A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that while this reality show doesn't have any violence or gore, it's still pretty eerie. The investigators visit real locations that are alleged to be haunted and try to find evidence of actual paranormal activity, often by spending an entire night in very spooky surroundings, which can be scary even for older viewers. Graphic descriptions (words, no images) of how people died are frequent. And, because much of the show is shot at night, often in underground dungeons or catacombs, the producers use night-vision cameras that only heighten the creepy factor.
What's the story?
GHOST HUNTERS INTERNATIONAL, a spinoff of the Ghost Hunters series, exports the same model overseas. The team of daring investigators is briefed on the history of a haunted location. Often it comes with a particularly gruesome story, perhaps involving torture or murder, that could have prompted a spirit to remain in the area. The team then sets up their equipment and tries to find a ghost.
Is it any good?
If there really are spirits out there, the Ghost Hunters will find them. These adventurous investigators spend their days and nights -- mostly their nights -- wandering through deserted dungeons, old torture chambers, creepy castles, and any other site rumored to be haunted, using high-tech tools to hopefully capture evidence of the paranormal.
The history lessons are always interesting, but the show's flaw is the actual investigation. Though watching the team wander through these creepy old buildings, usually in the middle of the night, can be nerve-wracking, it's hard to get away from the fact that not much is actually happening. Occasionally the team spots something strange, something that'd difficult to explain rationally. But most of the footage ranges from the tedious to overly dramatic, with the producers using editing and music to create excitement out of empty rooms.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about ghosts. Do you believe in ghosts? Why or why not? The investigators use high-tech gear to try to capture evidence of paranormal activity. Do you think ghosts will really show up on such devices? Why are shows about real-life spirits so popular? Do viewers want to see signs that ghosts may be real? Do you think any of the show might be faked? Why would producers do that?