There is a veritable subgenre of reality TV for ghost investigation shows, but this is one of the better ones. Ryan Buell leads Penn State’s Paranormal Research Society, responding to reported hauntings from all over the country.

Whether you believe in ghosts or not, the show is entertainingly constructed, with Buell as a likable and levelheaded protagonist. His attention to the “real world” problems that crop up in the cases (usually involving domestic tensions) lends the proceedings some welcomed legitimacy.

Despite the many of the episodes taking a very similar shape, the writers do a fine job of sculpting character arcs over several episodes, even creating for Buell his own demon antagonist. However much of the show is “real” is to be debated, but that’s half of the fun.

Grade: A-

Paranormal State – Season 1 is currently available.