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A walk through nightmares.

October 30, 2014

Tour of terrorFor the second year Zombie Joe’s Underground Theatre brings us the best haunted maze in the LA area.

What makes Tour of Terror better than other mazes, the expertise? The folks at ZJU are a working Theatre company, a company that specializes in grindhouse, macabre, existential scares, and suspense. They’ve taken this experience and twisted their entire theater into a haunted maze, with the stage proper playing host to a series of vignettes that fit into their Urban Death Plays.

To start, you’re ushered into the dark, with nothing but a dim flashlight to serve as a safety blanket. It’s quite dim, and quite brilliant. With such a dim light, you’re forced to move the illuminated disk from corner to corner, trying to spot your doom. This alone gets your heart pumping, and your psyche primed for fear. As soon as you shine the light away from what you thought was a motionless prop, it springs to life. The maze isn’t just filled with props, it’s filled with talented actors who live to scare people year round. It’s like someone opened the doors to the madhouse, lured the patients into a maze, then locked you in there with them.

When you get to the end of the maze, you’re rewarded, your reward, more terror. At the end of the maze is an insane looking pig playing the cello, while a creepy doll dances silently. From there it gets more bizarre. As with all Urban Death shows, darkness and sound are used to draw you in. When the lights go out, and you hear shuffling, you can’t help but lean in closer, forcing your eyes to see through the darkness. This is all in vein, but it heightens your senses. When the stage is illuminated, what is seen can never be predicted.

When the show is over, you must return through the maze to reach the safety of the night outside. That alone is a unique psychological trip. For most of the world, the night has alwayse posed a tiny bit of fear. Who knows what is around each corner, what on earth did you just see out of the corner of your eye? After your tour through terror, the unknown of the night is a welcome refuge. It’s velvet darkness will take you in, and give you a chance to breathe free. Don’t be tricked into thinking a return trip through the maze will be an easy one. Who knows what the ghosts and ghouls may have done to the maze while you were enthralled by death on stage.

Urban Death Tour of Terror is a must experience for anyone who enjoys the darker season. It’s Halloween distilled and bottled. I can’t say more, as that would give away the ghost so to speak. You must show up, and face your fears.

Tour of Terror opens its maze Fridays and Saturdays through November 1st at Zombie Joe’s Underground in North Hollywood.

For more more information please visit www.zombiejoes.com

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