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Case Number 22464: Small Claims Court

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The Haunted

Animal Planet // 2011 // 405 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge David Johnson // October 7th, 2011

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All Rise...

Judge David Johnson's pet rock is haunted.

The Charge

"After the party, the bunnies continued to act out of character."

The Case

I suppose this is how the brainstorming session went in the Animal Planet programming department:

GUY IN SUIT: You know what seems to be really popular these days? Shows about ghosts and demons!

MAN IN SUIT: You mean, like Buffy the Vampire Slayer? Didn't that show go off the air years ago?

GUY IN SUIT: No, I'm talking reality shows about ghosts and demons!

LADY IN PANTSUIT: Oh, the ones with the night vision cameras and creaky doors and stuff?

GUY IN SUIT: Precisely! Now, how can we get a piece of that sweet action?

MAN IN SUIT: Not sure how that fits in with our slate of programming involving dog rescue and cats jumping out of bathtubs…

GUY IN SUIT: Hey. You. You're fired.

MAN IN SUIT: Wh --

GUY IN SUIT: I'll ask again. How do we get a reality show about ghosts on our channel?

LADY IN PANTSUIT: Uh, well…I guess we can copy the format of the other shows and just put a dog or a rabbit in it.

GUY IN SUIT: Sounds great! Go.

MAN IN SUIT: Am I still fired?

GUY IN SUIT: Security!

So here we have The Haunted, an oddball show that's similar to every other paranormal investigation reality show you've ever seen. The only difference is the presence of pets, because "animals are commonly thought to be more sensitive to the spirit world than humans are." Or so the DVD package claims.

This two-disc set gives you 10 episodes, totaling 405 minutes of things-that-go-bump-and-woof-in-the-night. The game-plan doesn't deviate from the genre: a haunted site is presented, we meet the afflicted hauntee, a semi-professional paranormal investigative unit comes in, they set up a bunch of equipment I never heard of, turn on the spinach-green night vision, track sounds and movement, attempt to cleanse the besieged venue of supernatural hijinks, and we wrap with a post-script which is often a huge bummer ("the house is still full of demons, and the cat can't stop crapping itself.") Sprinkled throughout are shots of dogs, rabbits, and cats reacting to all of this like you'd expect a dog, cat, or rabbit to react when a bunch of goofy-looking strangers stomp through their house with video cameras and EMF detectors.

The DVDs: 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen, 2.0 Dolby stereo, no extras.

The Verdict

Guilty. Get these pooches some Ecto Cooler, stat!

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Scales of Justice

Judgment: 60

Perp Profile

Studio: Animal Planet
Video Formats:
• 1.78:1 Anamorphic
Audio Formats:
• Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)
Subtitles:
• English (SDH)
Running Time: 405 Minutes
Release Year: 2011
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Genres:
• Paranormal
• Reality TV
• Television

Distinguishing Marks

• None

Accomplices

• IMDb








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