 as The Director has cast you in various roles of his sadistic productions.

Since 25 was a little more than a tag line, I’d think 30 will be the same. An icon hosting the event, which is themed to bring you into a nightmarish world.
But those weren’t the actual themes. In interviews (I miss the Calendar section), Roddy, TJ, etc would be asked “What’s the theme this year?” and they would say the tag line. Then they explained how the icon fit the theme. Only on rare occasions did the formal tag line not match the theme in those interviews (2005, when the theme was “Terra Cruentes” and 2008, when the theme was actually “urban legends”).

The confusion is that many of the icon years had stories to explain the icon’s place in the event, and some years had better integrated stories (2005) than others (2002). Shoot, HHN 23 (TWD) has one of the most integrated stories they’d ever done... but “TWD” wasn’t the theme.

It’s all semantics, sure. But when fans say “I want a theme” they actually mean “story.” Themes are just recurring ideas to provide ambiance.
 
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JawsVictim

Member
Nov 3, 2015
798
It’s all semantics, sure. But when fans say “I want a theme” they actually mean “story.” Themes are just recurring ideas to provide ambiance.
Then I’d like the event to make a concentrated effort to unify a story with recurring ideas that elevates the ambiance of the event.
 
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shiekra38

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Dec 13, 2009
9,699
Florida
14’s theme was “What’s Your Breaking Point” with the asylum aesthetics.

And yes, pre-2000 had themes. Eyegor, “Primal Scream,” etc.

And that’s part of the confusion for a lot of fans. People view the “theme” as this tightly integrated narrative when it’s not, really. It’s the tag line and the “look.”

What was the “theme” of the Caretaker’s or Director’s years? It wasn’t the characters. The themes were “Your Time Has Come,” and “You Ought to Be In Pictures.”

Basically, the “theme” is a combination of the tag line and the primary aesthetic.
But those weren’t the actual themes. In interviews (I miss the Calendar section), Roddy, TJ, etc would be asked “What’s the theme this year?” and they would say the tag line. Then they explained how the icon fit the theme. Only on rare occasions did the formal tag line not match the theme in those interviews (2005, when the theme was “Terra Cruentes” and 2008, when the theme was actually “urban legends”).

The confusion is that many of the icon years had stories to explain the icon’s place in the event, and some years had better integrated stories (2005) than others (2002). Shoot, HHN 23 (TWD) has one of the most integrated stories they’d ever done... but “TWD” wasn’t the theme.

It’s all semantics, sure. But when fans say “I want a theme” they actually mean “story.” Themes are just recurring ideas to provide ambiance.
I loved the concept of HHN23 and wish it was fleshed out and explored a bit more...I will say the aesthetic built for HHN17 & 19 was the perfect way to present an IP and still balance that with the idea Horror Nights....Even something like HHN18 could work with IPs.

I suppose HHN28 & 29 had an aesthetic, but it feels different with how things are integrated...maybe it's just me being picky
 
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Legacy

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Jul 27, 2015
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Maybe, but it could always come back to port.
I've discussed this before, but the structure and culture of Universal A&D has changed drastically from something that allowed fully fleshed narratives and lore in the event. Roddy, Mike, and Kim had carte blanche over the event and (more importantly) little requirement to focus on other things (like refreshed parades, expanded street show offerings, etc). While they did manage other things, the scale at which is was required pales to now. Roddy and Kim, especially, were predominately dedicated to HHN--to the extent Kim designed the bulk of the websites during the aughts in his spare time. Marketing was used as a supplemental element, that didn't have to calculate social media interactions, to do nothing more than buy ad space designed by A&D. And Marketing, in a similar manner, was a lot simpler back then.

That is no longer the structure. Charles, who is now officially working with Jason in developing/executing the HHN "vision," is ALSO responsible for direction of live entertainment in the parks. A&D influences marketing, but they're not marketing experts who understand "impressions," "views," and "SEO." And resources that don't go to maximizing those things, in a corporate since, are wildly inefficient expenditures. Which matters, because shareholders.

Can A&D and Marketing throw a page on the site that explains the common thread of the year? Sure. But then they have to figure out the common thread. They're already working on the event 18 months in advance, without focusing on a narrative and commonality. Throwing the wrinkle of a fully integrated lore into the equation complicates the process a, frankly, unnecessary degree.

What they're doing works. Fans can not like it but, even when the stories mattered, the stories were never necessary. And that's the point.

To add this is a larger problem in the Disney style theme park fandom. “Theme!” people scream but what they want is lore.
Hector and Chester's area in Dinoland USA has some of the best lore in Disney. Primeval Whirl was literally a wild-mouse retelling of Dinosaur next door. It was themed perfectly. Fans just didn't like it, so it was "unthemed."
 
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shiekra38

Veteran Member
Dec 13, 2009
9,699
Florida
I've discussed this before, but the structure and culture of Universal A&D has changed drastically from something that allowed fully fleshed narratives and lore in the event. Roddy, Mike, and Kim had carte blanche over the event and (more importantly) little requirement to focus on other things (like refreshed parades, expanded street show offerings, etc). While they did manage other things, the scale at which is was required pales to now. Roddy and Kim, especially, were predominately dedicated to HHN--to the extent Kim designed the bulk of the websites during the aughts in his spare time. Marketing was used as a supplemental element, that didn't have to calculate social media interactions, to do nothing more than buy ad space designed by A&D. And Marketing, in a similar manner, was a lot simpler back then.

That is no longer the structure. Charles, who is now officially working with Jason in developing/executing the HHN "vision," is ALSO responsible for direction of live entertainment in the parks. A&D influences marketing, but they're not marketing experts who understand "impressions," "views," and "SEO." And resources that don't go to maximizing those things, in a corporate since, are wildly inefficient expenditures. Which matters, because shareholders.

Can A&D and Marketing throw a page on the site that explains the common thread of the year? Sure. But then they have to figure out the common thread. They're already working on the event 18 months in advance, without focusing on a narrative and commonality. Throwing the wrinkle of a fully integrated lore into the equation complicates the process a, frankly, unnecessary degree.

What they're doing works. Fans can not like it but, even when the stories mattered, the stories were never necessary. And that's the point.


Hector and Chester's area in Dinoland USA has some of the best lore in Disney. Primeval Whirl was literally a wild-mouse retelling of Dinosaur next door. It was themed perfectly. Fans just didn't like it, so it was "unthemed."
Right, Universal has upped their game with Christmas and entertainment offerings...Back in the day HHN was THE thing...Now it is A thing...Universal used to not be known for its Christmas festivities and certainly not for nighttime displays...That has since changed.
 
Apr 7, 2019
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So with a new saw movie releasing next year does anybody think that could potentially be a house? I know it’s been done in the past and I was just wondering if it always had large crowds or was a favorite among fans?
 

horrornights789

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Jul 8, 2017
3,125
So with a new saw movie releasing next year does anybody think that could potentially be a house? I know it’s been done in the past and I was just wondering if it always had large crowds or was a favorite among fans?
Probably not since it got ranked in the bottom 3 of 27’s house rankings and that was supposed to be its revival. Plus if Jigsaw’s box office is any indication the franchise isn’t as big as it used to be
 
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Sep 12, 2015
344
Houston Texas
Probably not since it got ranked in the bottom 3 of 27’s house rankings and that was supposed to be its revival. Plus if Jigsaw’s box office is any indication the franchise isn’t as big as it used to be
I mean I don’t necessarily want to see Saw at HHN 30 but it certainly has a bigger pull than some of the cult classics they’ve used the last couple of years a la Trick r Treat, House of 1000, Klowns. Having an easy IP for them to get lined up with a film release would at least make it likely it will be there. For better or for worse.
 

OhHaiInternet95

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Aug 18, 2017
2,080
So with a new saw movie releasing next year does anybody think that could potentially be a house? I know it’s been done in the past and I was just wondering if it always had large crowds or was a favorite among fans?
Seems like it and Scarecrow were the most popular houses at 27. Not a huge fan of the property but I did find the room with pig mask guys pretty scary. I'm a sucker for "crowded rooms," I guess.
 
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