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Why ‘Ancient Aliens’ is not worth the watch

We watch a lot of rubbish in my house, but one show stands above the rest. One show that genuinely insults its viewers by drowning them in nonsense, and lies, and fails to even be particularly entertaining or interesting in the process. That is Ancient Aliens

In case you’re unfamiliar with the show, Ancient Aliens explores something known as the ancient astronaut theory – the idea that aliens visited the Earth in ancient times, and may have helped steer our species towards the future (I say “explores”, but this is a totally uncritical show). In Ancient Aliens, we’re told that aliens did come to Earth, and they’re responsible for literally every major historical event. The creation and the extinction of the dinosaurs – it was aliens. The Bermuda Triangle – aliens. Nazi science – all aliens. And the show becomes more stretched as time goes by – aliens are now involved with Vikings, King Arthur, the American Civil War, cowboys, the Large Hadron Collider, superheroes – you get the idea.

It’s a very frustrating watch for anyone who values things like facts and research, as the show just throws untruths and rubbish at you

It’s a very frustrating watch for anyone who values things like facts and research, as the show just throws untruths and rubbish at you. It leaps from idea to idea, offering the tiniest possibilities that things might have happened as the definitive proof that they did. The reasoning is like this – if aliens came to Earth, they could have told us how to build the pyramids. And, as we have pyramids, that means aliens did come to Earth. If you can detect the logical flaw there you’re going to hate Ancient Aliens, where anything and everything is possible no matter how tenuous or non-existent the evidence.

Something that really gets me is something that happens at least once an episode. We’ll be told what scientists believe explains a phenomenon or a particular historic event, and then the announcer will say “but ancient astronaut theorists have a different, more profound theory” and run with it. It dismisses the science instantly, in favour of whatever nonsense these supposed experts are peddling. When scientists say ‘theory’, they mean an idea that best fits the facts available, but when you hear it on Ancient Aliens it means a load of garbage thrown out by people making stuff out.

If you watch this show, believe nothing you’re told

There are no depths to which the show won’t sink to lie to you. If you watch this show, believe nothing you’re told. It deliberately presents false data and information as true to build off it, and will take quotes completely out of context to change their meaning. They bring on people who are supposedly experts with genuine credentials, and then leave a lot unsaid in the hope that the credentials themselves will sell the testimony. It’s presented with such enthusiasm – the show’s most frequent contributor Giorgio Tsoukalos seems like a really nice guy, but his energy shouldn’t excuse the fact that he and the other “experts” are outright lying to you.

I also hate how negative the show is about humanity. If you believe everything it tells you, it paints a depressingly bleak picture of the human race. Supposedly, every technical advancement and engineering accomplishment our species ever made is because aliens came to Earth and told us how to do it. Ancient Aliens creates a world in which every myth, legend and religion was simply the result of man trying and failing to record these alien encounters. We’re not allowed to have any imagination or ability, not one bit, because everything we’ve done is as a result of aliens taking us by the hand. Historical geniuses like Da Vinci, Tesla, Einstein and Steve Jobs – yep, all given the knowledge by aliens.

The show makes up garbage, putting out blatant lies that even the slightest bit of research would disprove, and they have the gall to present it as a genuine historical documentary

And where do commissioners choose to share this utter rubbish: on the History Channel, of all places. The show makes up garbage, putting out blatant lies that even the slightest bit of research would disprove, and they have the gall to present it as a genuine historical documentary. And the worst thing – people buy this. I know people convinced that aliens built the pyramids, and that there’s no way ancient man could have done it because they watch this show. That’s bad – encouraging people to unthinkingly swallow this hokum can only be a negative.

Ancient Aliens started airing ten years ago and is about to enter its 16th season – dragging on, even as facts become ever scarcer and the theories more and more tenuous. The best thing for the box would be to cancel it once and for all. We’re in an era in which concerns over disinformation are more present than ever before, yet conspiracy theories are being given primetime billing.

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