When looking for someone to host a new show about unusual places and weird phenomena, who you gonna call?
Dan Aykroyd, of course. UnBelievable? You decide!
The “Ghostbusters” star and one-time Bass-O-Matic pitchman is back as the host of “The UnBelievable With Dan Aykroyd,” coming to History Channel on Friday.
For reasons that are not explained on the show or in the publicity materials, the “B” in “UnBelievable” is capitalized. Unbelievable!
On the show, Aykroyd -- an original “SNL” cast member and “Conehead” patriarch -- takes viewers on a worldwide tour of eerie, bizarre locales from the Great Lakes to New Zealand.
Actually, Aykroyd, 71, stays put in the setting seen in the above photo, standing behind the rear of a great clockface.
But who can blame him? The locations he describes -- aided by testimony from scientists, a podcaster and a “Jeopardy!” all-star -- are places known for the misfortunes they cause.
Want an example? How about a hazardous cave in Kenya where the guano of thousands of upside-down fruit bats contains a virus considered to be the most deadly in in the world? (according to this show).
Or, venture into a section of Lake Michigan known as the Lake Michigan Triangle and then see what happens.
According to the show, hundreds of boats and ships have sunk there since the 17th century. Unbelievable? Not really, since Dan Aykroyd and the others all say it’s true.
Betcha didn’t know there’s a creepy island on a waterway near Mexico City where thousands of dolls hang from the trees.
The “Blues Brothers” star tells us the dollies were installed there by an eccentric loner who once found the drowned body of a young girl on the island, and then set about arranging the dolls as a self-styled memorial to her.
This might actually be a phenomenon or syndrome identified in the annals of psychology. I knew an old house in Queens whose trees were similarly festooned for many years with creepy dolls.
Meanwhile, in New Zealand’s Waitomo Caves, a species of larvae emits a mysterious light that the show insists is unsettling to behold.
But wait, there’s an explanation. First, Aykroyd tells us the “larvae” are glowworms, which are the larvae of the fungus gnat. News you can use? Not really, unless you’re planning a visit to Kiwi country.
Then, one of the show’s experts explains why the larvae glows. It’s really pretty simple when you think about it. Or is it?
“They combine these enzymes in their abdomen,” he says, “to form a chemical reaction that creates this urine-tinged goop with this greenish blue glow.”
“The UnBelievable” fulfills one of TV’s fundamental purposes -- to take us places we would otherwise never visit.
Where the destinations in the show are concerned, never visiting them sounds like a great idea.
“The UnBelievable with Dan Aykroyd” premieres on Friday, December 1, at 10 p.m. Eastern on History Channel.