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Ghost Hunters 100th Episode from Alcatraz. But not live.

The Ghost Hunters will kick off their 100th episode with a live investigation of Alcatraz. Or so we thought. Not ones to get caught faking evidence twice, the Ghost Hunters won’t actually do the Alcatraz investigation live for us to play along, but will instead play it safe and show a pre-recorded investigation as usual and then appear live for an interview session with Josh Gates of Destination Truth. Josh is a great host and does a great job of asking questions and keeping the mood light and lively, but considering Jason and Grant really aren’t that forthcoming with information when doing an interview it all seems rather pointless. I’m sure we still won’t hear about what experience got them involved in ghost hunting in the first place. You have to pay to read the book where they sort of hint at what might have happened. And we all know well and good they won’t address any of the issues/controversy that has taken place over their last live investigation.

I guess the days of a truly live investigation are over.

I’m sure if you want to hear about why Jason and Grant always work together, or how the Spalding Inn is coming along, or what they think about their new spinoff Ghost Hunters Academy it will be riveting stuff.

Press Release:

New York, NY – February 23, 2010 – On Wednesday, March 3, join Jason, Grant and the rest of the TAPS team as the Ghost Hunters celebrate their triumphant 100th episode with a LIVE audience from the legendary Studio 8H in Rockefeller Center. From 9-11pm, the team will present their first-ever investigation at Alcatraz as well as take a look back at the most shocking and spine-chilling moments the hit series has caught on tape over the past five seasons.

Josh Gates (Destination Truth) will host the event, which will feature investigators from all three Ghost Hunters teams gathered together for the very first time. Jason Hawes, Grant Wilson, Steve Gonsalves, Dave Tango, Amy Bruni, Kris Williams (Ghost Hunters), Barry FitzGerald, Robb Demarest, Dustin Pari (Ghost Hunters International), Susan Slaughter and Karl Pfeiffer (Ghost Hunters Academy) will take the stage and get the chance to talk directly with the fans, answering audience questions from in the studio and Syfy.com.

Throughout the show, Josh will also reveal some surprises coming up in the Ghost Hunters franchise!

As always, Syfy.com will serve as the ultimate Ghost Hunters destination online, linking viewers to all of the action in the studio in real time. The site will host an interactive center helmed by investigator Britt Griffith, where fans can log on throughout the evening to be a part of the broadcast. Viewers will be able to ask questions of all participating TAPS members, leave comments and feedback, participate in polls, read up on Alcatraz history and more!

Then, at 11pm, the show continues online with an exclusive post-broadcast streaming event, “Ghost Hunters Alcatraz Live Extra,” also hosted by Josh Gates. This 15-minute extension of the live episode will feature a Q&A panel with Jason, Grant and the rest of the TAPS team answering viewer-submitted questions from Syfy.com.

In October 2004, Syfy introduced Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson – plumbers by day, Ghost Hunters by night! The success of its spin-off series, Ghost Hunters International and Ghost Hunters Academy, cemented the Ghost Hunters brand as the top paranormal franchise in cable. Ghost Hunters, Ghost Hunters International and Ghost Hunters Academy are produced in association with Craig Piligian’s Pilgrim Films and Television (Dirty Jobs, The Ultimate Fighter, My Fair Wedding). Piligian and Thomas Thayer, along with Rob Katz and Alan David, serve as executive producers.

Syfy is a media destination for imagination-based entertainment. With year round acclaimed original series, events, blockbuster movies, classic science fiction and fantasy programming, a dynamic Web site (www.Syfy.com), and a portfolio of adjacent business (Syfy Ventures), Syfy is a passport to limitless possibilities. Originally launched in 1992 as Sci Fi Channel, and currently in 95 million homes, Syfy is a network of NBC Universal, one of the world’s leading media and entertainment companies. (Syfy. Imagine greater.)

This is the line that has me the most intrigued:

Throughout the show, Josh will also reveal some surprises coming up in the Ghost Hunters franchise!

Does this mean there is going to be yet another spinoff show? Please say it isn’t so! Or is this perhaps the announcement of Jason and Grant retiring from the show? If they’re doing a "look back" over the last five years something tells me they might be bringing one of the shows to an end or at least changing who’s at the helm.

I wonder if Steve and Tango will take over the reigns of Ghost Hunters and turn the Ghost Hunters Academy into a shorter series or perhaps do that show while GH is on one of their multiple breaks during the year.

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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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Ghost Adventures Marathon on the Travel Channel

The Travel Channel is running a Ghost Adventures marathon from 4pm – 11pm, Monday February 22nd. It’s a 7-hour feast of the paranormal starting with the Ohio Reformatory and Poveglia Island. Both of these were fun investigations so it should set the mood nicely!

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Ghost Hunters International – San Lucas Island – S02E12

Robb and the rest of the GHI team head to Costa Rica to investigate an island prison that is supposed to be as notorious as Alcatraz. There is the typical murder of inmates, the warden handing out brutal punishment, but there is also the reported death of both a priest and a nurse. Conditions were bad as people were crammed into small cells and in one instance a prisoner died, but no one said anything so they could keep getting his rations.

Right off the bat I have several problems with this investigation. First, the number of animals roaming around is staggering. We know for certain the place is full of bats, but I’m sure there are plenty of birds and other small animals that call this place home. Any noises and sounds they hear could easily be them. "I hear scratching at the door!" "That’s just an ill tempered boar trying to eat us."

Second is the rain and the lightning. You can hear the rain hitting the roof and sides of the buildings. Plus there is the low rumble of the thunder. This will contaminate any audio findings they come up. "Did you hear that growl?!" "Think that was thunder. Or maybe the chicken salad I had for lunch."

Right off the bat I’m already prejudiced against anything they find because of these environmental factors.

But moving past that, we have Robb and Barry investigating near the Torture Circle where Barry says he sees a pig like figure go running in front of him. However, it doesn’t show up on the thermal. They also hear the sound of a woman. Again, not picked up on audio.

Paul and Brandy go to the Slaughterhouse where several inmate murders took place. (Who thought inmates and knives was a good idea?) They claim to hear all sorts of noises. Again I ask, how is this not the rain, the animals and the wind? They didn’t capture anything.

Robb and Joe go to the dispensary where the murdered nurse used to work. Again, more claims of female voices but this time Robb says he sees someone walk across the room. The person walking was not captured on video. Paul and Brandy go to the dispensary, but they don’t see the figure either.

There is the story of a priest being murder so Joe and Robb go to the chapel to see if they can make contact. They hear a loud noise, but can’t find the source. Feral cat? That would be silly.

Robb and Joe head to the Slaughterhouse and tell the spirits they can’t get in. Low and behold the door starts shaking. A rickety door, on a worn out shack, in the middle of the jungle, on a rainy night. Wow, who would have thought something like that could happen? Don’t look now, it could be the wind!

They don’t really capture anything during the investigation, but at the reveal they have a few shoddy EVPs up their sleeves. What I find funny is that even the client can’t make out what’s being said, but after being prompted by Robb he agrees completely that’s what he hears. Robb is clearly not influencing the outcome.

With these couple of EVPs in hand Robb says the island is definitely haunted. Once again, they don’t have any truly solid evidence at hand. They didn’t capture any of the apparitions, no shadows, no clear cut voices. The entire basis for the prison being haunted rests of a few EVP recordings, which, just like every other EVP, could be interpreted as just about anything.

The place is certainly ripe for paranormal activity with harsh treatment, terrible living conditions and plenty of death, but the elements play too large a factor in contaminating any evidence they come up with. Whenever there’s bats, it makes me suspicious of any noises the team hears. And those things they see out of the corner of their eye? Yeah, that’s a bat.

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