When British ghost-hunting import Most Haunted aired stateside in the mid 2000s, little did we know its format and stock characters would inspire a host of American reality-show imitators. With an ex-footballer psychic medium pitted against a skeptical “scientific” observer, the show popularized the overnight haunted site visit, shot in eerie night-vision green. Just in time for Halloween, herewith is a helpful roundup of today’s terrifyingly entertaining ghost-hunting reality shows, organized by shtick. Be afraid! Be very…well, maybe not so afraid.

One day a close friend confided to me, “My mom has been meeting guys in chat rooms, pretending to be me.” It was 1999, in the murky days of online life when we were content to let AOL dictate how we used the internet. Imparting our deepest, darkest secrets to strangers? Sure! Why not? Many people I knew had wandered into chat rooms a few times for fun, but this woman’s behavior was odd. She was a great, seemingly normal 50-something single mother in every other regard. Why would she need to use her daughter as an alias to meet people? I didn’t get it.