Fictional Television Characters That Inspired Future Paranormal Investigators


Sometimes, all it takes as a kid is to see someone doing something that so intrigues you, you park it in the back of your mind until you're an adult. When you can make your own choices for hobbies and interests, you might file through that best-of reel and recall something that has always interested you. For those of us in paranormal research, our muses might have been some interesting minds in the TV and movie realm who made uncovering mysteries look, well, downright creepy cool!

Scooby Doo Gang

Children of the 70s were first introduced to the Scooby Doo Gang in 1970. It ran the majority of the decade and went into permanent syndication for future generations to get hooked on the spooky jazzy music, the frightened dog and his owner, the brainy girl, the leader guy, and the redhead as they tried to solve unexplained mysteries. They poked around dark mansions and freaky forests and all kinds of scary locations and we waited for them to shake ghosts out of the dusty drapes, only to find that the cases were explained by very human means. And then they trapped the crook.

This was really a first debunking team we had seen growing up and they set the stage for us thinking that perhaps there is something going on that is explainable. We were usually disappointed when they found out the butler or someone did it. But, they left us with plenty of hints that maybe there really are ghosts and yeti and other unexplained things, only not responsible for the crime that occurred.

The idea of some friends piling into a van to solve a mystery was enough to get most of us kids excited about driver's licenses and poking around in the dark, even when we're scared

SCOOBY DOO TRIVIA: (LINK)Velma's famous line, "My glasses; I can't see without them!" was not originally scripted for the show. During a table read for the voice artists, Velma's voice-over actress Nicole Jaffe, who was near-sighted as well, lost her glasses and uttered a variation of what became Velma's famous catchphrase. The writers liked the line so much that Velma losing her glasses became one of the show's trademark gags. Velma loses her glasses in the first episode, Scooby Doo, Where Are You!: What a Night for a Knight (1969), but the actual line is first spoken in Scooby Doo, Where Are You!: Decoy for a Dognapper (1969).

You know it's iconic when Lego makes a tribute - 

Carl Kolchak

"Kolchak: The Night Stalker" was a very short-lived series in the 1970s, but it created a huge influence on a generation of kids and teens.

Carl Kolchak was an underpaid and overabused reporter who had a knack for being in the right place and the right time for coming across the unexplained. With his trusty camera and nosy personality, he managed to get himself right in the middle of threat from dangerous entities and an bellicose editor at the newspaper. 

Kolchak was bumbling but persistent. That persistence taught us a lot about pushing past fear and darkness to find the truth. And, he didn't even need a sidekick, unless you count his cheap straw hat.

The series was cancelled because Darren McGavin asked to be released from his contract. He became disappointed with the series' scripts and was exhausted from his uncredited producing duties. Three scripts were left unproduced. Two of them were adapted into a "Kolchak" series of comic books in 2003 

Mulder and Scully

"X-Files" show began in 1993 and went almost a decade. It left a devoted audience beyond measure. It involved conspiracy theories, monsters, aliens, and unexplained miracles. No matter what the subject, we were hooked on the two investigators; a skeptical doctor (Dana Scully) and a hopeful believer (Fox Mulder). 

These FBI investigators pulled out cold cases and unexplained happenings around the country and went out to investigate, trying hard to balance disbelief with humbling admissions they had no clue what or how things were going on. 

Most of us itched to have a hard file we could caress to learn all about prior investigations, to go to the site, to talk to witnesses, and to have resources available to uncover secrets. It behooves us as investigators today to keep a few skeptics on the team, a few science-minded folks, and a couple of open-minded believers. 

X-FILES TRIVIA: (LINKIn real life, David Duchovny is actually a skeptic and Gillian Anderson is a believer.


The 1980s hit movie "Ghostbusters" was just gol-darned fun, but what was really fun was the child-like way the team got a neat-o firehouse and hearse and dolled them up and started an official team with shirts and all! Most ghost hunting teams today have to say that being part of a team that is called in to deal with ghosts is as ghostbusters as you can get.

Ghostbusters Trivia: (LINK) The party scene where Louis Tully (Rick Moranis) mingles with his party guests (commenting on the price of the salmon, and so on) is not only taken in one continuous shot, but is almost entirely improvised.

You know it's iconic when Legos makes a tribute -


The Amityville Horror
The Changeling
The Haunting
The Legend of Hell House
The Entity
The Conjuring