Monday, October 30, 2023

Exploring Paranormal BOO-Tube

Here we are again, on what some call “Devil’s Night” – or the eve before All Hallows Eve. Spooky season is drawing to a close with the advent of Halloween and the turning of the calendar to November later this week. I find myself sad that the ongoing SAG-AFTRA strike has drug on this far (for shame, studios) and our solidarity prevents us from sharing our normal eerie seasonal cinematic finds. However, there’s no shortage of spooktacular fun to share with you.
From anime to animated horror stories on BOO-Tube, we’ve explored some alternatives that hold to the spirit of the chills and thrills of the season. We haven’t covered everything yet, though! There are still some creepy corners of BOO-Tube left unexplored. So let’s dive in, shall we?
Welcome to my tour of Paranormal BOO-Tube. What’s that, you ask?

If you’ve ever heard of the show Ghost Hunters (2004-), or seen any of the episodes, you’ll have an idea about what to expect from the list I’m bringing you today. If not, well then you’re in for a treat if “reality TV” about things that really go bump in the night is something that interests you.

I’ve always been drawn to the paranormal, riding the line between trepidation and curiosity. I find the more I educate myself about topics that make me nervous or scare me, the more I am able to manage those complex emotions. In this case, it’s become practically a past-time of mine all on its own to follow various teams that explore the paranormal – and also help people plagued by it.
Of course, I don’t believe everyone that claims to see ghosts is necessarily being genuine, for whatever reason. I maintain a healthy skepticism and respect those that have a process and take the time to suss out a situation and debunk things that are easily explained and overcome. (For example, in the beginning of the Ghost Hunters show, when it was still on SYFY, they explained that they used their plumbing background to solve issues explained by faulty pipes, excessive electromagnetic fields created by improper wiring, and things of that nature.)  These days there’s all sorts of technological equipment available to help with investigating the paranormal that allow teams to document more than what the human experience allows. Further, I don’t hold a lot of stock in “orb chasers” – because it’s usually dust or bugs or something – so I tend to dismiss those findings rather quickly.

With all that in mind, I’ve collected the channels of teams that I have grown to respect and enjoy over the years through exposure on various TV shows highlighting their work, or even those solely with an online presence. I have fond memories of watching Ghost Hunters’ all night Halloween real-time investigation specials. While I don’t know if any of these teams are hosting anything similar this year, if you’re in the mood for spooky ambiance and a dive into the world of real paranormal investigations, here’s a good place to start. 
These channels may contain some shaky-cam and profanity.
(1) Project Fear – the team that brought you Destination Fear (2019-2023) on the Travel Channel now has struck out on their own to continue to bring episodes to those seeking to join them on their road-trip challenges. This pair of siblings and their best friends select paranormal hotspots to travel to and spend the night to explore their own reaction to fear – and how the paranormal reacts to their fear - as a social experiment. The team is respectful of the locations they investigate and conducts a fair amount of research on each location. This new venture on YouTube was supported by a Kickstarter campaign once Travel Channel / Discovery cancelled the original show. These are their ongoing adventures without studio oversight and strictures.
(2) Ghost Hunters – The Travel Channel has a channel that shows past Ghost Hunters episodes if you would like to see the series that sparked my love of Paranormal TV. The team has evolved over the years but their core mission is to help those that need assistance with Paranormal issues as well as investigating well-known (and sometimes lesser known) allegedly haunted locations to debunk where possible and provide paranormal evidence for property owners and caretakers. (Please note this is not the same team as Ghost Adventures. I do not agree with the practices and procedures of that team and do not promote them.)

(3) Travel the Dead – Katrina Weidman (Paranormal State, Paranormal Lockdown, Portals to Hell) has teamed up with her best friend, and fellow investigator Heather Taddy (Paranormal State) to create a new YouTube series of paranormal investigations. The pair also employ the aid of mediums to both assist and corroborate their experiences with these investigations.

(4) The Paranormal Files – Lead investigator Colin Browen provides a lot of quality content on this YouTube channel full of paranormal investigations and other quests regarding the unexplained. He often collaborates with fellow investigators and you’ll sometimes see him on other channels I’ve mentioned here, as well. I’ve been rather impressed with the production quality of his work with this channel. Sometimes the videos are on the long side but they’ve been packed with content.

(5) Groff Adventures – Tessa and Nick Groff are a couple that investigates the paranormal together. Nick has been behind the scenes on popular paranormal shows but has since broken away to work on his own following controversy surrounding his former teammates. I won’t get into that here because I don’t like talking about that other production – so let’s focus on the Groffs. Nick’s wife, Tessa, is a medium in her own right and together they are able to pursue investigations from multiple fronts. Their channel doesn’t currently have as many investigations on it as some of the others listed but look for more to be added in the future.

(6) Sam & Colby – Watching this duo is a lot of fun. I think Sam & Colby might resonate well with “younger” audiences (Millennials and Gen Z, most likely). They take some crazy risks sometimes and bring along friends to share the scares. While I don’t think that everything these channels calls a “demon” is really necessarily that – they do run into some scary situations and provide entertaining paranormal content. Colby has also shared with their followers his personal cancer scare. This pair of investigators feels grounded and authentic even if they are silly sometimes.

(7) Twin Paranormal – These twins have been experiencing paranormal activity first-hand since they were at least 10. They have taken their journey to the next level now seeking out paranormal hot-spots to investigate and share their experiences on this channel. Of course, they hit a lot of places that have been well-documented by others but I have appreciated their content and unique take on events, as well as the production value of their videos.

(8) Amy’s Crypt – Amy is a native Australian that now resides in California. She and her partner travel to explore paranormal activity at “the world’s most haunted locations.” I’ve really enjoyed the production quality of her content so far. Her channel is a recent find of mine so I haven’t watched all of her videos yet. Though I am excited to get her take on places such as The Blood Countess Elizabeth Bathory’s castle, Dracula’s Castle, Dark Hedges in Ireland, and the like.

(9) The Paranormal 60 with Dave Schrader – Dave Schrader is a known paranormal investigator, featured on Travel Channel’s The Holzer Files (2019-). This channel is more of a video podcast – ’ 60 minutes or more, investigating aspects of the supernatural, strange and anomalous with exciting guests, topics and segments designed to educate, enlighten and always entertain.” I really appreciated his approach and perspective when he was on the TV show, and I’m excited to explore this new venture.

(10) Dead Air: Full Spectrum – This channel is described as a “streaming channel offering both live and pre-recorded shows dedicated to a diverse array of entertainment and information related to the paranormal and other related topics.” From segments titled “Extremely Strange” to appearances from The Paranormal Couple of Cody Ray DesBiens & Satori Hawes (daughter of Jason Hawes) this channel offers quite the range of content for lovers of the paranormal and unexplained.

Bonus! While it’s still unknown if one of my favorite paranormal shows, Kindred Spirits (2016-) will be renewed for an 8th season or not yet, I did run across something interesting while searching for that information. It appears that Amy Bruni, one of the main investigators of the show has participated in a web series titled “Ghost Hunting 101.

Extra Credit! – Did you know that before Corpse Husband became a fairly household name among gaming streamers for his collaborative play-throughs of games such as Among Us, his rising music career, and his signature deep voice – his channel started as a scary story space? It’s true! Corpse would narrate scary tales much like the previous list of channels I published. His content has moved away from that sort of video, however, they’re still there on his original channel if you go back to the beginning. (Keep in mind these stories were narrated 6+ years ago so his voice has changed a bit since then - getting deeper over time due to his various medical conditions, so think of this as "young Corpse!")

However you celebrate the season, we hope you have a safe and fun holiday!