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Podcast / Astonishing Legends

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Astonishing Legends is a podcast about all things paranormal, supernatural, and (as the name implies) legendary entities and goings-on. The podcast is hosted by Forrest Burgess and Scott Philbrook, with the help of their massive and devoted research team (called the ARC, or Astonishing Research Corps) led by Tess Pfeifle, and behind-the-mics staff. Scott and Forrest dive deep into each topic and make a point of emphasizing the human elements of each story, not just the cool supernatural parts.

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The average episode runs about two hours in length, and stories often span multiple episodes until the team feels they have examined the topic to their satisfaction. The first section of each episode/story usually details the backstory of the topic, transitioning to a very thorough description and retelling of the event, and ends with Scott and Forrest discussing various theories to explain the given topic, then deciding which ones they find more likely.

Astonishing Legends can be found on most podcasting services, or on their website here: [1]


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Astonishing Legends contains examples of:

  • Agent Mulder: Both Scott and Forrest, by nature of the show, though this better applies to Forrest. Scott tends to espouse the more fantastic/paranormal views, while Forrest favors conspiracy theories/Clarke's Third Law.
  • Agent Scully: Again, both of the hosts! Scott and Forrest both express doubt and skepticism at various theories and ideas, if just to play Devil's Advocate and examine possible holes in theories.
  • Catchphrase: Several! Most frequently "...if you believe any of this at all."
  • The Conspiracy: Mentioned and discussed in several episodes, typically by resident Conspiracy Theorist Forrest.
  • Creepy Child: The focus of the episodes on the black-eyed kids.
  • The Dead Have Names: Serious Business for the hosts. All people who die or are harmed in each story have their names and a bit of their personalities and lives described.
    • Notably, in the Dyatlov Pass story, Scott lists all ten of the people involved and gives brief introductions of each person to emphasize that they were people. Scott can be heard getting choked up while talking in this section.
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  • Demonic Possession: Discussed in the episodes on the alleged possession of Anneliese Michel.
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: A viewpoint occasionally expressed by Scott, often when discussing the more mundane elements of stories.
  • The Illuminati: Often jokingly name-checked by the hosts in lighter moments.
  • Info Dump: Essentially the entire show.
  • Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: Regardless of the hosts' own views and beliefs about the episode's topic, this tends to be the overall vibe of the show. Scott and Forrest (and the Astonishing Research Corps) strive to find scientific explanations and less fantastic ideas before getting into the more paranormal stuff.
  • The Men in Black: Come up in several episodes, typically first mentioned by Forrest.
  • Our Cryptids Are More Mysterious: The subjects of several stories, including Bigfoot, The Jersey Devil, and the Mothman.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Frequently discussed in relation to supernatural entities, to the point of becoming a bit of a joke between Scott and Forrest.
  • Skeptic No Longer: As of September 2018, Scott describes himself as this (in the context of belief in evil as a physical presence on Earth)
  • Skinwalker: Subject of the episodes on Skinwalker Ranch.
  • Stock Unsolved Mysteries: Oh yes! To list just a few:
    • The Somerton Man (also known as the "Tamam Shud" case)
    • The Dyatlov Pass incident
    • The Oak Island Money Pit
    • And many, many, many more!
  • Youkai: Subject of an episode.

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