Ghost Hunters Academy

 
(i)

 

Competition adds edge to latest in supernatural franchise.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The show makes it clear that the ghost hunters need to learn to trust their instincts and judgment -- and their teammates. Viewers see that people who try to cover up their mistakes or mislead their colleagues make everybody’s jobs more difficult. Hard work and functioning well as a team are valued, while kowtowing to the bosses and indulding in self-promotional antics are quickly dismissed as distracting from the overall goal.

Positive role models

Steve and Tango are demanding bosses who refuse to cut their new recruits any slack and go out of their way to trip up the would-be investigators. Their behavior could seem vindictive and hostile, but, as they later explain, they’re simply trying to find the best people to join their team of paranormal experts. As in any other job interview, they need to know who's qualified and who's just putting up a good front.

Violence

Frequent references to battles and other violent incidents that led to the deaths of the people who might be haunting the various locations that the team investigates.

Sex
Not applicable
Language

Mild swearing, including “crap” and references to “ass kissing.”

Consumerism

The show is part of the expanding Ghost Hunters empire, which is quickly becoming a major paranormal franchise.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this entry in the popular Ghost Hunters franchise combines paranormal investigations with an elimination-style reality competition, giving it a little more edge than earlier series. The Atlantic Paranormal Society is looking for new recruits; of the thousands who applied for the job, the finalists must prove their mettle during on-site evaluations. Expect a generally creepy vibe, as well as mild swearing and frequent discussion of violent incidents in the past that could have led to ghostly presences.

What's the story?

The Atlantic Paranormal Society -- which created the popular Ghost Hunters franchise -- needs some fresh blood to help them study the spirit world. The team examines allegedly haunted houses, spending the night in old forts, historic mansions, and other places that have a history of supernatural activity and using scientific gear to hopefully capture physical evidence of the afterlife. But the group's successful TV show and the expanding TAPS empire means that they need to hire some new members; after screening thousands of applicants, the finalists are getting an on-air evaluation as they try to investigate a possibly haunted site.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

GHOST HUNTERS ACADEMY combines elements of the proven Ghost Hunters formula with a Survivor-style elimination series. Though there’s no fixed formula that means someone gets thrown off the show at the end of each episode, the recruits know that they'll be sent packing if they can’t pull their weight. Veteran TAPS investigators Steve Gonsalves and Dave Tango lead the five finalists through a real investigation, but the focus is shifted away from the supernatural to land on the very mundane as each candidate tries to prove their worth.

The result is somewhat muddled. The recruits are jockeying to show their stuff -- or just avoid making a mistake -- while Gonsalves and Tango point out their errors and explain what they’re doing wrong. It looks like a group job interview held in a haunted house, with each nervous applicant trying to sell themselves. The best reality shows succeed by finding participants who will create the kind of drama that makes for good television; Ghost Hunters Academy, however, sifted through resumes looking for people who might make good ghost hunters. These participants may be great at communing with spirits, but they aren’t especially telegenic.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the supernatural. Do you believe in ghosts? Do you think the Ghost Hunters shows actually capture evidence of the spirit world?

  • What do you think about this hybrid reality show, which adds elements of Survivor-style elimination to the traditional Ghost Hunters formula? Do you think this combination works?

TV details

Cast:Steve Gonsalves
Network:Syfy
Genre:Reality TV
TV rating:TV-PG

This review of Ghost Hunters Academy was written by

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Quality

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; OK 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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Teen, 17 years old Written byabbacus June 15, 2012
 

Good, but could be better.

This show is good, but I like The Travel Channels "Ghost Adventures" better.
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Teen, 13 years old Written byJustino4 October 11, 2011
 

The Goofy Side of Ghost Hunters

I think this TV show shows the goofy, fun elements about investigating while also teaching positive messages and being taught by good role models such as Steve and Tango (Dave).
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Parent of a 2 and 2 year old Written byMissBecky285 February 19, 2010
 

Tweens up

i love it! They show teamwork and they stick to their beliefs.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models

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