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Terror on the Streets
Tots10 t.jpg
Terror on the Streets episode title screen
Format Comedy television
Created by HornBlasters, Inc.
No. of episodes 12
Production
Running time 1-3 min.
Broadcast
Original airing June 15, 2005
External links
Official website

Terror on the Streets is an online web series, originally published on HornBlasters.com in June of 2005, featuring various air horn and public address pranks. In the series, unsuspecting pedestrians are caught being startled with train horns, gentlemen's club patrons are taunted, and even police officers are caught off guard. This web series reached its peak popularity in the Summer of 2006 and helped promote public interest in air horn upgrades for vehicles.

Contents

History

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Background

In May 2005, interest in custom air horn installations was booming. While auto manufacturers were equipping cars with less powerful horns, the latest customization fad of high powered air horns was rapidly gaining popularity. Most older cars were equipped with robust multi-tone air horns, but in modern production automobiles these were being replaced by smaller single tone electric horns. In Florida, the home state of HornBlasters, Inc., actual railway-use air horns were being installed on vehicles. These custom air horns are so loud that people standing near the horn can feel the blast of air as its honked.[1]

Beginning

In June 2005, Terror On The Streets was first published to HornBlasters.com. The first episodes consisted entirely of stealth assaults given by automobile drivers with customized air horn installations. The car featured was a Ford Crown Victoria outfitted with a low tone train horn and a high pitched horn known as the PsychoBlaster. These episodes quickly become viral videos and drove tremendous traffic to HornBlasters.[2]

Growing popularity

The Jacksonville Police Force being honked at in the Terror on the Streets DVD Blowin' Em Up.

The unanticipated popularity of the series drove HornBlasters to create another, more powerful, train horn car. The Terror on the Streets Marauder was created. A Mercury Marauder was chosen for the project. This new car was outfitted with three full-size, railway-use, train horns, multiple higher pitch PsychoBlaster horns and a complete FHP Police outfit.

With this new car in hand the series took a slightly more daring direction. The team started collecting footage using their police grade public address system to mock pedestrians and bring a more personal feel to the series[3].

The series also started showing more controversial clips. In the fifth episode (the second with the new car) a police officer is shown being honked at while inches away from one of the horns.[4] Throughout the remaining episodes gentlemen's club patrons, police officers, and even the homeless were scared by these outrageous horns.

Controversy

In May 2007 this viral web series caught some major attention from local authorities. The local police department (Tampa Police Department) commented that the horns are potentially a dangerous distraction. TPD spokeswoman Laura McElroy stated that the horns could result in someone being confused to the point of stepping out into traffic. The local news channel Fox 13 Tampa Bay televised a story titled "Innocent Fun or Public Nuisance?" portraying the horns as offensive and cruel.[5]

Later that year in December, the St. Pete Times published a front-page news article titled "Showing Terror On The Streets". This news article portrayed Terror On The Streets as much more than just innocent fun. The newspaper reported the series as using terror as a marketing tool. Ironically, after publishing the article the St. Pete Times received a lot of negative feedback from its readers for promoting the videos indirectly.[2][6]

External links

References

  1. ^ Higgins, Michelle. "Big Honkin' Horns Hit the Highway - WSJ.com". http://online.wsj.com/article/SB111525470647725357.html?mod=googlewsj. Retrieved 2008-05-20.  , Wall Street Journal reports on the growing popularity of train horn modifications on May 5th, 2005.
  2. ^ a b Lake, Thomas. "Showing 'Terror On The Streets'". http://www.sptimes.com/2007/12/10/State/Sowing__Terror_on_the.shtml. Retrieved 2008-06-04.  , The St. Pete Times published this as a front-page article on December 10th, 2007.
  3. ^ "Terror On The Streets Mercury Marauder Profile". http://www.hornblasters.com/terror_on_the_streets_mercury_marauder.  , Terror On The Streets Mercury Marauder Profile at HornBlasters.com
  4. ^ Terror On The Streets Episode 5. [Web-Series]. Jacksonville, Florida. 2005.  , A police officer is caught off guard after pulling over the team.
  5. ^ "Innocent Fun Or Public Nuisance?". http://www.myfoxtampabay.com/myfox/pages/Home/Detail?contentId=3168607&version=2&locale=EN-US&layoutCode=TSTY&pageId=1.1.1. Retrieved 2008-06-06.  , Fox 13 Tampa Bay aired a report on the use of air horns on May 10th 2007
  6. ^ Castor, T. "Irresponsible story on 'HornBlasters'". http://www.itsyourtimes.com/?q=node/3412. Retrieved 2008-06-27.  , The Tampa Bay Times chastises The St. Pete Times for its article about HornBlasters.

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