Paranormal investigator and columnist Joe Nickell shared his skeptical take on a variety of cases. Differentiating his approach, he said that "mystery mongers" often have their minds made up that something inexplicable is taking place in so-called paranormal incidents, whereas he "follows the evidence." So far, he has yet to uncover "anything that defies the laws of physics."
Among the cases he debunked:
- A long-necked multi-humped "lake monster" is probably a group of Northern River Otters swimming together.
- Ghostly phenomena at Mackenzie House in Toronto was due to bleed-through sounds from a parallel iron staircase in an adjacent building.
- A 100–ft. UFO in Salt Lake City turned out to be a misidentified remote controlled 30-ft. blimp.
- Ghost sightings and alien abductions are often associated with "waking dreams" and sleep paralysis.
- Mothman was a Barred Owl, a creature known for their glowing red eyes.
- Spontaneous Human Combustion cases often involve people's carelessness with flammables and sometimes their bodies act as a kind of wick.
- The images on the Shroud of Turin don't match the burial cloth descriptions written in the Gospel of John.
The Roswell incident didn't involve a UFO, but a crashed 'Project Mogul' spy balloon.
Rituals & Witchcraft
First hour guest, neopagan priest Isaac Bonewits spoke about witchcraft and rituals. He outlined the history of Black Masses, which he said originated with Roman Catholics as a ceremony for the dead. Rituals often serve as psychodrama to promote altered states of consciousness, and the imprinting of ideas, he noted.