- Narrated by Robert Clotworthy
- Produced by Prometheus Entertainment
- March 8, 2009 to the present
- History Channel
This is a series that purports to establish and examine all the connections and involvement aliens have had with humans since before the dawn of human history.
Ancient Aliens is a show that is long on speculation and short on evidence. Here they point to every weird thing as proof of alien involvement or evidence of a grand alien plan for us. Weird statues? Aliens! Quality stonework? Aliens! The Civil War? Aliens! The American Revolution? Aliens! I am not joking about any of those examples.
Everything is aliens. No oddity is out of bounds. No historical question is untouchable. It is all aliens. The series tries to overwhelm the viewer with its arguments (called the “Gish gallop”). You are overwhelmed with questions and speculation but never any evidence. Someone not approaching this as junk food might be convinced that there is something to all the crap they are tossing out.
I admit to watching the show rather regularly. I do not believe a single thing they are selling but for me it is very entertaining crap. It is like a live action version of the Weekly World News. It is my understanding that the Weekly World News is currently a website but what I recall is a tabloid that could at one point be found at the end of just about every supermarket in this nation. They would run some of the most ridiculous things with obviously doctored photos and treat the stories with an unusual level of seriousness. The weird thing was every now and then they would slip in a true story. It was never anything major, but it was something that was real and had probably garnered a brief national headline. And that was to make you think that maybe they were telling the truth.
Why do I bring that bit up? Because this show consults legitimate experts aside from the often mentioned ancient astronaut theorists. They do not hit up fringe crockpots endlessly but rather historians and scientists to give context to a particular theory or idea.
They often interview alternate history/ancient astronaut theory purveyors like Graham Hancock, Robert Bauval, David Childress with producer Giorgio Tsoukalos being the shows breakout star. He is the face of the series. He is the one most associated with it. He is what gives Ancient Aliens its personality. He is the chief reason to watch.
This show is enjoyable trash television. Perhaps the most enjoyable trash television. It can be described as being science fiction treated as fact. I have found myself often actually laughing at how they go through mental gymnastics to connect something to space aliens with no evidence.
The production values of Ancient Aliens are slick. This is not a series done on the extreme cheap but rather done with a little bit of money behind it. Otherwise it would not be as well-known as it is. It would be a one-off novelty that would have been forgotten about by the public.
Though without Robert Clotworthy doing the voiceover I am not sure even with good production values it would have been around that long. That gentleman really sells it. He has a fairly authoritative voice and delivery that makes you go “Yeah. I can believe that” while watching with you only coming to your senses once you stop.
The show itself is a sign of the decline of the History Channel and perhaps influenced others to take a more profitable and less educational approach. Fifteen or more years ago I do not know if you would have seen something like this on the History Channel. A special here and there but nothing that like an ongoing series with multiple seasons. As much as I enjoy it I also wish it had not come about. I liked when the History Channel was about, well, history and not speculation.
In the end though Ancient Aliens is fluff television done right. It has a cheesy entertainment value. I recommend this for entertainment purposes but if you actually believe it you might want to go back to school.