The Alienists: UFO Researchers Get Spaced Out On Discovery Channel

To the credit of the two UFO researchers on the new Discovery Channel series “Alien Encounters: Fact Or Fiction,” they are not afraid to debunk UFO claims that they conclude are false.  

On most of these kinds of shows -- whether they are about UFOs, Bigfoot or haunted houses -- everyone in them goes along with the program. Skeptics need not apply.

On “Alien Encounters,” premiering Wednesday, UFO experts Mitch Horowitz and Chrissy Newton meet UFO claimants in a bar in Roswell, New Mexico, world capital of the alien-obsessed.

There, Mitch and Chrissy hear their stories and then present these true believers with the results of factual research.

In Episode One, for example, the pair’s research of a dot of light observed in the night sky over a remote farm was not a UFO, but the orbiting International Space Station. 



This comes as unwelcome news to the claimant who saw it, and who now bitterly refuses to accept their verdict.

Another man, a Roswell resident, claims that his metal detector found a tiny piece of metal in a remote sandy field that he thinks might be part of a UFO that crashed there.

That’s him in the photo above, left, talking to Mitch and Chrissy in the bar. They inform him that they had the metal tested, and the results revealed a metal that was so rare that they could not rule out the possibility that it was part of an alien aircraft.

To the skeptical TV Blog, this conclusion is more far-out that foregone. In fact, while watching the premiere episode of “Alien Encounters,” a whole bunch of questions occurred to me, and not for the first time either.

For one thing, why are these supposed UFO sightings always in the middle of nowhere? If these aliens are so advanced in their intellect and technology, why don’t they ever steer their flying saucers toward somewhere more interesting, such as New York, for example?

When I watched the show, I formed a theory about why some people who live out in the boonies think they’re seeing UFOs every time they see a lighted object crossing over them in the night sky.

It is because they live so remotely that they are completely unaccustomed to aircraft of any kind. Thus, to them, everything lighted and moving in the sky is literally unidentified.

Here in New York, no one ever claims to have seen a UFO probably because the night skies are full of lighted, blinking aircraft that everybody is used to.

Airliners, private planes, and even small commuter planes with pontoons for East River landings are part of the air traffic around here.

The most conspicuous aircraft by far are helicopters. Unlike planes, they seem to have no obligation to follow fixed flight paths. They fly in all directions and at a wide variety of altitudes. 

Far away in the night sky, they look like little dots. Closer in, they look like bigger dots. And lighted dots are what the farm folk see and believe an invasion from outer space is imminent.

New Yorkers are accustomed to people from so many different places that a couple of E.T.’s walking around midtown or taking in a show would hardly be noticed.

As for where they might park their spaceship, they can simply park it anywhere they please, just like everybody else.

This column has been updated.

“Alien Encounters: Fact Or Fiction” premieres Wednesday, June 19, at 10 p.m. Eastern on Discovery Channel.

1 comment about "The Alienists: UFO Researchers Get Spaced Out On Discovery Channel".
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  1. David Scardino from TV & Film Content Development, June 17, 2024 at 6:11 p.m.

    Though the photo referred to in the review was missing, the rest of the piece was very wise and extremely witty. Thanks, Adam.

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