For a new haunt, Junction Nightmare in West Chester is on the right track. Divided into two separate haunts (Ripper’s Revenge and Fear Factory), the attraction offers a diverse collection of tastefully decorated scenes ranging from Jack the Ripper’s old stomping grounds on foggy London streets to psychedelic mazes infested with deranged clowns that might impress even the most desensitized fright-seekers.
Overall, Ripper’s Revenge is handled well with decent actors and superb set design, featuring cobblestone floors, lantern-lit corridors and, of course, plenty of theatrical fog. The most memorable part of the entire haunt was witnessing Jack the Ripper emerge from the shadows and slit the throat of a young damsel.
On the other hand, some actors in Fear Factory seem a bit too boy-next-door to frighten most adults, creating an ambiance more akin to a funhouse than a scare attraction. There are other actors, like the belligerent clown loose in the chain link maze, that are so intense I was convinced they may have really spent some time locked up in a padded cell. (Reviewed by Adam Sievering)
THE WAIT: Lines are a quick 15 minutes. The tour lasts about the same
DETAILS: Junction Nightmare is open 7 p.m.-midnight Friday-Saturday and 7-10 p.m. Sunday through Oct. 31. Jack-O-Lantern Junction (lights-on tour for kids) is open 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday- Saturday and 12-5 p.m. Sunday. 7379 Squire Ct., West Chester, 513-898-4656, www.junctionnightmare.com
THE DAMAGE: $15 (up to 50 percent discounts available on Web site), $8 for Jack-O-Lantern Junction
CITYBEAT RATING: PG