A new house was announced today by Universal! The house, “Seeds of Extinction,” marks another original concept to be added to HHN 28. The concept places us in a post-apocalyptic world. After a meteor strikes Earth, an outbreak of plants runs amuck over the planet. However, life finds a way and new predator species of plants emerge to fill the void left in the destruction.
Expected Wait Time
Slow Nights – 20 – 40 minutes
Busy Nights – 50 – 70 minutes
Characters/Effects We Hope to See
The early images from the house seem to indicate there will be a lot of very cool production design, which makes this an exciting one to watch for. Walking through the ruins of society is something we’ve done a lot at HHN in recent years, including the litany of Walking Dead houses. Still, a walk through the apocalypse can be extremely fun. The images look very cool, and as we walk through local businesses, especially the Shop-N-Go, there are some great scare opportunities. Get ready for vicious carnivorous plants to come out of the aisles.
The “Lightning Gulp” might be one of my favorite references to a past house in some time. Lightning Gulch was one of my favorite original houses over the past five years, and the logo even bears some similarities. It’s a nice nod to the hardcore fans, while still showing some fun character design.
The Jack & Eddie’s Sunwear references our favorite clown in charge. Also fairly popular among the HHN base is the McPherson name, which first appeared in the Dead Exposure House from HHN18. Ten years later, the house returns, and so does the McPherson name in some fashion. Coincidence? I think not.
Scares to Watch For
- Human-Plant Hybrids – This is a given, especially since you know there’s going to be scareactors. However, showing humans in various stages of either transformation could be extremely spooky. If set up correctly with mannequins throughout the house, you could be tricked into seeing more creatures than there actually are. It worked well for “Dead Waters” last year.
- Furniture Based Characters – I have no idea how else to describe this, but when you see them you know. Imagine creatures will reach out of various objects, such as pianos, drawers, or cabinets. These boo holes will be stationed throughout the house and maximize the scares.
- Fishing line – this is the perfect house for this at HHN 28. There are still other houses that could use it, but this one feels obvious. Combine the fishing line with various vines hanging from the ceiling. Fans of Tomb will probably be happy.
- Stilts – This house feels like the most obvious one to feature stilt walkers at HHN 28. The creature design can be extremely elaborate, and the extra height will help deliver some frights. Think of the Scarecrows last year.
- Puppets– It’s always interesting when an unexpected puppet shows up in a house. “Tomb of the Ancients” had some surprise puppetry in the house at HHN 26 with an Anubus/Dinosaur creature at the exit. It’s likely that most puppets based performers will be needed for Stranger Things, but if the Demogorgon resembles the Lipstick Demons of the “Insidious” houses, bring them here, please. Think of “Little Shop of Horrors” or “Jumanji” giant puppets.
What to Watch
“Annihilation” (2018) – While “Annihilation” is a more recent film, the parallels are uncanny. Behind a “shimmer” creatures are evolving in mysterious ways. As the DNA of creatures blends together, plants, animals, and humans become singular creatures. One of the great moments in the film comes when soldiers cut open one of their own, only to reveal a vine/snake creature on the inside. Hopefully, the production design team took some notes from the sci-fi adventure.
“Invasion of the Body Snatchers” (1978) – One of the great horror films of the 1970s, the Donald Sutherland-led feature follows a group of friends as they try to survive an alien invasion. The creatures from another planet seem invisible at first. They take the forms of plants, flowers, and giant pod creatures. This may be where a good deal of the inspiration comes from for the house, and if they replicate the screeching sounds, it’s going to be terrifying.
“Little Shop of Horrors” (1986) – It’s unlikely we’ll get anything as comical as Audrey II, but the concept bears a striking resemblance. With some pop culture pieces thrown into the house, it wouldn’t be shocking to see a human being eaten by a plant here and there as part of the production design. Regardless, this is an amazing movie that everyone should watch during this time of year anyway.
“The Last Man on Earth” (1964) – The first adaptation of “I Am Legend” featured Vincent Price in what is likely the most faithful adaptation of the source material. Post-Apocalyptic worlds are easy to draw comparisons between, and an abandoned world full of monsters is a good place to start.
“The Mist” (2007) – This has one of the darkest ends of any movie in history. The insane creatures they also see throughout the movie can be creepy as hell. This one is more to get you in the mood for the apocalypse and get a bit more Stephen King in your life.