Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Has the History Channel Slipped Into History?

I, and surely others, saw the metamorphosis occurring for some time now.  I used to regularly tune in to the History Channel for, well....history.  I don't anymore as I returned back to the tried and true printed book. 

What the hell happened to the History Channel?  It started out promising touching on all aspects of American and International history, now it's no different than watching episodes of "Jersey Shore" or "Survivor."  It's a damn shame and it appears there is no one willing to drive a stake into it's wretched heart. 

A case in point is the Ancient Aliens program.  Over the past few years, the History Channel has presented numerous editions of Ancient Aliens with a dose of Nostradamus to sweeten the pot.  

Yes, this is now our history.  I'm awaiting the next archaeological discovery revealing that Spartacus stumbled across a crashed alien saucer but was unable to reverse engineer the damn thing before being defeated by Crassus.

The following from a Smithsonian blog reveals the true diagnosis and the pitiful prognosis, "The Idiocy, Fabrications and Lies of Ancient Aliens."  I actually accessed this via UFO UpDates:

"Until now, I have assiduously avoided Ancient Aliens. I had a feeling that if I watched the show—which popularizes far-fetched, evidence-free idiocy about how human history has been molded by extra-terrestrial visitors—my brain would jostle its way out of my skull and stalk the earth in search of a kinder host. Or, at the very least, watching the show would kill about as many brain cells as a weekend bender in Las Vegas. But then I heard the History Channel’s slurry of pseudoscience had taken on dinosaurs. I steeled myself for the pain and watched the mind-melting madness unfold."

And the closing paragraph:

"Ancient Aliens is some of the most noxious sludge in television’s bottomless chum bucket. Actual experts are brought in to deliver sound bites that are twisted and taken out of context while fanatics are given free reign. Fiction is presented as fact, and real scientific research is so grossly misrepresented that I can only conclude that the program is actively lying to viewers. To present the show as a documentary, on a non-fiction network, is a loathsome move by the History Channel spinoff. (Technically, Ancient Aliens airs on an offshoot of the History Channel called H2.) If the network and the show’s creators want to present Ancient Aliens as a light survey of fringe ideas and make it clear that the ideas aren’t meant to be taken seriously, I can’t quarrel with that. But Ancient Aliens and shows like it winnow away at actual scientific understanding by promoting absolute dreck. Ancient Aliens is worse than bad television. The program shows a sheer contempt for science and what we really know about nature." 

The sad fact is that quite a few viewers will believe Ancient Aliens as thoroughly researched facts worthy of scholarly journal publication.  Funny, even Van Daniken doesn't believe the crap that he writes...another hidden secret of Ufology.

Yep, its back to the real history books for me.

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