Remember when you had to wait until October for the Travel Channel to feature specials about ghosts, exorcisms, UFOs, and Bigfoot? Thanks to the paranormal transformation of Travel Channel in recent years, fans now get to enjoy series focused on ghouls, ghosts, and monsters of all kinds on a weekly basis.
And even though we are treated to a candy cornucopia of paranormal television, the yearly documentaries that Travel Channel used to produce about the history of Halloween or Halloween celebrations around the world have been disappeared….until now!
Travel Channel’s new event series, Shock Docs, premiered in September with Devil’s Road: The True Story of Ed and Lorraine Warren to rave reviews and high ratings (and you can read the Conskipper review right here), and the network’s latest effort is a tribute to the holiday that every ghost lover adores: Halloween.
Shock Docs: This is Halloween combines an impressive set of experts/historians and stars from many of the Travel Channel’s most popular series such as Ghost Nation, Destination Fear, Ghost Brothers, Kindred Spirits, Expedition Bigfoot, and The Holzer Files to reminisce on not only the history/origins of the holiday, but also recall their favorite memories of the celebrations, costumes, and scares.
As mentioned previously, these yearly looks at the holiday’s origins in Irish and Celtic folklore and the American transformation of the holiday (sometimes due to religious reasons, sometimes due to the changing suburban culture, and sometimes due to juvenile delinquency) are again highlighted here by authors Tok Thompson, Lisa Morton, and Lesley Pratt Bannatyne. What makes the special unique is the the addition of cultural aspects that are often left out of documentaries on the subject such as the influence of horror films and haunted attractions on the holiday and the adult version of Halloween that has produced hundreds of skimpy costumes for daring moms and dads.
The stars of Travel Channel inject humor and anecdotes in each section, adding levity and nostalgia to the special. For example, who knew that the sweet Amy Bruni of Kindred Sprits had such a penchant for bloody costumes as a kid or that Marcus Garvey of Ghost Brothers knew the exact spots to collect the best candy on Halloween night? These type of brief stories serve to entertain viewers between the compelling cultural examinations and peek into the lives of the paranormal investigators. This combination makes This is Halloween an enjoyable trip down memory lane that can also serve as a history lesson, a rare mix in the world of documentaries and reality television. Tune in, grab a bowl of colorfully wrapped candies, and enjoy!
Shock Docs: This is Halloween airs on October 26 at 9:00 PM ET.