Why Does This Man Chase Monsters – The Paranormal Podcast 821

Why does our guest chase monsters for a living? Seth Breedlove is the world’s most successful monster movie maker with his independent production house, Small Town Monsters.

We talk about his career, why he does what he does and why he’s gone from a skeptic to someone who believes that there is more to cryptid legends than many believe.

Find the STM Kickstarter that we talk about at https://Kickstarter.com and search for Small Town Monsters!

Thanks Seth!

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TRANSCRIPT

Announcer (00:13):

This is the Paranormal Podcast with Jim Harold.

Jim Harold (00:17):

Welcome to the Paranormal Podcast. I am Jim Harold, and so glad to be with you once again. And today we’re going to talk with someone I admire. I admire what he’s done. He’s basically taken the idea and his passion for things like Monsters encrypted and built his own movie studio right in basically rural Ohio, which I think is amazing. It’s a huge success. It’s called Small Town Monsters. He’d been doing it for years. He’s been on the show many times and we’re so glad to have him. Seth Breedlove. Welcome back to the show. So glad to speak with you once again.

Seth Breedlove (00:52):

Yeah, thanks for having me, Jim. Big, big fan. Always a big fan.

Jim Harold (00:56):

Well, thank you. And we were joking before, usually we spend 10 minutes talking about how you started and you were listening to my shows and all these things. We’re going to skip that. We’re going to talk now about where Small Town monsters is and where it’s going. Actually, this is going to air in February and right now you guys are doing something really, really big. It’s really, really important to keep this a going concern and successful, right?

Seth Breedlove (01:22):

Yeah, yeah. We’re on our 10th, this is our 10th anniversary, not the 10th anniversary Kickstarter, but our 10th Kickstarter. The actual 10 year anniversary of Small Town Monsters is next year, but we launch a Kickstarter every February, very early February that runs into March, and that is a big piece of how we fund what we do at Small Town Monsters. And this year we are funding on the trailer Bigfoot, the Ancients, Cryptid the Goat Man. Courtney’s holding up a list of the movies so I don’t forget them. Lost Contact and Dog Man Territory, which is a movie about the lamb between the lakes and Dog Man sightings and the lamb between the lakes. There’s also, if this is airing in February, by then it’ll have been announced. So we are also doing a fifth surprise, fifth movie called Cursed Waters, the Creature of Lake Okanagan, which was filmed last May in British Columbia and is about Ogopogo. And then there’s also, one of our books is also a part of the campaign this year, which is called, I’m blanking. Wait, where is it? Hunting Grounds!

Jim Harold (02:40):

Yeah.

Seth Breedlove (02:41):

There’s so much stuff that we’re doing anymore that I, it’s hard just to keep track of all the different projects. We’re about to announce an additional three films tomorrow on the live stream. That’ll air right up to the Kickstarter launch too. So yeah,

Jim Harold (02:59):

Recording this everybody on January 31st. The Kickstarter starts on Feb first, so if we refer back to – we’re not in a time machine, it’s just that this was prerecorded a little bit before it aired. Now, Seth, how many, as of February 1st, 2024. How many films has Small Town Monsters done

Seth Breedlove (03:24):

Close to… I’m trying to think because it will be, it’ll 27, 28, somewhere in that neighborhood, but we already have two of next year’s shot, so in my head it’s 30. By the time this year wraps up, it’ll be well over 30 because we’re putting out six to eight this year. So there’s a lot, but then the episodic content is really taking a front seat here as well. I’m not working on any of that this year outside of producing it and helping to bankroll it. But the episodic content is really about to step into the limelight. At STM, we’re filming a show at the Canton Palace Theater here in two weeks, I think that is called UFOs Revisited. UFOs Revisited, which is probably a 15 to 18 episode series, kind of exploring the rich history of ufology and ufology cases and phenomenon associated with it. And then we’re also doing another season of On the Trail of UFOs, we are doing more of Bigfoot Beyond the Trail. There’s a show that’s already running called Road to Discovery. There’s more Sasquatch Unearthed coming. I mean, the amount of content we’re putting, we’re at 150 hours worth of content created over the last 10 years at this point.

Jim Harold (05:01):

Wow, that’s a lot. That’s a lot. So basically, so people understand, you’ve got your regular mainline films, which you start out with are your bread and butter, those are available on various video on demand outlets, correct?

Seth Breedlove (05:15):

That’s correct, yeah. Yeah, they are. Right now, if you go looking for a lot of our stuff, it isn’t available. Most of that has to do with the legal issues we had with the previous distributor, but we are literally today in the process of launching these back onto Amazon and Tubi and things like that, they will be available hopefully by very early March. The bulk of the catalog will be back on most of the streaming platforms. But that is, yeah, we refer to those as the feature films that it’s the way we built the company. It continues to be my main focus as a creator. I love telling those long form stories and especially on the Trail of Bigfoot series, but what I’m working on right now editing is Dogman Territory, so there is a huge focus on the feature films as well.

Jim Harold (06:07):

And then this episodic content, people find that on YouTube, is that generally where they find it? YouTube?

Seth Breedlove (06:13):

YouTube for now, but the reason we’re focusing on it so heavily is Tubi has become a big outlet for that stuff as well. You can find Sasquatch Unearthed, The Ridge and the first season of Bigfoot Beyond the Trail on Tubi. Now we’ll have the Bigfoot project, we’ll have most of the episodic content on Tubi here in the next two months. And then we are preparing to launch our own Fast channel this spring, which is called Unexplained TV. And that will be, we’re not sure yet the platforms it’ll be available on, but the Fast Channel will hopefully be on Roku and Sling and things like that.

Jim Harold (06:54):

So if people aren’t familiar, what is a Fast channel?

Seth Breedlove (06:57):

So that is Free Ad Supported Television, so it’s constantly 24 hours a day streaming all the different content we’ve created. And that would include the films.

Jim Harold (07:09):

Yeah, that is neat.

Seth Breedlove (07:10):

It won’t be relegated to just the episodic content. We’ll have our movies on there and it’ll be programmed. We’re planning some really exciting things with that. There’s going to be themed days where we stream like eight hours of werewolf themed movies or six hours of Mothman stuff, whatever it is, and that’ll be constantly streaming 24/7.

Jim Harold (07:31):

Oh, that is awesome.

Seth Breedlove (07:32):

That’s kind of like the future of our company, honestly. It is going to position us in a place where we’re able to basically control our own distribution going forward. So that’s why we’re really focusing so heavily on the episodic side of the company.

Jim Harold (07:53):

Well, that’s really interesting because really if you look at things like Pluto, things like Tubi, things like freebie, these things are the things that are taking over. A lot of the for pay streaming services are not doing well. It’s really the ad supported ones. So kudos for you to get going on that and bring the content to the people and find them where they are and allow them to enjoy and get the information and the entertainment another way to reach people. Now also, you have a publishing arm. That’s been another thing that you’ve been doing with books. How’s that going?

Seth Breedlove (08:31):

It’s great. The most exciting thing that happened with the publishing side of the company this past year was the release of the Dogman Triangle book and film. We had done a couple books prior to that. One was a children’s book called The Veggie Man, and the other one was the Kinder Hook Creature by Bruce Hallenbeck. But then when we put out a Dogman Triangle by Aaron Deese, we were able to tie a film directly into it. And I love the process of bringing the book to an audience that might not have discovered it otherwise. And this was all done completely. I mean, we’re a very small company, so we self-published this book. I mean, you could call it self-publishing, calling ourselves a publisher, but this is all new territory for us. So being able to tie in a piece of content to the book and then introduce the book to an audience that might not have otherwise found it was really cool for us.

(09:36):

And that was by far the most successful book we put out. So this year, pretty much everything we’re doing publishing wise will tie into some sort of feature or episodic series or a special, so we are doing Dog man territory and okay, I need Jason Hewlett’s book, Jason Hewlett. Courtney is literally going to sit here and feed this to me because otherwise I’m not going to remember. So Jason Hewlett is an author from British Columbia who wrote a book about Ogopogo, which is called we don’t know. Then we have a book by Ron Murphy coming out later this year that is about mystery lights, which I think we do have a title for, but I don’t have it in front of me. So a lot of this has just come up to in the last month and (off-mic voice) No. So it’s a lot, but we’re publishing three books this year and then there’s probably going to be more coming next year. But as a company, the funnest thing for us is to be able to put out the book, but then also create something that sort of centers around it and puts the author of that book in the spotlight.

Jim Harold (10:50):

And then you also have the live event, which was a new thing for you last year. You’re doing it again, Monsterfest 2. I was glad to be at the first one. Thrilled to be coming to the second one as well, being there doing a live Campfire. Talk about that. I mean, people would look at everything you’ve said to date and say, man, he’s got a lot on his plate. That’s enough. And you say, no, I’m going to add a major live event, which I got to say, I mean, I’m biased obviously because I’m a part of the event, but I was just amazed at how well it went off last year being a first time event and people were commenting, had a great time. This was fantastic. When’s the next one? I mean, it really had a great vibe to it, but why live events added to all this other stuff?

Seth Breedlove (11:38):

Well, we used to do an event here called Minerva Monster Day. So it kind of sprung out of my, I love doing that event. And it was honestly, the reason we’re today is because of Minerva Monster Day, I was able to drum up all this interest from the media surrounding that event. MonsterFest is a little different. That is sort of like a Comic-Con atmosphere that it’s focused on the paranormal and cryptids. But the biggest thing for me was always doing something that was family friendly. Honestly, most of the stuff we do is geared at all ages, and I have a son, I want him to be able to experience this stuff, and I know a lot of the events I go to aren’t necessarily interested in being inviting of children or families in general. So that was the impetus for it.

(12:38):

It was really creating an event that was inviting of all ages and that they can come in and learn about Bigfoot and Cryptids and things like that and experience this stuff and maybe gain their own interest in some of these subjects. Whether you believe in Bigfoot or not, it’s a fascinating thing, and it gets kids in the woods. It gets kids out exploring and trying to find new things. And so that for me was always the goal with the event was to do something that was all ages appropriate where we could also, we try to do a mix of guests, folks like yourself or the Astonishing Legends guys, people that everyone knows, Cliff Barackman, but then there’s people that they might not have the familiarity with, like Aaron Deese and some of the other,  Amy Boo, some of the local researchers and things like that.

(13:35):

So we try to get a good mix of guests involved. And then this year we’re also introducing the workshops alongside the speakers. So there’s a pretty broad range of activities that’ll be involved. There’s a screening room and then the vendor hall, which is around 70 vendors, something like that. So there’s a lot of people that come to this and it’s like their introduction to the paranormal because kids 12 and under get in free too, which is great for families, especially locally who want to come out and attend an event like this for free. They’re kids for free.

Jim Harold (14:14):

No, I thought it was a lot of fun. It really, this would be a thing if I weren’t appearing at it and doing the podcast and meeting people. I would attend it just for fun because it just really is that good. It was really excellent. It was really excellent. I’m looking forward to this year. And that’s happening June 28th and 29th, is that right?

Seth Breedlove (14:33):

Is it June 28th and 29th? Yes. Yes. It’s a good thing. Jim knew that because I didn’t.

Jim Harold (14:41):

Well, we kind of talked about the business, but no business is anything without its people. And you talk about family and when I was around you guys, ‘cause I’d never, we’d done this a million times. We met when we went out to Colorado. We’ve told that story a million times, to be on George Noory show, coincidentally at the same time. That’s how we met. But I’d never been at one of these events and I was struck by you and your team and the family environment and how you guys get along and you’re like the dad of this family of filmmakers and researchers and people are united in their interest in this stuff. Can you talk about the Small Town Monsters Family, your staff? Because you have a lot of very knowledgeable, very smart, very great people, but people that all, I kept thinking, these people are pulling in the same direction, and that’s really kind of hard to pull off. Can you talk about that a little bit?

Seth Breedlove (15:39):

Well, and I would include people like you in that family, honestly, because I mean, we are, so some of the crew I’ve known forever, Zack Palmisano, who’s my director of photography, Jason Utes, who does our sound and behind the scenes photography and is going to be the programming director for Unexplained TV. They’ve been friends, we’ve been friends since we were kids. And then Mark Matzke and I got started in of all of this around the same time. We did a podcast together called SasWhat, Heather and Courtney came into STM around the same time, and they’ve grown up together. And then Aleksander Petakov, despite the fact he lives in New Hampshire, is a vital part of the crew and has been involved since 2016. And Eli Watson has been doing stuff now for five years with us. So as far as just, I don’t know what it is, you connect with certain people, whether it’s on a person, your personalities click or you just have the same kind of outlook on this stuff, whatever it is that brings us together. I do consider it a family. I’ve always called us a family. We take care of each other and we’re all kind of aligned in the direction we’re heading, but there are people that are outside, I don’t consider it that, but that might not be on the payroll or directly a part of SDM like Shannon or people like yourself or some of the researchers. We work regularly with, like Cliff.

(17:19):

You do find that over time that whether it’s that you see things the same way or you just might not take it as seriously; sometimes it’s just the fact that you can both laugh at certain things that sort of gets you on the same wavelength.

Jim Harold (17:39):

I think it’s important. I mean, I take experience seriously and I believe there is something to this stuff, but I mean, I don’t know if you’re familiar, but there’s this comedian by the name of UFO Phil, I don’t know if you’ve ever seen him. He’s a hoot and he does a lot of stuff with Coast to Coast AM and stuff. I’ve had him on a couple shows, and then I had Rainn Wilson on the show who was doing a podcast where he was spoofing paranormal podcast hosts and acting in the role. And I laughed at it, and some people were like, well, you’re not taking this seriously. It’s like I can take it seriously and laugh just like I can politics or religion or anything. I think it’s good to have both sides of that. I mean, I take this very seriously. I believe there’s something to much of it.

(18:23):

I really believe that. I don’t think every leaky faucet is a ghost. I don’t think every creature seen in the wood is a bigfoot. I don’t think every light in the sky is an alien, but I think it might be the case in some of those cases. So I take it seriously. But I think you also have to have a sense of humor about life in general. In fact, I would say that’s what’s wrong with our society today a lot. One of the things, nobody can laugh at themselves. We’re all so serious and so pious and our viewpoints are always right. So yeah, I think having a sense of humor about it and taking it seriously, both, I think you can walk and chew gum at the same time.

Seth Breedlove (19:01):

Yeah, yeah, that’s a big part of what brings the crew together. I mean, we just had a meeting for the Kickstarter earlier today, and it was mostly us just making fun of each other, and that’s pretty common for how things function here.

Jim Harold (19:18):

Well, I think you’ve got a winning formula there. When we get back, I want to talk with Seth about, we talked about the business, we talked about how everything works at Small Town Monsters. Now we want to talk a little bit about the monsters right after this on the Paranormal Podcast. 

(19:34)

Welcome back to the Paranormal Podcast. I am Jim Harold, and so glad to come back from the break and talk more with Seth Breedlove of Small Town Monsters. So let’s get to that monsters part now. Just to recap, if I remember correctly, again, for people who haven’t heard us talk before, I think you started out, correct me if I’m wrong, as someone who was really interested in this, but you weren’t necessarily a believer. I don’t think you were a debunker. I don’t think you were a hardcore I’m going to disprove all of this, but you were probably a little more on the skeptical side than the believer side when you started out. Is that an accurate representation? Where were you at that time?

Seth Breedlove (20:16):

It’s fairly accurate. My eyes were wide open to the whole thing when I got into it. And there’s been a trajectory of I don’t buy any of this to, I buy some of it, back to I don’t buy any of this and then to where I am today, especially with Bigfoot, where I’ve actually had a sighting. So I 100% think those things are real. I think anyone that’s involved in this would be dishonest if they claimed that every day of the week they bought 90% of the stuff they’re told. And so yeah, there’s been a path that I’ve been on while I’m into it. And over the course of that, you form your own opinions on different topics. I certainly don’t lump in Bigfoot with things like Dog Man or Mothman or the paranormal side of stuff. And I have different opinions on UFOs than I did five years ago. So I’m sure you’re the same way I am, but I think that’s common for people that are in this as long as we’ve been.

Jim Harold (21:26):

Yeah, I often say with Bigfoot, because that’s one I’ve always had and I’ve not had an experience unfortunately. I mean, that would be kind of neat. That would be a neat thing to have that experience. But it’s a situation where some days I’m all in, I’m like, yes, Bigfoot exists, and then next day it’s like, well, why haven’t they found a body and why haven’t they found this, found that? And I know the reasons why. We all know the reasons why, but it’s like you go back and forth and then I look at the Patterson Gimlin film again, remastered, and you see muscle tone. That’s not an outfit. That’s not a costume. So I mean, again, it kind of depends on the day of the week that you catch me, but I do, I believe there’s probably something to it, mainly because of the witnesses. And I got to think for you, you have a lot of contact directly with storytellers. I do in an audio sense with Campfire, but you do with the movies and you go out and see these people, you see their faces, and I’ve got to believe that the experiencers have informed a lot of the way you feel about this, right?

Seth Breedlove (22:35):

Yeah, and I mean, there’s a weird thing that happened maybe. I mean, I think it’s always been going on, but especially in the last five years where people like to echo this idea that testimony doesn’t matter that we need some, we have to have some sort of definitive proof or evidence in front of us, some physical evidence in front of us. But yeah, for me, it always comes down to the stories I’m told and who is telling them. I have been doing this for coming up on 20 years because despite the fact I’ve only been doing small town monsters for 10, before I got into this, I was doing newspaper reporting. So I’ve talked to people and taken stories a good chunk of my life, and I do think that I have a pretty good sense BS detector as people call it, and I don’t buy every story I’m told, but the thing that it always comes down to for me, or the most believable witnesses are the ones who have nothing to gain by telling their story, are very hesitant to tell their story.

(23:54):

Those are the ones I’m the most interested in. I bristle when I have people reaching out to me begging to be involved in a project, because to me, that’s a red flag. Typically, the most believable witnesses I’ve interviewed are people who actually have no interest in going in front of the camera, who I basically have to spend a good deal of time convincing to come in front of the camera to tell their story. There is becoming, and I’m sure you’ve experienced this to some degree, there is a desire, I think, to have some form of celebrity by concocting a story and telling it on camera. But I would say 90% of the witnesses we have on camera in our films are people we had to coax into doing that. And so yeah, for me, the testimony, witness testimony is always going to be the biggest part of the evidence side of all of this that I am drawn to.

(24:59):

It drives me crazy when we put out content on YouTube and you get a billion comments with people begging for foot casts or believable photographs or video or whatever because there isn’t, there’s no evidence here of Bigfoot, well, what do you call the 20 minute witness story that sort of wraps this whole thing up to begin with. So yeah, for me it’s the stories rather than any one piece of physical evidence because frankly, the physical evidence across phenomenon is, it is lacking, whether it’s UFOs or ghosts or whatever. It’s lacking, and I don’t know what attributes to that. I don’t know what accounts for that. If I did, we’d all know whether or not any of this stuff is 100% real or not. I mean, I’m as confused today as why we don’t have a Bigfoot body or a photo as I was 10 years ago, and I just saw one of these things two years ago, I don’t understand how on a property where I had trail cameras set up, I don’t have photos of the things that I know were on the property, and there were multiple. So it’s as confusing today as ever that we don’t have more physical proof of Bigfoots and UFOs and ghosts.

Jim Harold (26:22):

Yeah

Seth Breedlove (26:23):

I mean UFOs are out there, but…

Jim Harold (26:25):

It’s so true because the thing is people say, well, you must have, you’ve been doing this 19 years now. You must have it all figured out 19 years, come this July. And it’s like, no, I have more questions now than when I started. I’m just more convinced these things are real. In some cases, I’m talking about all the phenomena that there is a reality to these things really happening and that the world is a lot stranger than we give it credit for. That’s the thing I think I’ve learned, but in terms of being able to say, this is the explanation or that’s the explanation, I don’t know. I don’t know. I just ask questions. So now getting back to the witnesses, to me for Bigfoot, I think some of the most compelling things would be you’ve got somebody who’s been a forestry worker or someone who’s been a hunter for 30 years, people that were born and raised.

(27:24):

Born and raised. Yeah, well, my family’s from West Virginia. I was about to say. So I come by it, honestly, born and raised in these areas, and I know because I was around people like that, people who knew the woods, and that’s something that I don’t want to belittle. I want to celebrate that and say, Hey, you really should listen to these people. I bet you’ve run into a ton of those people who are just like you look at the face and you can see the lines on their faces, and they’ve kind of worn this lifestyle and lived this country that they’re in and know it  like the back of their hand. I think it’s hard to discount some of those people, and I’m sure you’ve run into many of ’em, right? 

Seth Breedlove (28:05):

I mean, right now there’s an article that just dropped in the last couple of weeks about the correlation between Bigfoot reports and places where there are Black Bear, and what the writer was trying to do was just write off all Bigfoot reports as Black Bear. But the issue with that is that these places, and a lot of the people who are reporting these bigfoots have been around black bear, know what a black bear looks like, whether it’s on all fours or it’s standing on two legs, they’re not necessarily going to just misidentify a black bear as a Bigfoot, I believe that happens for sure, but there’s not, it doesn’t. You can’t whitewash the entire history of Bigfoot away as well. People are just misidentifying bears, but people love to, especially skeptics, love to write this stuff off in a way that is very cut and dry, like a neat little explanation for the whole thing.

(29:04):

And it’s not possible. There’s too many witnesses, too many witnesses who are experts in observation. William Dranginis, Bill Dranginis passed away back in, what was it, 2016? He was an FBI agent who had a sighting, a bigfoot sighting, and he had two other agents with him when it happened. These are not guys who are just misidentifying a bear in a place where there happened to be bear and Bigfoot in the same location. The other thing that I think really stands out for me with witnesses are when one witness in one location identifies a commonality that is frequently cited by other witnesses, especially when it’s a witness that has no knowledge of the Bigfoot topic, who wouldn’t necessarily know this? Things like peeking, like tree peeking bigfoots. That’s a real common. There’s this common thread of people seeing Bigfoot lean out from behind a tree or peeking out from behind a tree.

(30:16):

There’s also the commonality of the way. There’s been multiple encounters that involved a Bigfoot approaching a tent and touching the tent or running a hand over the tent. There’s commonalities and physical attributes. Those always stand out to me when I talk to one witness in a certain location that identifies something that I’ve interviewed another witness eight states away on, and they both align in what they’re describing physically or whatever it is, just some sort of personality characteristic. That happens a lot, and I find that the thing that really keeps me heavily invested, especially in the Bigfoot subject.

Jim Harold (31:00):

So I won’t ask you your favorite because then if you forget somebody, somebody might get mad. But who is one of your absolute favorite experiencers and storytellers that you’ve had on camera to share what’s happened with them? Who’s one?

Seth Breedlove (31:15):

I don’t know if you met him. He was at MonsterFest, but Martin Groves?

Jim Harold (31:19):

I might’ve.

Seth Breedlove (31:21):

Martin was a police officer, interestingly enough in Robertson County down where the Bell Witch is. And in fact, I think he was actually in Adams, Tennessee where the Bell Witch story originates. But Martin had a really wild encounter, and when I say wild, I mean wild as in it’s so wild that just hearing it without knowing his backstory or meeting him, you would say, well, this has to be made up because it’s a crazy story. It involves encountering Bigfoots and Dogmen in the same place and essentially being escorted out of the forest by Bigfoots while being stalked by Dogmen. And it’s a wild story, but he is a very believable witness. I’ve interviewed him now twice about this story, and I always find that he is absolutely genuine. 100% believes what he’s telling you, and you can tell the guy isn’t making the story up. It’s something that he believes happened. So Martin’s the one I would go to the most just because also we were the reason that story has been told on camera. He told it in American Werewolves for the first time and had to be, again, that’s a situation where Heather had to do a ton of coaxing to get him to come on camera and tell us his story, but he is probably tops for me.

Jim Harold (33:05):

I’ll tell you a story happened to me and see if you’ve had anything similar. And this is still a mystery. I have no idea who it was. Someone called my personal number, which I don’t give out, and left a voicemail and said, we’re out here and we’ve got bigfoot knees, mining uranium. I have no idea who it was. Do you ever get anything like that? I mean, anything that’s like on the other side, like, whoa, come on now.

Seth Breedlove (33:32):

Yeah, and I’m trying to, the most common are like, oh, shoot, I just, habituation stories habitations to the point where Bigfoots are coming into my house and eating dinner with me. Those, I get emails constantly with stories like that, or Bigfoot came out of a portal and escorted me back into it, and I spent a week in his homelands in another reality. We get things like that quite often. The Mothman movie invited a lot of reports like that as well, where I was getting emails from one person in particular who was telling me about how Mothman would appear outside their window every night, and then eventually it morphed into Mothman was coming into their house and sleeping on their couch. So we get, yeah, definitely. I mean, honestly, that’s probably more common than the believable or more mundane sighting stories,

Jim Harold (34:43):

So it’s kind of separating those out a little bit, separating ’em out a little bit. Now, other than Bigfoot, what is your favorite cryptid? I know Bigfoot is kind of front and center, I think, in this whole field, but what’s your number two?

Seth Breedlove (35:00):

Well, the Flatwoods monster story is always going to be my absolute favorite of all these, it’s Flatwoods Monster and Minerva Monster. Those are my top two. My son has taken quite a liking to the Flatwoods monster, which is why I’ve always loved that story, but just my son sort of adopting it as his own now has really given me a love for that story in particular. But as far as traditional cryptids, I’m very interested, remain very interested in the entire Thunderbird phenomenon, especially lately, Tommy’s been watching Terror in the Skies a lot, and we’ve had discussions, which is always interesting with a 6-year-old, about Thunderbirds. And I tell him, my personal opinion is that Thunderbirds are just abnormally large birds that sort of spring up in known species, but we have very interesting discussions about that one. So Thunderbirds are always top of the list. And then I do have quite the fondness for Lake Monsters, and so I’m very excited about the fact we’re putting out an Ogopogo movie this year. I’ve always been fascinated by Lake Monsters, and we did on the Trail of Champ back in 2016, and this year we’re doing the Cursed Waters movie, so I love those, those are my top right there.

Jim Harold (36:30):

Well, one thing about Flatwoods Monster, really weird for me. I didn’t even know about the Flatwoods monster. My mom was born, no, born and raised about 40 miles from Flatwoods. 

Seth Breedlove (36:43):

I remember you telling me that.

Jim Harold (36:44):

Yeah. And I had no idea. I’d never even heard of it, and I used to go there every summer. In fact, we’d pass what is now known as the or way back was the Trans Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, which became the West Virginia State Hospital, and we used to pass that through Westin as we were going down to the area where my mom was from. So yeah, small world, small world. Wish I’d known more about that growing up. That’s kind of cool. You talked about lake monsters, and I’ll extend it out to sea monsters. To me, those are some of the most plausible, because I’ve said this a million times on the show, but it’s said that we know less about the deep ocean, for example, than we know about outer space. And all the time you see, particularly on ocean shores, you’ll see things wash up and they’ll say, oh, this is something we thought was extinct, or they will discover a new species. To me, waterborne cryptids in some ways I think are easier to believe than land-based. What do you say?

Seth Breedlove (37:52):

Yeah, yeah. No, it’s exactly that. It’s the fact that we know less about the ocean, especially with the seaborne monsters. I find I’m all about, Tommy is absolutely, again, everything comes back to my 6-year-old, but he’s absolutely obsessed, obsessed with sharks, and megalodons right now are top for him. And so we talk about that very often. And yeah, I’m in the same camp because of the fact that we know so little about the ocean, and even some of these lakes, when you talk about the lakes that do have lake monster stories, sure, we have stories like Atwood Lake here in Ohio supposedly had a monster, and it’s not a very big lake, and it’s manmade, so it makes no sense, but it’s got its own lake monster story. But a lot of the lakes with plausible stories like Loch Ness or Lake Champlain or Lake Okanagan, they’re massive lakes, typically very deep, that have some sort of, you can at least theorize in your head how something like Plesiosaur or it could exist in a place like Loch Ness. Yeah, no, I’ve been that way even before I was really into this stuff. I always thought the lake monsters were far more believable than something like a Bigfoot, and pretty much for the reasons you put out there.

Jim Harold (39:16):

Now, here’s one for you. Let me back up into the sea monsters and ocean borne monsters. Now, there’s increasing thought from the UFO/UAP camp that maybe whatever non-human intelligence that David Grush talked about in front of Congress, maybe just because they’re new and non-human does not mean that they come from outer space, but they might come from down below the earth and also under the oceans, because you have unidentified submersible objects, USOs, which I know Richard Dolan, who we just interviewed, is doing a big book on. So I guess what I’m saying is, is that the idea extends now even more so to looking at maybe not up above, but down below four, supposed aliens or non-human intelligences.

Seth Breedlove (40:13):

Well, this was huge in the seventies. I remember watching episodes of Unsolved Mysteries and stuff about the Lost City of Atlantis and how it was some sort of aquatics species of people that now lived under the ocean that were creating technology that was responsible for UFOs. I’ve read books about that as a kid. I read books about that. So it is interesting that we’re circling back around to that now because it was always one of my favorite concepts as a kid. As a kid, I was obsessed with 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and still am today. And it’s a look at people managing to survive under the ocean in this vessel. And that’s essentially what we’re talking about now. Only the vessel can come out of the ocean and fly into our sky and circle around and things like that. I’ve always been a big fan of that whole line of thought. I don’t know how believable it is. I don’t know that you’re going to get science to look into it in a serious way, but I’ve always been fascinated with it. That movie, what’s the James Cameron movie about the life form that they encounter under the ocean? The, how am I blanking on that?

Jim Harold (41:35):

The Abyss?

Seth Breedlove (41:36):

The Abyss? Yeah. Yeah, the abyss. That’s the whole concept behind that film.

Jim Harold (41:41):

The interesting thing, I kind of saw the smile on your face when you were talking about Unsolved Mysteries. I think so many of us who have taken this, whether it’s authors, researchers, filmmakers, podcasters, whatever it is who have made this either our profession or a major part of our life, we all have that same route. We went to the library and we read the books. We read those Time Life books about all the different mysteries we watched in search of, we watched Unsolved Mysteries. And it’s so funny, when people were creating that content, they probably had no idea,

Seth Breedlove (42:17):

No idea that

Jim Harold (42:18):

This would spur on. I read where Robert Stack was skeptical of the more supernatural episodes of Unsolved Mysteries, but they did great in the ratings. So the idea is we’re going to do more of these, but the point being, it kind of planted the seed with all of us of our generation. And I would like to think that what you’re doing, and maybe a little bit what I’m doing, but what you’re doing is planting the seed with the next generation. Have you ever thought about that 30 years from now, somebody’s going to be on whatever a podcast is, then they’re probably full-blown holograms, and they’re like, man, I really got into this because of the Small Town Monsters movies. Did you ever think of that?

Seth Breedlove (43:04):

Yeah, I mean, I’ve had people tell me, I’ve had kids tell me that. In fact, at MonsterFest, I was interviewed by a young man, his mom had reached out to me and asked me if he could interview me at the Camp Palace Theater at MonsterFest, and I did an interview with him, and that was one of the big things he had told me through email was that he’s interested in all of this today because he saw Minerva Monster when he was like six years old. So yeah, I mean, it is interesting to think about because if I really look at the broad scope of STM movies, the bulk of them are somehow influenced by watching Unsolved Mysteries and old episodes of sightings at my grandma’s house in the late eighties, early nineties, like the style, the tone. And then there’s movies I’ve made that directly ape that style to pay homage to that stuff. So it’ll be interesting if down the road some kid makes movies in the style of small town monsters, whatever that would be. I don’t even know what a specific style is that we have, but who knows?

Jim Harold (44:17):

Well, whatever it is, it’s working. People love it. And really, I just see it growing and growing and growing. I just saw where, I dunno if you’re familiar with a guy by the name of Byron Allen. He used to be a host like in the early eighties in a show called Real People. He’s become a billionaire and a media mogul, and he’s trying to buy Paramount. I see Seth Breedlove in that category. He’s going to be the king of all Paranormal Media someday. So Seth, now’s the time when we tell everybody what they should be paying attention to, what they should be plugging into, how they can help small town monsters continue. the great work you’re doing through your Kickstarter, let ’em have it.

Seth Breedlove (45:01):

Yeah, if you go on Kickstarter and just look up Small Town Monsters, this year’s campaign will be the first one that pops up. So you can just go on kickstarter.com and then put in Small Town Monsters in the search that will bring you to us. I have been in touch with the Kickstarter’s head of film and TV, and they said that we would be one of their projects we love again. So we might be on the main page on Kickstarter this year. So that’s the easiest way to find a Kickstarter, smalltownmonsters.com has all the information on the films and the series and the book publishing and MonsterFest as well. So if you’re interested in all of that, definitely visit Small Town Monsters or we’re on all the social media platforms, so Facebook and YouTube and, well, I guess not YouTube, but we are on YouTube. But social media probably doesn’t cover that. 

Jim Harold (45:57):

You’re everywhere.

Seth Breedlove (45:58):

Yeah, we’re everywhere. You can find us on all those platforms.

Jim Harold (46:01):

Well, I’ll be making my contribution to that Kickstarter. Seth Breedlove, thank you for joining us in continued success in everything you do.

Seth Breedlove (46:10):

Yeah, thanks for having me.

Jim Harold (46:12):

And thank you for tuning into this edition of the Paranormal Podcast. I appreciate it. And if you like what you see and what we do, please subscribe to the YouTube channel. This is, we’ve been starting and stopping on the YouTube channel for four years, but this year we’ve committed to putting every episode of the Paranormal Podcast on YouTube. So please let us know if you enjoy, please share it with a friend, subscribe and follow the channel, and we appreciate it very much. We’ll talk to you next time. Stay safe, share the show, and stay spooky. Bye-Bye.

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