Ghost Hunters S09E05 All Ghosts On Deck

The TAPS team visits the great state of Kentucky — again. In this case, they investigate the The Belle of Louisville, a great old steamboat. While it is another infomercial for paranormal tourists, I couldn’t help but love the boat and hope to visit it one day.

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I guess my first issue is that while waving his hands around as he drives (Dude, talk with your mouth and not your hands while you drive!) Jason replies, “I don’t know” to a question of murder. I’d like to have heard him say, Steve nothing suggest murder and to pose the question is disrespectful to his family. Of course, this is para-tainment as opposed to a real investigation.

To me, the most entertaining part of this episode of GH was listening to Jason struggle with his monologue. Clearly, he didn’t write it nor spent much time rehearsing it. Perhaps another indication that the cast and crew are going through the motions and seem tired of doing the show. It begs the question, do poor ratings cause the lack of enthusiasm (1.11 million viewers and only a 0.3 in the 18-49 age range ) of the cast, or does lack of enthusiasm of the cast cause poor ratings?

I shook my head in disbelief when Adam didn’t know the sounds of his own equipment. You would think after being on the show as long as he has that he would know every chirp, whistle, hum, and buzz of his equipment.

I guess the biggest question one would ask is why the investigation was worthy of an entire episode? In the past, something like this would have been the second part of an episode. The ship was the star of the show. Sadly, it may have been a better episode without the ghost hunters.

Ghost Hunters: S09E04 Permanent Residents

This week the GH gang visit a beautiful location The 1890 House in Cortland, NY. It is now a museum and I wonder how long it will be before it has it’s annual ghost tours? I guess we will know by this Halloween.

The reports of  haunted activity are pretty much what you might expect from a house of this age. I liked the test by Britt of the pool balls making noise by vibration caused by heavy traffic. While the experiment was a good effort, he failed to remember (or perhaps that info was not passed on to him) that the witness said that the pool balls were not set out. He should have tested how the balls were stored and if improper storage and gravity might have caused the sound. They had a strange sound around the cue rack and I wonder if they should have spent more time there? I wasn’t impressed with the Rim Pod going off on the table because it was probably KJ approaching the pool table.

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ghdebunkAs for the debunk attempt of the alleged ghost photo, I wonder why Britt and KJ didn’t pull the trigger and say that the picture was a person with a camera. I couldn’t help but think that season 1 or 2 Ghost Hunters would have tossed out this photo.

Adam reports that his leg was touched (not getting enough airtime Adam?) and I couldn’t help but laugh. Interesting place, I can see why people think that it’s haunted.

The second portion of the show was an investigation of the Ashmore Estates. Michelle and Tango propose that a rocking chair may be a source of knocks and for once I came away happy with the debunking efforts. Having said that, I think that Ghost Adventures (season5) did a much better investigation of the location. I couldn’t help but wonder if GH’s efforts to debunk were a salvo aimed at GA. It makes you wonder about the motivations of rival paranormal TV shows.

Ghost Hunters: Prescription for Fear

Ghost.Hunters S09E03 Prescription for Fear

I’ll give the Ghost Hunters one thing; they know how to make an interesting show title. With their ratings in decline, the GH crew needed something to revive interest in the GH franchise. Instead, they investigate another closed Asylum.

The Peoria Asylum is looking for some

… sound investors (local or international) and interested partners to join with us thus allowing the introduction of this amazing location to the world. We will gladly provide more information to “qualified” investors. (link)

I’m not sure what a “qualified” investor is, but after announcing that Jay and Grant are selling the Spaulding Inn, I wonder if Jay will be “qualified.”

The investigation begins as usual with a breakdown of the alleged phenomena and eyewitness accounts woven into Jay’s monologue. I found the new location interesting, but I really wanted to hear some hard challenges to the eyewitnesses and some healthy skepticism. Once again we are treated to GH’s staged driving scenes complete with examples of how not to drive. Jay both hands on the wheel, you talk with your mouth not your hands.

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I found the window picture taken by a guest (I wonder if he was a “qualified” guest?), but I wonder if I am looking at an imperfection in a window screen and the play of light on the wall? Is this a case of matrixing?

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The image of Steve rolling Jay around in a wheelchair gave me an uncomfortable thought of the future of GH. I hope that there was more to Britt and KJ’s attempt to investigate the image in the window than what we saw. I can’t believe that someone didn’t try to stand at the same location as the photographer. Simply walking into the same room and standing in the location is half-assed investigation and really gives the impression that they don’t really care about what they are doing. Britt and KJ captured an image of someone walking in the woods, but it could have been Bobo from Finding Bigfoot for all we know. If it was anything, wouldn’t the GH folks have an independent analysis?

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The line from Jason that “we’re here to help — that’s all that matters” made me laugh. It shouldn’t have, but it did.

I’m not sure that it was a prescription for fear, but it certainly was a prescription for Zzzzzzzzz.

Ghost Hunters: Ghost Mission

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Best lines in the program: Britt asks, “Do monks talk?” Britt to KJ, “I’m not going to have to give you mouth to mouth am I?” KJ replies, “Only if you want to.” Hmmm Jason may have to break you two up.

Do Monks talk — really Britt? Does Britt think? Am I to understand that Britt has “ghost hunted” this location to see ghosts and to scare the girls, but has never bothered to spend a few minutes to research this order of monks or any order of monks?

I’m happy to see that the GHI method of speaking English to non-English speaking entities is still in practice. While I was happy to see Josh Gates, a Spanish speaker like Jael might have been a better choice.

Steve freaks out after stepping on a towel that he thought was a dead animal. This throws some doubt on his earlier comments about hearing sounds that could not be animals because he didn’t see any animals. Well, it’s dark, you didn’t see the towel either.

Michelle Tate is a cute girl with an odd hair cut. For some reason she makes me think of Peter Pan. I’m sure that the camera men will enjoy following her upstairs for the obligatory butt shots.

I enjoyed seeing Josh Gates again and the ruins at the location were awesome. The San Juan Capistrano Mission is awesome, but outdoor investigations are really tough. Having said that, I think some members really didn’t put any effort into their investigation (Britt) and the lack of Spanish and native speakers was inexcusable. Let’s face it GH has the bucks to bring in some Spanish speakers — they just didn’t have enough pride in their job to do it. I can imagine that some paranormal groups would love to have a fraction of the GH money to spend on their investigations. I get the sense that these people really don’t love what they do anymore.

The evps collected were poor, ringing bells (did anyone bother to check with a local church?), shuffling sound (did anyone bother to contact an expert on local animal sounds?). One evp was described as Spanish but it couldn’t be understood which begs the question was it really Spanish (was it anything)?

Great location — disappointing effort.

 

S09E01: Hollywood Horror Stories

Ghost Hunters
Ghost Hunters (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I decided to watch this episode of Ghost Hunters to take a look at the new ghost hunter, Michelle Tate. The new format of Jason mixing his monologue  with comments added from the eyewitnesses works for me. I really didn’t care for the staged case briefing in the Taps van of previous seasons. Having said that, GH really feels like Ghost Adventures.

A-ghost-of-the-victorian-ageOn the downside, the staged introduction of Michelle Tate could make a maggot puke. We have to pretend that her introduction to the team was a “big surprise” — complete with Adam cheering. Even the biggest hardcore Ghost Hunters fan had to poll their eyes at the obviously staged introduction.

The investigation seemed to be odd in that we were looking for the ghost of a woman who may have been murdered at that location. In the end, we only have a couple of low quality evps and some external noise contamination.  I really came away with the feeling that the cast and crew didn’t want to do this investigation — they seemed really flat.

The second part of the show took us to Madame Tussauds wax museum. Let’s face it dolls, statues, and manikins, are creepy.

All in all, this episode was a bit of a snooze …

Michelle Tate, Syfy’s new Ghost Hunter

2-Angels-Photo-0335It looks as though the Syfy channel’s  Ghost Hunters has added a new young female to it’s team, Michelle Tate. You may remember her from Ghost Hunters Academy were she placed second in the contest. Maybe she will last a little longer than Ashley Troub?

I guess this means that the cameramen will get to do their famous butt shots again.

 

The ghosts of paranormal Christmas yet to come

old houseI have to confess that I don’t watch the parashows with the ferocity that I once had. It’s not that I am no longer a paranormal geek (BTW check out the book Paranormal Geeks by Sharon Day and Julie Ferguson) but rather it is the lack a fresh angle to the paranormal shows.

If you want an entertaining show with a lot of silliness there is a program for you, Ghost Adventures. If you are interested in paranormal infomercials, Ghost Hunters has changed from it’s ideal of helping people to shameless huckstering of alleged haunted locations.

Ashley TroubI recently learned that our favorite barista was booted from the Ghost Hunters show. I guess Jason couldn’t mold her in the Ghost Hunter ideal “what was that? — did you hear that?” Isn’t it sad that the most stable paranormal team on TV seems to be the Ghost Adventures team?

I think this latest personnel shuffling with Ashley Troub is a perfect example of why I seldom watch the show. If you pick a person, shouldn’t you invest the time to train her up and give her a fair chance to earn her spot on the team? I think a lot of fans realized at first sight that Ashley was not the person for the show, but once you’ve made your pick, it’s only fair to give her a chance. Of course, it isn’t about the passion of ghost hunting, but all about ratings, money, and demographics.

What does the ghost of paranormal shows yet to come have in store for us? Josh Gates has a new show called “Stranded — The show features average paranormal enthusiasts who are stranded in some of the most haunted locations in America and record their experiences with handheld cams.” The show sounds like Scariest Places on Earth narrated by Linda Blair. While I like Josh Gates, couldn’t Syfy give us something new?

Notorious Hauntings — supernatural investigations from around the world or a re-make of the defunct (though not officially) Ghost Hunter International with a little dash of Destination Truth tossed in. Ghost Mine or the paranormal version of Discovery’s Gold Rush Alaska. What’s next, the paranormal housewives of the rich and famous? Dancing with the Bigfoots?

I guess the best thing about paranormal TV is that like Ashley Troub’s career they go away quickly.

S03E01: Hamlet’s Castle, Denmark

S03E01: Hamlet’s Castle, Denmark — or something is rotten in Denmark ?  Alas, poor GHI! I knew them, kind of. As the show continues to circle the drain, we find a new GHI team lead by Barry FitzGerald. Britt will be in a few episodes that were shot before he was fired. I guess GHI considers it a successful season if they finish with most of their cast.

Another sign of the crumbling empire that was Ghost Hunters, Scotty Roberts has resigned. I know many of you are asking — who is Scotty Roberts and why should I care? Scotty was the editor for TAPS ParaMagazine. He has resigned after working UNPAID for a year. That’s right folks!

Merge that little thought with the Donna La Croix’s Ghost Divas interview where she said that she and other TAPS celebrities were in financial trouble due to the show. She said that she, Brian, and Andy “almost went bankrupt.”

In the usual Ghost Hunter fashion, the team welcomes the new members without mentioning the departure of the old team. It’s as if Robb and the others didn’t exist.

I have noticed that the team members seem more chatty than normal. I think that I’ve heard more from Joe Chin in this episode than in his entire GHI career. I have to wonder if the team members feel the need to step it up a notch after the departure of so many team members?

On the plus side, I enjoyed the location. The castle is beautiful. On the downside, I was not impressed with the pebbles being tossed. I have seen far too much of pebble tossing on “Most Haunted.” It seems that GHI has a magical moving flashlight to rival GH’s magical blinking flashlight. Of course, we couldn’t see all of the flashlight, so we have no idea what might have moved it. As for the chandelier swaying, I’m sorry but it was within reach of anyone. I would like to have seen some effort made to debunk ghostly accounts.

Barry concluded that the location is haunted and my jaw dropped.

There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,
Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.

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