The Creep has been excavated from his grave for the new Creepshow Halloween Horror Nights maze at both Universal Studios Orlando and Hollywood. But he's not just bringing along dusty old scares from the original Stephen King and George A. Romero horror classic. While the more iconic scenes from that first anthology are definitely on display, Universal is also heaping some love on the new Shudder series for an unexpected scare treat that makes this one of the funniest, thrilling new mazes for the 2019 Halloween season.
The new Creepshow maze works in bringing the iconic comic book to life from the original movie, which was in part both based on and paying tribute to the old EC horror comics of the 1950s. The new Shudder series of the same name debuted shortly after Halloween Horror Nights officially opened its doors this year, so fans who'd not yet seen this fresh take on the franchise may have been confused when they reached the final leg of their terrifying trip through this haunted attraction. As they were confronted with a few new unexpected jump scares that may have seemed unfamiliar and misplaced at first glance.
Shudder's Creepshow is an anthology horror series based on the 1982 movie featuring vignettes that explore terror, murder, the supernatural and the unexplainable. It works as a sequel, and is a noted continuation of the first two movies. Not everyone who is a fan of the movie has signed up for a subscription to the Shudder streaming service, though. And walking through the tail end of this new Halloween Horror Nights maze can be perplexing and even take away from the scares.
I know I was left wondering what type of hellish scenario I'd found myself in. Unfamiliar monsters and an impetuous setting set my mind twirling. This wasn't the Creepshow I know. It wasn't until later I discovered that this maze was recreating key scenes from two of the better Creepshow episodes, one of which didn't actually air until October 3, weeks after I'd climbed through this living nightmare. It's a shame I didn't realize what I was experiencing on that first climb through.
The scenes depicting the Creepshow Shudder series are perhaps the best in this particular maze. And that is saying a lot. Aside from Killer Clowns From Outer Space, Creepshow wins as one of this year's best for perfectly capturing the spirit of the original movies. And now, as I've learned, they also did a great job of resurrecting the energy, enthusiasm and thrills Shudder seems to be delivering on a now weekly basis.
The entrance of the maze features various Creepshow comic book covers, welcoming guests in for the fright of their lives. And the aesthetic here is much more reminiscent of the new TV anthology series than the movie, utilizing the revamped Creep in his ominous green hood. Walking down a long hallway, guests are quickly pulled into the first installment from the 1982 movie title Father's Day, all along the way oversized pages from the comic line the walls.
There are ghouls and ghosts that often jump out from behind these comic covers for an unexpected scare. Which is unique to this particular maze. Scenes from Father's Day are brought to life with a lot of attention and detail. Things next careen into The Crate, often sighted as a favorite short in this ensemble. The red and blue motif flashes as the Monster in the Box appears at various stages, consuming and killing its prey. You firmly in its sights.
The Crate swiftly leads into They're Creeping Up on You, which puts Upson Pratt's body on full display as he is consumed by hordes of cockroaches. Instead of recreating Something to Tide You Over, the second half of the Creepshow maze works as a living promo for the new Shudder series. We get to walk through the most horrifying parts of the very first story from the premiere episode Gray Matter, which follows Doc and Chief, two old-timers in a small, dying town, who brave a storm to check on Richie, an alcoholic single father, after encountering his terrified son at the local convenience store. Here, we get to take the place of Doc and Chief as we encounter the creepy creature that Richie has become, confronting this beer-swilling monstrosity in his ramshackle kitchen.
While getting to see Richie in his true monster form was pretty exciting, the next room goes directly into the second episode Bad Wolf Down. This originally aired on October 3, and follows a group of American soldiers, trapped behind enemy lines during World War II, who find an unconventional way to even the odds that directly involves a giant werewolf. This might be the best part of the maze, and they perfect sell the show home.
We're taken inside a Nazi jail cell, where one of the soldiers is ripped in two. Machine gun fire fills the tight space. And suddenly a werewolf in army fatigues is jumping out of a doorway for perhaps the maze's biggest scare. But then, an even bigger werewolf comes bursting onto the scene for a double whammy that is sure to make even the most tight-faced skeptic scream.
It's a fun way to get to experience the new Shudder Creepshow TV show, and the werewolf designs are pretty great. There are 6 episodes with two stories apiece, so not everything is accounted for. That would be impossible. Though this particular maze, much like the American Horror Story maze and the Stranger Things maze has quite a bit of potential to grow and expand in the coming years. There's not doubt this property will be revisited. Especially since we see not one scare room or scene from Creepshow 2. It's nice that they included Gray Matter since it is the one episode written by Stephen King.
The Creepshow maze is a great addition to the park this year. And it all ends with one final scare from The Creep in his new small screen incarnation. Hate to say it, but it might even beat the new Ghostbusters maze. Though nothing quite competes with Killer Knowns from Outer Space. That big top spectacle is a little hard to top. But Creepshow comes close.