2012 Review Team


Ryan Acker – Team Lead / Critic

When I go to a Haunt, I expect to be immersed in horror. I want to be frightened in the queue lines and have sweaty palms as I wait to go inside. From there, the scare levels must be increased dramatically. Props must be authentic and actors must be trained or just naturally be downright terrifying! It’s always annoying to see the same online purchased props or to have an actor ruin the mood by some overused line. Also, it is crucial to me that if I am transported into a world of Hell, I better be there for a satisfactory length of time. There is no greater turn off then to get a good scare and see the exit sign a few minutes after I started. With that being said, I hope 2012 will be a season to be reckoned with!


Bill Bevis – Critic

Note to Haunts: Sweat the details. Make me believe. I’m a skeptic and a cynic, so you’ll have to work at it. But I really WANT to believe (I’m so conflicted!). Serve me up a five-course, Full-Sensory Experience: Visuals. Sounds. Smells. Vibrations. Energy. Make it palpable. I want to feel Out Of My Comfort Zone–WAAAAAAY out. I want to TASTE the oppression. A chain saw roaring in my face will make me reflexively jump as high as the next guy. . . but a soft, indefinable, not-of-this-world demonic growl coming from SOMEWHERE (“what IS that ?! WHERE’S IT COMING FROM?! . . . . WHERE ?!?!?!?!)–or ANY well-crafted affect that’s consistent with your story–will mess with my mind and keep me uncomfortable for TOOO long after exiting your Haunt. Make me feel it. Make me take it with me. Make me want to shower afterwards. Sell it. Get in my head. If you do. . . . you GOT me!


Victoria Maez – Critic

Fun! First and foremost a haunted house should be fun. By the end of the haunt, if I can’t say I had a good time, it probably wasn’t worth my time or effort. A haunt that doesn’t take itself too seriously is my kind of haunt. I like haunts that can scare the poop out of me as well as make me laugh. I don’t like seeing the same tactics and props over and over, so anything new and unique is always a plus, especially if the scare is executed well. Good acting plays a huge part in making a haunt great. Anything that can draw me in and make me feel like I’m literally in a haunted world…now that’s my kind of fun!


Jason Peterson – Critic

What I look for in a haunt is a consistent theme, if there is one present, and set design, which is a big deal to me. A good set can make me forget that I’m actually walking around inside a warehouse, a mall, a tent, or even a trailer. I like to feel immersed within the set and with the actor. Acting and costuming help polish and bring a good set together. It’s also important that actors never break character and stay relentless in disturbing or frightening me. I’m a huge fan of props, if used correctly. I enjoy all different styles of haunting. I’m also a big fan of line entertainment, it’s always fun getting pumped up before the big show. This isn’t a necessity but it’s a fun way to pass the time while you wait. Length is great as long as it doesn’t consist of to many dead spots or dark undecorated halls. I look for originality, lighting, sound, smells, humor, make-up, and costuming.


Alex Gallegos – Webmaster / Critic

As far as I’m concerned a great haunt provides me with an experience that’s somehow new and different. Jars of blood with shrunken heads in them, prisoners reaching at me from their cells screaming, creepy clowns that jump out at me from behind doors and a wailing demon straight from the fiery depths of hell can all be entertaining, sure, but these set pieces have a tendency to wear a bit thin. Something unconventional – zombie uprising, aliens, robot apocalypse… even a deranged undead Betsy Ross who stitches a five point star onto each victim’s corpse will make me sit up and take notice just for the sheer novelty of a unique experience.


Marlena Baker – Critic

A haunted house needs atmosphere first and foremost. I look for a haunted house that really draws me in and keeps me nervous between scares. A cohesive theme always helps me stay in the mood and really believe I’m surrounded by horrible things. Good haunted houses don’t overplay one particular scare and keep the pacing steady so the crowds don’t detract from the mood.


Corey Dunham – Critic

The main thing that gives a haunted house its appeal is realism and authenticity. I love entering a scene that appears totally real to the point of delusion. From horrid smells of the dead to life-like theatrics, a haunt should contain its own style and reality.
Acting is critical in a haunt and the quality of the acting will make or break a scene. I have seen haunts that the scenes were rather sparse, but that became irrelevant when I encountered the actors. I truly was afraid of them because they were so believable, I was quite fearful for my safety. That’s the good stuff! Actors that say, “Boo”, “Grrr”, or the highly overused, “Get out”, kill not only a scene for me, but dramatically reduce the level of suspense and fear I feel for the remainder of the haunt.


Peyton Lucero – Critic

I have been acting and haunting for some of Colorado’s finest haunts. I worked my way into set design, became an established make-up assistant, and jumped into character to begin the scaring to all who entered my world. I have helped build, tear down, and everything in between. I have a special appreciation for haunted houses and love just about any style of haunting, from old school vampires to zombie or alien infestations. I am a gore hound! I love gory props & make-up, and I think it’s important to light up the gore so I can see it! Lights, sound, smell, along with good acting, that’s what I’m looking for. Never say “boo!” and not a huge fan of the line “get out of my room!” either. I have not been able to see many of the haunts here in Colorado, so I definitely look forward to the 2012 season as I’ve never seen it before.

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