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Q&A: Destination Truth Goes Live to Investigate the Banshee!

Written by Jude Terror on Tuesday, March 15 2011 and posted in Features
Q&A: Destination Truth Goes Live to Investigate the Banshee!

As Destination Truth gears up for its first live broadcast on St. Patty's Day, the Outhouse joined host Josh Gates on a Q&A press conference!

Nothing screams St. Patrick's Day like a trip to Ireland to track down the banshee, which is what Josh Gates has in mind as he and his team prepare to brave the crumbling ruins of Duckett's Grove Castle in search of the truth behind this legend. The live special, airing at 7PM Eastern/6PM Central on Syfy, kicks off six all-new episodes (beginning March 22 at 9pm), which will feature adventures in Namibia, Cyprus, Panama and Argentina.  In a Destination Truth first, the team will also trek to Antarctica, where strange phenomena occurring around abandoned research stations has stumped scientists.

We joined Josh for a live conference call to promote the upcoming episode, where we learned that Josh is no stranger to the challenges of a live broadcast. "I serve as the host of Ghost Hunters live on Halloween Night," he told us. "I've done that for four or five years now and it's a pretty complex machine. I mean, you're trying to really bring the viewer in and let them experience what it's like to do an investigation in real time, and broadcast that live. It's sort of the anything can happen saying, and I'm sure anything will."

Broadcasting live from an international location can be tricky, but the Destination Truth team is up to the challenge. "We're trying to use interesting technology. We have these wireless backpack cameras that are able to transmit live and actually show viewers various people investigating throughout these ruins," Josh said. "It's going to be a really challenging night, but we're really excited about it, we're ready for it, and excited to get over to Ireland and see what happens."

Josh is excited to return to Ireland for this investigation, due to the strong connection between Irish culture and folklore. Josh explained, "We experienced some of the same surprises that we experienced when we were investigation the leprechaun story last year, which is that there's this really intense connection in Ireland to their folklore. You meet a lot of people who really are invested in these paranormal reports. They really believe that these ghosts are there, they believe that the banshee is there, and they claim to have had these first person experiences that are really compelling when you listen to them. And so, I think that the real challenge for us is to be as respectful as possible of these beliefs. These are stories and legends that really define Irish culture."

So what is the banshee? "If you walk down the street in Ireland and polled 100 people and asked them about the banshee's wail, you'd be amazed at how many people will have something to say about it," Josh said. "There are a lot of people who claim that just before a death they have heard this keening or this wailing, but there is also a visual element to this ghost. She is reported as being sometimes a young woman, sometimes an old woman, but always with this cloak and always with the sort of long flowing hair. And there have been a lot of visual encounters, specifically at Duckett's Grove, the place we're going."

If you see the banshee while watching the show, be sure to let the team know! Destination Truth plans to make the investigation an interactive one, with lots of cool technology to allow viewers to participate.  "Our big goal when we make Destination Truth is to get the viewer to feel like they're on the journey with us, they're a part of the expedition team, and on this live show they're going to be part of our investigation team," Josh said. "And we want them to feel like they're looking at a largely, raw, unfiltered, look at what it's like to be out there in this really dynamic, kind of unknown environment overnight."

"We are going to have some interactive elements to the show, and what we're trying to do is really make the focus about the investigation," he continued. "We don't want to step away from the investigation too much and get too bogged down in stuff that doesn't keep our focus on the show. But, we found all these interesting ways to creatively involve the team out in the field while they're investigating with the viewers back at home."

Llike what? "There will be a Twitter component. The viewers are also going to be able to track the teams in real time while they're investigating. There will be a banshee button, which is sort of a way for viewers to actually at monitor some of the cameras from around the site, and weigh in if they see anything unusual while we're investigating," Josh told us. "So, my goal is that we're able to satisfy the viewers and that they really feel like they were out there with us on St. Patrick's Day in Ireland, and that they have a great time."

Fans of other Syfy shows like Ghost Hunters International will have even more reasons to tune in. According to Josh, "We're going to have a couple of our good friends from Ghost Hunters International Barry FitzGerald and Kris Williams who are both friends of ours and Kris has appeared on Destination Truth before. And Barry is obviously going to be the local authority, seeing as he's Irish, so we're really pleased to have both of them there."

"They've got a lot of experience investigating internationally, " continued Josh, "and Barry is going to be able to draw on a lot of local experience as well, in terms of the folklore and the history, so really excited to have both of them involved with the show."

That's not all! Josh name-dropped another special guest. "During the live Ghost Hunter show this last year in Buffalo, I had the pleasure of co-hosting with Allison Scagliotti from Warehouse 13. And Allison is going to come back and join us as well and she's going to be with us at our base camp, and hosting the show. We have a few new team members that we haven't met before, so the viewers will be able to meet a couple of new folks as well. As well as, folks like Erin Ryder who is really part of the heart and soul of Destination Truth, who hasn't been on the show this last season, and this will market the beginning of her return for all of the new episodes to come."

Speaking of episodes to come, following thespecial live broadcast this Thursday on Syfy, Destination Truth moves to a new time, at 9PM on Tuesdays! Josh has a lot of exciting things planned for the rest of the season, including an episode from Antarctica! "There are these amazing ghost stories about these abandoned whaling stations and disused science facilities down at the bottom of the world, and we actually sailed from the bottom of South America. And it's a one-hour special where we're going to be going down to Antarctica and investigating these locations. And for me, it exceeded all expectations. It's this absolutely stunning place that is just sort of hidden from the rests of the world."

Josh continued to gush about Antarctica, "I think one of the things that makes it so impressive is how pristine it is. It is a place that really has benefited from being removed from human contact. It has an unbelievable amount of actual wildlife. It's a place that you think of as being sort of barren, but when you get there you realize that it's actually this flourishing ecosystem."

"It's a desert essentially, as well, a snow covered desert, but it's just a really unique environment," he went on. "I think for me, the other thing as a guy who is a traveler that is so impressive about is the amount of fortitude and bravery that it has taken people to go and explore that place. When you go to these old explorers' huts and these old whaling huts, there's this unbelievable legacy of intrepidity. I mean, these people who risked, and many times, lost their lives trying to explore this extremely hostile environment."

What else does Destination Truth have in store for it's viewers? "There are a few episodes from this coming season that I'm really proud of as well," Josh told us. "We were able to visit Namibia in Southwestern Africa, which is a country that is just almost not featured on television at all. It's an amazing place, incredible dunes and deserts. It's a really barren landscape. And we have a couple of great stories there; a really interesting creature sighting in the northern part of the country, and a very cool paranormal story as well."

Season 2.5 of Destination Truth on Syfy kicks off with the special live episode this Thursday, St. Patrick's Day, at 7PM Eastern, 6PM Central!

Don't forget to tune in the following Tuesday as DT moves to it's new regular time at 9PM Eastern! Until then, enjoy this promo clip for Thursday's show:

Here's the official Press Release:

On Thursday, March 17, 2011, Syfy's hit adventure reality series Destination Truth will celebrate St. Patrick's Day with the show's first-ever LIVE investigation! Host Josh Gates will take viewers to Ireland for the Season 4.5 premiere, where he and his team will brave the crumbling ruins of Duckett's Grove Castle in search of the truth behind the legend of the banshee.

According to Irish legend, the banshee is a sign of impending death; a female ancestral spirit who wails around a house the night before someone inside is to meet their demise. Today, many County Carlow locals claim to have witnessed hearing the banshee's unmistakable wail and seeing glimpses of an ethereal woman stalking the grounds of the 200 year-old historic ruins of Duckett's Grove Castle. Armed with equipment, expertise and, as always, humor, Josh and team will attempt to solve the mystery behind this age-old legend.

Josh's return to Ireland marks the one-year anniversary of the series' most-watched episode (featuring a hunt for the leprechaun that aired on St. Patrick's Day 2010).

Other adventures this season include tackling claims of spirits in Namibia, a sea monster in Cyprus and mysterious creatures in Panama and Argentina. Then, in another Destination Truth first, the team will trek to Antarctica, where strange phenomena occurring around abandoned research stations has stumped scientists. Now, the Destination Truth crew will brave the elements to conduct the world's first paranormal investigation on the frozen continent, giving viewers a rare and unique glimpse at this rarely visited well as, perhaps, a look into its past.

About Destination Truth
Destination Truth is Executive Produced by Brad Kuhlman for Ping Pong Productions (1000 Places to See Before You Die, Celebrity Rehab, FM Nation). Josh Gates, Erin Ryder and Christopher Lore will serve as co-executive producers.

About Syfy
Syfy is a media destination for imagination-based entertainment. With year round acclaimed original series, events, blockbuster movies, classic science fiction and fantasy programming, a dynamic Web site (, and a portfolio of adjacent business (Syfy Ventures), Syfy is a passport to limitless possibilities. Originally launched in 1992 as SCI FI Channel, and currently in 96 million homes, Syfy is a network of NBC Universal, one of the world's leading media and entertainment companies. (Syfy. Imagine greater.)

About Josh Gates, Host and Co-Executive Producer of Destination Truth
Explorer and world adventurer Josh Gates has touched down in more than 75 countries around the world. An avid scuba diver, he has participated in sub-sea archaeological excavations in the Mediterranean, and his work as a photographer has taken him from sweltering African villages to the icy heights of the Himalayas. In addition, he has scaled "the roof of Africa" on Mt. Kilimanjaro and climbed Aconcagua, the tallest mountain in the Americas.

Josh originally hails from the small town of Manchester-by-the-Sea, Massachusetts. A graduate of Boston's renowned Tufts University, Josh holds degrees in archaeology and drama and was recently inducted into The Explorers Club, a prestigious global organization dedicated to the advancement of exploration and field research.

Josh currently resides in Los Angeles.

Source: Syfy
Written or Contributed by: Jude Terror

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About the Author - Jude Terror

Jude Terror is the Webmaster Supreme of The Outhouse and a sarcastic ace reporter dedicated to delivering irreverent comics and entertainment news to The Outhouse's dozens of loyal readers. Driven by a quest for vengeance, Jude Terror taught himself to program and joined The Outhouse. He instantly began working toward his goal of forcing the internet comics community to take itself less seriously and failing miserably. A certified trash eater ruining the pristine field of comics journalism with his sarcasm and goofiness, Jude Terror is secretly friendly and congenial, so if you've got a complaint, why not just bring it up to him instead of subtweeting like a jackass, jackass? You can find him on Twitter or try your luck with an email, but keep in mind that he is notoriously unreliable and may not get back to you right away. Unless you want to send him free stuff, in which case he'll get back to you immediately.

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