Thursday, January 14, 2010

My Gradually Shifting Allegiance

I watch very little TV.  After teaching all day, nights and weekends (and holidays) are my time to write.  Which means that when it comes to being a couch potato, approximately 3 hrs. per week is my limit. 

Sometimes I'll become a fan of a particular show, but then something will happen (character change, focus change - who knows) and I'll drop out of love with it.  Which is why I no longer watch CSI.  I used to "live" for Vegas until Gil Grissom left.  The show jumped the shark for me at that point.  I used to watch Miami, but I quickly tired of watching Horatio putting his hands on his hips.  And I just never caught on to New York (CBS, you made a MAJOR mistake when you chose NY over New Orleans.  Just think of the fantastic stories you could have had, not to mention the financial help you would have brought to that part of the country, after Katrina!)

Now, my Only Other Show I Diligently Watched is slowly going the way of becoming uninteresting.  In short, my allegiance is shifting from Ghost Hunters to Ghost Adventures.

When GH started up, I was quickly swallowed up by its unique scheme.  Shows like the St. Augustine lighthouse and the lighthouse (sorry, I forgot the name) where the chair in the attic moved on camera won me over big time.  But it seems more and more each episode consists of "Did you hear that?" and "What could have caused it?", and nothing more.  Very little spook and too much emptyness, IMHO.  That includes practically nothing caught on camera, and maybe, if we're lucky, one or two EVPs.

GH International went the same route.  Lots of promise, with the added cool factor of being shot in some gorgeous worldwide locations.  Until place after place yielded nothing startling.  And I flatly refused to watch Ghost Hunter Academy.  Sorry.  Its promo sounded too much like a reality game show, and I'm not a fan of the format.

Ghost Adventures, on the other hand, started out small.  Three guys, two cameras, period.  They even "brag" in their opening monologue that they have "no big camera crew following them around".  But their reactions are much more dramatic, which makes for more entertaining TV.  Plus they tend to find at least a half-dozen EVPs per episode.  (Tell me, what would raise the hairs on your head?  "Put your hand right here.  Do you feel a cold spot?"  Or "Ohmygod!  Swear to God, dude!  I felt something go through me!")

My favorite holiday is Halloween, and every year I wait on pins and needles for the Ghost Hunters yearly live investigation.  The trip to Ft. Delaware on Pea Patch Island will forever haunt me after seeing Grant's jacket actually move as it's being tugged on by an invisible hand. On Live TV!  But this last year I felt cheated.  No live event.  Just "best of" reruns.

However, Ghost Adventures took up the slack and did their own live 7-hr. event on All Hallow's Eve Eve at an abandoned mental institute.  It gave me my "live feed" fix, and I think it was from that night that I grew less interested in GH and set my VCR for GA.

Yes, I often hear the argument that GA is ripping off GH.  Well, in a way, yes, they are.  But once you watch both shows, you can see how different they really are.  Another thing that's different is that GA will go to locations where GH has already been, and they'll record stuff where GH found squat. 

I've wondered at times how much is "real" and how much is contrived.  But at this point I don't care.  Of course, there's no reason why a person can't be fans of both shows.  But there's no denying Zak is veeeery easy on the eyes.

Jason!  Grant!  Bring back your live Halloween special!  Please!

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