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The genre of horror is one that has captivated people from hundreds of years. Of course, reveling in the feeling of being afraid, though, is a tradition as old as time. Fear is one of those instinctual physical reactions that is every bit as necessary for our survival as a species as it is fun to explore, much like sexual pleasure. The capacity to feel terror is hardwired into us. And the rush that comes with it is intriguing, and some would say downright enjoyable. The rush of adrenaline that accompanies a quick jolt of fear fascinates all, old and young alike.
This is why we tell ghost stories around the campfire. This is why we willingly enter haunted houses. This is why scary movies are some of the most popular in the history of film. We all like to explore the darker sides of the human experience every once in a while. And for some of us, we can’t get enough of it. So, we read Stephen King novels, and we celebrate Halloween, we tell tales of ghouls, goblins, ghosts, and the unexplainable phenomena of existence.
The genre of horror, though, has grown to become much more than just a niche comprised of B-grade movies from the 80s. It has, in fact, expanded to the level of subculture. There are horror conventions (like Comicon but scarier). People dedicate their lives to the art of horror makeup. It is an endless fascination that turned into a passion for many. The more frightening, the better. Whether you are a casual fan of watching the occasional horror movie (maybe come October especially) or it has become an embedded part of your daily life, the subreddit r/Horror will probably be of interest to you.
Reddit, for those of you who may be less familiar, is one of the unique websites on all of the internet. There is really nothing else quite like it. There are millions of online communities to be explored on this site that has dubbed itself, ‘the front page of the internet.’ And these communities range from being extremely general and broad to as specific niche as you can imagine. R/Horror, I would say, is somewhere in the middle of this spectrum.
Why you might be wondering, would I review a subreddit on StreamingSites? That is a fair enough question. I have a whole category dedicated to subreddits because, well, there are plenty of adjacent streaming communities that can enhance your streaming experience in various ways. Some subreddits, such as r/Hulu or r/Netflix, are great resources for anyone who either wants to learn more about certain streaming platforms before deciding to subscribe or for anyone who grows to love a streaming service so much that they want to be in the loop of all news and discussion surrounding it.
Others, such as r/Horror and r/Movies, are the perfect online communities for fans to discuss their favorite films, stay abreast about news pertaining to what they care about, and discover new titles, directors, writers, etc., which is precisely why r/Horror is such an invaluable resource for anyone who loves the genre of horror. It allows you to chat with likeminded individuals about your favorite horror films, stay informed on everything that is going on within the genre (new and upcoming releases, speculation, reviews, awards, events, etc.), and get recommendations from people that really know their stuff in the world of horror.
R/Horror is not only about horror movies and culture, though. It is also the number one online community for horror books, games, and TV. In other words, if it is scary and it can be read, watched, or played, you can probably find it on r/Horror. There is not much actual streaming that occurs on this subreddit, unfortunately. You’ll have to go elsewhere in order to actually watch most of the movies and shows that are discussed on this community (perhaps a subscription to Shudder is in order), but there is not a more actively used and rich online community dedicated to the genre of horror anywhere else on the internet … I’d put money on it.
R/Horror has been in existence for over a decade (12 years to be exact). It was created on February 27th of 2008 and grew rapidly from there. Today, as of this review, this subreddit has 1.5 million members with anywhere between 2 and 4 thousand members active at any given time (if I were to offer a ballpark average).
The subreddit became almost immediately popular. And it did not take long at all for it to be given the unofficial title of Dreadit by the members of the community, in honor of the feelings of dread that horror inspires. The fact that Dreadit has been around for so long and is so well-established is a testament to how effective of a subreddit it is. The best online communities, of course, are those that have been active for a long time. This will translate into a wealth of archived posts to browse (countless) and ensure that the community is active and thriving.
Of all the movie genre based subreddits, r/Horror may be the most voracious.
One thing that I love about r/Horror is the fact that the moderators have set up a very helpful and easy to use flare system. This gets taken for granted sometimes, but you’d be surprised how many subreddits do not include an organization structure for tagging posts. On r/Horror, posts can be paired with flare to signal what they pertain to. Choose from Vote Inside, Vote Results, Discussion, Recommend, Movie Review, Horror News, or Original Work to help navigate the endless catacombs of Dreadit.
Not only does this help users to easily and conveniently filter posts to find precisely what it is that they are looking for, but this map of Dreadit also gives you a great idea of all of the content that you will be able to find. Partake in polls, chat with other horror buffs about movies, directors, etc., get recommendations, read reviews, stay in the loop of all the latest current events in the genre, and even view original work from fellow Dreadit community members or share your own project for feedback. I always appreciate a subreddit that also acts as a creative outlet for its members.
R/Horror is not a free for all, though. There are some rules that members are expected to follow, both in their comments and in what kind of content can be posted. All content, for example, must be in English. You are also not allowed to post anything that depicts real death, murder, suicide, accidents, or gore. The moderators make it explicit that r/Horror is only for horror entertainment. You can not link to pirated content. No memes are allowed (no direct image files, really). And users cannot post unless they have at least a total of 100+ karma points on their account (which shows you that Dreadit is a serious subreddit and won’t tolerate spam, trolling, or subpar content.
I like that Dreadit has such high standards. The result is one of the better subreddits out there. It may seem a bit like overkill, but I have seen a few subreddits before that do not have such stringent rules … and it shows – these pages are not helpful or interesting to visit at all. So, believe me, the rules are in place for a reason.
Suggestions that I have for r/Horror
I love, like I just said, that r/Horror has plenty of quality control measures in place. I also love that they frequently do things to stoke community engagement, such as, conduct polls that are pinned to the top of the subreddit. I always appreciate it when a subreddit actively provides fun little activities for its members to partake in. And not enough subreddits, in my experience, go out of their way to do this. So, that is refreshing to see.
The one thing that I would maybe like to see more of on Dreadit is the employment of AMAs. I think that r/Horror could possibly take a page out of the playbook of r/Music, which has frequent AMAs with artists, bands, and producers. Dreadit could easily do this by inviting horror directors, actors, producers, and filmmakers to do AMA sessions in which users could, in real-time, ask them anything (AMA = Ask Me Anything).