Wednesday, November 23, 2011

FACT OR FAKED: Asylum Apparition; Mystery Over Mexico

SyFy - Original Air Date: 11/9/11

The videos the crew is not investigating this week are: Roswell Alien shows a purportedly living alien in B&W footage, though puppetry, animatronics, or CGI seem more likely.  Cascades Bigfoot is a cell phone video of a mysterious figure walking through the woods -- but it's shadowy enough to be a suit or even just a person.  In the commercial break, Sky Portal is supposedly an alien portal in the sky.  The "portal" is merely a misidentified smoke ring being used to advertise the amusement park where the video was shot. Which leaves the two cases they're actually looking into.

Waverly Hills Apparition shows 2 figures in the deserted hallway of a legendary haunted sanatorium.  A second video seems to show a toy ball moving on its own.  Waverly is a ghost-hunting hotspot, and the team gets the usual grisly tour (as seen on several Ghost Hunters shows).  A test with a ball immediately shows how uneven the floor is.  They do a wind test, and the ball moves around easily because of that, too.  Seems debunked to me, but the team becomes caught up in the ball moving too much, rather than just rocking as in the video.  That's silly.  Clearly this drafty old place with the un-level floors could produce any number of effects on a light ball like this, depending on drafts and floor dents/grooves. Then they try  to recreate the hallway apparitions with first humans (too solid), then with heaters (too obvious in frame or not defined enough when out of frame).  So, even though this "ghost" looks like another reflection or camera malfunction to me,(nothing was seen by the human filming, only the camera), they start a ghost hunt and (no surprise) hear strange noises.  Plus, the ball they set down rolls around, seemingly on its own.  I'd be more impressed with a baseball, basketball, or even a standard playground ball, rather than the lightweight play balls they're using. Vibrations in this rickety old building could probably move the test-subject ball around.  In fact, a heavier-looking ball nearby doesn't move at all.  They also get EVPs, which you should know by now I think are almost always completely bogus.  Should you be surprised that they declare Waverly Hills haunted?  You shouldn't be; the MO of the group this year seems to be to have one gimme for believers every episode.  I'm guessing the SyFy execs think there's not enough ratings in bursting believer balloons -- or rolling balls -- every week.  And speaking of balloons...

Guadalajara UFO Fleet seems to show a fleet of round white UFOs hovering in the sky.  Their first theory is that the objects might be birds, so they send up a flight of pigeons, but the birds are obviously birds.  Next, they try floating ping pong balls in a pool with dry ice clouds to fake the shot.  Closer, but ripples are a problem.  So, they try what I thought the obvious solution from the beginning (though I understand the need to structure the show this way) and release a mass of balloons.  Yeah, hey, bingo!  Balloons plus dodgy camera equals UFO fleet.  Which makes me think the original videographer was an idiot not to notice.  I saw three UFOs this summer, and one of them was likely a Mylar balloon floating over Yellowstone.  (Other 2 might have been a helicopter and a Chinese lantern.)  So, good job, group.  One out of two ain't bad, but...

The problem I'm having with this show this year is that each episode seems to have an obvious sop to believers -- a case where the group just doesn't push far enough.  Last year, this wasn't so much a problem, and I was encouraged.  This year, not so much.  I hope they'll do better in the second half of the season.

No comments: