Pardon the title’s French, but I have to call ‘em like I see them. And, folks, I see a bunch of shit. Okay, maybe that’s being too harsh. What I actually see is some super shitty investigative work.
MY PROBLEM WITH FACT OR FAKED
I have been really torn about this show from the get go. I was willing to give it a chance, even though I find most of the epiosdes boring as hell and I’m always thankful I’ve DVR’d them so I can fast forward to the findings part.
The one redeeming quality was I saw it as a neat way to get people fired up about science. I liked that they put theories to the test and concocted experiments to test their theories about how and why something may have been faked. I can see applying this sort of thing in classrooms to get kids more interested and enthused about science, problem solving, logical thinking, etc.
However, I’ve had a problem with the team from the get go. They all seem like perfectly nice people, but Ben Hansen’s all of what, 12? He was a FBI agent for all of a minute maybe? (Okay, according to his bio he served as an investigator at the state and federal levels for a total of six years –or, as I see it, a minute– before he became a Systems Analyst.)
Worse, he became an FBI agent because of the X-Files. The following is taken straight from his Fact or Faked bio:
Early in his youth, Ben developed a fascination with UFOs and secret government projects. Ben has been looking for the real-life X-Files since he was a child and decided he would dedicate his career to investigations.
The “early fascination with UFOs and secret government projects” caught my eye even before I got to the second sentence mentioning X-Files. It screamed “This kid watched a lot of X-Files, maybe an episode too many” to me.
I’d probably have had less of an issue with all of this if the show’s producers didn’t insist on labeling him the “Former FBI Agent” and didn’t try to make the show so X-Files-esque.
Jael provides the sex appeal to the male viewers. Austin (a.k.a. the other baby) is supposedly the team’s “Stunt Expert” (God, how I hate how people abuse that word), yet his bio mentions no stunt experience, only that he’s a freaking personal fitness trainer.
But I can’t bag on the whole Fact or Faked cast. Bill Murphy seems like the team’s most experienced paranormal investigative member. Why he’s not at the helm I have no idea. (Well, I do. Because he apparently wasn’t a former FBI agent and how would the show’s producers spin their X-File take then?)
I also can’t knock on Chi-Lan or Devin too much. Their real-life experience/careers compliment their positions on the show.
WHY I’M DONE WITH FACT OR FAKED
But after last night’s episode, I’m done with Fact or Faked for good. I didn’t even watch the whole thing. The second Chi-Lan made a big deal about how the Whaley House is listed as an official haunted place by the Deparment of Congress I stopped the episode, deleted it, and then went and deleted the series from my series recording list. It’s no longer worthy of my viewing time.
Why I am being so harsh?
I can’t emphasize that enough.
Someone didn’t do their homework very carefully. There are some bad reporters out there not doing their diligence. There’s even worse editors slacking on their fact checking.
Whoever does the research for the Fact or Faked team clearly misinformed Chi-Lan. (Or, if she did her own research, she didn’t do it thoroughly enough.) But a source I’d never expect to spread such misinformation also did so big time.
TIME wrote an article listing the Top 10 Haunted Places. They also erroneously referenced the U.S. Commerce Department (for their Whaley House listing) and the U.S. Department of Commerce (for their Winchester House listing) as having listed these places on their “official” haunted places list.
[INSERT LOUD BUZZER HERE]
Wrong! Impossible! Why? For the same reason I emphasized above.
Sorry Fact or Faked. I wanted to like you. I liked the concept and what you attempt to do, but in the end I haven’t been impressed. And after this blunder I just outright think you’re all entertainment and completely full of shit. How on earth could you have missed the biggest fake of all?