One of the joys of reviewing haunted attractions and home haunts is to watch new talent jump into the fray and thrive. It requires two things though. There’s the obvious desire to entertain and, more importantly, scare. It also requires a receptive community, one that supports the developing talent as they make their way. Here in southern California, we have plenty of both. This creates a fertile ground for homegrown frights that can work outside of convention and come up with things that are truly unique.

Prism Haunted House Home Haunt in Mission Viejo returns for a second year. This time much bigger, a lot more focused, and infused with a lot more technology with the results being highly impressive.

This is a home haunt, meaning it is built in and around an existing private residence. space and resources are limited in comparison to professional venues. Don’t let this dissuade you from visiting because there is actually a lot to enjoy. Setat Prism Research Group, the Fortune 500 bio-tech company franchises out “MiCRO”-Laboratories to would-be home scientists. This year, the Doctor of MiCRO Lab 2 has been tinkering, and things have gone terribly right. The Doctor invites you into his lab on a self-guided tour to witness his miracles of science. Just don’t overstay your welcome.

From the looks of the receptionist, things have already gone off the rails.

To explain the haunt, scene by scene would be to rob you of the joy of discovery. Suffice it to say there are a few very inventive scares and some interesting use of new technology and old practical effects to accomplish said moments. In keeping with the Prism theme, each one of the 7 rooms is themed off of one of the visible colors of the light spectrum. Going deeper into the facility, we finally get to meet the renegade scientist before having to make our way out. The experience is relatively short but very effective.

There are minor notes to be sure, but nothing that gets in the way of the good time. You can tell that haunt creator David Fefferman, along with Andrew Ducote (on audio/visual) and Alex Darejeh (on hardware and software) possess that haunter’s spirit. The insatiable need to create, improve, frighten, and share the joy of Halloween with the community. I would caution them, to not let the tech get in the way of the scare.
Regardless, Prism Haunted House is remarkable in its enthusiasm, technology. and design. This is clean work that will serve to entertain the neighborhood, and seasoned haunters alike. Go check it out.

About the Author: Norman Gidney

Norm(an) Gidney is a nearly lifelong horror fan. Beginning his love for the scare at the age of 5 by watching John Carpenter's Halloween, he set out on a quest to share his passion for all things spooky with the rest of the world.