We’ve reached the halfway point of the 2020 haunt season. This is part of the tour where I get to say within my home state and visit what I consider our home haunts. I’ve been going to Doomsday for a while now and they’ve always put on a very unique and original show. Now, they are in a new location and found a new home in Athens, Alabama. I was very excited to see the new location and what Eric and his crew have cooked up for 2020.  

The new location is absolutely perfect! It’s right off a main highway and you can’t get lost. If you get lost finding this haunt, please retire yourself from ever driving again. It’s a huge property and with the skylights waving around and helicopter and Humvees sitting out front truly shows that Doomsday is officially in Athens and it’s here to stay! 

Costume/makeup 

Mostly masks and simple makeup jobs while there were a few detailed looking characters, as in the twins near the end of the trail. Doomsday has always done a good job with doing what is necessary to bring the characters to life in the scenes that they are in.  They don’t need to go over the top with every character to get the job done. 

SFX/visuals 

It’s an outdoor woods trail and with that comes challenges. They do a wonderful job with light placement throughout the experience. I felt at times certain things were darker than usual but knowing how their minds work at Doomsday, it was meant to be that way. You see what they want you to see and if they want you to get confused, they make sure you get confused. I absolutely loved walking through the house/barn scene and a few other scenes. In areas, they do a great job with diverting your attention away from the possible threats that lurk in the dark. You won’t find any elaborate animatronics or extremely detailed scenes here, just good old fashion hand-built scenes and solid acting. Oh yeah, they have foam and you have to walk through it. Have fun with that.

Trail experience 

Coming in to the new location, I was a little curious on how much of the old Doomsday they’d bring with them. This experience is still a classic Doomsday vibe. That will never go away. It’s important to note that they only had 3 weeks to put this entire thing together and what they accomplished in that short time, it’s nothing short of amazing.  Every scene is like a show and you will walk out of each having a good laugh or hearing the echo of your screams travel across the property. They promote that they are "Alabama's longest outdoor haunted attraction." That definitely rings true and Doomsday is known for their length and trail time. You better build up your stamina when coming to this haunt.

 

Atmosphere 

Another Doomsday staple that you must show up early to witness. You get the national anthem, fire, fireworks and multiple monsters. The Murder march is a Doomsday classic and it’s fun to experience. As the season goes on, they will add more and knowing the owner Eric, he never runs out of ideas. The one thing I do have to say that I think they are missing in the midway. It’s their Doomsday arch.  As mentioned, they are still trying to move things in from their old location so you can bank on seeing things added within the midway and trail in the coming weeks and for 2021. 

Is it scary? 

There were a few areas where the actors utilized the surrounding darkness to their advantage. A few were able to get a quality startle out of us by pretending to be a prop that blended in with the scene. Good job to those actors, by the way. In some cases, just walking through the woods to each scene can put your nerves on edge because you never know when or where someone could pop out.  

Bang for your buck 

The trail is not as long as the Doomsday of old where it took you an hour. This experience is right around 30-minutes. Which that being said, that is still a LONG experience compared to a lot of other haunts out there. Throughout our walk-through I had a blast experiencing the new scenes and setup. It is definitely worth the price of admission and one thing that Doomsday does, each night you will see something new or different. That’s just how they work. 

Originality/creativity 

It’s Doomsday! It’s ALL original. Doomsday has always been on a different page when it comes to originality and creativity. We even dubbed the owner and certain things as “Riley’isms”. Even with the new location and certain things not yet put in place, there are still creative scene concepts and unique experiences that you will only get at Doomsday. 

Haunt change 

New location and new trail. Completely different experience with the same Doomsday vibe. As mentioned, Doomsday constantly changes each weekend they are open. Sometimes, each night. You never know what you’re going to get each time you come to this haunt. 

Did I feel comfortable? 

I felt 100% comfortable. Masks not required, but just like anywhere, it’s recommended. Be an adult and make the best decision that fits your comfort level. 

Actors 

We encountered many actors who you could tell that has been doing this for a while. Their interactions out front with patrons are great and fun to watch. I love how interactive they are within their scenes and with the groups. They have their base speaking lines but are wonderful with how they to change quickly and improv their lines with each different group. They are quick witted and can come back with anything. Prime example, the actress in the Armory shack. We did however run across a handful that seemed very hesitant or timid to break out of their shell with us. You could tell that they wanted to do more but something was keeping them from going all out. That I believe will be fixed with time and more experience down the road.  But that did not kill the experience and quickly overshadowed by other actors like, the moonshine guy, the twins, the actor with the weird bowling pin axe thing, the actress wanting us to look for salt and how could we forget about the ice cream guy. ICE CREAM!!!! We couldn’t get that out of our heads as we were driving home.

Overall 

secret rep score 1 = 7.8

secret rep score 2 = 8.2

secret rep score 3 = 7.7

With them only having 3 weeks to get this haunt off the ground in a new location. Doomsday put on a great show! I know a lot of things will be added in the near future and it only will get better from this point forward. 

Their new location is amazing and only will bring in more people and give Eric and his crew limitless space to do amazing things. This is a great fresh start for Doomsday and bank on them getting better each and every week and year. This is just the beginning of something amazing! 

Get out to Doomsday and see for yourselves. You won’t be disappointed! 

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