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Episode 72 - Ghost Trains

Squaring the Strange

Release Date: 08/24/2018

This week we start with a discussion of Spike Lee's Black Klansman movie and the notion of holding narrative movies "based on" real events to some imagined standard of full accuracy. Then all aboard for the ghost train express! Ben and Celestia discuss the lure of the locomotive (and train wrecks) in the American imagination, the flickering lights said to be distant spiritual echoes of trains, and the dangers of ghost-trainspotting on elevated trestles. Ben looks into fabled "virtual underground" trains in Russia that have sprung up as folkloric pranks. We go over the legend of Abraham Lincoln's phantom funeral train, and Ben recounts a faked ghost train video he was tasked with examining.