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2018 Wrap-Up

A look at the last year…

For the last two years, this is where we published a best of the year list. We’re not doing that this for two main reasons.

  1. We didn’t really visit that many UK events during Halloween as we were in L.A. As we’re a UK-based site, we figure people aren’t going to be massively interested in a ‘best of’ list that mostly consists of US-based events.
  2. We haven’t yet posted all of those US reviews for a reason that we’ll get to now…

We’ve been dead quiet over the last month or so but for a super good reason. Writing up Halloween is always a massive pain for us as we don’t have much grace with getting posts up before more are due to be written and that wouldn’t be so bad if there wasn’t a ton of admin that needs to be dealt with to get the posts to the position where they’re published. It’s not an exaggeration to say that the admin, per post, can take a good 30 to 45 mins sometimes – digging out all the key details, the social handles, preparing those posts etc. It all adds up really quickly and faced with so much of it in such a short space of time, we decided to stop and take a step back.

Because you can carry on with the way things are and limp forward or you can figure out a better way. Well, we’ve spent this time building that better way. We’ve trialed it and it works perfectly and takes out maybe 90% of the pain. It’s really cool and the best thing about this is that we’ve identified the potential to use it to do something that we haven’t seen anyone else in the scare industry do. Admittedly, we’re probably a good six months away from being able to talk about that but it has us incredibly excited – this could be something really cool for anyone that has a passing interest in scare events.

More importantly, we arbitrarily said to ourselves that we’d take until the end of the year to focus solely on that before returning to the site proper in the new year.

So the US reviews will return – we have Knotts and Warner Bros fully written I believe with everything else drafted. But first we want to post the two European events that we recently (ish) visited. Facsimile over in Belgium and Unwrapped here in the UK. Again, those reviews are already written, just need to do a polish – expect to see them before Sunday!

And then there’s this year – we’ve got a bunch of things on the list already – Twilight Zone and Ghost Stories on the stage, Seance at the Vault festival along with the latest production from The Tom Sawyer Effect and maybe a few other bits at that festival – still having a flick through everything that they’ve listed! A bit further afield but the Overlook Film Festival is really calling to us! And Faceless Ventures already have a few things penciled in.

And on that note – whilst we won’t do a ‘best of’ list – a few things that we want to highlight.

L.A. is absolutely amazing for immersive horror. Theatre Macabre killed it for us and Zoe was an escape room like none we’ve seen over here. We haven’t discussed Creep or Delusion yet but they were both great and we can’t go any further without mentioning Urban Death. We’d implore any fan to go over and see it all – they also have a super huge variety of haunts so there’s something for everyone though we do have to say but, even on the 3rd time around, we really are not seeing the appeal of Halloween Horror Nights at Universal!

As for the UK, Faceless Ventures are easily the most interesting company currently out there. We attended 3 productions of theirs this year and they were all completely and utterly different though we have to say that Interieur was our favourite. Seriously, keep a close eye on them as they’re constantly changing things up in an industry where we see a lot of repetition.

Somewhat related to that – we’d love for readers to take more of a punt on these smaller, more independent attractions. Contained Liverpool produced an event that we just weren’t expecting at all and was all the better for it. We visited Tulleys Farm for Shocktober Fest again this year and it really is an event that’s just going through the motions. Support the guys that are sticking their necks out with more unconventional ideas!

To add to that – we are seriously mulling running a one-off scratch show at some point this year. We absolutely don’t want to enter that arena ‘full-time’ but we have creative backgrounds and there’s an idea that we have that we haven’t seen done before that could be really interesting. Maybe not conventionally scary but something that we reckon readers of this site would appreciate… We’ll continue to chip away at it!

And I guess the final thing is – though I have no idea how successful that we’ll be on this front but if we write it down here, it sorta forces us to take it a bit more seriously. We want to get back into things that we were doing before – covering films centered around scare attractions, featuring the odd VR home title (they’re immersive horror after all). And more behind the scenes stuff. We should do better with all that stuff as they’re not time dependent like events are. Let’s see how well we manage it!

And that’s it for us! Normal service will resume and cool things are coming down the pipeline!

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