|My bookend sons are polar opposites w.r.t. haunted houses.|
The older son, the athletic one with the UVA degree and double major, hates them, won't go anywhere near them, his entire life.
The younger one, the one with Williams Syndrome, loves them, has always loved them, and every year, the two of us make the rounds and hit a bunch of them this time of the year. (Kyle, what you describe sounds just like 'Field of Screams' in Lancaster, PA...one of our favorites. If there is a Disneyland in Hell, it looks like 'Field of Screams.')
When the actors jump up on the hayride with their chainsaws, for example, my youngest is laughing his head off; he introduces himself, "Hi, my name is Eric, and I like to be an actor, too." And the kids behind the Freddy Kreuger mask whatever whisper to him, "Dude...you're supposed to be scared!" and they both laugh.
This started when he was four, up on the Canadian side of Niagra Falls; there are really great 'haunted houses' on that hill, I forget its name, up from the casino, near Hard Rock Cafe, etc. Pitch black. He begged me to go in; his older brother, who was 9 at the time, wanted no part of it. I took Eric in, and it was pitch black, couldn't see your hand in front of your face. Inside, kids with balloons and feather dusters and air horns, etc. Eric clung to my neck like a gila monster, head buried in my shoulder. As soon as it was over, he wanted to do it again.
And, ever since.
And, now we have something to tease his older brother, the scholar athlete jock about. For years.
There is no explaining it. It's just fun.