'Spooked Ireland' Ghost Hunters Play A Spectral Game Of 'Guess Who?' To Reveal A Spirit's Face
The second episode of 'Spooked Ireland' aired this week on the Really channel. Led by Vogue Williams and Chris Fleming, they became the first television team to investigate the iconic King John's Castle in Limerick.
The historic castle is said to be teeming with shadowy reports and has countless ominous tales to its name. To try to get to the bottom of the hauntings, the team employed a method that ingeniously marries technology with a classic board game. Could a game reminiscent of childhood favourite 'Guess Who?' genuinely uncover the face of a lingering spirit?
Built in the 13th century and named after Richard the Lionheart's brother, John, the castle rests on King's Island, surrounded by a bustling modern city. Reports of shadows, unsettling noises, and eerie phenomena in the castle have reached an all-time high.
During his initial psychic sweep of the castle with tech expert Ryan O'Neill, Chris reports hearing men yelling and footsteps stomping in the empty castle. When Vogue meets James, a staff member of the castle, to learn about its bloody history, Chris' psychic vision starts to make sense. Constructed over a century amid persistent harassment by Irish warlords, the castle has seen five sieges. During one particularly brutal siege in 1652, plague victims were flung over the castle walls to infect the defenders. James also mentions feeling a gust of wind and witnessing a shadowy mass near siege tombs, further reinforcing the castle's haunted reputation.
Local expert Ocean McCormack shares the story of the 'black lady,' a mysterious spirit captured on video. While the show's parapsychologist Evelyn Hollow can't debunk the footage, Ryan's footstep tracker fails after just one hit, hinting at possible paranormal activity.
As the team gets stuck into their investigation, they grapple with more challenges like faulty audio gear that makes their investigation eerier.
Photo: © Discovery+
Towards the end of the episode, the team took an unconventional approach to unmask the mysterious shadow figure haunting the castle. The method, which was formulated by Ryan, utilises a gadget known as a 'yes-no device', which responds solely with yes or no answers. This was paired with some facial composite software, similar to what the police use to create Photofits. "We've got an FBI-type software called Faces which we can put together a face hopefully of the shadow that's been seen," Ryan explained. This method allowed the investigators to ask yes-or-no questions about the ghost's appearance, subsequently using the software to generate a face based on these ethereal affirmations or negations.
Vogue took charge of asking a series of questions about the entity's hair, eyes, and gender. "Do you have short hair? Yes. Do you have dark hair? No. Do you have blue eyes? Yes. Are you a man? Yes," she called out, noting the response on the yes-no device each time. The answers not only narrowed down the entity's appearance but also gave fresh insights into who or what could be haunting the castle.
The generated face was void of distinctive features, a gaunt, androgynous visage with short hair, small eyes, a slender nose, and notably large lips. Chris noted the face bore the hallmarks of a spirit in pain, stating, "That does not look like a happy face. It looks like it's been through a lot of pain and suffering."
While the approach is undoubtedly inventive, Chris hinted at this ambiguity, noting that sometimes spirits form faces that are 'smoothed out', almost like masks. Skeptics may argue that the generated face could be a technological approximation rather than an accurate spiritual representation.
The third episode of 'Spooked Ireland' airs on the Really Channel this Friday at 9pm. If you've missed the investigation of King John's Castle, you can watch this and the first episode on demand and for free on Discovery+ now.
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