John Murdy and Creepshow. Two names that are synonymous with horror. Throw in Halloween Horror Nights and you have a recipe for masterful mayhem. HorrorBuzz was invited to get a preview of the highly anticipated maze coming to Universal Studios Hollywood’s Halloween Horror Nights with Creative Director, John Murdy to get an idea of what the horror masterminds were planning for visitors when the event kicks off Thursday, September 12th.
The Creepshow maze will feature five segments total; Three stories from the original film including Father’s Day, The Crate, and They’re Creeping Up On You, along with two new segments from the upcoming original Shudder series from Greg Nicotero of The Walking Dead fame and KNB effects.
Approaching the façade, we spy the detailed outside cover of a well-read pulp horror comic. as we fitted our hard hats Murdy pointed out the special touches that art director Chris Williams peppered the maze with. For instance, the artwork for the entrance was far too clean. Williams actually scanned the staples from copies of his own comic books and used them to lend authenticity to the environment.
We enter and are barraged with those wonderfully campy ads for x-ray glasses and monkey’s paws. You can bet that there will be more than a few scares hidden here.
We turn a corner and enter Father’s Day. Any fan of the original remembers the story. A guilt-ridden daughter who murdered her abusive father returns to his grave every Father’s Day to pay respects. That is, until he digs himself out of his grave and exacts revenge on his progeny. All of the high notes are here, including the disturbing scene in the kitchen.
We next head into THE CRATE. An old wooden crate is discovered under a staircase at Horlicks University. Within is a dormant monster with a ravenous taste for flesh. Affectionately known as Fluffy, the creature bears tufts of beige hair and row upon row of razor-sharp fangs. During our tour, we are taken through the various University rooms that will soon be covered in blood and carnage.
We then come into the section of the maze that is sure to creep out folks suffering from katsaridaphobia, and entomophobia alike. They’re Creeping Up On You is the story of a germaphobe eccentric who is attacked by roaches.
The last two sections are based on new stories from the upcoming series. In this next scene a man becomes a shut-in after becoming addicted to Harrow’s Supreme Lager. What no one realizes is that he is morphing and absorbing unsuspecting victims. There’s a subtle nod to The Shining in this segment if you keep your eyes peeled.
The final segment is another new story about soldiers during World War II who realize their only means of escape are to become werewolves. We wander through a prison in enemy-occupied France and come face to face with a riot of lycanthropes out for blood.
With such a varied collection of horrific yarns to pull from, it became difficult for Murdy and his team to narrow things down for a Halloween Horror Nights Maze. There were plenty of ideas that were left on the cutting room floor so to speak. Murdy explained that he was a huge fan of the segment in the original Creepshow film called SOMETHING TO TIDE YOU OVER. However, there just wasn’t enough maze. In fact, the team even read through scripts for the new show that were held for a possible second season. But these were the best of the best stories.
At the end of the maze, there is a special nod to the close of the original film. A father yelling at his son for reading such comic book trash. this sets up a collection of boo boxes and final scares that give the ending a punch.
From what we saw, they are doing the memory of George Romero and Stephin King’s collaboration in the 80’s proud with a view to keeping the terrifying tales going.