We don't want to give anybody sleepless nights.

1992 | Color | 1 Hr 31 Min | Horror | PG-13 | BBC

Director: Lesley Manning

Writer: Stephen Volk

Michael Parkinson
Sarah Greene
Mike Smith

The BBC gives over a whole evening to an 'investigation into the supernatural'. Four respected presenters and a camera crew attempt to discover the truth behind 'The most haunted house in Britain', expecting a light-hearted scare or two and probably the uncovering of a hoax. They think they are in control of the situation. They think they are safe. The viewers settle down and decide to watch 'for a laugh'. Ninety minutes later the BBC and the country was changed, and the consequences are still felt today.

On Halloween 1992 the BBC aired their Mocumentry Ghostwatch that lead viewers into hysteria! It was so scary it caused PTSD, Labor, and sadly suicide of a ten-year-old boy. With 11 million people watching this one-off which appeared to be broadcast live from a house in Northolt, troubled by a malevolent presence that manifested itself by banging on the water pipes. With its Crimewatch-style setup, complete with a Crimestoppers style phone number flashing at the bottom of the screen "Pipes" become folklore that night that is still talked about today.

Even the News set was fascinating. 

And with so many children watching and with plenty of clues along the way that the programme was fake people still believed what they were watching was real. As for those children maybe they shouldn’t have been up – it was broadcast after the 9pm but that didn’t mean anything if your parents let you watch it and it was Halloween for crying out loud I know I would have been up!

Yeah Pipes is here!

The first 45 minutes of the programme were rather sedated. Then things started to go wrong. Even tho I knew it was fake those little girls really suck you into there world! I could escape by reminding myself its only a movie so I can understand watching this live holy crap! Ghostwatch freaks you out all the way to the end and lingers in your mind for a while after. 

The girls where just the right amout of creepy. 

Pipes was described as a bald man in a long black dress buttoned up to the neck. Almost with affection, the little girl pulled the reporter to the cupboard under the stairs to show her where he “lived”. Gradually, the fake phone-ins started to flesh out the story of the house: one caller revealed that a child molester had lodged there in the 1960s; he had hanged himself under the stairs and his face had been eaten by cats. As the “public” began to contribute, the presenters began to flounder. All the time, there were real members of the public trying to get through! All I can say is brilliant. 

Do you see him?

If you have a chance to watch Ghostwatch this Halloween season turn out the lights and let your self-escape into the movie and I promise it will still leave you gasping for air! After you have watched it make sure to google the after effect. Might not be War of the Worlds but it helped lunch Point of View horror like The Blair Witch Project. 

4 Bloody Brains out of 5

Ghostwatch is currently playing on Shudder.


  1. Whoa, that is crazy! I should give this one a watch, after I put the kids to bed.


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