I was on the phone with a producer again the other day, discussing paranormal television. I had passed on some ideas that various friends had suggested to me to make paranormal tv shows better. One suggestion was to make the show backwards. That is to say that the investigation is first, then meet the client to see if any evidence we caught matched with their claims, and then look to the history and research of the site to see if either or both our evidence and that of the homeowner matched. The producer told me it had been pitched and shot down for good reason. The producer said, “The television viewing audience is made up of dicks.” He said this to explain to me why it won’t work. If none of the evidence matches up, we’re losers and nothing is haunted and we’ve wasted television time. If we find evidence that matches, people will assume it is because the producers MADE it match up based on what we did the night(s) before. Fair enough.
Other suggestions, for the record, included a niche of just investigating the ghosts of animals (probably focusing on pets). A prominent friend in the paranormal community suggested a show where a different kind of investigator is brought in every week (a shaman, a geek, a psychic, a dowser, voodoo priestess). If you have great ideas on how to improve paranormal tv I’d love to hear them!