Seaside Haunted Theme Park 2008 Video

Here is a video shot on Halloween night last year of the final performance of Seaside Haunted Theme Park. Formerly known as "Seaside Haunt," this Halloween attraction was under new management in 2008; unfortunately, it failed to live up to its formerly glory. Part part of the Spooky House family of haunted houses (which also included Fearplex and Old Town Haunt), it featured some familiar sets and decorations that used to be part of the three separate mazes that Spooky House ran back when they were located in a mall parking lot on Topanga Canyon Boulevard. It was nice to see them hauled out of the mothballs and put back to good use, but along with them came an unfortunate handicap that the Spooky House haunts had overcome in recent years: a tendency to feature lengthy elaborate sets with few actual scares. The result was a bit like walking through a spooky museum - fun but not always as frightening as it should be.

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Skull Kingdom 2008 Video

Our favorite new attraction from last Halloween was Skull Kingdom in Woodland Hills, an atmospheric haunted house that recaptured much of the feel of the Seaside Haunt in Venture (hardly a surprise, since it was put on by the same people). It was very atmospheric; there were some good sets that gave an impression of being within an actual location, not just a mock-up; plus, there was a strategic use of darkness - no doubt intended to hide budgetary shortcomings but cleverly employed to enhance apprehension as you manuvered through the corridors inhabited by lurking ghouls.

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Reign of Terror Halloween 2008 Video

Reign of Terror was without doubt our great discovery on Halloween night 2008. A community haunt at the Conejo Recreation Center, it was as good as any pro haunt, making it well worth the drive from Los Angeles out to Thousand Oaks.

We shot some video, but by the time we got around to looking at it, the Halloween season had passed, so we let it sit on the back burner until now. With word out that Reign of Terror is returning for 2009 - at a new location, promising an even bigger and better haunt - now seems like a good time to finally make the video available.

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