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Thursday, November 1, 2007

TAPS Ghosthunters Paranormal Show Review

Weird as it seems, a comment to my site prompted this entry to my blog. I get a lot of traffic to this blog because of Most Haunted, and GhostHunters/ TAPS searches. In a few searches my site pops up a the first web article (to which I can only say "sorry" to fans of MH and TAPS).

I'm a huge fan of paranormal shows that seem to be never ending on our cable television line up. Travel Channel, for example, inundates us with shows about haunted houses, haunted inns, haunted places left and right. In fact it seems that there are so many stories about ghosts and goblins that you'd have to wonder where the "travel" component fits in.

I guess they must do well in the ratings game since the theme never changes and people keep tuning in. Back several years ago, Travel Channel began carrying "Most Haunted" which quickly became a favorite show of mine - besides interest in ghosts and spirits, I also enjoy watching shows about old castles, old structures, museums, and history of the British Isles. Most Haunted has a reputation for having some staged activity and they fired a medium for faking a contact with an alleged ghost. I go into all of that in this post. But Most Haunted has a great staff and crew and the show is fun to watch - whether its choreographed or not. MH never fails the viewer to provide some entertainment and a laugh.

GhostHunters (or TAPS) is another paranormal show that airs on Sci-Fi Channel. It's sort of ironic that a show dedicated to "scientific investigation" of ghosts airs on the "SCIENCE FICTION CHANNEL" but there is humor in most things. I gave a pretty harsh review of TAPS show in general and a comical review of TAPS at Lisheen Ruins. I received some hate mail from some of their dedicated fans but that's perfectly understandable given the fact that TAPS has a paranormal cult following. Of course, it's nowhere near the size of the Most Haunted following which has a life of its own.

In a lot of ways, GhostHunters is a cheap imitation of Most Haunted. Most Haunted is directed and produced by Yvette Fielding and her husband Karl Beattie - two well-respected people in film and theatre. Just about every aspect of Most Haunted has a professional appearance - from the theme music to the camera coordination through out the show. TAPS on the other hand is a show that never seems to get off the ground. Between redundant clips that often reveal nothing such as Jason debunking mist for breathing, or endless minutes of watching them connect and disconnect wires - with the TAPS crew, it's amateur hour and a disappointing one at that

Moreover, for fans interested in seeing paranormal activity captured, most of the Ghost Hunter shows are a total bust. The fact that they waste so much time in the Reveal section of the show to tell someone they didn't find anything is beyond me. I think one of the worst episodes had to be the recent adventure in Salem. The only one that seemed to get something out of this show was Donna, who had a chance to relive her youth, but for the rest of us, it was one ugly ride to nowhere. No ghosts, no goblins, nothing. A big fat zero. And when TAPS can't even catch a ghost in Salem, MA, they might as well hang up their Proton Packs.

You'd have to believe GhostHunters/TAPS is on its last leg. Last evening they went back to the Sanatorium for a live Halloween special which featured ECW Wrestler Elijah as an assistant paranormal investigator. It's clear to everyone that TAPS has reached a new low by trying to mix pro wrestling with ghost-hunting. You have to wonder if TAPS realizes that viewer reaction was so negative to such a move. Or did Sci-Fi Channel impose the use of Elijah as a marketing stunt to either bring better ratings to Ghosts Hunters or viewers to ECW. Quite frankly, you'd think that the genre for both is entirely different so its a bizarre mix anyway.

Naturally, it took about two minutes for Elijah to "see something". After about an hour of this mess, and monitoring an accompanying website that didn't function properly, I decided it was time for bed. I kept hoping that Jason and Grant my disprove my theory that they are the two most incompetent ghost hunters on the planet, but alas they failed me. Instead of holding contests to add to staff, they should have a contest to replace themselves and their producer. It's God-awful television.

And don't get me wrong. Each week I root like heck for them to get it right. I still think one of the best paranormal episodes on television was a GhostHunters episode that featured a haunted lighthouse where they absolutely captured activity of something following them up and down the stairs. If anyone remembers the name of the location, please feel free to comment.

The biggest disappointment on Halloween night 2007 is that Travel Channel didn't team with Living TV and deliver us an episode of Most Haunted Live. Maybe you guys can get it right next time. Meanwhile, its time for Grant and Jason to get back to plumbing. Whoever thought Derek Achorah would upstage GhostHunters?

And yes, I carved the pumpkin in the picture. Thank God for easy designs.


Anonymous said...

Great review. St.Augustine lighthouse.

Teekay said...

I think you hit the nail on the head with you comments about Sci-Fi's GhostHunters. They are on a spiral downwards...

I was sucked into GH about 2 or 3 years ago. Back when they actually caught something in video... The EVPs to me are a joke.

Like you, I watch GH every week and get disappointed every week. Now I am looking into "Scaries Places", "GH International", "Paranormal State" and "Destination Truth" all are DVRed and scanned rather then watched.

What don't these TV shows set up cameras for a month at like the "Goldfield Hotel" and see what can be found.

The King said...

Now they have an "international show" but that's equally disappointing. I marvel at the idea of actually going places already visited by Most Haunted crew... and yet find ... nothing.

Anonymous said...

I also watch GH and Paranormal State.I went to the Lizzie Borden house two days ago and was talking to the woman who runs the giftshop.
On the shelf was a picture of Jason and Grant fropm GH at the time of their investigation there.
Come to find out, they stayed for only THREE HOURS and passed it off as a full investigation!

The King said...

What I also heard was that the show contains a lot of fakery. My source is a relative close to these guys who used to work with one of the wives.

She went on at length about editing that is done to give the impression that paranormal phenomena is occuring. This is why they often refuse to tell owners that the dwelling is haunted.

It's a real shame that TAPS is so phony.