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2012 Fables Studios Interactive Haunt Review

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Fables Studios Interactive Haunted Attraction
8408 W. Grand Ave
River Grove, IL 60171

Visited: 10/05/12


Reviewed By: The Webmaster     
Visibility/Location: They could have done better in this category. It is quite possible to drive by this event inadvertently, if you aren't paying close attention. Since it was located in the "River Grove Plaza" strip mall, it really blended in with the other shops. There also weren't any signs posted along the road. They did have a "Fable Studios" sign hung above the entrance; however, since it wasn't well illuminated, it couldn't be seen from the street. 

To help make their event more visible, they projected multicolored flashing lights against the front of the building.  The hearse parked in front of the entrance and the bright, sweeping search lights in the sky helped increase visibility significantly.

Also, at first glance, I thought that parking was also extremely limited. There were not that many parking spaces in front of the strip mall. After I went through the attraction, I found out that there was additional parking available across the street, but there were no signs posted anywhere, indicating this was the case.

Wait Entertainment: Even though it was early in the season, they still had some entertainment lined up. Near the entrance, there was an evil clown character, interacting with the people waiting in line, as well as a fire spinner performing out in the parking lot.   
Admission Price: $10
Parking: FREE

10 Minutes * 
= Since people move through haunted attractions at different rates, your time will vary. Note: The time shown here represents the actual time spent moving forward through the attraction. Time spent waiting in queue lines, staging areas, intro scenes, rules rooms and when traffic jams cause patrons to come to a halt, has been subtracted. 

LPR: 3.500
LPR stands for Length/Price Ratio. It represents perceived value of an event, by comparing length vs price of admission. Higher numbers represent more value per dollar. Actual quality and/or entertainment value of an event are not factors in this calculation. Click Here to see how this event compares to others visited this year by the staff of
Scare Factor: Low-Medium
Crowd Control: Great. I never saw or ran into any other groups. Inside the attraction, there were various timed sequences and hidden exits, which was effective in separating the groups.


Advertised as "Chicago's Interactive Haunted Attraction", this event delivers just that. In many ways, it reminded me of the movie "Saw". Based on your actions, various things would happen. Throughout the attraction, customers would flip switches, push buttons and perform various other tasks, which triggered special effects and/or allowed them to continue to the next area.  You really don't see this kind of attraction every day and I think it's refreshing to see something that is different from most of the other haunted houses out there. 

It was quite obvious as soon as I walked in the door that this attraction had a circus sideshow theme. Near the entrance, there was a glass display case, containing a petrified spider web, shrunken heads and other oddities. The surrounding walls had wide red/white vertical stripes, resembling a circus tent.  The ticket booth was also themed like the ticket window of a circus trailer. The tour began with an introduction, given by a pair of "living" animatronic marionettes, which were suspended over a small wooden stage. After some entertaining back-and-forth banter between the two characters, which included relaying the rules of the haunted house, the marionettes set up a nice surprise ending to the scene. From there, patrons moved through various areas, most of which were related to the central theme of the attraction.   In many of the scenes, there were great soundtracks and lighting effects.

In the execution room, there were flashing lights and dozens of pushbutton switches mounted to the back wall.  Customers were split up into two groups, to engage in a competition to soon see who could push the correct button the fastest.  When the right button was pushed, the winning team was announced and a cool special effect was triggered. 

In the play room, dolls were attached all over the walls. Two short doll girls with porcelain masks, wearing dingy dresses, approached me asking "Wanna play?".  They were very creepy!    

My personal favorite was the fortune teller room, which was also one of the most detailed areas inside the house. In this scene, a fortune teller rocked back-and-forth. The table in front of her had a crystal ball, tarot cards and flickering candles. "Bela", a Gypsy character in the scene, asked me to pick a card from the tarot deck. This set up a nice scare that I didn't see coming. 

Moving through the attraction, it seemed to pick up momentum, getting creepier and creepier as I went along.  Toward the end, there were some really demented clowns. One of the clown scenes featured red/white striped walls, with multiple bloody body parts and intestines hanging from the ceiling.  As I walked through, an evil clown stalked me to the exit.

Overall, the actors did a great job.  The most convincing actor was "Bela", in the fortuneteller room. His costume was authentic and his accent & demeanor were convincing. The girls in the playroom were creepy and the clowns at the end were sinister.  The roles were well thought out and the actors never broke character.  There was a mix of acting styles in this attraction.  While the majority of the actors had lines, giving more of a theatrical presentation, there were a few pop outs, as well, to take you by surprise.  Is this event an all-out "scare fest"? No. That's not what they were going for.  It was more creepy than it was scary.  Was it interesting and entertaining? Absolutely.

If you looking for something that is a little bit of a departure from most regular haunted attractions, this event is for you. Be sure to add this haunted house to your list of visits the season.  Not only is it very entertaining, it is also a great value.

To find out more about this event, visit:







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