My bf and I love the Sci Fi show Ghost Hunters. We love the sensible leadership of Jason and Grant, their rational desire to debunk allegations of ghost activity and yet their occasional admittance of haunted places once in a while, their skeptical stance on orbs. We love the cast of characters: Donna who didn’t seem easily rattled (or maybe she was just edited that way), the annoying and yet goofy melodrama of Brian, we even grew to like Tango. We were excited to learn of a new spin-off, Ghost Hunters International (GHI). After a falling out with Grant and Jason, Brian Harnois joins another long-timer Donna LaCroix, and sporadic members Andy Andrews (I know) and the Irishman Barry Fitzgerald. New hunters Shannon Sylvia (who suspiciously was recently seen appearing on the vapid show Most Haunted) and joins and Robb Demarest, from another TAPS franchise is chosen to lead this rag-tag group. We were sorely disgusted with the result. In fact, I kept falling asleep half-way through most episodes. My bf and I recently sat down to discuss the problems.
- There’s very little skepticism or debunking going on. Robb and Andy try but…
- A sudden Christian element (prayers, rosaries) has infiltrated the show and this destroys much of the credibility from the original Ghost Hunters. In fact, there’s a constant assumption of evil. We miss the “ghosts are people too” ethos of the first show. To assume you’re always dealing with eeevil clouds your judgment. And this show’s judgment is in a fog bank.
- In fact Irishman Barry is in ghostly hysterics half the time. He would fit more with the fraudulent-seeming Most Haunted show from England. Barry, who’s silly, skinny soul patch should go post-haste, sees ghosts every episode. And runs from them. Brian got ripped a new one for running out of a prison in the first show with his infamous exclamation “Run, Dude, Run!” GHI seems to be edited to engage in fear mongering. Which makes it very unscary.
- Brian is pretty much a non-entity on the show. His main asset on the first show was his irritant role in the group. He’s not even touchy on this show.
- Shannon is dead weight.
- Donna is a great disappointment. She was a semi-kewl chick on Ghost Hunters, rarely getting her feathers ruffled as far as we could tell. On GHI, she’s whiny, alarmed, or clutching a rosary most of the time. It usually necessities Andy coming in to debunk her grand claims of ghost activity.
- And thank God for Robb and Andy, who are good but alas no Jay and Grant. They don’t have their sense of humor; they don’t have their camaraderie; and they cannot instill debunking-focus over the entire group. They seem to lack the leadership skills or authority Jay and Grant have. For instance, when Shannon and Donna were fighting, Robbs direction was very tentative. Jay would have brought down some anger into the situation and they would have had to get their shit together.
- Too many “personal experiences.” They’re in fabulous locations all over the haunted world and they can't come up with a single interesting piece of visual evidence or any really outstanding EVPs. As Jay and Grant would say, personal experiences are good but they don’t prove anything, they’re just supporting evidence.
- It turns out there’s a language barrier when trying to communicate with ghosts who may only speak say Romanian or Italian.
- Where did all the superstitious paraphernalia come from anyway? What happened to the more scientific tone of the American show? What happened to all that TAPS education?
- No more interesting SWAG...all the funny versions of TAPS t-shirts members would wear from week to week.
- And finally, I miss the funny intro with cast members throwing looks over their shoulders with disturbed expressions.
Read my comments about season 2