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The First Televised Exorcism

Long before The Real World was even a concept, the news was where TV viewers turned to see what was happening in “reality.” Today, with the profusion of “ghost hunting” paranormal TV shows, which feature over-the-top hamming for the camera and camera techniques that try to increase the suspense and eerie atmosphere of the location, we have a different idea of what a televised exorcism looks like. But in 1971, when NBC interviewed the Becker family of Chicago about their experiences living in a haunted house, and filmed the “cleansing” or exorcism of their home, it was absolutely sensational and provoking TV. Psychic Joseph DeLouise and Rev. William Derl-Davis are filmed as they channel the spirit haunting the house, and the family is interviewed about their experiences by NBC correspondent Carole Simpson. This short documentary inspired the book True Haunting by Edwin Becker, and no doubt was influential on the future incarnations of paranormal TV. Watch the first televised exorcism below!

 

Written By

Meghan MacRae grew up in Vancouver, Canada, but spent many years living in the remote woods. Living in the shadow of grizzly bears, cougars and the other predators of the wilderness taught her about the dark side of nature, and taught her to accept her place in nature's order as their prey. She is co-founder of CVLT Nation.

1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. Ralph J. Rivera

    July 20, 2015 at 3:40 pm

    Have you ever seen a movie called “The Atticus Institute”? Supposedly based on real military experiments with possession.

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