John Hutchinson has claimed that he has created poltergeist effects in his laboratory. Also worth noting is that scientist David Turner proposes that poltergeists and ball lightning may be linked phenomena. Some scientists go as far as calling them pseudo-psychic phenomena and claim that under some circumstances they are caused by obscure physical effects. Parapsychologists William G. Roll and Dean Radin, physicist Hal Puthoff and head of electrical engineering at Duke University who specializes in electromagnetic field phenomena, claim that poltergeist phenomena [the movement of objects at least] could be caused by anomalies in the zero-point field, this is outlined in the above article and in Roll's book Unleashed and mention is made of it in a chapter of Dean Radin's book Entangled Minds. The basic theory is that poltergeist movements are repulsive versions of the casimir effect that can put pressures on objects. Thus, anomalies in this field could conceivably move objects. This theory has also been mentioned in the current book on paranormal phenomena Science by Marie D. Jones.
The theory is not complete, however, because it accounts for the movement of objects but not for the strange voices, seeming personality, and strange electrical effects displayed in some cases.
Skeptics think that the phenomena are hoaxes perpetrated by the agent. Indeed, some poltergeist agents have been caught by investigators in the act of throwing objects. A few of them later confessed to faking.
Skeptics maintain that parapsychologists are especially easy to fool when they think that many occurrences are real and discount the hoax hypothesis from the outset. Even after witnessing first hand an agent throwing objects, psi-believing parapsychologists rationalize the fact away by assuming that the agents are only cheating when caught cheating, and when you do not catch them, the phenomenon is genuine. One reason given is that the agents often fake phenomena when the investigation coincides with a period of time where there appears to be little or no 'genuine' phenomena occurring. Another stated reason is that some of the phenomena witnessed would be hard to fake, even for magicians when under the watch of many people, let alone untrained children and non-magicians.
The current most agreed upon hypothesis among most scientists is a mixture of the self-delusion and hoax hypothesis and a bit of the caused by scientifically explained forces hypothesis [tremors, abnormal air currents etc ]
Although poltergeist stories date back to the first century, most evidence to support the existence of poltergeists is anecdotal, which is hardly surprising as the nature of the phenomenon is unpredictable and sporadic. Indeed, many of the stories below have several versions and/or inconsistencies; however there are a few that do not, for example, the Miami poltergeist has event records signed by all witnesses as to the way things happened. These witnesses include police officers, a skeptical magician, and workers at the warehouse. The Rosenheim case is another, with multiple witnesses and unexplained electric and telephonic phenomena.
In the Rosenheim case of 1967 , The Rosenheim Poltergeist (1967). (German and most extensive). Friedbert Karger's whole perspective on physics changed after investigating the events. "These experiments were really a challenge to physics," Karger says today. "What we saw in the Rosenheim case could be 100 per cent shown not to be explainable by known physics." The phenomena were witnessed by Hans Bender, the police force, the CID, reporters, and the physicists. The claims were aired in a documentary in 1975 in a series called "Leap in the Dark."
Both the name and concept of the poltergeist became famous to modern audiences in the Poltergeist movies and the subsequent TV series Poltergeist: The Legacy. The first Poltergeist movie actually gave an excellent depiction (during the first half of the film) of a "typical" poltergeist infestation, right down to the depiction of the focus as a prepubescent girl.
Poltergeist is Monster in My Pocket #117. It resembles the long-limbed, yellow creature outside the hall door glimpsed briefly in the 1982 film.
Poltergeists are the subject of some episodes of The X-Files.
Dean Koontz's Odd Thomas encounters many poltergeists in his adventures. Most notably, the ghost of a killer Odd was tracking and a nameless ghost with a buzz cut who wrecks the Panamint Casino when Datura verbally abuses and belittles the ghost of an Indian waitress.
There is a poltergeist named Peeves in the Harry Potter books. Peeves, however, does not conform to the classic definition of a poltergeist. The fact that he manifests visually would seem to indicate that he is something similar to a ghost, though J.K. Rowling has stated that a poltergeist is not the ghost of any person who has ever lived. Perhaps she intended Peeves to be more of a literal translation of the word poltergeist, because Peeves is quite noisy and mischievous. However, it is also possible that Harry and other students can perceive Peeves because they are wizards, and that he would be still invisible to Muggles. It is also interesting to note that Peeves appears in colour, where the other ghosts at the school appear as white, misty figures.
The Terry Pratchett Discworld novel A Hat Full of Sky features an "ondageist" named Oswald (possibly a play on Lee-Harvey, Harvey the rabbit being invisible...), belonging to Ms. Level, the witch that Tiffany is staying with. This is the opposite of a poltergeist: a spirit obsessed with cleaning and tidying.
On October 20, 1942, the old-time radio show Lights Out featured a story called "Poltergeist" in which a trio of girls experience horrific, unexplained assaults from flying stones after one walks over a grave.
In the board game Atmosfear, a playable character is Hellin the poltergeist.
On Tuesday, November 15, 2005, Supernatural aired an episode involving a multiple haunting in the old house of Dean and Sam. The owner of the house would claim there were rats in the house. She only heard scratching and rustling noises, but didn't actually see them. The poltergeist in the house threw knives, opened baby cribs and refrigerators, and claims the hand of a repairman trying to fix the garbage disposal. Also, in another episode, Phantom Traveler, a person mentions that Dean rescued him and his family from a poltergeist with his father.
Some Castlevania games feature a few poltergeist phenomena. For example, certain furniture may suddenly spring to life and attack (some of the furniture are named Ouija Table). Another case is the enemy Alastor, where a giant sword floats around in the air, wielded by an occasionally visible, invulnerable spirit. In some disputed game canon, it is said that a character called the Poltergeist King takes charge of the Belmont family weapons between quests. The Poltergeist King does make an appearance in Captain N: The Game Master in the episode "Return to Castlevania".
The popular Ju-on series of horror films in Japan and the Americanized version The Grudge, feature poltergeist elements including the replaying of the tragedy and the violent nature of the ghosts.
The comic Fetus-X includes a fork-throwing poltergeist cheerleader and attempts to bring her back from the dead.
The 2002 novel, The Bishop in the West Wing, written by Catholic priest and author Andrew M. Greeley, includes a poltergeist as a central feature of the story.
Released in October 2006, a comedy French film called Poltergay was inspired by poltergeist phenomena. The film features the story of a couple of young lovers moving into a mansion in the vicinity of Paris which used to be a gay night club. The club was shut down after a fire broke out killing a group of club patrons whose spirits live in the mansion to present time and naughtily haunt the male lover , leading him to be insecured about his sexual preference.
A The Far Side strip describes Poultrygeists, poltergeist-like activity in chickens. Similarly, a Dilbert strip features Upholsterygeists, furniture possessing spirits that can only be expelled with work-out tapes (exercists).
In Super Mario Galaxy, in one of the galaxies, there is a boss named Boldergiest, of course is the boss of the Ghostly Galaxy.
On the movie "Zoey 101: Curse of PCA" when Chase and Zoey are at the infirmary, poltergeist effects start to happen.