17 February 2018

REVIEW: Most Haunted - Series 21 Episode 6 (23rd February 2018) Dudley Castle

Ring Ring....
Yam yam yam yam....
Whoever this is speak clearly I'm a Brummy, we spek proppa English.
Hi, It's Lenny Henry 'ere...
Oh hi Len, how you doing mate, been a while, whats up?..
I urd dat Most Haunted wur in my neck of the woods en thought I-ud give yow da eds up...
What? They are in Dudley?...
Yeah man. Down at the Costle...
Cool, I will look out of the episode when it airs....
Oh en I fund this old shu that a Bull ad bin ate-in, it was cover in drool, but inside was a sodden bost piece of peper...

Really? What was written on it?....

"Spook-searching with Yvette Fielding and co! The ruins of Dudley Castle house a plethora of paranormal activity, with strange noises and a violent poltergeist awaiting Yvette and her team."

Yes it is that time again, and since Most Haunted this week are at Dudley Castle, I thought I would put my big boy pants on and get the review done early for once.
Now I know Dudley very well, I've investigated the Castle a few times, have known people who have worked there, in the museum part, in the Zoo, on the grounds, I even know people who have been employed as actors to pretend to be ghosts to hide around the place when there is a ghost hunt on.

Dudley Castle is NOT haunted, there are no ghosts there, (Or anywhere of course), all of the stories of hauntings from the castle, have been created to help with tourism, to sell ghost hunting tours, merchandise and so on. I repeat there are NO ghosts, poltergeists, ghoulies, a drummer boy, a grey lady, nothing at Dudley Castle, it is 100% made up for tourism.

Next up time for predictions for the episode.

1. Something will be thrown OFF CAMERA.
2. Fred will act suspiciously.
3. Karl will challenge a ghost to murder him.
4. Darren will get a throb on.
5. I will want to poke my own eyes out in frustration.

And with that lets get to the show.

Yvette is wrapped up well today, I am guessing it was a classic Dudley day with the weather.

For those of you with good memories, Most Haunted has investigated Dudley Castle before, on a Most Haunted Live, although they never mention that tonight. It's a great location for an event like that, as it is nice and big, lots to do etc. For a straight forward one night investigation, it's an old castle, it's a bit boring.

Looks like Stuart is back from his r̶e̶h̶a̶b̶ holiday this week. 

Yvette and Glen start off in the museum area, And even see the rats. They are part of the Zoo area.

Although I am sure there are wild rats in Dudley, they probably like to stay in the sewers and not pose for the cameras.

Yvette is talking about the Castle, the hauntings and so on.
Even Glen points out it is stereotypical.

For some bizarre reason we keep getting this "behind the scenes" shot, the show even started with us hearing Karl say "Action". Not sure why they are doing this, but at least it is something different, but perhaps it exposes the fact that everything is very much scripted and pre-planned.

Lovely red lipstick on Yvette today, nice to see her make an effort.

Yvette and Glen are looking around, and doing a good job showing the various things to see in the museum area. Doing a good job advertising the Castle Museum.

They now start the investigation.
Yvette is with Darren and Glen.
Karl is with Fred and Stuart.

Yvette is already hearing bangs. Worth saying at this point, it is very easy for anyone to get on the Castle grounds, for kids to hide, mess about etc. And trust me if people see a camera crew, they gonna try and prank.

At roughly 13m 35s there is a weird sound, to me it sounded like a stone being thrown and then spinning on the floor. The sound has definitely been enhanced here.

Fred hears a noise, so they run about a bit, they are on the roof of the castle, so open air, and noises could be anything, hell a bird could pick up a stone and drop it near them. Karl decides to balance over the spiral stairs for no reason at all.

Karl reveals that they couldn't have Watson there because it is a zoo as well. But hang on a second Watson hasn't been on camera on any of the episodes of this season has he? And ALL the animals are contained at the zoo, you don't have giraffes walking about loose you know.

Glen is bored so is looking at the latest additions to The Fappening website, hoping beyond hope that a naked photo of Yvette has been leaked.

Artists impression of Glen if ever such a photo was leaked.

I am not a fan of outdoor investigations.

Back with Karl, they hear steps.

"It cant be a person" - Fred Batt.

Here is a simple question, why would a ghost need to use the stairs?

Karl claims the sounds are definitely paranormal as they cant be normal. With science like this all the skeptics need to go home.

Karl has enough of all the lies, stands ready to jump from the top of the castle. He shouts from the top of his lungs.
"I am NOT a real Samurai, I am NOT a Doctor, I flipped the bed, I threw the spoon, I cant even tie my own shoe laces"

And just as he is about to jump, Stuart grabs him and says.

"NO Karl, You ARE a real samurai, you ARE a real Doctor, and you would have gotten away with it if not for those meddling kids."

Now his head is back in the game, Karl stands up straight and challenges the ghosts to knock him off, to what would be certain death. (Perhaps someone should tell Dudley Castle about this scene, as I am sure they would not be impressed at this health and safety violation)

Never in my whole life have I wished to be wrong about ghosts. I was willing them with all my being to do ask he asked. But alas the ghosts decided to stay quiet, and avoid a potential lawsuit from Dudley Castle Ltd.

Back with Yvette and she knocks on the chair and asks the ghost to copy her, we then hear returning thuds, definitely from the ghosts, and not from one of the production team in the next room off camera.

Yvette knocks again, and again clear as day you hear a knocking back, but Glen said he could hear it very faint, and Yvette couldn't hear it all.

So basically this is being edited in or enhanced in post production, meaning what you are hearing through your TV speakers is not the same as what is being heard in the room. Sorry guys but more fakery right there. 

By the ghosts not pushing Karl to his death, Karl realises he has just proven ghosts do not exist, so he quickly has to change course and says the ghosts do not want to hurt him, because he has been hurt in the past and now the ghosts feel sorry for him and want to hug him and make love to his naked body. Or something like that I don't recall, I was picking my nose during this bit.

Notice Stuart's hairline again, I still think he fakes his Alopecia and just shaves his head.

All gone a bit boring now, at least Karl and Stuart in in the museum area now inside. Hopefully they have a nice stunt for later.

Fred is looking incredibly suspicious as usual, hands in his pocket, any noises, things thrown will definitely be him.

Yvette asks the ghosts to do something to Karl and Stuart who are elsewhere, we get the split screen to trick viewers into thinking we are seeing the same timeline on both shots, within a few seconds there is a noise, and something has been thrown OFF CAMERA. As they investigate, something else is thrown behind them OFF CAMERA.

Karl is pretending to not be able to see where he is going, despite the fact Stuart has a big light on his camera, and things in the room are clearly casting a shadow.

For some reason Stuart keeps filming up Karl Beattie's snot ridden nose, I hope you are not eating while you are watching this.

Suddenly another noise and vase or something has been thrown OFF CAMERA.

Just one stationary £50 camera at the other side of the room with them both in shot would prove this was not one of them, but instead Stuart just chucks it with his spare arm.

21 series of Most Haunted and they have NEVER EVER, not once, ever, caught something being thrown that was not a crew member, from beginning to end. Never. If any of this was real, that is the single most unlucky streak in the history of the world.

There is a noise of a chain being moved, there is a chain on the table. Karl declares neither of them were near it, and it is the only chain in the room. But how do we as viewers know it is the only chain? For all we know Stuart has one in his pocket, around his waste. One of the many off camera production team could have a chain. Why they are filming using only one camera, when you can buy a simple GoPro style camera for hardly anything is beyond me.

They could even prop up one of their smartphones in the corner of the room, and hit record, it really is that simple, yet they never do it.

Dudley Castle Museum is full of CCTV, yet we never see any footage from that, why? Because the employee from the Museum turns off the CCTV while they do their investigation. That footage would be so valuable IF this was a real investigation and not a spoof.

Fans and believers of Most Haunted, however much you hate me, please just go ask these questions yourself, ask why we are never shown the CCTV footage that ALL of these museums have.

Fred looking suspicious.

"We are not here for the view, we are hear for the invisible things" - Glen.

Glen is up on the roof of the castle now, seemingly on his own. Nothing happens.

Karl shows off the museum piece that Stuart chucked earlier OFF CAMERA. 

Back with Yvette and Fred, and Yvette is getting scared. You can hear steps or knocks very clearly through the camera, but they are not reacting, so this is some bad editing.

Now with Karl and Stuart and suddenly a big bang behind them and something has happened OFF CAMERA.

With Yvette and this has to be a mistake in the post production edit, I am guessing the knocks etc are supposed to be faint, but have come up really loud, but no one present is reacting to them, so they have definitely been added afterwards.

Fred has gone ahead, and there is a noise, so Yvette catches up to him, a big  dice has moved and Yvette even says "We just assumed it was you."

Why would Yvette assume it was Fred?

Yes Yvette it was him, it is always him.

This has been a really boring episode. 5 minutes left, come on Stuart and Karl, please do something.

Remember the days of Stuart fainting, or falling in graves or down a staircase. I miss that Stuart.

Suddenly there is a loud ringing of a bell, Stuart and Karl react accordingly. 

Karl finds the bell, and points out he was one side of the room, and Stuart was the other. So how did it happen?

Here are just a couple of explanations that are much more likely than a ghost did it.

Stuart is holding another bell.
They recorded the sound of the bell on their phone and just played it back.
They recorded the sound of the bell and then added it in, in post production, and then just had to signal to each other when to react.

So simple to fake.

And that is it, the big finale was a bell ringing. What a complete and utter let down. With Stuart back I had really hoped for some quality shenanigans, but instead we got a few things thrown off camera, and a bell. That's it.

What a waste of mine and your time.

I can't even give this a 1 out of 10, this is a 0 out of 10, I wont give it a minus score since it is in Dudley, but still this was a terribly boring episode.

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By Jon Donnis

13 February 2018

REVIEW: Most Haunted - Series 21 Episode 5 (16th February 2018) Beaumanor Hall Part 2

I have finally managed to stop repeatedly poking myself in the eyes after watching last weeks episode, so while I have my sight, what better time than now to review the second part of the Beaumanor Hall "Investigation".

Since my review last week it has been pointed out to me that some people will read this review the same time they are watching the episode, as some kind of colourful walk-through. And that is something this idiot never even thought people would do. So I will keep that in mind from now on.

I write these reviews so that people don't have to watch, but if you are going to watch anyway, then yes why not read and watch at the same time.

With that said I open that bottle of "Natural Redhead Hair Colour", empty out its contents, and at the very bottom of the bottle is some small writing, oh look it is the blurb for this weeks episode.

"Spook-searching with Yvette Fielding and co! Still in Beaumanor Hall, Yvette and her team venture into the abyss of the cellars where the darkness suddenly seems to come to life."

Where as the entire Film Industry, TV Industry, even noobs on Youtube would use "Previously on...." Most Haunted have to be different and instead we get...

We are then reminded of the awfulness of last week's episode. Karl pressing the button on his walkie talkie to set off the EMF Meters, (Yes that is how he did it, go back and watch last week with headphones on, and you will hear the clicking the first time, and after he edits it out.)

Reminder of Yvette moaning, and people getting scared of nothing, as well as things only happening OFF CAMERA.

So before the investigation starts it is time for my weekly predictions.

1. There will be a carefully choreographed argument.
2. A door will slam by itself OFF CAMERA.
3. Something will be thrown OFF CAMERA.
4. There will be a ridiculously bad experiment that will make everyone roll their eyes.
5. Karl will perform a stunt.

Yvette is in a downstairs tunnel, very wide tunnel, a lot of damp and dust, reminds me of Karl's colonoscopy from last year. (Get yourself checked lads, no excuses any more.)

I do like Yvette's look here, it really does seem familiar.

Yvette and Glen are walking around the cellar area, Glen is not impressed at all. Yvette is doing her best to try and drum up some interest.

Glen is playing pocket billiards while looking Yvette straight in the eyes, I can only imagine the filth he has running through his mind right there.

Suddenly we jump to the investigation and Yvette is back with Karl, some poor pacing here. Yvette is hearing noises already. A squeaky door becomes a ghost talking.

While talking about noises Karl says...
"It's like everything is a couple of steps behind you"

Karl is literally stood a couple of steps behind Yvette as he says this.
I will take this as him admitting he is the cause of all the noises and things that will happen to Yvette this evening.

Picture in picture shots like this are often used to show that everyone is accounted for, yet seemingly it does not occur to any of the believers that firstly the super imposed picture has to be put on in post production, so could have been filmed at any time, not to mention they have numerous members of crew that never appear on camera.

Also someone asked me where Stuart was, and I can confirm that despite the rumours he is not in rehab, 100% definitely not in rehab, he is just on holiday.

Karl and Yvette are investigating a room, and suddenly Karl closes the door leaving Yvette on her own inside, which means that it is time for the carefully choreographed weekly argument.

Yvette is over-acting while Karl makes sure to film himself smirking and laughing to camera.

"Now I cant trust you" - Yvette Fielding.

Back with Glen, Fred etc and a door has slammed OFF CAMERA.

In the room with Yvette and Karl, and apparently some photos have moved by themselves, but as usual it was OFF CAMERA.

Yvette changes up the teams, and is going to conduct a Morse code table seance experiment thingy.

Glen says he can feel the table tremble, that will be because of the 3 of them touching the table, and the table being on an uneven floor.

Fred is doing his nonsense incantations.

Always helps the ghosts if the table has wheels on it. One of the old sayings of the SNU. (Spiritualists' National Union).

Glen has a Morse Code app on his phone, and that is on the table. I don't think it will pick up anything, mainly due to Karl not knowing Morse Code.

Glen types in a word and the phone app makes the noises in Morse Code.
If Glen was clever he would have pre-programmed it to say "This show is bollocks" in Morse Code.

As Fred is spouting his crap, Darren says there was a ghost behind him, of course nothing is caught on camera.

As the phone is repeatedly making noises on the table, Yvette says she can feel the table moving, vibrating etc. Yes that would be the phone love, it is literally right in front of you.

The phone is face up, and guess where the speaker is on the phone? Yes it is on the side touching the table.

Ok the whole table gimmick is getting boring now, and the noise from the Morse Code app is annoying as hell.

Darren has decided to bugger off on his own and leave Fred behind.

The phone is still beeping out "Hello" in Morse Code. At last they stop it. Thank god for that.

Ok they are waiting for the ghosts to tap, but hang on a second, Glen is imputing the taps to the phone himself, it is not picking up the taps automatically.

The audio feed is not picking up any taps, so this whole "experiment" is a shambles.

Darren is now running away and hiding from Fred. Not the first time someone has done that I am sure.

Darren and Fred then have a choreographed argument, did no one tell them that Yvette and Karl had already done one?

Glen is still desperately trying to get something out of this Morse Code nonsense.

Hilariously they are talking in Morse Code to the ghosts, and then asking the ghosts to reply with "1 tap for yes, 2 for no".

It is a good job this is all self funded, could you imagine anyone actually paying people to output this nonsense?

Darren and Fred are now doing a ridiculous over the top Benny Hill scene, running away from each other.

This is bad TV, whoever thought this should make the final cut is an idiot. Did Karl really thing this was funny? I know the MH fans are a bit dim, but even they are not so stupid as to find that nonsense entertaining.

Back with Glen and somehow he has come up with the name Eric Topple and 1943. Keep in mind that we cannot hear any tapping, we cannot hear any Morse Code from the ghosts at all.

Of course the name and date match, this was about as blatant a set up as they have ever done. At least Derek Acorah put some effort into names he came up with, this is just blatant bullshit. And then you realise that the ghost is not even talking in Morse Code, Glen is just pointing to the Letters/Numbers on the phone screen and then the ghost (Karl) is tapping. This whole thing is a joke. And despite the obvious fakery, lack of controls etc, the pretend skeptic, Glen, claims to be very impressed.

Here is how you instantly debunk this.
Get a nice big iPad, bring up the keyboard, turn the iPad upside down, blindfold everyone present, and whoever is in charge move their finger across the keyboard, and with no one else able to see the keyboard, press the screen when you hear a tap. When you finish, turn the iPad over and see what was written, I guarantee you, much like how Ouija Boards don't work when people are blindfolded, neither will this nonsense gimmick.

The teams get split up and changed again, Karl is on his own, Glen is with Fred, Darren is with Yvette and Greg.

In Yvette's group, there is a noise, and something has been thrown OFF CAMERA.

Just 10 minutes left, so not long to go guys.

Yvette and the lads are hearing noises again.

Karl is on his own, and hearing noises too, I suspect he has something in mind here, some kind of stunt.

Then bizarrely after one of the lads (maybe Greg?) knocks a table, Yvette says that people have edited videos of her on Youtube that show her knocking the table when it is supposed to be a ghost, and that is why she doesn't knock tables any more so she cant be edited. Now I have never heard of this happening, or seen any videos showing this. I have seen her get caught kicking a table in a Most Haunted Live show, I have seen her faking ghost noises when she thought she wasn't on camera. And whenever anything like this happens, I always direct people to watch official footage direct from the UKTV site, as well as any clip I put on here.

So if anyone has any idea what exactly she is referencing here, please do let me know. The last thing I want is people faking stuff to make them look like they have faked something. We can catch them cheating for real.

I hope Glen doesn't see how close Yvette and Greg are getting here.

With Glen and Fred now and something has been thrown OFF CAMERA. They go off to investigate.

Karl is still begging for something to be moved in the room he is in.

Right at exactly 40 minutes, listen to the audio, right as Karl sighs, the audio is cut and then replaced with Karl talking, then a noise is heard in the other room, he goes to look, then another noise and when he returns a metal container has magically been moved to the middle of the room.



I have re-watched the scene a few times, there is no edit in the footage itself, so everything happens in real time, but the audio has been edited.

So here is how it is done.

As soon as you hear him say.
"You're making sounds, not moving anything"
Then he sighs and the audio is edited right after that, so the new audio will have him sighing on, and then that is merged into the original sound file, and that helps cover up the audio switch. During this segment Karl will not film himself talking like he usually does, as that would give the game away.

Then just after Karl says.
"Whatever the bloody hell they are called"

The camera pans up slightly and stays in one place, at this moment Karl moves the metal container with his free hand. Then there is a noise in the other room, he carefully turns while pointing the camera upwards so he doesn't get the metal container in shot, moves to the other room, and then comes back to see the container he moved now in shot.

At 40m 50s, the audio then is switched back to the original recording. Right after Karl says "That's right in the middle of the floor now."

It is all quite well done, but the audio really gives it away.
Here is how he would do it.
Film the scene first.
Then while watching the scene back, record audio of him reacting, that matches the scene he has just shot. Edit in the audio in post production. And job done.

I must admit I prefer fakery like this, than splicing two videos into one. But sorry Karl you can't get anything past me.

And as usual I don't want anyone to just take my word on this, go to the UKTV website, watch the episode on catch-up, or even as it airs this Friday, put your headphones on while you watch, and you should be able to hear the audio edit.

Karl then tries to prove that there is no one else there, hears another noise OFF CAMERA, but nothing has been moved, and then we go back to Yvette.

Quickly back to Karl who is now filming his own face. Note how he never filmed himself at all during the 50 second audio edit.

And the episode then ends.

Now last weeks episode I gave a negative score and called it the worst episode ever, this weeks episode was much better, still awful, but better. Karl made an effort to fool us, and I appreciate that, as recording extra audio to then edit in takes time, and effort, and if he was better at editing audio, then perhaps he could have got it past me, but alas he couldn't so it is another goal for the good guys at BadPsychics.

So I will give this episode a 3 out of 10.

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By Jon Donnis