Archive for March, 2008

Time Travel with TAPS

March 31, 2008

A “Ghost Hunters” Recarp

Mme. Blahblatsky did the transcript work and then shoved it and the DVD at me muttering about “effing shadows,” and “yesterday is tomorrow,” and I got concerned enough not to argue with her. So the Talking Mongoose is your reluctant guide to the fourth episode of the second season of the dimwittedly fabulized “reality” show “Ghost Hunters.”

Disclaimer: Mme. Blahblatsky toiled to capture almost every word spilling from the mouths of the language-challenged TAPS crew for us to read and marvel over, but all the scintillating dialogue belongs to Pilgrim Television and Films, Inc. We are not responsible.

The Narrator guy attempts to whip up a frenzy of anticipation.

Narrator: On this episode of Ghost Hunters, TAPS heads to North Carolina for a routine training mission. Does the ghost of Andrew Johnson inhabit this house? Will this investigation sour the ghost hunters’ spirits? And then, Jason and Grant are asked to investigate a haunted battleship. How will they maneuver around this 35,000 ton steel maze? Are the ghost hunters now being hunted?

Answers to these questions: no; damn it, no; with lots and lots of extension cords; no.

Credits: CARL!!! Demonologist Carl is back. I never thought I’d be so glad to see one of the Johnson twins. And – oh, Andy Andrews returns.

Case Manager Donna LaCroix and Tech Specialist Steve Gonsalves are in conference with the big guys, “lead investigators” aka plumber/producers Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson, in the headquarters of The Atlantic Paranormal Society, Warwick, Rhode Island. Where is Brian?

Donna has no cases for the guys. None. But she has a swell idea. She thinks Dustin Pari and Jen Rossi need some training. Hmm. Where do you suppose they could get this training? Because there are no ghosts in Rhode Island. Or Massachusetts or Connecticut or anywhere within several hundred miles. TAPS has eliminated them, through sheer mind control.

Jason: “I talked with Jim Hall and Dave Gurney from North Carolina and they’ve got a place that they use down there, but that’s a trip.”

Donna awkwardly tries to join into this manufactured conversation, but she’s not having fun with it. “Yeah. North Carolina – that is – that’s going to be a haul.”

Tch tch, Donna. It’s only 680 miles! What’s 23 hours out of a weekend when it’s spent on the road with the always hilarious TAPS gang?

Steve plays the role of the reluctant techie, who is still thinking he wants to spend his weekend playing Halo. “Why do we have to go all the way to North Carolina just to train people?”

Because, silly, there’s a battleship just waiting to be debunked. Only we’re pretending we don’t know about that just yet. We’re just heading off on a little training retreat.

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Lagniappe

March 27, 2008

Mme Blahblatsky and the Talking Mongoose discuss their reactions to Episode 203 – “The Red Room” (Gumbo and Bananas Foster) of “Ghost Hunters,” in which a door opens and closes by itself in the Labadieville, Louisiana DeVille house and poor Jason fails to debunk it, and TAPS dines and whines and New Orleans’ haunted Brennan’s Restaurant.

TM: Speaking of the Ouija Board being a portal to hell…

MB: It could have been worse.

TM: Anything is possible.

MB: So tell me again how they ended up in Louisiana.

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and Bananas Foster

March 20, 2008

The third episode of the second season of the so-called “reality” show “Ghost Hunters,” second half (continuation from Gumbo, same disclaimer applies).

We’re in pre-Katrina New Orleans, the French Quarter, with sprightly music and happy tourists, including those perpetual party people, The Atlantic Paranormal Society, strolling around and gawking at the lack of snow banks. Only Steve and Brian are wearing their gang colors, in prison bar grey TAPS-stenciled jackets and cap. Everyone else is undercover. They are headed for Brennan’s.

NEW ORLEANS

Monday 7:13 PM

Jason: “I got a call from Brennan’s Restaurant about a block away from Bourbon Street on Royale. Uh – they heard we were in town and wanted us to check it out. Supposedly they have a history of haunts in the building from entities appearing upstairs to dishes and plates banging in the kitchen, so we’re going to check it out while we’re down here.”

We see a voodoo-ish shop with statues and skeleton figures.

TM: Brian really ought to stop in and get some charms against the evil eye or something.

MB: The evil “J” more like it.

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Gumbo

March 18, 2008

Mme. Blahblatsky and the Talking Mongoose recap and carp about the third episode of the second season of the putative reality show “Ghost Hunters.”

Disclaimer: All of the inane dialogue that Mme. B. has so kindly transcribed gratis with no help from closed captioning because there isn’t any belongs to Pilgrim Films and Television, Inc.

We are getting extra wary of that narrator, but here he is again.

Narrator: On this episode of Ghost Hunters, when a paranormal investigator gets attacked, Jason and Grant come to the rescue. Can a woman make this apparition jealous? To lure out the spirit, Jason decides to use the girls as bait. And the investigation leads Brian and Steve into danger. Then, TAPS travels to Bourbon Street to investigate a famous restaurant. Have the ghost hunters discovered a vortex?

CREDITS: On the changing slate tonight – Andy Andrews and Paula what’s-her-name, the new r&d person.

Paranormal plumbers Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson sit in their office at The Atlantic Paranormal Society in Warwick, Rhode Island, waiting for that special phone call that will make them spring into action. It has been a slow week. Jason got thrown out of a White House tour when he attempted to bring in a thermal imaging camera. A poltergeist in Pawtucket turned out to be raccoons. And Brian has been infuriatingly well behaved, going so far as to dress up as a clown and make balloon animals at a Hawes family birthday party.

TM: Stop that. You can’t fabulize in the story line. That was your rule, you know.

MB: Yeah, I’m thinking of changing that.

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Zero Sum

March 13, 2008

Mme. Blahblatsky and the Talking Mongoose discuss the paranormal investigative entertainment value of the second episode of the second season of “Ghost Hunters,” as recarped in Zero Divided By Two and Equals Zero.

Because we like to think there’s at least a shred of entertainment in something we voluntarily submit to watch, here are our

Favorite Bits


Mme. Blahblatsky:

Line: “I don’t want to play ghost.” (Cody)

Moment: Jason hustling out of the van to bust up Grant and Paula’s tête à tête in Cranston.

The Talking Mongoose:

Line: “I’m only human, man. (Brian)

Moment: Jason “debunking” sad Mr. Debunker in Grafton.

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Equals Zero

March 11, 2008

I think I’m stuck in some sort of alternate dimension, where time passes so slowly it is almost imperceptible. This is the second half of the recarp of the the second episode of the second season of the quasi-reality show “Ghost Hunters.” Mme. Blahblatsky is off in “therapy,” watching her BtVS DVD’s and eating bonbons.

Same Disclaimer as before: Pilgrim Films and Television, Inc. gets all the credit. Which they so richly deserve.

What did the narrator say before?

“Then, Jason and Grant investigate a house with multiple hauntings. When the ghost hunters get close, a TAPS member gets attacked.”

Right. This was the part he was looking forward to, so maybe it will make up for Cody and the cow bones.

CASE # 2 DIRAIMO’S HOUSE

Saturday 3:20 PM

The TAPS flunkeys are sitting in chairs arranged classroom style, with Brian and Steve in the front row, and Donna, Paula and a strange woman in the back.

Grant: “Hey, have we got a case for you!” He claps his hands, either because he’s so excited, or he needs to wake them up.

Jason, in his red t.v. sweater: “Yeah, actually a nice local case right here in Rhode Island.”

That’s incredible! Our first Rhode Island ghost.

Grant tells them it’s interesting, but he has to say that to keep them from running home to clean the stove or something. A family with two daughter in their 20’s has been experiencing paranormal activity for over two decades. So there’s no rush.

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Zero Divided By Two

March 8, 2008

I’m giving Mme. Blahblatsky some time to get over her bad moodiness re The Myrtles. This is a recarp of the second episode of the second season of the reconstituted reality show “Ghost Hunters.”

Disclaimer: Pilgrim Films and Television created this mess, and quoted dialogue is theirs, in perpetuity. They are damned to the circle of hell reserved for really bad television producers.

Narrator: On this episode of Ghost Hunters, TAPS searches for a spirit that terrorizes children, and a bone-chilling discovery is made. Are they human? And Brian and Steve are in hot pursuit. Then, Jason and Grant investigate a house with multiple hauntings. When the ghost hunters get close, a TAPS member gets attacked.”

That narrator sounds positively gleeful about that last bit.

The Credits are changed again. This week, the featured bit players are Andy Investigator, and Paula Research & Development. Jen and Kristyn can just suck it.

Warwick, Rhode Island winter – snow plow, snow banks. The three-foot high ones are back in front of TAPS headquarters.

Donna, Jason and Grant are in the conference room, where not one but two giant pictures of Race Rock Lighthouse remind us of the glory days of last summer.

Donna is presenting the next case, a house in Grafton, Massachusetts. A couple with children and a sister live there. “The children are being woken up in the middle of the night by things tugging on their bed sheets, the toys flying around the room.”

Yeah, you can just forget the toys jet-propelling through space right now.

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Moss from the Myrtles

March 6, 2008

A Ouija Board regarding the first episode of the second season of “Ghost Hunters,” the show that purports to bring us into the thrilling world of paranormal investigations.

Mme. Blahblatsky and the Talking Mongoose try to argue the finer points of whether the Myrtles Plantation show was good television or not. They fail.

TM: Oof.

MB: Yeah.

TM: You want to talk about those ghosts dashing across the thermal imaging camera?

MB: Eh. Who cares?

TM: So. How about the new office, huh? Although I had gotten rather fond of that trailer.

MB: It’s not that I don’t know full well that the subject of ghosts is inherently boring once you get past the superficial strangeness. But does this have to be made so painfully obvious on these shows? I mean – why not throw us scraps like the silly back stories of Chloe and her severed ear instead of making us listen to Grant and Jason jaw about how Brian is going to screw up next? What have we ever done to them that we have to watch the van get work benches installed? I liked being able to see the Myrtles at last, but did they have to make it so goddamn dull?

TM: There are people out there who get all exercised over the fact that they think Grant faked the moving lamp, you know.

MB: Pft. TAPS and Pilgrim even made that boring. A lamp moved for over four minutes on camera and they made it look like nothing. If you’re going to create a hoax, you should at least have the decency to throw in some drama.

TM: Yeah, well – I told you this whole thing was a bad idea. But now we can’t stop watching because we’re invested in finding out how awful it can get.

MB: Awesomely awful.

TM: Yeah.

MB: Well, that’s something.

TM: There’s always something. Like “me and Grant.”

MB: “Me and Grant” are always good for some ghastly dumb thing.

TM: You want me to do the next episode?

MB: Please.

 

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Ouija Board rating: NON and NON

 

 

Favorite Bits

Mme Blahblatsky:

Line: “I’ve given you more than enough lean way.” (Jason, to Brian)

Moment: The shadow on the porch. Ghost or not.

The Talking Mongoose:

Line: “As TAPS moves ahead, will Brian be left behind?” (the narrator)

Moment: Steve getting mad at Brian for looking at laundry steam with the thermal imaging camera.

The Myrtles

March 2, 2008

Mme. Blahblatsky here doing the recarp. The Talking Mongoose is still perking like an old coffee pot about the first season of the quasi-reality show Ghost Hunters,” and will join me later for a Ouija session. For now, I’m on my own with the first episode of the second season, and it’s just as well. The Myrtles holds a special place in my heart. If you’ve spent any time reading up on ghosts in America in the past several decades, you must have heard of the Myrtles.

I’m not such a fan of “Ghost Hunters” as I was before I started this blog a mere two months ago. Now it’s more like a sick fascination. I can’t stop watching and taking notes. It is such a watery stew of incoherent speech, inaction, and irresolution that occasional lumps of carrot give greater pleasure than they should.

Anyway, I was both delighted and appalled to realize TAPS had gone to the Myrtles. What havoc would they wreak with the Louisiana mansion of my imagination? Eh, well, it’s TAPS, so – not so much. They just managed to make it sort of dull.

Disclaimer: All the astoundingly stultifying dialogue I have kindly transcribed for no pecuniary consideration whatsoever belongs to Pilgrim Films and Television, Inc.

The narrator announces big doings at The Atlantic Paranormal Society.

Narrator: On this episode of Ghost Hunters, TAPS gets a new headquarters, and new faces, but as TAPS moves ahead, will Brian be left behind? And then Jason and Grant head deep into the bayous, but will they be ready for what awaits?

CREDITS – are same as last season, except – no twin demonologists! That is not a good omen. I already miss Carl and Keith. No Andy Andrews. And two new women – PAULA RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT, and KRISTYN FIELD INVESTIGATOR. Nobody gets last names in the credits. I guess that would confuse us, because we aren’t very bright.

Opening shot of Warwick City Hall, and a street banner of Historic Apponaug Village. Warwick seems pretty interesting. Why don’t we ever get to hunt ghosts in Warwick?

TAPS HEADQUARTERS

It’s winter, because there are three-foot high snowbanks in front of a small one-story brick storefront. Two guys in hooded parkas are shuffling along the sidewalk. It’s Jason and Grant, who, with the success of the first season of Ghost Hunters and the complaints of the neighbors spurring them on, have moved The Atlantic Paranormal Society out of the mini-construction trailer parked on Jason’s front lawn.

Jason in voice-over: “My name is Jason Hawes and I’m a plumber for Roto-Rooter. I’m the founder of TAPS, the Atlantic Paranormal Society. I started it back in 1990 after having my own paranormal experience. TAPS was also designed to help the people who believe they’re having a paranormal situation. We’re here to help out whoever needs us.”

Unless, of course, you’re seriously crazy, in which case you’d better hope your friends and relatives have your best interests at heart and don’t go inviting TAPS in to exploit your craziness.

Jason unlocks the front door of the new office space. Inside, there are dust covers over some furniture. They need to get organized. They’ve got to get it done because cases are waiting, impatiently. People all over the country are desperately waiting for TAPS to come and debunk their paranormal situations.

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