|Jen & Sylvia Soska|
|GSN: 10/21/2015 – 10/28/2016|
Hellevator was a terrifying, horror-themed game show that dared three friends in Season 1 and four friends in Season 2 to ride a haunted elevator into the depths of an abandoned slaughterhouse as the contestants struggled to realize that "It's just a game, It's just a game, It's just a game!"
Each episode centered around a legend whose central figure committed horrific deeds, generally torture and/or murder of multiple victims. The challenges in each episode were based on that legend.
In Season 1, a team of three contestants would participate in the game. In Season 2, a team of four contestants participated in the game although one of them was locked up in the Inferno at the start. The contestants usually had a common bond (nurses, college students, models, chefs, etc.) The Soska sisters would tell the contestants in the Hellevator part of the legend. The subsequent challenge related to that part of the legend. In Season 2, the overall legend related to three of the Seven Deadly Sins (a.k.a.: Envy, Gluttony, Greed, Lust, Pride, Sloth, and Wrath), with each of the challenges relating to one of those three sins. The team members would decide among themselves who would face that challenge, with each contestant having to take one of the three challenges. The contestant chosen would exit the elevator and make their way to the challenge area (they were usually told to follow the light that guided them). On the way there, they were usually either startled by sounds or actors intimidating them; or kidnapped by robed figures and taken to the challenge area.
Once the contestant arrived, the Soska sisters would tell them the rules of the challenge as well as how much time they had to complete it. While the contestant was performing the challenge, he/she could be distracted by such things as the challenge environment (for example, the room could get hotter as the challenge progressed, or certain actions could result in the contestant being covered in blood or other substances) and actors either screaming or actively antagonizing the contestant. In some challenges, the Soska sisters would provide clues either at the start or during the challenge to the contestants inside the Hellevator to help their teammate. The contestants were equipped with walkie-talkies so that the contestants still in the elevator could offer advice during the challenge. There was also a video screen inside the Hellevator to provide visuals as well as for necessity at times for the team to help the contestant doing the challenge. In order to win the money assigned to the challenge and remain in the game, the contestant had to complete the challenge successfully and return to the Hellevator within the time limit of three or four minutes (five or seven minutes in Season 1), (not completing the challenge or doing it incorrectly would deny the contestant a return to the Hellevator). The first challenge was relatively easy and was worth $5,000, the second challenge was more difficult and was worth $10,000, the third challenge was the hardest and was worth $15,000. For Season 2, the values of the individual challenges were reduced to $2,000, $3,000, and $5,000 respectively.
If the contestant failed to complete the challenge and return, he/she was eliminated from the game. In Season 1, eliminated contestants were out of the game completely and suggested to have met a horrific death related to the challenge (in reality, they exited the slaughterhouse, and did not participate in the interview at the end of the show). In Season 2, the contestants who failed to complete the challenge were sent to the cell called The Inferno where they had to remain until they could be rescued by their teammate(s) in the final challenge.
Once the three challenges had been played, the remaining contestants would face the Labyrinth (Season 1) or the Inferno Run (Season 2).
The Labyrinth (Season 1)
Prior to the Labyrinth, the remaining members of the team would surrender their walkie-talkie before exiting the Hellevator and were given a bag in which they would place any money found. The Labyrinth consisted of three areas designed to relate to the legend and/or the challenges featured in the show, each with a certain amount of cash hidden within. Also hidden somewhere in the Labyrinth was a special item, generally said to be the key to defeating the central villain of the legend, if found, this item was worth an additional bonus to the team. The amount of cash and the bonus totalled $20,000. In order to keep the money earned in the Labyrinth, the team had to complete the entire run in the Labyrinth and return to the Hellevator within the time allocated of four or five minutes. If the team failed to do so, they forfeited the money.
If all three contestants had successfully completed their challenges, an alternate version of the Labyrinth was used instead of the traditional three-area format. In this alternate version (which was only used once), the team had to complete one final group challenge and return to the Hellevator within four or five minutes. There was no bonus item in this version, but during the final challenge, the team could find money bags worth $1,000 each, however, the team could only keep the additional money if they completed the task and returned to the Hellevator in time. In this version of the Labyrinth, there was a total of $25,000 available.
A team that played a perfect game by completing all three challenges and finding all of the money and the bonus item in the Labyrinth would win a total of $50,000 to $55,000.
The Inferno Run (Season 2)
The Inferno Run replaced the Labyrinth in Season 2, and like with the Labyrinth, any contestant that accomplished their individual challenge would get to participate in the Inferno Run. In the Inferno Run, there are seven doors with each door corresponding to one of the Seven Deadly Sins. One of those doors was removed for each of the individual challenges completed (always the sins relating to the challenge(s) completed by each successful contestant). The contestant(s) had a total of seven minutes to complete the remaining challenges (the time ran continuously once the round started). Accomplishing each challenge would either reward them with money or with the key to free their teammate(s).
If two or more contestant(s) mad it to the Inferno Run, they would attempt the challenges individually. Once they entered the door, the Soska Sisters would explain the rules of the challenge. The contestant(s) had to continue completing challenges, alternating turns, until they found the key. If they did find the key they could choose to either attempt additional challenges (if any remained) for extra money, or free their teammates and head back to the Hellevator. If the contestant(s) choose to play another challenge, they had to complete it before they again had the option to end the game, if they chose to free their teammates, they couldn't attempt any more challenges and had to then return to the Hellevator. The entire team had to return to the Hellevator before time ran out in order to keep their winnings from the Inferno Run within seven minutes, if they failed to do so, they forfeited the money from the Inferno Run, although they would retain any winnings from the individual challenges. Any episode ending in an Inferno Run failure ended with all of the contestants trapped in separate rooms in the Slaughterhouse, presumably "tortured" to death.
There was a total of $40,000 in cash available, so that a team that played a perfect game would again win a total of $50,000.
The Seven Deadly Sins
- Envy – The contestant had to make both sides of the childhood bedroom (which the Soska Sisters claimed to be theirs) match by taking a number of duplicate items from Sylvia's purple side and move them to Jen's grey side.
- Gluttony – The contestant had to search the birthday cakes using only their mouth to find the cash inside.
- Greed – The contestant had to search the safety deposit boxes for the combination to open the bank safe.
- Lust – The contestant had to retrieve a wedding ring from one of the holes in the wall and place it on the finger of the lusty corpse bride.
- Pride – The contestant had to siphon 15 pounds of fat or more from the patient in the operating room.
- Sloth – The contestant had to fix the gaps in the two leaking pipes by attaching the connectors that fit.
- Wrath – The contestant had to find the colored needles and jab them into the matching colored X's on the life-size voodoo doll.
The show's title is a mash-up of the terms "Hell" and "Elevator" respectively.
This is GSN's second game show original with a dark themed atmosphere, the first was Inquizition airing from October 5, 1998 to October 19, 2001.
In Season 1, eight episodes were produced while in Season 2, four episodes were produced.
This is the first game show created by Jason Blum for Blumhouse Productions. In addition, Blum is known for famous horror-themed franchised films like: Paranormal Activity, Insidious, Ouija, and The Purge.
Hosts Jen & Sylvia Soska (a.k.a The Twisted Twins/The Soska Sisters) are known for directing, producing, screenwriting, and acting in horror movies.