Orlando Fun Tickets recently had the opportunity to visit Universal Studios on opening weekend of Halloween Horror Nights 2012 and after all of the hype of “The Walking Dead” haunted house it was no surprise that was our first stop of the night and we were so glad we got to experience it.
We were surprised how closely the haunted house followed the series and how accurate the zombies and “sets” looked from the television show. The house pretty much follows Sheriff Rick Grimes’ journey as he wakes from his coma in the hospital and then discovers the horrors that await him in the streets and beyond.
Get there early in the day, so you’re wait time is shorten, but when in line; we were never short on entertainment as bloodied nurses roamed the line offering blood bags full of liquor and scenes from the first two seasons of The Walking Dead played off the top of the building where the haunted house was. Eventually we made it to the start of the line and were immediately transported to a post-apocalyptic zombie-infested world as dead bodies in body bags were strewn about the entrance way of the house giving us just enough scare to both intrigue us and make us hesitate to walk in.
But we did walk in and were immediately surrounded by “walkers” as we stood in the hospital scene of Season 1. Universal Studios really nailed this part of the house, with great touches from the series including the blood-inscribed double doors warning, “Don’t Open Dead Inside” and the “walkers” scratching and reaching from the other side of the doors trying desperately to grab you.
As we warily made our way out of the hospital scene and into the streets just as Rick did, we encountered the same horror he did including “bicycle girl,” the legless walker who drug herself on the ground trying to reach Rick as he walked past her. The next thing we knew we’re in the department store where Rick and his crew attempted to hide from the “walkers,” and just like in the show we were bombarded with the angry undead as they forced us to the next scene which just so happened to be the rooftop. Again, Universal did a great job bringing the series to us as we walked past Rick’s Sheriffs’ bag full of guns, a bloody saw from when Merle cut off his hand, Merle’s severed hand, bunny slippers (worn by the first little girl walker of the show,) and a motorcycle that looks like Daryl’s.
And then there is the iconic RV, and although we couldn’t walk on it, we were quickly reminded we were glad we couldn’t as gunshots and screams rang from within. As we passed the RV we were astonished to see the “well walker” from Season 2 (remember the one that gets caught in the well and Rick and crew try and pull him out?) desperately reaching for us. And then even more shocked and a little excited to be entering Hershel’s ‘walker” infested barn. Definitely the highlight of the house, the barn had us screaming at every turn and clutching onto one another as we blindly scurried through trying not to be made into “walker” dinner.
Finally we made it outside by station wagon the crew left supplies for Sofia, and just when we thought we were safe from the flesh-eating undead, more “walkers” snuck up on us, scaring the daylights out of us! In all it was a very real and very frightening haunted house and we’re dying to go back!