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Series / Wellington Paranormal

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Officers Minogue (left) and O'Leary.

Wellington Paranormal is a 2018 six episode Comedy Horror Mockumentary series and Spin-Off of the film What We Do in the Shadows. The film's creators, Taika Waititi and Jemaine Clement, serves as executive producers on the series, and Clement has additionally directed some of the first season's episodes.

Shot in the style of police reality shows, the two Wellington police officers who followed up a noise complaint in the vampires' flat in the original film, Officers Kyle Minogue and O'Leary, tackle paranormal crime on their new assignment to Sergeant Ruawai Maaka's paranormal unit.

A second season consisting of 13 episodes has been confirmed for release in 2019.


Wellington Paratropal:

  • Agent Scully: While Minogue thinks O'Leary is this because of her analytical brain, she's consistently more skeptical of paranormal explanations for events before seeing evidence.
  • Aliens in Cardiff: In O'Leary's own words, Wellington is a very liveable city; that means it's also very liveable for the paranormal.
  • Aliens Steal Cattle: The officers investigate cows being placed on top of trees in the "Cop Circles" episode under the assumption that that aliens are behind it. At the end of the episode, a Flying Saucer makes off with cow behind them.
  • Almost Famous Name: Minogue and O'Leary get mocked by fellow officers as "Kylie Minogue and his little sister Dannii", which Minogue corrects:
    Minogue: My name is not Kylie. It's Kyle? And the E is silent.
  • Body Surf: Bazu'aal of the Unholy Realm from the "Demon Girl" episode possesses a young teenage girl, both her parents, and the family dog, and the officers take a while to catch on when he's hopped.
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  • Brick Joke: After multiple references to Officer Parker's very young looking face in the "Zombie Cops" episode, he's later assigned to be bait to get the zombie cops into jail.
    Parker: So I'm jailbait?
  • Chekhov's Gun: Minogue and O'Leary are called out on reports of something that sounds like ghosts but turns out to be a plastic bag in the "A Normal Night" episode. At the end of the episode, the plastic bag has a face and attacks Maaka in his office.
  • Clown Car: Minogue and O'Leary pull one over containing sixteen clowns in the "A Normal Night" episode, partially because the clowns creeped them out, partially because the clowns were dancing in the road and jaywalking.
  • Crop Circles: The officer find a crops circle made by Plant Aliens in the "Cop Circles" episode.
    Minogue: So, uh, we appear to have come across a large circle within some crops. We're not quite sure what to call it.
  • Cuteness Proximity: Played with: O'Leary and Minogue are too busy admiring photos of large dogs on O'Leary's phone in the "The She Wolf of Kurimarama Street" episode to notice people running past their car.
  • Death by Racism: Very narrowly averted when Māori Sergeant Maaka and white Officer Parker stage a civilian assault in the "Zombie Cops" episode with Parker 'attacking' Maaka, in the hopes of luring the zombie cops into a jail cell with Parker's fake escape. Maaka is appalled that the zombie cops - part of his own precinct, one of them Samoan - attack and try to arrest him instead.
    Maaka: Racist cops!
  • Demonic Possession: Bazu'aal of the Unholy Realm's MO.
  • Disproportionate Retribution: Maaka threatens to dock everyone's pay in the "Zombie Cops" episode if his grandmother's donuts are not returned by the end of the day.
  • Everything Is Racist: In the "A Normal Night" episode, Nick accuses Minogue and O'Leary of discrimination against vampires, before concluding that it's because he's a brown vampire and they wouldn't have arrested a white vampire.
  • Exorcist Head: Happens to Gary after being possessed by Bazu'aal from the "Demon Girl" episode.
    Oh, no, look, your neck is gonna get really sore, and I'm not massaging it tonight.
  • Ghost Amnesia: Most of the ghosts from the "Things That Do The Bump In The Night" episode don't remember that they are dead and it takes a light shining through them to convince them of their spectral nature.
  • Good Cop/Bad Cop: Subverted: When asked by Minogue to "do your bad cop" to a demon in the "Demon Girl", O'Leary deadpans, "Stop that. It's a bit scary." Surprisingly, it works.
  • Haunted House: A suburban house from the "Things That Do The Bump In The Night" episode where the party's been going since the 70's, attracting decades of noise complaints.
  • Hellgate: The Cuba Street Bucket Fountain, a beloved Wellington city landmark.
  • Hollywood Exorcism: The officers exorcise Bazu'aal in the "Demon Girl" episode using a online video tutorial and end up having to wait for the video to buffer.
  • Human Sacrifice: Bazu'aal from the "Demon Girl" episode performed a human sacrifice at dawn during his previous possessions. When he grabs Minogue, the other speculate it could be because he is a virgin.
  • I Coulda Been a Contender!: O'Leary theorizes that blood missing from the blood bank in the "A Normal Night" episode has been stolen by athletes looking for a competitive edge, and bitterly says that if she'd done the same when she was in sports, she could have won the gold.
  • Impact Silhouette: Sheena from "The She Wolf of Kurimarama Street" episode left a werewolf-shaped hole in her back door when after she transformed and went out on a rampage.
  • Incredibly Lame Pun: While the cops make his handcuffs tighter in the "A Normal Night" episode, Nick points out that they're in Taita.
  • Loads and Loads of Loading: In universe: The Unit has to look up a video tutorial to perform an exorcism in the "Demon Girl" episode, but has to wait for the video to buffer multiple times.
  • Locked into Strangeness: Maaka says that his hair turned white after seeing a ghost in the "Things That Do The Bump In The Night" episode. O'Leary points that hair is pitch-black but still insists that they are there and some of his pubes turned white then unzip his pants to show them.
  • The Masquerade: Sergeant Maaka insists on only speaking of the paranormal in the "The She Wolf of Kurimarama Street" episode, shushing Minogue for saying "werewolf" in the briefing room and telling O'Leary not to say "zombies" in front of young Officer Parker in the "Zombie Cops" episode.
    • On the other hand, Sheena's perfectly aware that werewolves exist in Wellington, citing her ex's lycanthropy as the reason she broke up with him.
  • Monster of the Week: So far including:
    • Bazu'aal of the Unholy Realm
    • Aliens making Crop Circles
    • Ghosts trapping the living at their party
    • Werewolves
    • Vampires
    • Zombies
  • Narrating the Obvious:
    (Minogue gets thrown behind some rubbish bins)
    O'Leary: We've got an officer down!
    Minogue: (getting up) Officer back up!
    O'Leary: (to camera) He's back up.
  • No Name Given: O'Leary's first name is never revealed, Minogue's is only revealed in the finale, and Maaka's is revealed on the back of the DVD.
  • Not So Above It All: Sergeant Maaka doesn't joke around on the clock, but does dress up a small dog as a cop at work in "The She Wolf of Kurimarama Street" episode.
  • Not Using the "Z" Word: Maaka tells O'Leary not to call the zombies zombies in front of Officer Parker. O'Leary resorts to "very unwell people".
  • Occult Detective: The Paranormal Unit.
  • Our Werewolves Are Different: Werewolves here need to be in view of the full moon to fully transform, so several live in Wellington for its heavy cloud cover.
  • Poke the Poodle: Upon discovering that the zombie cops from the "Zombie Cops" episode follow orders given over radio, the Paranormal Unit and Officer Parker radio them orders to perform various dance moves.
  • Psycho Ex-Girlfriend: Sheena talks about her ex-boyfriend Dion a lot even before learning that he's turned her into a werewolf. Then she tells two cops she's going to murder him and goes over to his house to yell at him.
  • Required Spinoff Crossover: What We Do in the Shadows cameos include Dion the werewolf in "The She Wolf of Kurimarama Street" and Nick the vampire, now working as a phlebotomist to steal blood from the blood bank in the "A Normal Night" episode.
  • Shout-Out:
    • To The X-Files:
      • Minogue notes his and O'Leary's passing similarity to Scully and Mulder, saying that "She's like Scully, because she's analytical, she's got the brains, and I'm a man with brown hair."
      • Maaka's underwear says "The Truth Is In Here" on the waistband.
    • The Paranormal Unit discusses the similarity of some Crop Circles from the "Cop Circles" episode to Led Zeppelin's Remasters album.
    • When Minogue cannot see O'Leary in the "Things That Do The Bump In The Night" episode despite both of them saying they are in the bathroom, he assumes one of them must be in the Upside Down from Stranger Things.
    • A gang leader's beloved dogs from the "The She Wolf of Kurimarama Street" episode are named Britney, Beyoncé, and Rihanna (or Riri).
    • Minogue and O'Leary seem to have adopted "safer communities together", a meme from actual police reality show Police Ten 7.
    • Many of Nick's attempts to perform the Jedi Mind Trick in "A Normal Night" are accompanied by hand gestures. O'Leary calls him out on a failed attempt:
      You're not Obi-Wan Kenobi.
    • Maaka knows a lot about the walking dead "from watching The Walking Dead".
    • After finding out that th zombies in the "Zombie Cops" episode follow any order given over the radio, the officers amuse themselves by making them do things like the zombie dance from Thriller Music Video and re-enacting the boat scene from Titanic.
  • Stop Copying Me: The aliens from the "Cop Circles" episode copy the officers' dialogue. Once the officers realize this, they weaponize it to have the aliens copy their fear so they can escape.
  • Take That!: A McDonalds drivethrough worker from the "Zombie Cops" episode suggests Burger King when zombie cops try to order brains.
  • Unnamed Grandparent: When Minogue falls for a Phony Psychic's vague 'messages' from someone's family member whose name has a G, he thinks it's his grandfather, whose name is apparently Granddad.
  • Unresolved Sexual Tension: Invoked by Minoque in comparing him and O'Leary to Mulder and Scully, but going by his partner's expression, it exists only in Minoque's head.
  • Vomit Indiscretion Shot: The young girl Bazu'aal first possesses in the "Demon Girl" episode vomits green fluid, leading the cops to believe she's simply drunk.
  • Your Mom: Bazu'aal cannot help but making the Obligatory Joke when possessing the body of a dog:
    Bazu'aal in dog's body: Your mother sucks cocks in hell, Minogue!
    Minogue: You're a bad dog!


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