Today I am reviewing the cauldron creeper animated Halloween prop, which you can order from Mad About Horror. This is a truly horrifying piece and would definitely fit in with any zombie theme. It makes a great centre piece for a room in a haunted house.
I bought this beast back in 2017 and after assembling him, instantly fell in love with him.
He is an absolute beast; at 1.8m tall this monster stands taller than me. The assembly is relatively straightforward with easy-to-follow instructions. This guy can easily be assembled by one person, I’ve managed it several times on my own.
The framework supporting the creeper is well designed and sturdy – it lasted for a week under a gazebo with tarpaulin sides, standing in my back garden in English October/November weather. It stood there all day and night perfectly fine, the only issue being the movement of the tarp in the wind triggering the motion sensor.
The design of the framework makes for easy assembly, the main support for the creeper himself uses the click pins. I don’t know what else to call them, but they use them on gazebos and tents where you have a sprung loaded pin on one pole and a hole in the second. The poles are designed so that you have a pin on one end and a hole the other, to stop you from fitting the wrong ends (idiot-proofing mechanism). The smaller framework, ie. non load bearing parts like the waist hoop, are simple pins dropping into hollow shafts.
The cauldron itself is made from cloth and uses a series of thin metal supports that bow to give its rounded shape. The cauldron has one ridged support bar which holds up three green LEDs and the motion sensor. The motion sensor is poked through the fabric (actually attached to the fabric not the support bar, but tied to it during assembly). The sensor is practically invisible on the finished product. The base of the cauldron is a thin plastic, easily dented/bent, so do be careful! The plastic base resembles fire/burning embers and houses a few orange LEDs that fade in and out to give the illusion of flames.
Back to the creeper himself. As the frame work goes up you slowly dress him with stylistically ragged clothes, these look really good to be honest and the feel shows there is quality there. I haven’t had a problem with mine over the years, other than the odd thread left here and there. To build the bulk of his chest and back there are clear had formed plastic pieces that slot onto the frame work. This is where I had some difficulty assembling mine, getting them to sit right whilst you pull his shirt on is a pain. The other minor annoyance I had building mine was feeding the arms up through the sleeves and then dropping the pins into their hollow shafts. Since I did this alone and was working blind. this made it that bit trickier.
Around the openings for the shirt (sleeves, hood and around the boney chest piece) are a series of velcro tabs which attach to the arms/chest piece/head. In my opinion this is a great touch which just shows the extra thought the designers put into this product. These help hold the clothes in place when the creeper comes to life.
My final tip with building him – when assembling his staff, slot the top piece through both hands and then attach the lower sections. This made it a hell of a lot easier.
Now onto the the finished product. It truly is something you have to see in person to get the full measure. The movement is simple in that the staff moves round inside the pot and his head nods, the mouth opening and closing. Having said this, the effect is no less impressive when used with the lights and sound. Not a lot to say on the lights other than the green lights in the cauldron are angled to give his face and chest an eerie green glow, the flames as I said before fade in and out for a flame style effect. The only other lights on the cauldron creeper are white in the eye sockets, which do give a good creepy vibe to the zombie peeking up through the tattered hood.
It goes without saying that the best part of this animated monster is the voice box. The sound quality is incredible. Most of the animatronics I look at have that tinny cheap sound to them. This is one of the best I’ve heard.
You have a choice of three activation modes – step here pad (which was included when I bought from Mad About Horror), motion sensor or steady on.
Mix all of these parts together and you get a truly terrifying Halloween prop.
It is worth saying that if you order only one of these as opposed to several, build it straight away and test. I ordered one from a different website, I can’t remember which, but the voice box didn’t work, as you can see in the video below.
He was returned and I ordered a new one from Mad About Horror, which was perfect.
Last year I set my cauldron creeper up just past the door to my outbuilding at the end of my garden, set on the motion-activated setting. In true devil fashion, I then sent my girlfriend in there under the pretense that I needed some help moving things. She screamed before she managed to turn the lights on. I know it sounds cruel but she knows I’m a horror freak and knew what she was signing up for.
I then repeated this with a friend… he did no less than a full on girly scream. I have to admit it was hilarious. Previously, I had the cauldron creeper set up in a gazebo in my garden- all the kids and their parents loved it. Most of them had seen nothing like it (nor had I)!
Unfortunately the haunted house I setup last year didn’t make it to Halloween. There was a fire in the outbuilding on October 30th and I lost everything. This is how the creeper ended his terrifying reign.
Overall, the cauldron creeper has been my favorite animated Halloween prop I have had so far. It’s great quality and received amazing feedback and reactions from my visitors.
I loved this guy so much I have ordered a new one from Mad About Horror again this year to replace him.
4 *. Great build quality, designed to last. My only critique wold be the trousers could be longer to hide more of the frame.
5 *. Great appearance, truly horrifying and will make anyone jump.
3 *. The animation is simple, the stick stirs the cauldron and the head nodes, but it does create a good effect and the hanging jaw opens and closes with the nodding to look like he is talking.
4 *. Almost gave my friend a heart attack…. need I say more? – Sorry Andy, but it was hilarious.