Doubles and Fakers on UnXplained

 DATELINE:  Local Connection!

 Imposter, Not Tony Curtis.

Here is another fascinating subject, not usually covered in any depth by the spate of paranormal, mystery investigators. These are stories about near criminal impersonation.

The UnXplained came across with another winning episode.

If the show were worth its weight in truth, it had to deal with the most famous impostor and faker in my resident town:  yes, Ferdinand Demara stayed here a while in the 1950s, pretending to be a elementary school teacher with fake credentials. A neighbor was actually in his class that year—and she laughed he was no Tony Curtis (the movie star who played Demara in The Great Impostor).

This faker and poseurpretended to be a Canadian doctor and performed surgery during the Korean War. Yes, he operated on suffering wounded soldiers!  Caught, he was still deemed a hero for saving them. He went on to act out his fantasies as a Trappist monk, a lawyer, a college professor, and other stolen identities.

Demara’s life was always pretending, but did not much evil other than deception. He died a fat faker of 350 pounds, not pretending to be a health nut.

However, subsequent figures that Shatner’s show uncovered were increasingly sociopathic and homicidal. A French fake in the 1990s took over Hollywood as an investor and party-thrower, friend to stars. He was stealing their money and allegedly wanted to produce movies. He claimed to be Sophia Loren’s son.

Then, there was Clark Rockefeller, a German low-brow who went by several identities—and he was no Rockefeller. He was, it seems, a murderer with a yard with at least one victim—and another still missing.

These were the worst: the women were a brain damaged Polish peasant who convinced herself she was Czarina Anastasia. They made movies and plays about her fakery. And, given a short shrift was Billy Tipton, famous jazz pianist, who was found to be a woman upon his death.

This was another fascinating show, featuring rare clips, interesting insights, and the underplayed narration of William Shatner who knows something about playing roles.

UnXplained at Center of Earth

DATELINE: Under the Earth

 Brain Waves/underground acoustics?

Put Jules Verne’s Journey aside, UnXplained  is taking Shatner to the center of the Earth. In the series volatile up and down quality, this episode is a gem.

This show looked at the phenomenon of underground habitations, both natural—and man-made. The first stop in Turkey uncovers a labyrinth of rooms, a city actually, that could house 20,000 people. Conservative estimates suggest it is 1000 years old, but some say it is closer to 12,000 years. Who built this before the Pyramids, and why?

If you think we don’t have the technology today to accomplish this, you haven’t heard about the multi-layers of Area 51 or the cavernous living areas of Cheyenne Mountain, both military zones.

The experts (physicists from Ancient Aliens  like Drs. Travis Taylor and Mike Dennin) will tell you about a secret high-speed rail-subway system running clear across the United States.

If there is a nuclear winter, or a new ice age, the elite will be saved. The rest of us may not fare so well.

The show also visited a necropolis, an acoustic marvel in Malta where voices are enhanced, or seeming come out of the crypts of the dead. It almost sounds like Gregorian chanting from the netherworld. Actual recordings are played on this episode.

Shatner does mention Jules Verne toward the end, and his mid-19thcentury novel that may not be as fictional as some claimed. He even had a crystal world under the Earth, which has recently been discovered as real.

These giant crystals are hundreds of feet long from centuries of growth, and weigh tons. Humans cannot spend more than 15 minutes in their habitat because of heat and high humidity. You will be cooked alive.

The crystals are containers for microbes from outer space, not earthly, and they have been in suspended animation for 50,000 years inside the crystals. Uh-oh.

Subterranean worlds may be part of the “hollow Earth” syndrome, which has been dismissed by experts both as a fact here on our planet—and even the Moon.

This UnXplained  was truly worth the title.

 

 

 

Ancient Aliens Shows Up on UnXplained!

DATELINE: Cross Pollination of 2 Shows

 Son of Hynek.

 MUFON’s son of BLUE BOOK.

Leave it to History Channel to follow up the best episode in Shatner’s paranormal series with the worst episode, this about UFOs.

Once again we have History shilling its own various series, this time providing a boost for the next in line series,Unidentified, yet another variation on confirming the existence of flying saucers, or tick tacks as they are now called.

Shatner no longer seems quite as mobile, and he is all done up in his black leather suitjacket, but sits for the entire show. Well, it is understandable.

What’s inexcusable is to have him sit there and provide sound bites from the other hit series, Ancient Aliens. And, make no mistake, the experts of that show make a litany of appeances here, like Nick Pope, Richard Dolan, and the ubiquitous Giorgio. You throw in Erich van Daniken, and they are all spouting words they already spouted on the other series.

This cross-pollination continues, but there are some newer bits, like an examination of the 1953 UFO crash (these aliens seem to be bad drivers). It outdoes AATIP’s hosts when Shatner smiles when he talks about visitors from “where no one has gone before.”

One interesting detail is that the son of Project Blue Book chief, Dr. J. Allan Hynek’s son is now in charge of MUFON, the private investigative society of UFOs, and he appears here as one of the experts. We learn on the Unidentified show that he may be a bigwig spy.

Yes, they even force Shatner to use that old chestnut expression from Ancient Aliens several times: he refers to “ancient alien theorists.”  Whoever they are.

We did encounter the expression “superulminal velocity,” which was a new one for us. That must be warp speed.

 

 

 

 

Curses: Not Foiled on UnXplained

DATELINE: Another Gem in Series

 Cursed “Crying Boy” Painting!

A third installment of the Shatner series UnXplained came to us with a plethora of examples about cursed people, places, and things. Yes, they are nouns of a bad sort.

Shatner will never be upstaged by such shenanigans, and he is constantly looking over his shoulder as he hosts this marvelous series with another fascinating episode.

The smorgasbord of tales for the week include some stories well-known, and a few surprises.

First, there is Round Lake in New Jersey, a man-made reservoir that inundated a town back in the 1960s. It seems some of the late residents may be causing dozens of men to drown in the cold waters. A few intrepid realists suggest it is careless fishing or boating that causes the deaths. Shatner has an arched eyebrow, which is telling.

The most famous story of the night concerns the Hope Diamond, a cursed Indian jewel that glows red, not blue, when ultra-violet light is put on it. Blood red? No wonder Evalyn McLean kept it for nearly 40 years, despite family members dropping like flies.

Our favorite unknown tale concerned “The Crying Boy,” one of dozens of paintings by some Oscar Wildean Italian artist. These oils are covered in flame retardant for good reason: the houses in which they are hung in England tend to burn to the ground. Pass on the picture next time you see one in the flea market.

Shatner seems to snicker at the numerical curses of 13 and 27. It seems the Friday 13, 1307, could be the cause of the cursed day: Jacques DeMolay, Catholic hero or heretic, was burned at the stake and cursed his killers and the day of the week. It has lingered 700 years.

As far as 27 is concerned, it’s a club of dead rock stars. There is a litany of musical icons who died at age 27, including Jim Morrison, Kurt Cobain, Janis Joplin, et al. You can forgive old Shatner, at 90, not taking this one too seriously.

It all leads to his standard hilarious closing as he discusses charms to ward off curses at the end. It’s another must-see installment of the show.

 

Super Senses on UnXplained

DATELINE: Best Series on TV?

 Eric Plays!

William Shatner is in wry form again as the series UnXplained  actually tackles another unusual subject with some interesting insights. This time the show’s topic deals with how several individuals have made up for a lack of one sense (blindness, deaf, etc.,)with enhanced other senses.

This is more than someone learning to rely on what’s left when Nature has denied them the full range of sensory perception. The handful of interview subjects are not your usual subjects—and that gives the series yet another fresh approach.

A blind man who lost both eyes as a child to cancer make clicking noises, a form of sonar, to locate objects around him—and can makes a drawing or map accurately as to what is in his world when he walks around or ride a bicycle. It’s called echolocation, and some may disparage it as luck, he clearly has a new sensory approach that is nothing short of paranormal.

Another example, from the deaf world, is called synesthesia or synesthetes, people who may not hear noise or sound, but experience colors, and strange noise, to make up for their lacking. It is amazing to think that sound has color to define it.

Old-hand experts from our usual History Channel shows, Dr. Michael Dennin and Dr. Travis Taylor, are around again to discuss the physics of cross-connected senses. And, it is ground-breaking when it comes to these show topics.

Another victim of lack of senses, who feels no pain, explains the dangers of daily life when there is no pain sensitivity, which is called a genetic malfunction. He also explains he has so many injuries since childhood that it is now a blessing to be pain-free. To have it restored would mean he would not function at all.

Another premature infant named Eric Paravicini given oxygen in abundance to survive turns into a musical maven who at age 5 had memorized thousands of songs and now can play the piano like a virtuoso. The drawback and price for these “talents” is that forms of autism deny a full and satisfying existence.

Shatner is clearly in awe of this episode’s subjects—and we have to admit this was a startling and fresh approach, again putting UnXplained  at the top of the heap of History series.

Shatner Returns for More UnXplained

DATELINE: Great Escapes Explained!

For History Channel to bring back a series with such alacrity, you know it is a big winner. So, we are not surprised that William Shatner has returned for another batch of UnXplained.

His delivery is deadpan, hambone, hilarious. He has found another career at age 90—as robust as ever. His latest show opened with a look at “Greatest Escapes,” and the underlying notion is that some supernatural or paranormal power may be at work. Perhaps.

The first vignette put focus on Houdini and his inexplicable escapes from sure death under water. There is no explanation as he took it to his grave, only noting his “brain” was the “key.” Though Conan Doyle, of Sherlock fame, thought it was some supernatural psychic ability, Houdini dismissed that. Shatner raises the issue again.

Another anecdote is about a man who escaped a submarine 200 feet under the Mediterranean in a primitive pressure suit in 1941. No believed him until the wreck was found 50 years later with all the tangible evidence proved him right. And, there is the report of a Cuban escapee from Havana in 1969 who hid in a jet wheel well for nine hours, going into suspended animation, frozen.

All of these incidents are beyond science: and your usual History Channel expert, Dr. Travis Taylor, shows up again and again to tell us how this defies physics.

These relatively unknown, but documented cases, are always the backbone of the series, and they are handled with marvelous re-enactments, or archival footage.

Perhaps the most two fascinating episodes of the paranormal invoke the story of one of four survivors of the Twin Towers on 911. He was pushed to choose the only stairway unblocked to walk down 84 flights. Brian Clark is interviewed and explains how he has no idea who pushed him in the right direction.

And a little-known Alcatraz escape story involves Native American legends about positive spirits on the Rock leading the only 3 escapees to succeed in their plan. It seems gulls only land when the omens are good. And that was when the prisoners made their swim. Who knows?

Shatner is back, and that is all that matters.

 

Shatner, 4thTime a Charm on Oak Island

DATELINE: Ben Franklin after Treasure?

 Ben Franklin.

This time William Shatner is taking on the take of the American Revolution using the treasure on Oak Island to finance the fight against the British. The irony is that they used Canadian territory—and even tried to draw Nova Scotia to join the States.

Samuel Ball, the former slave, was given his freedom for working with the Brits—and reportedly found some of the treasure within 20 years of moving to Oak Island.

Shatner hosts “The Founding Fathers.”  To fight the richest empire of the time, the United States used Benjamin Franklin to try to locate funding.  Because of his ties as the Grand Master of the Masons, he could use this connection to find money.

What’s interesting the French ties to the Templars had transformed into freemasons. That was the role and connection that Franklin used for the American Revolution. These ties actually went back half a century to Nova Scotia. These French military wanted to take the territory away from the British.

The French placed a “second” treasure on Oak Island in the mid-1700s. The Templars went to Scotland where they were not persecuted—and they soon delivered their secret treasures to New Scotland (Nova Scotia).

The Laginas tell Shatner that there is no proof, but there is circumstantial evidence. It does allow the Lagina Brothers to dig out their visits to Scotland to give Shatner some information, including the discovery of the lead Templar cross on Oak Island.

Shatner provides the authority and brings the gravity of his celebrity to the theories. He relates how Franklin and Thomas Jefferson owned thousands of acres in Nova Scotia—and wanted it to be part of the new nation.

George Washington may also have a connection, however oblique, to Oak Island. Did the Americans finance their freedom fight with Oak Island treasures?

 

 

Shatner & Shakespeare on Oak Island

DATELINE: Shatner Returns to Treasure Hunt

 Cold Day in November!

We know how much everyone enjoyed William Shatner on Oak Island, but he must have also enjoyed it because he has come back for the final night of season 7.

His theory is worthy of the UnXplained,and we fully concur with him.

There is a fairly sharp start that indicates that Shakespeare may have been borderline literate: his father and mother were illiterate and only middle-class. His own education was fair, not royal and not comprehensive.

So, Shatner takes some relish in debunking the Bard and suggesting the real writer was a man with credentials, like Sir Francis Bacon, member of the Elizabethan court. There may even be several authors, as Shatner hints.

Cyphers in the original folio have intrigued researchers that there is something that matches Nolan’s Cross on Oak Island. In fact, Bacon was connected to Knights Templar through Rosiecrucians—and he may have known of the secret vaults on Oak Island—and chose to bury his Shakespeare originals there.

One can find that The Tempest may be confessional in terms of Bacon burying “my booke.”  If overlaid on the final page of The Tempest, you find a spot that would correspond to the Eye of the Swamp on the Island.

We were amused when Rick Lagina called Bacon the Michelangelo of his day: if history is correct, they were almost contemporaries as Michelangelo’s death crossed the date of Bacon’s birth. Technically, he was right.

Parchment was found over 160 feet below the earth. Bookbinding material was found near the Money Pit deep down.

Even the Laginas seemed intrigued that Shakespeare’s first folio is there.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shatner Goes to Dogs

DATELINE: Amazing Animals on UnXplained  

 Statue of Greyfriars Bobby!

 

“Amazing animals”, indeed, as UnXplained  takes on the mysteries of animal sentience. It is not just cats and dogs that Shatner gives a full nod and wink, but birds and whales too.

In certainly one of the most intriguing episodes of the series, the vignettes under study include one on the famous and heroic horse from the Korean War! Yes, a horse with independent spirit worked near miracles without human assistance. Sergeant Reckless even has a statue to her testimony—and how did she know what to do to bring wounded soldiers to medical assistance. Who knew there was an active military horse as late as the 1950s?

Shatner admits that his own love of horses is proven by the ability of the creatures to bond with its riders. Such animals are often used for therapy with psychically injured vets who need TLC—which the horse can provide.

There is also a rather interesting take on the Disney movie that was, in fact, a true story about Greyfriars Bobby. That’s the dog with such loyalty that for 14 years he slept every night on his master’s grave.

The suggestion here is that these animals saw dead people, or had psi trailing ability. That’s the condition where cats can go over a 1000 miles to locate a family they belong to.

There are also stories about dolphins and whales saving people from predators tiger sharks, as well as warblers that seem to take cues from Nature about meteorology and dangers.

If you think that the animal kingdom is more psychic than you ever suspected, this is your evidentiary show. Fascinating, with the usual Shatner delivery to amuse us.

UnXplained & Cults

DATELINE: Joining a Cult?

 Kookoo Bird Applewhite

 

Shatner’s compelling series was downright sickening this week on UnXplained.

We were eager to hear what this intriguing series might come up with here: oh, the usual ones like Heaven’s Gate and Jonestown. But we were hoping the latest dangerous cult of coronavirus killers, the Trumpists.

Yes, he meets the criteria for a madhouse cult, friends, leading society members into sure self-destruction. Alas, as a Never-Trumper, we have again been disappointed.

The show takes on a few we were unaware of, like the weird cult that women allowed themselves to be branded in the age of MeTooism. Truly fighting the trend, we presume.

It seems, from the historical background, that cults were not always considered bad, but often were a productive part of ancient societies, usually religious orders, looking for heaven. No, not asteroids that might be abandoned spaceships.

One infamous self-help guru was James Arthur Ray, using his name not to be confused with James Earl Ray, the assassin of MLK. They are all cut from the same cloth.

Today’s cults seem to attract people whose lives lack meaning—and they want to be among the elite who have the secret answer. Tribal indoctrination seems to be the key, according to the show—and it is the intangible but powerful thing called charisma that seems to exude from the cult leader.

Whether it is Charles Manson, Marshall Applewhite, or some weird woman from Brazil, these cults take people with strong social needs and give them a belonging. Shatner is amusing in questioning his own audience for their beliefs. The worry is how far the cult will go under direction of their leader.

More than any other episode, this one was the most unpleasant and uncomfortable—showing us satanic killers who target innocent children, but all of them from Jim Jones and others have ordered death to innocence. Politics and hate are the latest motives for cults.

 

 

 

 

 

UnXplained Takes on Precog

DATELINE: Shatner on the Future

Seeing the future, having vibrations, dreaming of some event?  Shatner’s cynical UnXplained gives him a chance to look askance at the camera yet again.

We love it. 

Starting with a British psychic or clairvoyant, he cannot tell you why or how he has the ability. It is something he grew up with—and then enhanced with study in India and mystics. Then, there is a short mention of Biblical prophets who had no training. You learned as you went along.

Of course, we end up with tiresome Nostradamus and his incomprehensible quatrains, which border on ridiculous. Shatner suggests he is either a fake or psycho, but the usual expert talks about Hister and the S in the name written like a Swastika.

 The real surprise of the episode was the footage of 9-11 and the discussion of many people having premonitions that they would die or experience something a WTC. It is chilling to hear of these incidents. The usual experts (Nick Pope, Dr. Kaku) claim it is intuition, a natural condition in all people who make sense out of patterns they see.

 The kicker for the show is the Universal memory somewhere out there: it is , you guessed it, the Akashic Record, where all past, present, and future floats in some distant dimension—and a few lucky souls have a library card.

 Not the best in the series, but still better than most!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Shatner on Oak Island: Beam Him Down

DATELINE: UnXplained Star Visits 

 Shatner at Oak Island!

Well, if you travel across the universe and end up with the UnXplained,you will surely make a pit stop to visit with the Lagina Brothers on Oak Island. William Shatner, not slowing down at 90, is there to see what all the commotion is about.  One fan called this appearance “epical.”

He is there to interview each of the key people about what is going on: he is intrigued, but the people in the so-called War Room are in awe of Captain Kirk in their midst.

There will be no revelations, but there are insights into the past of key people like Gary Drayton who is not used to turning over the findings to the Nova Scotia government. He has a history of being a modern pirate: keeping the spoils.

Yet, Shatner is cynical enough to tell them that the metal of the lead cross, apparent Templar, that was dropped not 600 years ago, mined back then.

They show him the swages that likely made the massive structures of 1741 that indicate that no Europeans were not supposed there—but really were.

Shatner tries hard to find the logic of the mystery of Oak Island, but he needs the late Leonard Nimoy’s Spock to give him the explanation. Marty Lagina tries to play the role of the man explaining the UnXplained.

It will be interesting to see how the same interviews come out on the other History Channel show.

Shatner drives at the key question, what is the curse! But he believes that the Shakespearean manuscripts sounds most plausible, hidden by Sir Francis Bacon.

Captain Kirk digs hard at the notions of mythology and magic, and for that we give him much credit as a journalist. He is intrigued by their notion that the latest technology always renews interest in solving the mystery.

Tractor and big equipment operator Billy Gearhardt is quite eloquent in answering. His new found fans will be thrilled that he stands up to Captain Kirk in this cross-pollination of History channel hit shows.

 

 

Slow but Steady on Oak Island

DATELINE: What has We Got Here?

Big Billy & Gary

You may wonder how slowly they can go to keep us dangling. Whether it is Rick digging up the alleged 90ft stone that was the original evidence found in the Money Pit with hieroglyphic instructions.

We are becoming unsure whether the shows are in any order that makes sense. We seem to be repeating so many searches that we see stuff brought to the island for reasons unknown. We expect the Men in Black to show up next. We can’t keep our conspiracy theories from overlapping. We are beginning to feel like we are watching Geiko commercials calling themselves “sequels.” We have more smoking guns than you can shoot in 200 years.

Dr. Ian Spooner seems to be taking a second role to Gary Drayton. Not to be outdone, Billy Gearhardt has become another big star of the show—and now he’s working with Drayton.

Gary Drayton cannot be kept down forever. He keeps finding evidence that makes him the man of the moment. He is either a good luck piece or a brilliant investigator. He is only more important than Marty Lagina—but moneybags will always take position number one.

Back at the Money Pit, they find undisturbed soil, meaning they have missed the target.

Laird Niven, Billy Gearhardt and Rick Lagina move on to visit a spot where the famous 90-foot stone may be buried. There was nothing.

Yet, ever vigilant Gary finds an ancient iron pickaxe near the eye of the swamp. He speculates that they have found tunneling tools near the eye.

Now wood is found 100 years older than anything else: 1600s, confirming Dr. Spooner’s view that activity occurred around 1680.

If there is big news, it is that William Shatner will be arriving in two weeks at Oak Island. Beam us down.

To Be Taken by Takei

DATELINE: Across Culture and Sexual Stereotypes

George pulls an Errol Flynn Moment on Star Trek!

You have known him as the original Sulu on Star Trek since 1966. George Takei is as familiar as an old shoe. His autobio- documentary is To Be Takei.

Yet, his life is both moving and horrifying. As a child he was sent to several Japanese camps in Arkansas because his family was deemed disloyal and dangerous. He was subjected to an American concentration camp—and though embittered, never let it ruin his life.

Howard Stern’s radio program gave him a voice outside his acting—and made him an activist in the gay rights scene. He was in the closet until 2005 when he charged out and married his 20-year companion Brad Altman.

The little bio is filled with clips of his performances—from Twilight Zone to Rodan (voice-over) to costarring with John Wayne in The Green Berets. His family supported his acting career, but felt he would be typecast and given limited roles. He appears to have transcended the Asian stereotype while becoming the new Franklin Pangborn.

There are surprises, of course: Leonard Nimoy genuinely liked and respected him—and the animosity between Takei and Shatner is beyond uncomfortable. We don’t know what put these two into feud mode, but there it is in this film at every turn.

If the life-story tends to focus considerably on his life partner, it is understandable—as they fought for gay marriage in California. They ran into hostile people like Schwarzenegger, but George also won over Ronald Reagan to win restitution for the Japanese Americans who suffered in camps during World War II.

His busy life continues with no end in sight. To be Takei is to be a show biz dynamo/dreidel. He continues to spin and provide everyone with a big charge.

 

 

 

 

UnXplained Ends Too Soon?

 DATELINE:  Shatner Show Sort of Ends…

 Survivor Mysteries!

For the first batch of the UnXplained series, Shatner hosted a bunch of tales of survival and unusual, perhaps supernatural, abilities that caused people to overcome the worst odds. Now, the most extraordinary of these survival oments came when a commercial interrupted the series, and William Shatner himself promised us that the series is not done, after all, and will return “soon.”

Such a threat actually became a delight.

The series brought its limited run to another intriguing close with an episode that again brought disparate episodes into a kind of cohesive pattern.

We saw a six-year old boy, lost in wilderness, who walked 18 miles overnight to find a road to safety. He felt something was following him: coyotes, or something else. How he chose to make the right turns is something inexplicable all right. But he did it.

One of the hosts ofAncient Aliens recounted his boyhood experience, also unusual, when time stood still and he was able to rescue a 13-year old friend from going over a waterfall to certain death.

Another tale, close to our heart and chilling to our personal experience, related to a Titanic survivor, one of the bakers, whose story is often recounted in movies as an episode that many would call fictionalized. The wonderful scenes are from A Night to Remember!

Yet, the baker who was soused, inebriated, managed to survive in below freezing water for two hours when most others who fell into the Atlantic died, of hypothermia, in ten minutes.How did it happen? Why? No one can explain.

There was the tale of the man whose parachute did not open, and he fell three mile—defying all physical laws to end up with a broken spine (that also miraculously healed) and he was able to walk away from what should have been sure death.

And, one of the other tales told a weird, extra-sensory experience about a British woman, Clare Henry, whose avoidance of a foggy car crash that should have killed her was owed to a casual friend who had recently died in a car crash.

Yes, that friend was Princess Diana who appeared before Clare and directed her to pull off the road before she would have been killed in multi-car pileup.

 

The moments gathered together all featured some rising above physical laws and physics to areas of puzzling survival. There are hints of guardian angels and directive spirits, protective forces, and other dimensions, yet as some of the experts note:  these things have not been studied by science enough to figure out if there are forces in the universe that transcend our world.

 

Yes, we want old bill Shatner’s show to return.