Despite the event’s cancellation, Halloween Horror Nights lives on in 2020 with the Horror Nights Tribute Store at Universal Studios Florida. The store, which opened 3 weeks ago, features many easter eggs and hidden references to past Horror Night elements, specifically Icons. Here are some of the Easter Eggs we’ve found around the store.
Jack the Clown
The Clown Prince of Pain is prominently featured in the Tribute Store, especially in the Carnival Room; but there are little nods found elsewhere in the room. First off, right behind the registers is a wagon advertising “Oddfellow’s Dark Carnival and Emporium”. Oddfellow was the original ringmaster of the Carnival that Jack was a part of during his youth. Years later, Jack would go on to take over Oddfellow and open up his very own “Carnival of Carnage”.
Right as you exit the Tribute Store you’ll find Jack’s clown shoes and his red ringmaster jacket.
The 2nd ever Icon in Horror Nights history, Dr. Albert Caine was a well-respected doctor and caretaker of Shady Oaks cemetery. During his career as a surgeon, Dr. Caine was always interested in the workings of the body and the nature of the human soul, eventually using the deceased of the town for his bizarre experiments. In the store, you can spot the Caretaker’s infamous top hat.
The Director, born Paulo Ravinski, was the 3rd original icon created by Universal for Halloween Horror Nights. He was very intrigued with capturing real human emotion and started to film his actors going through different events of torture, suffering, and eventual death. Tucked away near the ticket booth, you can find a camera with a film reel placed next to a Casting Call flyer from Ravinksi (Look inside the ticket booth for a better look at another flyer).
Elsa Strict is a sweet little old lady who enjoys her horror. She especially enjoys stories and likes to tell them to certain unwilling victims. You can find her shawl, glasses, and her book of tales sitting atop some of this year’s merchandise.
Julian Browning was an usher at the Universal Palace Theater. Browning would end up haunting the theater after his death, making sure patrons respected the theater. Right in the back corner of the Carnival Room, a ticket booth can be found right below an Usher banner.
Eddie Schmidt is the chainsaw-wielding brother of Jack the Clown and was the original icon of Horror Nights 11 in 2001 before being replaced by Jack. Eddie has an obsession with horror movies and loves his chainsaw, which you can find hidden in between the pumpkins as you exit.
Former Houses & Attractions
Throughout the store, many posters feature nods to former attractions and mazes of Horror Nights past. One of the posters includes a nod to Terror Mines, a haunted house featured in Horror Nights 15 in 2005. Guests would wear light helmets that served as the sole source of light and would flicker throughout the house.
Another poster that can be found a few times throughout the store is a nod to Robosaurus, one of the original entertainment options at the event. The premise was pretty simple – A 30-ton T-Rex looking robot would wreak havoc and breathe fire.
No Horror Nights would be complete without a Rat Lady appearance. Originally serving as a carnival-inspired sideshow, the Rat Lady has become a staple of the event. The premise featured a woman laying in a glass coffin filled with rats.
Another staple of the event, The Chainsaw Drill Team, can be found referenced in the store. The Team has been around since 1994 in some form, and are one of the most popular features of the event.
A double reference! One of the walls features two posters with nods to past props. The poster on the left is a nod to the Amulet of Fear, an interactive element that debuted in Horror Nights 28 in 2018. The poster on the right features a Pumpkin prop that has been featured for many years at the event.
Here’s a nod to something not-Horror related. There is an advertisement for the Annual Halloween Spook-Tacular sale at William B. Hackenburg Appliances, which is a store facade that can be found in the New York section of Universal Studios Florida.
We’re sure there are more references that we’ve missed. What are some of the references you’ve found?
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