NETHERWORLD Monster of the Month: July 2012 Revenant Zombies!

by on Jul.10, 2012, under NETHERWORLD Haunted House

NETHERWORLD Monster of the Month: July 2012 Revenant Zombies!

We are all, by now, more than familiar with the term “zombie”. A reanimated corpse, brought back to the world of the living through any one of several methods, be it by ritual, disease, or science gone terribly wrong. Numerous accounts of the undead have depicted a wide range of characteristics in these bloodthirsty fiends – everything from mindless, lumbering brutes who seem hard-pressed to move their own body weight, to lightning-fast, cunning predators driven forward by an insatiable hunger for human flesh. A veritable smorgasbord of attributes have been bestowed upon the many zombies of film and fiction, and depending upon your personal preference they would all seem valid.

Within the deepest, darkest chambers of Netherworld Haunted House, however, you are unlikely to stumble across the former variety. The undead who inhabit this buffer between the mortal realm and that which lies beyond tend to be alert and aggressive, with an agenda of their own. Used as shock troops by the Illuminati in the never-ending battle against the forces of the Netherworld, this particular “breed”, if you will, are commonly referred to as revenants.

Revenants, by all accounts, seem to originate from the Middle Ages, when stories began to surface of corpses rising from the grave to plague those left behind. Commonly believed to be evil in their previous lives, revenants were said to be wicked unbelievers, often responsible for spreading disease among the living. Seeking vengeance for some perceived wrong, or exacting suffering on some person or persons they deemed deserving, revenant zombies would steal into villages or homes in the still of the night – often repeatedly – terrorizing the subject of their spite. Legends have been passed down of men who rose after death, carrying their coffins on their backs as they strode through towns calling out the names  of mortals who would die several days later of sickness and disease. Although the specifics of each reported sighting differ slightly from one another, there are common threads that string these tales together. The general consensus was to return these vile creatures to the ground through decapitation, burning, or removal of the heart.

Unlike the typical zombie, which is believed to be controlled by some other person or entity for their own means, revenants are self-motivated, and act upon their own design. Historically, the term “zombie” is attributed to areas of magic and voodoo, as someone summons the dark arts or a mystical spell to enable them to direct the actions of the undead for their own sinister needs. These somewhat-less-than-animated reanimates exist purely to satisfy the desires of their master, and linger about aimlessly as they await their next command. Revenants, on the other hand, are driven by a more personal directive, whether it be hunger for brains, blood and flesh, or revenge against a living enemy. This may explain the difference in physical prowess, as revenants tend to be quicker and far more agile than their mystically-enhanced counterparts, and exhibit much higher brain activity (often a revenant has the capacity to outwit the living, taking advantage of the natural superstitions and fears attached to zombie lore). One may have the ability to outrun or maneuver against a garden variety zombie, but the speed, strength and cunning of a revenant is not to be taken lightly. Zombies of all type are also believed to exhibit superior strength, regardless of their current state of decomposition, so when mixing the combined powers of a revenant a truly intimidating threat is created..

In recent years, the threat of the impending “zombie apocalypse” has weighed heavy on mortal men and women. With widespread abuse of chemicals and radiation running rampant, it comes as no surprise that many would fear a day when the dead will rise, seeking sustenance from the living, breathing bodies currently populating the earth. The folly of man has long been a source of disastrous calamities – ironic that his most heinous might one day be the uncontrollable expansion of a legion of lost souls hell-bent on devouring their own…

In light of such potential dread, humans now find themselves preparing for a future in which they are no longer at the top of the food chain, but are instead the prey of beloved friends and family who have returned from beyond. Modern legend indicates that the most successful move against a revenant is to land an accurate  headshot to the brain, either with a firearm of some other effective weapon. Even beheading or dismembering a revenant does not guarantee a lasting kill, provided the brain is left unharmed. Burning one can also destroy it, again provided the brain is dealt with properly. Honing one’s physical skills may prove very beneficial, enabling a person to stay one step ahead of these ravaging fiends as we await the final outcome of this horrible conflict. And for the squeamish, there is always the option of surrender…you can take comfort in the knowledge that you’ll be back soon.


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The Zombies are coming! Are you prepared?

by on May.05, 2012, under NETHERWORLD Haunted House, Zombie Merchandise

The Zombies are coming! Are you prepared?

Day by day, we are all becoming more and more aware of the stark reality of the impending zombie apocalypse. As we enter May, we enter Zombie Awareness Month.

With the over-saturation of chemicals in pretty much everything we touch, and new strains of disease popping up all over – not to mention the ever-present threat of germ warfare – it is all but inevitable that someday soon, in the not-too-distant future, we as human beings will become an active ingredient on the unnatural food chain. Our very existence will become that of staying one step ahead of the ravenous, brain-hungry undead creatures who are bound to overrun the planet. Survival of the fittest will embody an entirely new, frighteningly real definition for all of mankind.

The key to survival is preparation, and who better to prepare us with the most up-to-date guns and gear than the folks behind ‘Guns & Ammo’ magazine, with the soon-to-be-released ‘Zombie Nation’ publication? A user’s manual for outlasting the mindless hordes of fiendish flesh-eaters so recently returned from the grave, ‘Zombie Nation’ is a must-have for the longevity-minded among us. Rest assured that you have no better guides in the battle for humanity!

Featuring some of today’s most effective firepower and equipment in the quest for the perfect headshot, this 140 page issue will place you front and center in the battle for humanity, with actual trained professionals in the fields of military, SWAT, survival and defense, all lending their experience and expertise. Your training begins here and now in an effort to arm you with vital knowledge necessary to stay alive.

To ensure that you are ready for the ultimate battle, ‘Zombie Nation’ will also feature a special pullout zombie based practice target from range target designers, Killer Targets, ( allowing you to hone those up-close-and-personal shooting skills before finding yourself confronted with the real thing. Practice makes perfect, after all. Killer Targets specializes in producing training grade range targets that will help you prepare for that crucial headshot, no matter if you are carrying a pistol, rifle or the ever-silent crossbow.

Fans of Netherworld Haunted House will not want to miss this essential guide as featured photography for this issue took place within Netherworld. Actually, without Netherworld Haunted House, you might have never seen a publication like this. Jason Teague, writer for Guns and Ammo magazine, has worked off-duty security at Netherworld for years. There he met Peter Montgomery, creator of Killer Targets, who serves off-duty as an operations staff manager. Together they combined their collective knowledge of law enforcement, training, and zombie lore to collaborate on ‘Zombie Nation’ magazine and to produce a range target specifically for its readers.

‘Zombie Nation’ hits news stands on May 8th, and can be pre-ordered now through Intermedia Outdoors’ online store at:

Additional zombie targets and other cool products can be purchased at:

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CDC- Prepare for Zombie Apocalypse!

by on May.17, 2011, under NETHERWORLD Haunted House

Preparedness 101: Zombie Apocalypse

There are all kinds of emergencies out there that we can prepare for. Take a zombie apocalypse for example. That’s right, I said z-o-m-b-i-e a-p-o-c-a-l-y-p-s-e. You may laugh now, but when it happens you’ll be happy you read this, and hey, maybe you’ll even learn a thing or two about how to prepare for a real emergency….

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The ZOMBIES of Billy Tackett

by on May.15, 2011, under NETHERWORLD Haunted House, Zombie Merchandise

Crawling out of rural Kentucky, Billy Tackett has often been referred to as “the
Creepiest Artist in America”. With a roster of over 200 book covers and
illustrations to his credit, he has become famous for his popular “Dead, White &
Blue” series of paintings – undead depictions of iconic images. Having captured
the attention of best-selling author Shane Moore – who dubbed him “Duco-Letum”
(Painter of Death) – Tackett became the official artist of his “Abyss Walker”

We invited Billy to chat with us regarding his career and interests, and tell us
a bit about what he has in store for the future.

How was the idea for the “Dead, White & Blue” series spawned?

Back in 2003 I was approached by a publication to do a one page illustration of
a zombie. I did the very first Zombie Sam drawing for that. It was black and
white ink piece. A few years later I decided to turn that drawing into a full
color oil painting. That painting became so popular that I decided to paint a
companion piece, Fannie the Flesheater. Things kinda snowballed from there.
The original intent was to just zombify iconic American images, but it is
growing to include pop culture icons of all sorts. Dead, White & Blue is now
synonymous with a zombie nation that has no borders.

The series spun off into a graphic novel – with enthusiasm for zombie
entertainment at an all-time high, how has public reaction to the project been?
Amazingly positive! It’s been kind of a slow process to get this project up
and running but there has been a large number of people waiting patiently since
the very beginning and anticipation continues to grow. I have a great team
working on it and am positive the final product will be well worth the wait.

You make a lot of convention appearances throughout the country. Is it important
to you to make yourself approachable for your fans? What is one of your more
memorable convention experiences?

Absolutely. I could tell you so many stories of big-name artists that have been
rude to fans. I don’t understand it! Without the fans we would just be sitting
around drawing stuff for our families. I mean here are folks that paid their
hard earned cash to get into the event and they are spending even more for your
art or merchandise when they could be spending it someplace else. It’s one of
the greatest compliments anyone could give me, the artist. And even if a fan
doesn’t buy something, for them to take the time to stop by the table and say
hello when there’s so much other stuff going on is great! I don’t mean to rant
but people that don’t treat their fans with respect are deplorable.

One of the best experiences was at a local concert/ mini-convention. The
headlining band was one that I used to listen to back in the 80s and it just so
happened that their merch booth was right beside ours. They turned out to be a
great bunch of guys and at one point the singer grabbed one of my cards and
asked me for my autograph. Here was a guy that looked up to as a celebrity
during my youth asking for my autograph! I’ll not soon forget that experience.

You offer ZOMBIFICATOR portraits – stylized zombie renderings of human creatures
from all stalks of life. Can you share a few of the more unusual requests you’ve
ever received? Any that you turned down, or is it pretty much “anything goes”
when it comes to bringing the undead to 2D life?

If it’s a commission pretty much anything goes. There are some places I will
probably draw the line but it must be way, way out there. When it comes to the
Dead White & Blue art I’m a little more selective. I only zombify images that
are iconic and have been around a number of years. I stay away from contemporary
images because I want the art I create to be relevant 10 or 20 years from now.
We know in this day and age icons come and go weekly and zombifying those would
be a waste of time.

Two unusual, for very different reasons, were Strawberry Shortcake and Skeletor.
Strawberry Shortcake was unusual because it was well, Strawberry Shortcake. And
I never figured out how to zombify Skeletor and if I have one more person say to me “You know who you should do? Jesus!”I
will strangle that person!

Outside of illustration and painting, what are some of your other creative

I’m trying my hand at writing with the graphic novel, of course.

How does the Tackett clan celebrate Halloween? Is your house the one that kids
flock to, or the one that bullies coax the weak of heart into approaching?

We never decorated our house but we always dressed up and gave out candy. I know
a lot of people seem to be let down when they hear that but for me every day is
Halloween. Whenever someone asks me why I do what I do I answer with “You know
the mindset everybody is in on Halloween? That’s my mindset the other 364 days
of the year”.

In recent years we are usually gone every weekend in October and the week days
are filled with commission work so I don’t have a lot of time for festivities.
But we always manage to squeeze a movie night or two in during the season!

Are you a fan of haunted attractions and funhouses? What are some of your
favorites, and can you tell us a few you’d like to visit?

I am. I have a lot of friends in the haunted attraction industry. I’m probably a
bigger fan of the behind the scenes magic. For me that’s where the fun really
is. A lot of haunted attractions only up during Halloween and like I said before
that is my busiest time so I don’t get to visit as many as I’d like to.

You are slated to appear at Dragon*Con in Atlanta this summer – Atlanta is home
to Netherworld Haunted House and a plethora of other horror-themed events and
attractions. Will you be taking advantage of your trip to explore some of these
venues, or will it strictly be a working visit to the con?

I hadn’t planned out that far yet but it is definitely a possibility. As you
know Dragon*Con is pretty much a mad house and finding any time for
extra-curricular activities is difficult (as if D*C wasn’t extra-curricular
enough!) But yes, we are always up for some local “culture” so to speak. It’s my
favorite part of doing conventions aside from the events themselves.

Can you share a few tidbits regarding any upcoming projects? What can fans look
for in the near future from the fertile soil of your grim imagination?

There’s always a new Dead White & Blue piece ‘o art just around the corner then
there’s the graphic novel we mentioned earlier. Some long terms projects are a
volume 2 to my art book/biography For the Love of Monsters. I’m also looking
into doing a couple of art books that could probably best be classified as
“bestiaries”. And there may be some more graphic novels in the future…

Okay, I have to ask the standard interview question: If you were transformed
into a haunted scarecrow, which would you prefer for your stuffing? Rotting
straw, buzzard feathers, or leftover candy corn from 2003?

Leftover candy. That’s the scariest! Because you know how when you leave it all
in the bag together for a while and all the flavors start mingling and after a
while everything you pick out tastes the same? I could also see a reaction of
all the chemicals being the catalyst for the animation of my scarecrow body!
There’s a movie in there somewhere…

Discover more about Billy Tackett and his artwork, as well as merchandise and
collectibles at

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Walking Dead Interviews – Pamela Smith

by on May.05, 2011, under Movies and TV, NETHERWORLD Haunted House, Walking Dead

AMC’s “The Walking Dead” has taken television audiences by storm. Based on the
hugely successful comic book series by Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore and Charlie
Adlard, “The Walking Dead” has called Atlanta home, and many of Netherworld
Haunted House’s Netherspawn particpate in the production.

We would like to offer readers an opportunity to meet some of these talented
folks, and find out what it’s like to work on a horror-genre dream project.
We’re starting out with the effervescent Pamela Smith!

What is your current position at Netherworld

My current position at Netherworld is a shock actress Vampire Bride!

How did you become attached to “The Walking Dead”, and what role do your play in
its production?

I was selected along with a veteran group of Netherworld actors and actresses by my
boss at “Netherworld”, Ben Armstrong! I received an invitation to
submit to the casting and be selected from hundreds of others to attend Zombie
School and be groomed for zombiehood by Greg Niccotero of “The Walking Dead” I
was chosen to be one of the “undead zombies”. So I was fortunate to have worked
quite a bit during the production, because somehow I never got shot in the
head….and everyone knows that once a zombie gets shot in the head they can’t
make a comeback from that type of injury.

Were you a fan of the popular comic book series “The Walking Dead”is based upon
before joining the project?

I was most definitely a fan of the comic book series before joining the project,
so to see it literally come to life and be a part of it on the big screen was a
huge priveledge for me – and a dream come true.

Zombie entertainment has a HUGE following right now – to what do you attribute
the popularity of the undead in film and literature?

For me personally, I have always been captivated by the unknown and the
mysterious lifelessness of the undead, and what may happen next…I would guess
lots of other followers feel the same.

One would imagine that working on any television or film project in Atlanta
could be fairly uncomfortable, as the summer’s heat and humidity descend, but
one so heavily dependant upon makeup and prosthetics must be doubly so. How do
you remain comfortable on-set during filming, and what does a mass congregation
of slack-jawed brain-eaters do to unwind while awaiting their next scene?

I mentioned earlier that I am a Netherworld actress…so I would like to say
that having experience with the horrifiying and nightmarish makeup, wardrobe,
and atmosphere for long hours for nearly 30 days straight has prepared me to be
able to withstand the variety of different set locations and conditions of the
set of “The Walking Dead”. When on set I would prepare mentally daily by keeping
my goal of putting on a good performance every time the director would say
“action”, and thanks to the PAs on set I did manageto keep myself well hydrated
(which is very crucial during the extreme heat and humidity). For me, unwinding
means staying in character and thinking about the next scene and what I should
do with my character to make my zombified transformation more menacing and
frightening. Sometimes there are strange interactions and encounters with other

Obviously you can’t reveal anything about the upcoming second season of “The
Walking Dead”, but can you at least hint at what fans can expect in terms of
shock and entertainment value next?

That’s right – I can’t reveal anything and I won’t… you will have to stay on
the lookout for the shocking second season of “The Walking Dead” to find out
what will happen next. I will have my DVR ready and you should too!

Any words of advice or encouragement for aspiring entertainers or film
enthusiasts who might wish to pursue on-screen acting and filmmaking?

If it is your passion, do your homework, surround yourself with like-minded
folks, and then go for it!

Thank you for taking the time to speak with us – we’ll be keeping our eyes
peeled to spot you on television in “The Walking Dead” (with fingers crossed
that you never receive that deadly headshot!).

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