If repeated viewings of Ghostbusters has taught us anything, it’s that, among other things, ghosts are totally real (a movie like that had to be based on a true story, right?). And video-sharing sites are filled to the brim with such brushes with the paranormal. Alas, while some are pretty darn convincing, many are overblown figments of the imagination or blatant hoaxes designed to fool the credulous. But we’re onto their little game with these five debunked ghost videos.
1) Space Mountain Ghost
You wouldn’t think that Disneyland—"the happiest place on Earth"—would have it’s share of ghost stories, and yet, behold, it actually has quite a few. Of them, cast members and patrons have reported sightings of “Disco Debbie”: The glowing ghost of a young woman who allegedly performed on the Space Stage in 1979, dying of a brain aneurism late one night—whose spirit is seen entering one of the cars in the video. Is it real? Yes and no. Yes, there was a cast member named Deborah Gail Stone, but she died in July 1974 in a tragic mishap in the long defunct America Sings attraction. And no, that is not her ghost cutting the line in Space Mountain, just the blue lights of the queue reflecting off the camera.
2) Marathon Gas Station Ghost/Angel
It must have been a slow news day for CNN when they reported that a rinky-dink fueling station captured footage of an amorphous ethereal blob floating around the gas pumps. But worse than the sighting being deemed newsworthy were people going as far to say it was a ghost or angel. At the risk of looking stupid, we’re going to guess that maybe it’s a—gee, we don’t know—a bug or debris on the camera lens?! We highly doubt that one of heaven’s angelic guardians came down to deliver souls at a gas station... unless it wanted to see for itself if the microwave chimichangas were as good as people claim.
3) Ghost of Michael Jackson
Mirroring the fallout of Elvis Presley’s death, thousands of delirious fans began reporting posthumous sightings of Michael Jackson from around the world. However, there was one in particular that caught the globe’s attention: Footage from Larry King Live of the King of Pop’s ghost moonwalking through a room in Neverland Ranch. While some practically hailed the manifestation as MJ’s second coming, skeptics and analysts debunked it as a crew member’s shadow being cast from outside, confirming that his mansion wasn’t haunted nor an elaborate plug for his 1997 short film, Ghosts.
4) Woman Walks Through Ghost
We’ve seen plenty of fabricated ghost videos in our time, but at least they had some shred of decency to make it seem plausible. This one... we don’t think the person who made this even bothered to try. Grainy camera quality aside, just about anyone cane see that the ghost has been rendered, saying nothing of the fact that it’s just standing there. Motionless. Like it’s waiting patiently for a bus that’s never going to show up.
5) Jakarta Angel
Surveillance footage of what appeared to be an angel-like being descending upon Cilandak Town Square in Jakarta, Indonesia caught the media’s attention on Sept. 11, 2011, causing many people to believe in the heavenly creatures’ existence. It’s an interesting video, we’ll give it that much, but the angel is nothing more than the product of low budget computer graphics. On closer inspection you can tell that the angel was superimposed onto the video, lighting effects making it appear authentic. Secondly, the security guards’ reaction after it bounces away comes off as scripted. This makes us wonder if the Jakarta angel was part of a viral marketing campaign for an unaired SyFy Original Movie.
Do you believe in ghosts?