Our review of The 17th Door:
To be extremely blunt- I have no idea what the motivation is behind the 17th Door. Within the maze they constantly electrocute you, they show off a dead baby pig, and you also have to watch a pregnant woman get kicked to death. It's like a group of spoiled teenagers, who haven’t learned how to socialize with women, decided to blow their trust fund on a haunt. It lacked a fundamental necessity: entertainment. Its lack of scares or thought just comes across as boneheaded, unfocused and boring.
At one moment within the maze a character approached the women within our group to ask if they ever had an abortion- this is interesting because if they are trying to be offensive it would be assuming that, in 2016, abortion is a taboo subject, or even an offensive thing for one to do. The idea that they actually spent their time and finances developing this warped reality that either looks at women like shit, or at its very least proposes the fantasy to treat them as such, is baffling. This very mentality is so prevalent throughout the whole maze that it ended up feeling very parallel to my previous experiences with christian hell houses in the south.
Throughout all of the child molestation and rape references there is one redeeming moment when we entered a room full of aquariums and specimen containers. The character within the room took two people from within our group and placed them into human sized tanks. The containers quickly throw them backwards out of the room and into the next. This trick reveals their potential to make 17th Door awesome. Considering this it is frustrating that they instead opted for the route of juvenile ideas.
- The haunt ends with a room where the pregnant female character, who is present throughout the maze, is having a miscarriage. We were forced to reach into her vagina and, instead of a human baby, pull out a dead pig. This is not scary nor shocking, but just a pathetic finale to one of the saddest mazes we had ever experienced (outside of Hell Houses). As we exited none of us were talking about what we had just experienced, instead the strangers within our group were talking about how they wanted to go vegetarian after seeing a baby animal carcass.
The main feeling we left with is how 17th Door was a waste of time. The people behind this haunt used very rudimentary shock and awe tactics that lacked any imagination and consequently did not achieve any goals of scaring or delighting us as their visitors. Historically, if your goal is to outrage your audience, the threshold is extremely high. The 17th Door is so desperate to be disgusting and shocking that they completely miss the purpose of entertaining altogether. It would be in their benefit to go back thirty years to a GG Allin show and learn something. This maze is a far cry from a naked, adult man punching out the audience and throwing his feces at them. You are not left with excitement but instead realizing you just paid to witness a vague and high budget mess.
What did you think?
October 18, 2016
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Our short review of Delusion's 2016 interactive horror play "His Crimson Queen"
Since Delusion first began, there have been many imitators - yet all of them fall short of touching how special this interactive horror play truly is.
Jon Braver's fingerprint is apparent within every aspect of the interactive play making this haunt an inimitable master of its genre. The cast, stunts, audio, plot, and setting are always excellent and executed with admirable precision.
This years act, “His Crimson Queen”, is a really entertaining, hour long, immersive journey.
It was running an hour and a half behind, which became grating since there wasn't much to do while waiting. Considering the amount of attention you get from the talent inside this unexpected delay is understandable. But when you are the last group of the night, like us, the lag could be made more pleasant by having suspenseful entertainment in the waiting area or by offering a small cafe/hang out room similar to the run Delusion did during its 2014 run in West Adams.
Within our group there was a complaint that “His Crimson Queen” was lacking the tension that Braver has become known for and instead focused more soley on the storytelling. An example of this would be the panic one would feel during 2014’s “Lies Within” when the fireplace came to life after you were locked inside a room. However this gripe is minor when you consider how impressive this play is otherwise.
In conclusion Delusion is a must for every Halloween season. You and your friends will likely leave impressed and exhilerated; wondering what the fuck just happened. We are looking forward to going again!
What did you think of it?
- J. Madison
October 04, 2016