Fact or Faked: Paranormal Files

Common Sense Media says

Experts debunk supernatural video clips in so-so show.





What parents need to know

Positive messages

The team evaluates videotapes of supposedly supernatural or paranormal incidents with a skeptical eye. They're willing to believe in the unbelievable, but don’t take anything on faith. There may indeed be forces beyond human understanding, but if so, they want to be able to prove it.

Positive role models

The investigators are open minded but also skeptical. They use rigorous scientific techniques to prove, or disprove, each case.


Recreating some of the incidents involves dangerous stunts.

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Drinking, drugs, & smoking
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Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this reality series -- in which a team of trained investigators examines well-known video clips of UFOs, ghosts, and other unexplained phenomena -- includes plenty of creepy video clips and dangerous reenactments. But the rest of the content is on the mild side, and overall the show is age-appropriate for older tweens and up.

Parents say

Kids say

What's the story?

Former FBI agent Ben Hansen applies his investigative chops to examining video clips of ghosts, aliens. and other unexplainable encounters in FACT OR FAKED: PARANORMAL FILES. His team of trained skeptics includes a photography expert, a scientist, a stuntman, a special effects wizard, and a journalist, all of whom are willing to be convinced they're seeing real evidence of the unknown -- but only if they can’t prove it’s fake. The group debunks plenty of tapes from their studio, but when they see something that could be the real deal, they hit the road to investigate, often recreating the incident to see if they can figure out what happened.

Is it any good?


The Fact or Faked squad was obviously selected for their skills rather than their TV readiness, because they're not especially interesting to watch on camera. They light up when they’re pointing out some tiny detail on the videos, but otherwise they all fade into the background. The dialogue and conversations seem strained, and the recreation sequences sometimes drag as the team members evaluate every possible option.

But the real stars of the series are the well-known video clips, which just might have evidence of ... something. It’s fun to watch when the team shows why a tape is likely fake, and even more interesting when they conclude that a clip could be the real thing.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the supernatural. Do you believe in ghosts? Do you think any of these tapes document actual encounters with the spirit world?

  • Do you agree with the investigators’ conclusions? Do you think their investigations are thorough?

  • Do you think some of the clips are hoaxes, intentionally made with the

  • intent of deceiving people? Why would people make such films?

TV details

Cast:Ben Hansen
Genre:Reality TV
TV rating:NR

This review of Fact or Faked: Paranormal Files was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging, great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging, good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging, good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging, okay learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 17 years old Written byabbacus June 15, 2012

Really good!

I like watching this show. It is interesting to see the results and tell if the video is "fact or faked".
Kid, 11 years old May 6, 2012

Bad Show

I hate this show so much. It hurts my eyes and ears to listen and watch this show
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Kid, 12 years old May 5, 2012

One of the greatest shows I have ever seen

I completely love this show. If you saw my screen name you would know. Bill and Ben are so smart. My favorite case is the creepy Night Crawler case. The evidence they got during the night investigation was awesome. Was the Night Crawler an alien, a ghost, or some other type of creature. In a summary, this is one cool show.
What other families should know
Educational value
Great role models


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