Ghost Hunters Academy

What a difference a year makes … It’s time to say goodbye

As the start of several new shows approaches, I’m actually more amazed by how many shows I WON’T be watching this time around. Some are because they’ve been taken off the air, such as Ghost Lab and Paranormal Cops, but some are because I’ve become sick of the show and the people involved.

I’m not sorry to see Ghost Lab go, but I think Paranormal Cops could have been quite interesting. Since they weren’t running around screaming like they soiled themselves or yelling "What the @#$% was that?!" every 10 seconds, it just wasn’t cut out for TV.

I’m also ditching the entire Ghost Hunter franchise. I’ve recorded all the new episodes of GHI so far, but I just can’t bring myself to watch them. I didn’t watch Ghost Hunters Academy because of the flunkies they had on that show, so I don’t want to see them on GHI. Apparently you graduate to GHI? It’s soured me off the show so it’s time to part ways.

I had a blast watching the first three seasons of the Ghost Hunters but the thrill is gone and it’s time to say goodbye to them as well. In the beginning, Jason and Grant just seemed like a couple of guys who got to explore some really neat places around the country. It was a little silly and Hollywood in those early episodes, but they settled in and it was like exploring along with them.

Everything was great until they hit the home of the Manson Murders (Season 3, Episode 12). This is when the show turned to crap. This was the start of the K2 meter (which I think it total junk) and this is where they brought in Chris Fleming (who I think is very suspect and dodgy at best). From this point forward the show changed for the worse to where the investigation where shoddy, the evidence shaky and far too many locations were labeled as haunted. And by many accounts this is where the GH team started faking evidence like the K2 meter and the temperature readings.

And the accusations are still going on, such as the jacket pulling Halloween incident. Which also coincides with the last actual Live broadcast. Plus, having arrogant and rather annoying wrestlers as guests on your show really isn’t that endearing.

I’m not saying that Jason and Grant doctored footage or evidence, but it wouldn’t surprise me and that’s part of the problem. I just can’t believe these guys any more. Good for them that their little side project turned into a multi-million dollar TV venture, which not only spawned a whole series of clones, it lined their pockets with enough cash to buy a supposedly haunted Inn of their own. But now they have to put on a good show- in more ways than one. Everything is haunted. Everything is overly dramatic. Everything is blown out of proportion. They can make or break a business by saying the place is haunted or not. A business struggling with sales can get new life if Jason and Grant say it’s haunted. And even towns are trying to revive their economies by catering to ghost hunting. It’s pure business now.

I didn’t watch any of Season 6 and barely any of Season 5. I just don’t care what they have to say any more because I can’t believe what they say.

It was a fun ride guys, but this is the end of the line for me. Good luck and don’t get caught.

While I’m at it, it’s time to wave goodbye to Ryan and the rest of the PRS crew. Paranormal State has just gone off the rails. Ryan and his interest in the paranormal has turned into a Satan hunting, exorcism performing, Holier Than Thou crusade. Demons are everywhere and Ryan has taken it upon himself to root them out.

The last episode of Season 2 (I am Six) should have been an indicator of where the show was headed. And by the time we hit the midway point of Season 3 (Return of Six) the show was just ridiculous. Absolutely nothing about the show made sense anymore. The experiments they were trying were plain stupid. Really, ping pong balls on the eyes and EMFs to the head? And of course the fight over just how dangerous it is. Lord have mercy that was moronic!

I really lost interest at this point, but held on to see if it would get better. It didn’t. By the time we hit Season 4, Episode 8, "Darkness Falls", at the West Virginia State Penitentiary I was done. Satanic symbol this. Devil worship that. Occult here. Conspiracy there. Blah Blah Blah. This is also where Ryan lost it and started fighting with his team and turned into a spoiled brat declaring he wasn’t going to share his paranormal secret with them because they were laughing. The only thing missing was the stomping feet.

Ryan’s grasp of symbolism is non-existent, and I can’t say he has come up with a single piece of evidence that actually supports a claim of the paranormal in any place he’s investigated. He’s even gone so far as to say if you keep claiming a place is haunted, it can actually become haunted.

Beyond all that, he’s just becoming an ass. Ryan, you started off interesting, but that’s no longer the case. Maybe one day you’ll grow up, and graduate.

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Paranormal TV – Which shows are coming back?

I’m getting my desktop ready and I’m looking forward to some new seasons of investigations. It looks like we lost a few shows along the way, but to be honest, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. A few of those shows needed to go and a couple more still need to go. So which ones do I think are coming back?

Shows on now:

Right now there is only one show back on the air and it’s GHI. I really liked the first season of this show but there have been dozens of cast changes and the way they break up the season is just maddening. I can’t say how much longer I’ll be on board for this one.

Shows coming soon:

I know two shows will be starting soon, Destination Truth on September 9th and Ghost Adventures starting up in September as well. These are the two I’m looking forward to the most, I just have a great time watching these and they look like they’re having a great time making the show.

Shows on the fence:

Paranormal State: It has no start date listed but the fact it’s still on the books leads me to believe it will be coming back. That being said, I wouldn’t be surprised if this is the last year for Satan seeking, Holy water throwing, seeing shadows in every corner, Ryan Buell and the PRS team. Ryan has become just way too damn melodramatic and quite honestly the show just isn’t that interesting anymore. Every single thing about this show seems staged and fake. The stories are weak, their reactions from the PRS team are WAY over the top, nothing is ever discovered and in the end Ryan buries a couple of medallions, tells the “spirits” they aren’t welcome, says a blessing and then heads home. And that “Director’s Log” crap is really wearing thin.

Shows that probably won’t be back:

Ghost Lab looks like it got the axe. Nothing is listed on Discovery and no new listings on IMDB. A Wikipedia entry sites they’re coming back for a second season but there is no actual confirmation of that. Their own websites lists two upcoming investigations this year, but no mention of the show. They may have had some of the coolest equipment, but their crazy antics and experiments may have done them in.

Looks like Paranormal Cops didn’t make it either. It has no return date listed in IMDB and the show has been pulled from the roster on the A&E website. There were some interesting aspects to this show, but overall it needed some work. They had procedures and guidelines which was great, but some of their fact checking seemed a little off and they made far too many connections that seemed to be huge leaps at best.

Shows that should never come back:

Ghost Hunters Academy. Please tell me we’ll never have to see or hear of this stupid show again… I can only hope.

Ghost Hunters will air again sometime this year, but really, who cares anymore?

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Ghost Hunters at Alcatraz 100th Episode

I’m sure you’ve been anxiously waiting for my comments on the Ghost Hunters 100th episode at Alcatraz so here they are at last.

Before we begin I really have to make a comment about Alcatraz itself. After watching American Paranormal and their experiments with infrasound I’m completely suspect of any paranormal investigation at this site. The environment itself of wind and water would lead to plenty of false positives. Not to mention the hundreds of birds, rats and who knows what else that now make Alcatraz home. How could you not expect creaks, bangs, scratches, footsteps, the moaning of the wind, the thud of the surf and dozens of others sounds from the place? With so much "noise" how can you possibly differentiate what you’re hearing?

But anyway, the Ghost Hunters team if off to the glitz and glamour of Alcatraz for their 100th episode. As I mentioned before my interest in the Ghost Hunters has come to an end. I only tuned in because Josh was hosting the interview and he brings a sense of fun and levity into everything he does. As expected both the interview and the investigation were fairly lackluster.

And by the way Dustin, I hate to break it to you, but you’re not a rock star…

The interview portion was pretty much a let down because no one actually said anything. About four questions were asked the whole night and the team was basically able to articulate nothing more than a short one sentence answer. When asked about their paranormal experience, Jason and Grant, as you might expect, dodged the question and gave a pretty non-committal answer. Even though Robb is the head man of GHI, he had one sentence to say then was ushered off stage. Kris and Amy hung off to the side and kept the couch from rolling away. Even Steve and Tango hardly had anything to say. Honestly, this train derailed dozens of times and Josh was having a heck of a time keeping it going.

I’m biased about the investigation anyway so I’ll skip through most of it. I don’t think they captured much evidence and certainly nothing that gives credence to most of the claims people have out there. It would take a lot to convince me the wind and surf aren’t responsible for most things people see and experience.

One thing that did come to mind is that once again the team shows they aren’t always sure where the other members are. Steve and Tango hear noises and say it could easily be the other team members. This just shows TAPS can actually step over themselves and give false positives by their own actions.

No denying Alcatraz is a wild place which I would certainly like to visit. The tunnels, long corridors and plenty of places without light would be fascinating to see. But whether it’s truly haunted or not remains to be seen, at least in my eyes.

And what was the big news of the night? Ghost Hunters Academy is coming back for a second season. I’ll try to contain my excitement. We’re also informed that the GHA graduates, Susan and Karl will be joining GHI. I was woefully disappointed by GHI this season and this doesn’t help matters. Now that these two are going to join the ranks I think I might be stepping away from the entire Ghost Hunters franchise. The premise and crew from GHA just rubbed me the wrong way. It was a personality clash in every sense of the word so having them on GHI doesn’t make me want to tune in. Jason and Grant have lost me for now. I may change my mind if they go to some place that really interests me, but as we start this new season I’m not on board.

Overall the 100th episode special was somewhat interesting, but not thrilling. It’s pretty obvious they see this as a business now, which unto itself is fine, but the quirky fun of the show is pretty much missing now. But congratulations to the Ghost Hunters for 100 episodes which as Josh says, in today’s climate is an achievement no matter who you are. To be something on the fringe like this is a major accomplishment. Hopefully they’ll win me back, but for now, I think we need a bit of a break from each other.

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When will the paranormal bubble burst?

The television networks and the interwebertubes are ablaze with everything paranormal. For the last five years, due in large part to those blue collar guys Jason and Grant of the Ghost Hunters, there has been an explosion of shows about the paranormal. We have plumbers, cops, students, film makers, wanna be scientists, and even Hollywood has jumped on board. But now that we literally have everyone and their grandmother hunting ghosts on some cable network show, when is this bubble going to burst? The airwaves are saturated so how long can it sustain the pressure?

Personally, ?I think we are on the cusp of the decline of the paranormal show. I think a lot of these stalwarts will start dropping off and the latest startups won’t be able to take root.

Ghost Hunters has had a good run, but Jason and Grant aren’t doing business like they used to. They spend most episodes sitting on the couch waiting for something to happen and with all the controversy surrounding them now days they’re not even game to do a live investigation any more. With two other spinoff shows well under way, I think Jason and Grant will be heading off to the Spalding Inn once this new season is done.

Ghost Hunters International and Ghost Hunters Academy probably have another season or two left in them for those who still cling to the Ghost Hunters name. Ghost Hunters Academy never should have been made, and while I was a huge fan of GHI for Season One, this second Season has been frustrating, not to mention boring and annoying. The flip-flop nature of labeling locations paranormal is frustrating, while investigators like Joe and Paul just annoy me. They act like such buffoons most of the time I can’t stand to watch them. The "character" of the show has become grating. They’ll be able to cash in for a little while longer, but I don’t think these shows can bring in the numbers over the long haul.

Ghost Lab is so bad I’ll be shocked it if makes it back for another season.

Paranormal Cops is interesting but it doesn’t have enough flair to stick around. Plus, they aren’t travelling the countryside or hitting the Hot Spots like Eastern State or Waverly Hills. It would be interesting to see how they would handle an investigation at a place like that. But with only six shows to their credit I don’t think they personally have the time or the audience to give us too much more.

Paranormal State is a train wreck. Ryan has gone off the rails and each investigation is more hysterical and frantic than the last. I doubt many people would even consider him a paranormal investigator anymore. His main want is to seek out the demonic and perform exorcisms. Debunking and explaining are clearly not in his repertoire. I think his antics are costing him fans not gaining him credibility. Maybe he does have ties with the church and that’s what’s driving him, but if you look at his first episode and what we have now and they are nothing alike. This show has gone downhill dramatically. Plus, you can clearly see that Ryan thinks a lot of himself these days.

Ghost Adventures still has plenty of excitement left to carry them for another season or two. But in that timeframe, after they’ve visited the big paranormal Hot Spots what are they going to do? They could follow in the footsteps of Ghost Hunters International and visit castles and forts abroad. Poveglia was a great location and there’s plenty more like that out there. We’ll have to see if Zak and team can hold the interest of the audience in the upcoming years.

Destination Truth also has plenty of excitement and destinations left. I don’t know if there’s a shortage of urban legends that Josh can track down and never find. And his show is just as much about his wild adventures in getting to his location as it is in hunting unusual creatures. His lost luggage, broken down vehicles, strange food, and death defying climbs could easily keep us entertained for some time to come. Josh manages to incorporate adventure travel into his show so his appeal isn’t just to a ghost hunting crowd.

And there’s so many more shows out there that I haven’t even looked at.

These shows are still fun, to a certain extent, and we all like a good scare, but with so many coming at us, something has to give. More paranormal related shows will crop up from time to time, run their 6 episodes and then disappear. The paranormal is big business right now, but I think it’s going to start running out of steam shortly. There’s just too many coming at us all at once. Once the fervor dies down there will be a slew of books documenting the paranormal and all the ghost stories from these former TV celebs, so we have that to look forward to.

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