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Friday, June 16, 2017

Thoughts on Fact or Faked Beast of Dartmoor

A week or two ago, I happened to catch an episode of Fact or Faked: Paranormal Files when they were "investigating" the Beast of Dartmoor, an anomalous big cat (or, more likely, big cats). Watching about five minutes of the show reminded me why I don't usually like paranormal/cryptozoology shows.

They were investigating the video below, suspiciously titled "The Beast of Dartmoor? (as seen on Fact or Faked)." It was uploaded to YouTube on May 22, 2008. The uploader says: "I spotted this animal while filming shots of Dartmoor for a video competition about 3 years ago. It's definitely not a rabbit and it seems to bound like a cat which boars physically can't do (plus it has a long tail). And it isn't a hellhound as they are fictional. Other than that, your guess is as good as mine."

Now, before the Fact or Faked team actually got around to comparing the video to some other animals, they did one of the things that paranormal TV has to do: talk with an "expert" in the field. But, I do have to give it to them as they did talk to someone who is probably as close to an "expert" as you can be concerning cryptozoology - Jonathan Downes. But, alas, when they went to talk to Jon, his part was cut to only about two sentences which they seemed to completely ignore later. Jon gave a little history on the Beast of Dartmoor and that it is supposed to be a big cat. But if I remember correctly, the Fact or Faked team thought it was a canine creature!
Jon Downes, actual cryptozoologist

Anyway, they then went to a zoo (forget which one) to film some animals running, including a pony and a lion (among others, but I don't remember what those others were, as I really don't care). They then superimposed them onto the video of the BoD to compare it to the original. Needless to say none of them really matched.

And that's about when I stopped watching.

Now, some thoughts.

First of all, the video they were investigating is an obvious hoax. The thing in it looks like it was created with CG. And it does look more like a canine than a feline. I also find it funny that on the YouTube description the uploader says he was "filming shots of Dartmoor for a video competition" when this particular video would probably loose any video competition in the world, unless it was for the most blurry!

The fact that the TV show (and other shows too) didn't give a crap about actual info about the BoD that someone who has actually looked into the mystery had to say made me mad too. But that's the way it goes with paranormal TV. Have some hosts who have no clue what they're talking about, have someone who does know what they're talking about for less than two minutes, show a blurry video that's most likely an obvious hoax, and try in vain to recreate it. All while probably giving incorrect facts the whole time, too, like the Fact or Faked crew did.

Needless to say I wouldn't recommend this show. If you see this particular Fact or Faked (or probably any of them) on, don't bother watching it. If it got a rating from me it would be a good 0/10.

And one last thing, too - the video uploader says that it "isn't a hellhound," but if it was real (which it isn't) that would be what it looks like most!

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