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Would you try to make it through this extreme "haunted house" for a $20,000 prize?


MercyA
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Would you try it?  

6 members have voted

  1. 1. Would you try to make it through this extreme haunted house for $20,000, assuming you met the qualifications?

    • Heck, yes, for $20,000!
      0
    • Maybe. I'd want to watch the videos of prior contestants and/or obtain more information first.
      0
    • No. No chance.
      6
    • Obligatory other.
      0

This poll is closed to new votes


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Excerpts from this article

Russ McKamey owns and operates the most terrifying haunted house experience in America — one you’re not allowed to attend until you watch a two-hour-long video, sign a 40-page waiver, create a safe word, pass a physical, and more. 

The Summertown, Tenn. horror house is so extreme, no one has ever successfully completed the experience. 

Think you have what it takes to tour the Manor? If you do, it only costs a bag of dog food– Russ has five dogs. And if you complete the tour, Russ will hand you $20,000.

Russ is so good at what he does, he’s had people sue him over things they thought happened during the show, but didn’t actually happen.

Russ doesn’t just film every show for entertainment purposes; he does it to protect himself in court.

“You’d be surprised over the years how many people have claimed something happened to them inside,” he said. “And I need to go back and show whoever needs to see it the raw and unedited footage, saying ‘here ya go, here’s the complete show.'”

So, would you try it? Assume for the purpose of the poll that you meet all of the qualifications (you are not under 18, pregnant, in ill health, physically unfit, or have a seizure/respiratory/heart disorder.)

ETA: I didn't realize that people can come to *actual physical harm* in the house. That's just wrong. Closing the poll but leaving the thread because this is just so crazy.

Edited by MercyA
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No, I googled it.  They are allowed to physically torture you.  For hours.  For real.  They can lock you in a coffin with spiders.  They can bury you alive.  They can nearly drown you.  They can break bones.  Supposedly legal because you have to sign a waiver before you go in.  And they have a wait list.  Insane world.

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29 minutes ago, perkybunch said:

No, I googled it.  They are allowed to physically torture you.  For hours.  For real.  They can lock you in a coffin with spiders.  They can bury you alive.  They can nearly drown you.  They can break bones.  Supposedly legal because you have to sign a waiver before you go in.  And they have a wait list.  Insane world.

Break bones on PURPOSE???

Someone making the choice to endure mental and physical torture to win a cash prize is one thing [a wrong thing, IMO], but actual physical harm is another. 

Edited by MercyA
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They can rip out chunks of your hair.  They can beat you.  They can make you eat disgusting stuff, and if you throw up, they make you eat that.  Seriously.  It's shocking.  It can last 6 to 8 hours.  And if you want out, they don't always let you go right away.  I really am surprised it's legal.

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Not a freakin chance. I won’t even watch horror films let alone ever give someone direct permission to mess with my mind and prey on the most vulnerable aspects of the human experience. Nope. Not for a hundred grand. Some things are worth more than any amount of money. Integrity of mind being one of them. 

P.S. I was almost distracted to the point of an accident today as I drove home on the highway, watching a big spider progress around the driver’s side door frame! What if it jumped on me?! I would wreck the car for sure! 

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18 minutes ago, perkybunch said:

No, I googled it.  They are allowed to physically torture you.  For hours.  For real.  They can lock you in a coffin with spiders.  They can bury you alive.  They can nearly drown you.  They can break bones.  Supposedly legal because you have to sign a waiver before you go in.  And they have a wait list.  Insane world.

You are right! I found this article: https://www.nashvillescene.com/arts-culture/cover-story/article/20993198/tennessees-mckamey-manor-torture-on-demand

Excerpts from someone going through the waiver:

“No. 28...Participant fully understands that by signing this waiver they are giving McKamey Manor permission to keep nothing off the table except sexual or inappropriate situations. Everything else imaginable can and will happen inside McKamey Manor....No. 30. Participant agrees and acknowledges that mouse traps are used on the tour which may result in bruising or breaking of fingers....In the hours it takes to make it through the waiver, he agrees to exposure to extreme temperatures (No. 73), having plastic wrap tightly held over his face (No. 74), and having his hands and feet zip-tied (No. 75). The only thing VanOver won’t stand for — everyone gets to pick two “freebies” — is tooth-pulling and needles." 

This is not a haunted house. Gross. (ETA: And their waiting list is supposedly 24,000 people long!)

Edited by MercyA
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2 minutes ago, Quill said:

I give your post the crying face because I just don’t understand why anyone would agree to that. I have a feeling there would be a waiting list even if there were no cash prize. 

I know, right? I took down the link to the guy's website because I don't want to give it more traffic. Ugh, I thought this was just a creepy Halloween thing. The owner is disturbed. 😞 

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24 minutes ago, DawnM said:

why is the poll closed?

No, I wouldn't do it.

I felt weird about leaving the poll open after I learned that it wasn't just a really scary "haunted house" but instead, as one article put it, "torture on demand." I thought about deleting the whole thread because I think what the guy is doing is actually wrong.

Edited by MercyA
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3 hours ago, perkybunch said:

  They can lock you in a coffin with spiders.  

There is not enough money in the world to make me be ok with that!!!!!

3 hours ago, Quill said:

 

P.S. I was almost distracted to the point of an accident today as I drove home on the highway, watching a big spider progress around the driver’s side door frame! What if it jumped on me?! I would wreck the car for sure! 

This is how I am too!

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No.  I'm shocked it's legal and I worry about those people who are participating in this venture.  How can you do that to people?  

But I don't like scary movies.  A bit of mild paranormal stuff fine.  But horror and gore?  Nope.  Of course in high school I mortified my best friend by screaming in the movie theater during the library ghost scene in Ghostbusters.  So yeah, not into scary stuff.

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I can understand why some people would be willing to try something like this, well for more money. It is disgusting but whatever floats their boat.

My biggest concerns are is who decides when it ends. I can completely see the guy just going until someone quits simply so he never has to pay. But also, what else is he doing with those videos he takes to protect himself. I can only imagine he makes money selling them to people who get off on watching torture p**n

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13 hours ago, MercyA said:

I felt weird about leaving the poll open after I learned that it wasn't just a really scary "haunted house" but instead, as one article put it, "torture on demand." I thought about deleting the whole thread because I think what the guy is doing is actually wrong.

 

Gotcha.

And yeah, I agree.  It is definitely wrong.  I can't even imagine being interested in anything of the sort.

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11 hours ago, hjffkj said:

I can understand why some people would be willing to try something like this, well for more money. It is disgusting but whatever floats their boat.

My biggest concerns are is who decides when it ends. I can completely see the guy just going until someone quits simply so he never has to pay. But also, what else is he doing with those videos he takes to protect himself. I can only imagine he makes money selling them to people who get off on watching torture p**n

In one of the linked articles he's asked if anyone will ever win and he laughs and says, "Surely you jest." So he's not even really hiding the fact that no one will ever win, and he'll just keep going til they give up. Apparently it's adrenaline junkies who like it, not money seekers.

1 hour ago, DawnM said:

I have no time to read the articles about it, I watched about 2 min. of the video.  

I didn't see if there is a cost to do it?  What is the cost to participate?

Just a bag of dogfood that he donates to an animal shelters according to one of the above linked articles. I refuse to watch the videos.

I have no idea how he makes money off this???? But surely he does somewhere somehow??? Maybe by selling the footage later as hjffkj suggests 

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I can't watch any videos about this, I'd have nightmares.  

I don't think this is a "whatever floats your boat" situation.  People sign up for all sorts of stupid things without realizing what they are getting into.  But this guy knows and administers it anyway, knowing it could lead to physical or mental harm (PTSD???)  Participants, however, are also morally implicated, because their agreement to participate means they will carry some of the culpability of employees in the haunted house doing things that are objectively morally wrong.  This is not as simple as "buyer beware".  

Disgusting.  

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I wonder if there’s even a time limit??? Like, sure, nobody could make it through countless hours and hours of this stuff and I’m sure he’d just keep doing stuff until they gave up, but is there even a mention of time? Like, if you can make it through 6 hours, or whatever??? Otherwise, you’re just signing up to be tortured until you can’t take it any more, bc nobody could do it forever. 

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29 minutes ago, mmasc said:

I wonder if there’s even a time limit??? Like, sure, nobody could make it through countless hours and hours of this stuff and I’m sure he’d just keep doing stuff until they gave up, but is there even a mention of time? Like, if you can make it through 6 hours, or whatever??? Otherwise, you’re just signing up to be tortured until you can’t take it any more, bc nobody could do it forever. 

His website says 10 hours or more.

I was thinking more about this last night because people's motives for doong things interest me. I imagine he does it because he likes the voyeurism. But there are also plenty of ways to make money with this. He could be live streaming the videos and people bet on how long people last or pay to make suggestions on how to torture the people in real time. That is certainly a thing in other underground illegal activities and even legal activities.

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I have a question for WTM board members with relevant legal experience. How does a waiver protect the guy running this? You can waive your right to sue, but you can't waive the state's right to prosecute for assault, battery, or other relevant charges. I was under the impression that consent isn't a defense to assault (i.e. if I ask you to saw my arm off, and you do it, you still get arrested). 

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re: how he makes money, I would assume first, the YouTube channel. I'm sure he is sufficiently sponsored, advertisers, etc. and making money off that. He must be making enough to not only keep running it, paying the employees, etc, but earning a living. 

I also wonder if there are legal aspects that can get to him, because it moved out of CA where it was first held. Perhaps the laws there were stricter? 

He also mentioned accomplishing a lot via hypnotism, so I wonder how much of the stuff mentioned actually happens, or are suggestions planted? For ex, one of the articles quoted him saying he could put you in a kiddy pool with a few inches of water, tell you there was a great white shark, and you'd fully believe you were in a large tank with a great white. So I wonder how much of the "buried with spiders" type stuff is, actually, spiders. (I've not, and won't, watched the videos to check....). 

I also wonder if he works separately as a hypnotist to fund things....but I imagine he probably makes $$ from the ads, etc. on his youtube channel, website, etc. 

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I would not.  Nope. No way.

But, in terms of voluntary risk, how does it (or the injuries that have resulted from it) compare to other risky things some people do “for fun”? Football, smoking, alcohol, vaping, skydiving, horseback riding, gymnastics, baseball, ice skating, rugby, race car driving, skiing ...      

 

 

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18 minutes ago, Pen said:

But, in terms of voluntary risk, how does it (or the injuries that have resulted from it) compare to other risky things some people do “for fun”? Football, smoking, alcohol, vaping, skydiving, horseback riding, gymnastics, baseball, ice skating, rugby, race car driving, skiing ...      

Well the things they do in these houses are literally torture techniques, designed to cause psychological harm and break a person. You can be water boarded, beaten, stripped naked, forced to eat horrible things, wet or defecate on yourself, immerse body parts in feces and puke, have your hair ripped out or shaved off, be groped and dragged around while bound and gagged, etc. Some people who have been through it say that the experience really does break you down to the point where you allow yourself to be subjected to things you would never ever have agreed to in a normal state of mind. Also, one of the things that makes McKamey Manor so infamous is they do NOT stop when you say stop, they will keep torturing you until they decide to be done. I think the guy who runs it and the "actors" he employs really get off on the sadism, and don't care about the money. Other programs like this have safe words and will stop as soon as you use it, but McKamey Manor does not. I think allowing people to literally torture others, or subject themselves to torture, is sick and not something that should be encouraged as a form of "entertainment." 

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11 hours ago, unsinkable said:

i seem to recall a thread where tonnes of people here were defending the S&M "lifestyle" including a man leading a woman around a store on a leash...

 

I'm consistent as well, in believing both scenarios are objectively morally wrong.  But we don't even need to think of extreme examples to find common grounds with many people.  For example, some/many/most Christians would say that sex outside of marriage is morally wrong, even when all parties are consenting.  Similar for euthanasia or a number of other hot button issues.  If you abide by any kind of absolute moral code, it is very easy to make a list of things that are legal, mutually consented upon, but still morally evil.  

Not interested in debating, just pointing out that legality and consent do not necessarily constitute a moral argument for something.  

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16 hours ago, unsinkable said:

i seem to recall a thread where tonnes of people here were defending the S&M "lifestyle" including a man leading a woman around a store on a leash...

I remember that...

I’m also consistent: hell no to torture to win a prize; hell no on mixing up love and degradation and torture...

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