Regularly, people ask me to rank ghost hunting TV shows like Ghost Hunters, Ghost Adventures, and Paranormal State.
I think they’re establishing my attitudes towards ghost hunting. (If they’re looking for an argument, that’s a waste of time.)
Each ghost hunting TV show has taken a different approach to the subject.
If I had to name just one favorite ghost-related TV show, Ghost Lab wins. The Klinge brothers explored more innovative research techniques than most similar shows. In addition, I respect their integrity.
The big brands
I’ve liked episodes of Most Haunted, Ghost Adventures, and Ghost Hunters, each for different reasons.
Most Haunted visited locations with fascinating histories. (I only watched the UK version of that show.)
I’m not sure about the accuracy of the channeled information or the stories. But, if you don’t take ghost shows seriously, that was a fun TV series to watch. Great locations. Silly pranks. Fun cast members.
Ghost Adventures intrigued me for different reasons. Though I only saw a few episodes, I liked the details included in each episode. I don’t mean the narrative, but the filming of each episode. Their cameras captured more nooks and crannies at investigation sites. I’m always interested in that.
In addition, I think many viewers like seeing the stars of that show. During the few episodes I watched, the guys seemed genuinely interested in paranormal research.
Ghost Hunters is one of the most authoritative production among ghost hunting TV shows that launched at the start of the 21st century trend. I liked every series in the franchise.
I wish they’d allowed Barry Fitzgerald more input for the international episodes. He was one of the most challenging researchers, and — though I often disagree with him on fine points — his voice was important.
I liked how Steve and Dave were portrayed in the “academy” episodes; they’re both sincere, funny, caring guys. I felt that they deserved their own series.
Paranormal State started out with an interesting edge. Before long, my “gut feeling” was that someone connected with the show attracted unpleasant energy. So, for me, the show lost much of its credibility, early on.
Ghost-related episodes of Destination: Truth highlighted fascinating locations. Too many segments seemed rushed, but they brought something different to the niche. I haven’t seen newer, related series.
Older paranormal TV shows
Though it’s long gone and not a ghost hunting TV show, per se, I liked John Edward in Crossing Over.
Of course, I’m aware of the criticism of the show and take most of it with a grain of salt.
The reason I liked the show was its authenticity.
Genuine mediums have a certain way of talking. They trust “the other side” more than the people in front of them. Those mediums do their best to articulate the odd images and sensations that come through from the other side.
Sometimes, those translations are so subjective, the medium can’t get it right. That’s normal, and it can be worse under the pressure of “performing” for an audience, much less a TV crew.
Through his accurate readings and his shortfalls, John Edward helped me understand my own psychic gifts.
Among all the TV shows with a paranormal theme, I think I got the most from his shows, and watched more of them. I’m sorry that rumors, duplicity, and production quirks cost that show its ratings.
But, the same could be said of almost any ghost-related TV show.
Also, I’m still a fan of the really old TV b&w series, One Step Beyond. When I find episodes on “oldies” channels, I watch them.
The shows are dated and usually include very bad acting. However, most episodes are based on true stories, and can give you fresh locations to investigate, yourself.
What’s ahead for ghost hunting TV shows?
Regularly, producers contact me with plans for new ghost hunting TV shows. So far, it seems like they’re still reinventing Ghost Hunters. I’m not convinced they get what’s changed in this field — and the viewing audience — over the past few years.
Will ghost hunting become trendy again in the near future? I haven’t a clue. However, these things tend to go in cycles, and I’ve seen some interesting spikes at search engines.
Whether future ghost hunting TV shows will be innovators or purely commercial trend followers probably depends more on the producers than anything else.