Statesville Haunted Prison & City of the Dead
Crest Hill, IL
Reviewed on: Saturday, October 10, 2015
Since the beginning, when we write these reviews, we try to speak directly to our readers. We not only try to capture and describe the experience, but not give away any of the major details that may prevent you from venturing out to taste the show for yourself. Each year, we at HHC have the honor of being able to immerse ourselves into a cornucopia of different fears, styles, and scare tactics all designed to force you to check under the bed just one more time before sleeping with one eye open. While some succeed much farther than others, there are very few that are habitual offenders.
That’s where the haunted house…haunted attraction party… October-based wild-and-crazy-adventure-ride officially mononymously known as simply, “Statesville” comes into focus.
See, ‘Statesville’ isn’t just a place. It is a living, breathing monster, caretaken for by 180-some proud souls and fed by thousands of patrons each year. (We may have even compared ‘Statesville’ to the Winchester Mystery House at some point in the past. And yes, that is still fairly accurate!)
Growing, and evolving each year, the crew here is always innovating, building, and designing ways to twist each turn into another page in the book of your worst fears. From the moment you step foot on the property, it becomes very clear that these guys do something well… very well.
Even before we reach the front door of the house, the outside cast/roamers have patrons hiding their faces and shrieking in terror. Safe zones? No, this is no 50-shades book. The cast and crew are hungry, and are licking their chops as you approach the table. Prisoners of various styles populate every nook and cranny and make sure you are paid the attention you deserve. Afraid of prison? Afraid of snakes? Afraid of rats? Crowds? Clowns? Doctors? The dark? Get out your checklist, because this place has you covered!
Some of the detailed highlights? How about the Rat King who lets real rats climb all over his body, and feeds them from his mouth? Or the very real, non-animatronic snake that slithers and coils around its handlers’ arm, posing to strike as you scamper by? Or a trip through the prison showers?
Or how about Big Daddy? One of the newest editions to this year’s show is a newly incarcerated prisoner who shakes down passing patrons for any trinkets they can spare in order for safe passage. (You have been warned!)
Or how about Tree? We ran into him preaching the horrific word inside the walls of the City of the Dead. With our guess of him being 7-feet something tall, there’s no ducking and covering on this one!
The Bottom Line: Statesville Haunted Prison and City of the Dead deliver time and time again, and 2015 is no exception. This year’s show has all of your favorite pieces and some ones that will leave you holding your socks in your hands. With the thoughts of all the characters we met through our trek, there really is no hope for sleep tonight.
Entertainment: 19.5 out of 20
Scare Factor & Fright: 9.5 out of 10
Acting: 9.5 out of 10
Sets & Room Detail: 10 out of 10
Costumes: 5 out of 5
Make Up: 5 out of 5
Sound: 5 out of 5
Lights: 5 out of 5
Props & Special Effects: 9.5 out of 10
Originality & Story Concept: 10 out of 10
Management & Owner Presentation: 5 out of 5
Website: 5 out of 5
Total: 98 points out of 100 points possible
– Official Haunted House Chicago Review Team Review