TV

Can the Uncanny TV Series Prove That Ghosts Are Real?


Well, no, obviously not. But it does make a pretty compelling case…

Uncanny
Photo: BBC/Jamie Simonds/Russell Kirby

When it comes to ghosts, are you a believer, a skeptic, or a ‘never really think about it’? If the latter is true Uncanny might not be on your radar but now the paranormal podcast, hosted by Danny Robins, has become a BBC Two TV show it’s definitely worth a look. Robins is a writer, comedian, broadcaster and journalist, who, as well as Uncanny, made the podcast The Witch Farm and wrote the acclaimed play 2:22 A Ghost Story.

Betteridge’s law that “Any headline that ends in a question mark can be answered by the word no,” does, unfortunately, apply here, however even though, no, of course the show doesn’t prove anything, it delves into multiple theories, and comes up with some fairly convincing arguments should you be inclined to believe. And if not? Well it’s still a rollercoaster of storytelling.

The format of the show is similar to the podcast. Each episode Robins talks to a member (or members) of the public about a strange instance they can’t explain. He then consults experts on both sides of the argument – skeptics and believers – and attempts to explain what happened to his guests. Danny is a believer (but only as of about two years ago, he says), but his approach is investigative. You’re not going to see him wandering around looking for orbs (or not in episode one at least).

The podcast is wildly popular and part of what makes it stand out is the crowd-sourced nature of the show. Robins made the podcast series The Battersea Poltergeist in 2021, based on a true case, and after its broadcast he asked people to get in touch with their own stories. Uncanny was built this way, with frequent updates on the incidents from early episodes bringing a wide ranging richness to it: it’s not one person tells a story and two people debate it. Instead others who hear each tale contact the show with their own experiences of the supposedly haunted locations and investigations are enhanced and corroborated (ish), or other debunking theories are added to the mix. 

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