Alice Oscura, Paranormal Investigations Head Writer
Discovery Plus continued its “Ghostober” celebration with the premiere of The Haunted Museum series. It is a collaboration between renowned paranormal investigators, The Haunted Museum owner Zak Bagans and modern day horror director Eli Roth.
The series is a horror anthology based on some of the most haunted objects from Bagans’ vault at his museum. Zak begins each frightening tale with a backstory on each cursed item that serves as the inspiration. The Haunted Museum is located in Las Vegas, Nevada where Bagans houses thousands of historically significant objects and collectibles related to true crimes or paranormal legends. So, without further ado, let’s review the first two hauntingly creepy episodes of The Haunted Museum.
Episode 1: Dollhouse of the Damned
This one is based on a massive-sized dollhouse that was purchased by Bagans back in March of 2018. Upon further research, he discovered that the dollhouse was a replica of the Westerfeld House, an iconic building built in 1889 for German confectioner William Westerfeld. Westerfeld died just six years later and since then the house has managed to have an eccentric list of occupants. Among them are Kenneth Anger, the underground occult filmmaker, and Anton LaVey, founder of the Church of Satan. The house was used to perform ungodly rituals and is suspected to be a doorway to a sinister realm.
Bagans held a deep curiosity as to who owned the dollhouse before it ended up in the antique shop that he purchased it from. The story is about a young grieving family consisting of a father, a teenaged daughter, and a baby. Still reeling from the loss of her mother, the teenaged daughter diligently helps take care of her baby brother but pulls away from the father. As her birthday comes up, no one is in the mood for celebration, but her father still manages to buy her a present, a gigantic antique dollhouse. The father becomes obsessed with the dollhouse and begins to carve replicas of his family including his deceased wife. He puts the figures into the mysterious dollhouse and soon it becomes clear that something demonic begins to take hold.
It is an emotionally dark and disturbing tale about the consequences of grief and about how it sends a father onto an extremely destructive path with devastating consequences. Nothing good could ever come out of delving into things without fully understanding what you are meddling with.
Episode Score: 7 out of 10
Episode 2: Monster in the Machine
This episode is based on some bizarre equipment that came into Bagans’ possession when he newly acquired the property now known as The Haunted Museum. Bagans was told by the realtor that a woman (whose name was not disclosed) had been using the equipment to communicate with the spiritual dimension. To assist in the documentation of her research the woman took numerous polaroids. Soon she became convinced that demons were coming for her. Eventually, her dead body was found in the centre of the machines which were formed in a circle around her.
During the quarantine episodes due to the Covid-19 lockdown Bagans decided to try a summoning experiment with the machines. Ghost Adventures team member Billy Tolley and engineer Bill Chappell (inventor of numerous equipment used in paranormal investigations) successfully activated the equipment and received some chilling responses. Tolley suspected that the woman was trying to make a deal with the devil.
The episode shows a woman named Esther Levin conducting the experiments with the machines and eventually contacting something demonic. The demon then becomes attached to her and threatens to take her to the seventh circle of hell. Despite her warnings to her family that a demon was coming for her, they ignored her. Little by little the demon toys with his prey to show her that each time he was getter closer.
Well, we know how this story ends thanks to Zak and his realtor, but it also goes to show you that curiosity killed the cat. The episode uses a lot of light and shadowing to play tricks with the mind. It was intense and nerve-wracking. And knowing that the machine exists only adds fuel to the adrenaline.
Episode Score: 8 out of 10
The first two episodes set the bar high. Especially if you are a fan of the Ghost Adventures paranormal show, you will have some prior knowledge about the chosen objects. To see them represented in this form as mini-horror movies is just the icing on the cake for any paranormal or horror fan.
So, stay tuned as The Haunted Museum entertains us with more creepy, cursed objects from their vault!
So have you checked out The Haunted Mansion? What did you think of it? And you can check out more paranormal investigations content below.
Dark Alice has an old soul and a curious mind. I believe that anyone can be a hero and that the good guys should always win! I dislike cruelty to animals and think that they have far superior qualities to humans. My motto is there is no future without the past. I also have a weird penchant for Paranormal TV shows even though the slightest sound makes me jump. I enjoy writing reviews and throwing in fun facts to pique the readers’ curiosity. My ultimate goal in life would be to become a published writer one day. Read More