The Travel Channel was once the TV world’s best outlet for shows about ranking waterslides and travelogues about foreign countries with weird food, but it’s hard to get today’s young people to pay attention to the world’s best waterslides when they’re so busy doing a Fortnite. So, the Travel Channel recently rebranded itself into “Trvl” (pronounced Ter-vall, we assume), and it’s celebrating the new identity with a batch of new shows that are less about taking trips to interesting waterslides and more about uncovering the hidden secrets that have shifted the very nature of our reality. In other words, Trvl is stepping further into the “ghosts and ancient aliens” flavor of non-fiction television.
The most interesting of these new shows, based on the name along, is Portals To Hell, a show about exactly what it sounds like, motherfuckers! HAIL SATAN! YEAH! Actually, it just another ghost show, with the eponymous portals to hell being more metaphorical than literal—as in, “this house is so spooky, it’s practically a portal to hell.” Unfortunately, Trvl isn’t actually dropping Andrew Zimmern into the underworld to see what kind of weird bugs they eat down there (though they probably do eat lots of weird bugs). Zimmern isn’t even involved, as the show actually stars “TV personality” Jack Osbourne and “paranormal researcher” Katrina Weidman.
Following Portals To Hell are America Unearthed and Mission Declassified, which both have boring names. A press release says the former is about exploring “a history of our country that we don’t know” (emphasis their’s) and the geologist trying find proof of what really happened. The other one is the same basic thing on a more global scale, but with an emphasis on “legendary and notorious mysteries” from throughout history. Neither of them are about going into hell, and none of these shows seem to involve even a single waterslide.