The Newkirks: Making the Paranormal Great Again

Manor Vellum
7 min readMay 26


By Marcos Codas

Art: Travis Knight

Meet Greg and Dana Newkirk, the couple who created a community of fun, friendly and respectful weirdos.

When I was growing up, there were two mainstays in my life: The X-Files and Sombras en la Noche. The latter was a TV show about Paraguayan myths and legends. The X-Files needs no introduction. As you can see, I had an interest in the paranormal.

But when I moved to Canada in 2003 (as a 17-year-old), the unexplained lost its appeal. It was the start of reality television, and it just didn’t seem all that real to me. So, for nearly 20 years, I went without my paranormal fix. I still had an interest in the occult, the paranormal, and things “beyond,” just no healthy, fun ways of exploring it. That is until a friend told me about Hellier.

Greg and Dana

The Newkirks are Greg and Dana, a couple of paranormal investigators who run a production company and a museum (more on this in a bit). They met, as young lovers do in the age of the internet, running rival paranormal websites. They used to bash each other online until they met in person and the old adage became true: those who tease each other, love each other.

Though both started as ghost hunters, it is Greg who is perhaps the ghostier of the two. A talk about egregors can set Greg off on a tangent, guaranteed. He is also very active on social media, where he shoots down bigot trolls for fun.

Dana is a practicing witch, with everything it entails. Perhaps more personally connected and tuned into the paranormal and the beyond, Dana is often the conduit for the experiments the couple (and their comrades in weirdness) perform.

There’s a true friendship between Greg and Dana that shines through in the content that they make, which is tremendously refreshing. It’s a friendship that bleeds onto fans, creating a community of like-minded weirdos who all enjoy each other’s company. From Dana’s flatulence to Greg’s odd choices in ashtrays, nothing is off-limits when sharing candidly with their audience. And I became part of that audience thanks to a little show called Hellier.


In 2019, when I was assistant editor at Dread Central, my good friend and colleague Michelle Swope told me about this show featuring Greg and Dana Newkirk, Karl Pfeiffer, and Connor J. Randall. It was a docuseries about an email that Greg received from a guy in Kentucky who was being harassed by goblin-like creatures.

L-R: Connor J. Randall, Dana Newkirk, Karl Pfeiffer, and Greg Newkirk in Hellier

It’s fair to say that this was most people’s introduction to the Newkirks’ work. It certainly was mine, and what a way to get to know new friends. And I say friends because, in the years since, I’ve developed fun relationships with people in the community surrounding the Newkirks and their content. Relationships that I hadn’t had before.

Hellier, as much as it is a fantastic docuseries, served a higher purpose for me: it reunited me with my weird side. It took me right back to the 90s and my days of watching The X-Files and Sombras en la Noche. I could explore my interest in UFOs and strange phenomena in a light-hearted but objective way again. Only this time, I didn’t have to do it alone.

High Strangeness and Synchronicities

One of the hallmarks of Hellier fandom is that you start noticing weird stuff around you. I started noticing weird little synchronicities, a theme very relevant to Hellier, and when I started sharing them on social media, I realized I wasn’t the only one.

There’s a running joke among Hellier fans that, once you start watching the show, weird stuff will start happening to you. Obviously, there are skeptics, and I never take everything at face value myself. But there’s a strange bond that is formed when a random person on the internet tells you they’ve seen the same blue balloon you’ve seen on another continent.

This kinship was taken to another level when, earlier this year, Greg and Dana started their own podcast.

The Haunted Objects Podcast — Sharing the Weird

A docu-series is, by nature, a long creative process. There’s very little reciprocity between the creators and the audience beyond interaction on social media after release. And though this is how it started for me, things really took off when The Haunted Objects Podcast launched.

Greg and Dana run the Traveling Museum of the Paranormal and Occult, where they collect, archive, and document all kinds of weird and haunted things. On the podcast, Greg, Dana, and Connor J. Randall discuss the history of the object and the phenomena around it. There’s an incredible immediacy in the podcast medium that lends itself really well to fostering human connection.

The Amityville Plank in the paramuseum

But the best thing for me is the comments, both on YouTube and social media. Every other Monday, a new episode is released, and this community of weirdos gets abuzz with the latest paranormal mystery. One of my favorite episodes was the debut/pilot, where they discussed a piece of wood from the original Amityville house. They even spoke with one of the children who experienced the whole thing. It’s pretty amazing to see the phenomena away from the Hollywood lens and to be able to respectfully discuss it with other people with similar interests.

However, the latest episode, about High Strangeness maestro-turned-CIA-spy Uri Geller, is the epitome of what makes this fellowship cool. Uri Geller was famous in the 70s to most people for bending spoons with his mind. But thanks to recently declassified CIA documents, we can see that Uri (who is still alive and active in the paranormal community) was in fact a spy, used by the Agency for all kinds of things.

We all went bananas, discussing how cool it was that this was happening at the same time as people kept thinking Uri was just an illusionist and magician. But then, none other than Uri Geller himself shared the podcast, thanking Greg, Dana, and Connor for the well-researched episode, and going so far as to claim he was psychically interfering with Dana’s lamp during the episode. Talk about going full circle!

Members of the museum during an Amy Bruni’s Strange Escapes event at Waverly Hills

Is It True? What Does It All Mean?

Honestly, I have no idea whether any of this is actually true. I’ve had some experiences myself that I can’t explain (I saw the Virgin Mary when I was a kid, for example). But in this community, there’s no pressure to find certainty. We’re not merely seeking answers; we enjoy asking the questions together.

Exploring the edges of human experience with people who encourage you to not take it all too seriously, but who will have your back if you decide to give it a more scientific go… that’s priceless.

As a 12-year-old growing up in a tiny town in rural Paraguay, a conservative, highly religious country, this kind of comradery around things we can’t explain is something I could have only dreamed of.

I am a person of science — that comes first and foremost in my analysis and perception of all of this. But the human experience is far too complicated to be fully explained by modern science, as good as it is. Maybe someday. In the meantime, I will enjoy the kinship of those who don’t mind asking silly questions, knowing that what’s important isn’t the answers, but who you’re asking the questions with. 🩸


Marcos is a Paraguayan-Canadian multimedia producer, writer, filmmaker, and game developer. He is the former assistant editor at Dread Central and has been an entertainment journalist for over 15 years. He is an unashamed fan of found footage films, handheld gaming, and restoring old vehicles, which he does in his spare time.

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Manor Vellum

A membrane of texts about the human condition and the horror genre. A MANOR feature. New 🩸 every Friday.