Business Expo Center, Anaheim, CA
It's Friday the 13th, and we find it only fitting that today's haunted attraction review takes us to a place designed to make guests feel disoriented, confused, and literally lost!
Mable's 6 Feet Under is the new name of the haunt previously known as Motel 6 Feet Under. Last year, the folks behind this attraction introduced the character of Mable, who inhabits the motel and is looking for guests to stay and play... forever. Well, she turned out to be a little too effective, eventually taking over the entire operation!
This haunted house has been one of Westcoaster's favorite for the past two years. Having visited in both 2015 and 2016, we've come to really appreciate the charming, carnie-style aesthetic and appeal that this place carries. It is a gore-free maze and thus relatively family-friendly, as far as haunts go. But that doesn't mean it lacks a fright or two. There are definitely some startle moments within the attraction--sometimes from actors, sometimes from animatronics. But there's an effusive spirit of fun that just lingers throughout the course.
This year, Mable's 6 Feet Under features even more ways to get lost. Veterans of this haunt know that there are moments where guests literally run into dead ends, only to retrace their steps and find a new path opened up and leading to somewhere else entirely. This requires a pulsed sequence that does have somewhat of an adverse impact on overall guest capacity--since only a select amount of people can be in the maze at a certain time, and they have to be monitored and distributed between segments similar to the way roller coasters trains must stay within their own blocks as their race through their circuit. But it makes for a harrowing and addictively confusing journey through the maze.
There's a lot in this year's maze that will be familiar to those who have visited before, but somehow, Carolyn and her crew have managed to make this year's maze maintain a sense of uniqueness by re-arranging things and introducing even more misdirectional segments and dynamic scene gags. Mable also seems to run rampant through the maze, appearing multiple times to taunt guests as they wander through without any real sense of which way is the actual correct way.
This builds and continues, culminating in an extended jaunt through a legitimate maze area that can send guests in circles, running into the same scare actors repeatedly. The monsters here seem to delight in the disorientation, and they are not beyond stalking and slowly chasing nervous guests. Given that few, if any other haunted attractions actually enable guests to actually get lost, Mable's 6 Feet Under stands in rarefied air in providing a truly unique experience for every visit through the maze.
Just as in prior years, I came away enchanted and gleeful with this event. There is plenty of love throughout the maze, with Easter egg shout outs to other haunted attractions across Southern California. Founder and CEO, Carolyn Carpenter, comes from a childhood carnival background, and the spirit of that upbringing shines clearly in this fantastic Anaheim haunted house.
There is also a great charitable component to Mable's 6 Feet Under. As I've mentioned in previous years, Mable's supports Building Occupational Opportunities (appropriately titled B.O.O.), which helps underserved adults gain skills to reincorporate them into a productive society. Using haunted houses as a basis, individuals can learn carpentry, craft, electrical, and other construction-related skills, which they can then use to find full employment and support themselves. It's a fantastic cause and so wonderful that Mable's 6 Feet Under can assist with this.
Mable's 6 Feet Under is one of the few haunts that runs past Halloween and into November (the first weekend, to be exact). It is located just off the I-5 freeway, at the Business Expo Center on Anaheim Way, between Orangewood Avenue and Gene Autry Way. That's a hop, skip, and throw from the Disneyland Resort and highly convenient for an Orange County independent haunts run (perhaps package this with The 17th Door--which is already open--and The Fleshyard and/or Perdition Home haunt--which open later this month). If you're looking for other haunts, check out our Southern California 2017 Haunted Attractions Guide. But Mable's 6 Feet Under is a definite recommendation for any haunt fan just looking for a good ol' fun and frightful time! Just stop by, check in, and then get lost!
Architect. Photographer. Disney nerd. Haunt enthusiast. Travel bugged. Concert fiend. Asian.