Blumhouse's FEAR INITIATIVE Is Fun, Charming, And Frightening

Blumhouse has long toted the now infamous SHOCK WAVES podcast, which is realistically the very reason this website even exists. Not long ago, they also brought onboard POST MORTEM, an interview show hosted by master of horror Mick Garris, one of the most charming and genuine people in the genre. 

Starting this week, they have now launched FEAR INITIATIVE, a live recording of a group of film and horror fans playing a horror centric Dungeons and Dragons campaign. Much of the cast have had their foot in the industry in one way or the other and many of them have played Dungeons and Dragons but a sizable amount have not.

David Ian McKendry leads the charge as host and dungeon master, the omniscient overseer of the rest of the crews macabre adventure. The cast is surprisingly large for a D&D campaign but it's easy to see that McKendry has done his research and built a story that's suited for so many characters in a wide array of class and race. Morgan Peter Brown, Megan Duffy, Josh Forbes, Cara Mandel, Jeff Seidman, Rob Schrab, and Clarke Wolfe all have roles that range from talkative wizards to peaceful nymph borne. 

The episode caps out at just about two hours and it takes a while for the various groups to run into each other and finally put together a quest but getting there is half the fun. It's clear that some of the group are more comfortable with the idea of improving piece by piece description that's intertwined in the DNA of the game but what's great is that by the end of the two hours, you can feel the more introverted players breaking out of their shell, discovering who they are. Josh Forbes Grimly will easily steal your heart with a genuinely charming ballad and when the entire cast starts to fight over the importance of a wheelbarrow of grain, it's easy to be all in on the show.

In the last third of the adventure, the pedal hits the gas and McKendry reveals his chops as a frightening play caller and the heroes get their first taste of a fight. Honestly, it's fun as hell and although it stalls out occasionally, by halfway through you'll have a favorite character or two and wonder...is it just grain?

Make sure you subscribe and review the show, you can find it pretty much anywhere that podcasts are available. Follow the crew on Twitter, they've rolled a natural twenty on this one. 

Ryan Larson