Entertainment

Perfectly Paranormal

Ghost HuntersAs Halloween draws closer and closer, everyone enjoys a good ghost story every now and then. We all loved to be scared silly and wish that we too, could experience the thrills and frights of an actual haunted house.

Still, while it is ill-advised to do sneak into an abandoned building to do some paranormal investigating, you can still get the thrill of watching a ghost hunt from the safety of your home; provided of course, that it is not haunted.

The following list is a compilation of all the “ghost-hunting” or “paranormal encounter” shows that are currently airing or will be aired on television right now.

• Ghost Hunters. This show is the father of all ghost hunting shows and airs on the SyFy Channel. Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson of TAPS (The Atlantic Paranormal Society) are more about looking for scientific evidence and are very cautious in declaring a home or location if the evidence just doesn’t stack up. They can debunk with the best of the skeptics, but they will also admit to a haunting as well. Spin off versions of this series are “Ghost Hunters Academy” starring team mates Steve Gonsalves and Dave Tango as well as “Ghost Hunters International” with Robb Demarest and Barry Fitzgerald are the main cast members.

• Paranormal State. This A&E show is unique because the team members are in their mid-twenties and a younger, college-age audience can relate better to them. Seasons 1 through 4 had a little more of a spiritual bent and focused more on helping the client, but Ryan Buell, founder of the Paranormal Research Society has mentioned that there will be exciting new changes for season 5; some of which includes Chad Calek, a featured investigator directing, Mr. Buell as the executive producer, and less use of mediums. Regardless of the changes, viewers know that this team is dedicated to their field; they often have live chats on their Livestream Channel, Paranormal Insider TV, host seminars, lectures and workshops from Paganism to energy work to ghost hunting 101.

Paranormal State: The Complete Season Four

• A Haunting. This Discovery Channel show combines re-enactments of the alleged haunting as well as interviews and recollections from the people who experienced it and the priests, psychics, or investigators that were called in to eventually deal with the problem. It is very chilling and the re-enactments can be quite spooky at times, even without state of the art CGI. The only downside is the often religious slant in a few episodes; some have portrayed Pagans and Wiccans in a more negative manner, subtly implying that their rituals stirred up the activity more. It would be nice if all religions were portrayed in a more positive, tolerant manner on this show though.

• Ghost Adventures. This Travel Channel show follows three investigators-Zak Bagans, Nick Groff, and Aaron Goodwin as they investigate supposedly haunted places with Bagans narrating the episode. They mark potential hotspots and go into “lock down” at night during the investigations in order to protect any evidence that they gather from “contamination “. However, Bagans’s flip-flopping comments about “being possessed” have earned some skeptical eyebrows from both paranormal skeptics and enthusiasts alike, as one would imagine that it would be an extremely rare occurrence as well as concerns about how aggressive and confrontational he is towards spirits. Still, Bagans maintains that he only provokes more negative entities that are known for attacking humans and respects the afterlife.

• The Haunted. This Animal Planet show is unique in that it focuses more about paranormal investigation and ghost stories that involve animals. Animals have traditionally been thought to be far more sensitive to the paranormal that we humans are, so the show definitely has an interesting premise rooted in folklore. It’s the sister-show to “A Haunting” as you can see from the similar premise and title cards. However, the plotlines revolve around cases involving animals, which gives it a unique focus that is not seen on other shows. For animal lovers, this is definitely the paranormal show to watch.

• Ghost Prophecies. While this A&E show hasn’t aired yet, it is the joint venture of executive producers Chad Calek and Ryan Buell. It will likely be similar in format to “Paranormal State”, only following around Chad’s group, American Ghost Hunters. It premieres November 18th, 2010 so tune in and watch as investigators Chad Calek, Justin Holstein, Joe Ansley and Mary Beth Wylie tackle the paranormal. Seeing as this team and PRS team are such good friends, the show seems poised to be the perfect complement to “Paranormal State”. At the very least, paranormal enthusiasts and skeptics will have yet another show to debate about.

Whether you’d rather hear stories about animals and paranormal activity, prefer a skeptical approach over a more religious approach, with paranormal tv shows, there’s something for everyone. Happy ghost hunting!

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