Paranormal State – Darkness Falls – S04E08

Could this episode be any more overly dramatic? Could Ryan be any more of an aloof asshole?

Ryan and crew visit the West Virginia State Penitentiary for reasons that aren’t really all that clear. Ryan lays it down thick about how he needed to come back; how he needed to finish what he started. We have no idea what that means since he prefers to be moody and dark. He acts in such a foreboding way as though all their lives are in danger.

It’s the Western State Penitentiary which is believed to be one of the most haunted places in America. There are endless stories of murder, violence and wrongdoings. And Ryan in his dour tone wants his team to face their fears at this place. Again, we have no idea why they need to face their fears and why this is place for such a showdown, but Ryan makes a really big deal that it needs to happen and that he has secrets about the place they need to understand.

On day one the team takes up position and sits in different locations – alone. Not surprisingly they hear noises, bumps and creaks. What abandoned building doesn’t make those sounds at night?

The next night it happens again but this time we add the element that there is an Indian burial mound near the prison. This should fuel the spirit energy.

All the while Ryan is taunting the team that he has a secret about the place that the public doesn’t know about, but he won’t share it because he doesn’t think his team is taking the events seriously. Too much giggling, not enough moodiness.

Of course, no one (including us) has any idea what the hell is going on or why Ryan is being a putz to everyone, but yet everyone needs to take his fears seriously.

Finally, after being pale and tragic Ryan reveals that while he was investigating the Wardens Tower the activity got so intense that he had to leave there. Translation: he got freaked out, soiled himself and ran away. Now he needs to redeem himself in front of his team.

And what’s the big secret of the tower? A pentagram. All this melodrama has been because there is an upside down pentagram on one of the windows in the tower. Clearly, this is the gateway to hell. Really? All of this over a stupid symbol?

Now the conspiracy theory begins that the staff would have been practicing Satanism in the prison and who knows what other dark rituals. This is the Satanic prison, that’s why weird things happen here.

What do we get when all is said and done? Ryan goes back into the tower so he can conquer his fears. With camera strapped to his back and audio recorders at the ready he trudges up the tower stairs, stands in the middle of the room and like a kid talking to monsters in his closet or under his bed, declares he isn’t afraid.

Feeling better about himself for his spectacular display of bravado Ryan calls it a night and asks the team what the penitentiary means to them. WTF? Are you serious? That’s it? Ryan loses his nerve in a tower and there is an hour long episode about him facing his fears?

Call this what it is, how Ryan got his nerve back.

Ryan, you can freak out, it’s ok. Prison can be a scary place at night. But do we really need an episode like this?

 

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