Ranking Ghost-Hunting Shows From Ghoulish to Down Right Silly

See where Ghost Adventures, Ghost Hunters and more land on our list of top ghost-hunting shows.

By Alyssa Ray Oct 25, 2021 12:00 AMTags
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Nothing screams Halloween like a good ghost-hunting show.

So with All Hallows' Eve only a week away, we decided it was time to take a closer look at the paranormal reality shows that make those little hairs on the back of our neck stand up. We know not everyone believes in ghosts and ghouls, which is why we're examining both the series that take themselves seriously and the shows unafraid to have a little fun.

For instance, Buzzfeed Unsolved: Supernatural launched its seventh and final season on Oct. 15. And even after countless investigations, hosts Ryan Bergara and Shane Madej still come off as amateur ghost hunters—in the best way. The longtime partners are unafraid to roast themselves while touring infamous locations—like the allegedly possessed Conjuring house—leaving us entertained while hoping for a ghost to pop up.

On the flip side, there's Zak Bagans' Ghost Adventures series, which follows the famed investigator as he uses top-notch equipment to investigate fear-inducing spots.

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"We don't play the part of paranormal investigators—I can't speak for other paranormal shows," Bagans told E! News in an exclusive interview. "I can just speak for myself, my show, my team and what we do. I mean, we're supposed to be doing this, I had a calling to do this."

These two examples, which couldn't be more different, are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the spooktacular genre.

For a closer look at the top ghost-hunting shows, see our official ranking below!

8. Haunted Towns

Haunted Towns, which had two seasons on Destination American between 2017 and 2019, followed a group of paranormal investigators—known as the Tennessee Wraith Chasers—as they traveled to the country's most, you guessed it, haunted towns in the hope of trapping ghosts. You may recognize the TWC from their previous paranormal series, Ghost Asylum.

Both shows had spine-chilling locales, but their tendency toward hokey dialogue made them not as enjoyable as their competitors. Their passion and dedication were certainly present, yet, we never found ourselves invested in the TWC.

7. Ghost Brothers

Ghost Brothers was unafraid to lean into the humor while hunting down the paranormal. Starring best friends Dalen Spratt, Juwan Mass and Marcus Harvey, the trio toured reportedly haunted locales—all while roasting their rivals. In the intro, one Ghost Brother quipped, "Why is everybody white?"

For a laugh-out-loud series that also delves into the world of the supernatural, catch the only two seasons of Ghost Brothers, which aired on Destination American and TLC, respectively, between 2016 and 2017.

6. Buzzfeed Unsolved: Supernatural

When Ryan Bergara and Shane Madej embarked on their Unsolved series for Buzzfeed's YouTube page, they had no idea that they'd soon begin investigating whether or not ghosts are real. Being amateur paranormal investigators, Bergara and Madej's quest proves to be more a comedy than a serious ghost-hunting show.

Nonetheless, the dynamic between believer Bergara and skeptic Madej is wildly entertaining, which has allowed the content creators to bank seven entertaining seasons.

5. Kindred Spirits

If Kindred Spirits seems familiar to you, it's likely because you recognize stars Adam Berry and Amy Bruni from their previous ghost-hunting series, aptly titled Ghost Hunters. Putting a twist on the classic paranormal show formula, Berry and Bruni investigate homes to see if the undead dwellers are connected to the families that live there.

Kindred Spirits, which first debuted in 2016, has called several networks home, including Destination America, TLC, Travel Channel and Discovery+.

4. Paranormal State

Though Paranormal State was a hit after its debut in 2007 on the A&E Network, the series may not be as fear-inducing on second watch. Ryan Buell and his Paranormal Research Society investigated several haunted locations over the course of six seasons, but unlike the ghost-hunting shows of today, there was little tangible evidence integrated into the show.

3. Scariest Places on Earth

We honestly can't believe Scariest Places on Earth only had five seasons. Hosted by The Exorcist's Linda Blair and narrated by Teen Witch's Zelda Rubinstein, the Fox Family series had a scare-tastic formula, which included sending regular people into allegedly haunted locales.

Though this show wasn't meant to definitively prove whether ghosts were real, there were some fun scares along the way.

2. Ghost Hunters

It's safe to say that the original Ghost Hunters is one of the most famous paranormal shows in TV history. The show's initial run on SyFy included 11 seasons, 230 episodes and 10 specials. Ghost Hunters also spawned several spin-offs, including Ghost Nation, UFO Hunters, Ghost Hunters Academy and Ghost Hunters International.

The series was later revived on A&E in 2019 with original star Grant Wilson and a new crop of investigators, which used a slew of technology to try to connect with the paranormal.

1. Ghost Adventures

Ghost Hunters may've launched the ghost-hunting genre into global fame, but it's Zak Bagans' Ghost Adventures that has perfected the storytelling style. With a documentary-film background, Bagans has curated 21 seasons of action-packed peeks into the world of the paranormal.

After 13 years on the Travel Channel, Ghost Adventures has since found a new home on Discovery+, introducing a whole new generation to Bagans' investigations into famously haunted spots. If you're looking for a lengthy binge with lots of intrigue, Ghost Adventures is the show for you!

(E! and SyFy are both part of the NBCUniversal family.)

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