UFO Hunters, and Why I Quit Watching After Two Episodes

3vi1 writes, Having seen Monster Hunters, I was excited to see the new series UFO Hunters. My excitement was short-lived, though: After watching only two episodes, I’m convinced. Convinced that I’ll never watch this unscientific tripe again.
3vi1 continues below.

My main problem with the show is that they let Bill Birnes voice his conclusions to every investigation. Of the two episodes I’ve seen, none of the evidence points to an alien presence whatsoever, yet Mr. Birnes presents every mundane detail as if it were irrefutable proof of something extraordinary. This is obviously a guy who has invested so much into area of UFO phenomena that he is working with blinders on.

Mr. Birnes takes every word of every witness as gospel, and makes non-sequitur associations: To paraphrase, the team says things like “If we find the plane with the windshield intact, the pilot must have been removed by aliens”. Not once does he say “Hey, maybe this guy killed his cousin and ditched the plane on purpose.”

The science of the show is also very shoddy. If you saw the episode with the foreign object in the guys leg, you’re probably wondering (as am I) why they didn’t use their “signal detector” in the same room while the guy was not present to determine if those frequencies might be coming from other equipment. This probably accounts for why the “object” (just a lump of iron) wasn’t broadcasting frequencies after it was removed (and tested in a different location).

If you detected a signal coming from an “alien implant”, wouldn’t you say “Whoa whoa whoa… let’s not remove this yet – let’s record the signals so that we can analyze exactly what it’s transmitting and receiving first”. I would. Any scientist would. The UFO Hunters don’t.

I love the idea that UFOs might be real. I’d love to see one. I’d love to watch any investigation that could seriously lead to progress in the field. I do not love, however, watching an incredibly shabby scientific process narrated with the wild rantings of someone who has obviously made the leap from science to faith.

It is only my opinion, but I feel that this is an incredibly bad show that portrays UFO enthusiasts in a bad light. But, don’t believe me – view the evidence and judge for yourself.

7 replies on “UFO Hunters, and Why I Quit Watching After Two Episodes”

  1. nitefallz says:

    I agree
    I agree, sadly. The show has disappointed me more than I expected. I think it’s even less scientific that Sightings from the 90s. The only positive thing I can really say at this point is that the show has educated me about other UFO phenomenon that I had not been aware of, and provided more details about events I didn’t know about, such as the supposed star map from the Betty/Barney Hill case.

    • Timeshredder says:

      UFO=Unidentified Flying Object

      I love the idea that UFOs might be real.

      By definition, they are. : )

      The reality is that more people will watch a show that appears to validate the existence of extra-terrestrial visitations rather than one that says, "the evidence is for the most part pretty crappy." Consequently, healthy skepticism is in short supply on such shows. I recently watched a show on the "Top Ten" UFO reports. It was fairly good, as such shows go, but I was stunned by how many questionable claims made their way into the show, stated as facts. Those were just the cases with which I was familiar.

      • y42 says:

        Re: UFO=Unidentified Flying Object

        I love the idea that UFOs might be real.

        By definition, they are. : )

        I’m always annoyed when people make the ‘logical’ leap to "aliens" when they hear "unidentified flying object".

        Of course I believe in unidentified flying objects, anything you see flying that you can’t identify is one of those! I didn’t say I believed they came from another galaxy! *sigh*

    • Erf says:

      Betty & Barney Hill
      A bit of a digression, but SF author James MacDonald takes apart the Hill story pretty effectively at Making Light. He drove their route, going over their whole story in great detail, including timeline, sightings, patterns, etc. The upshot: they saw the light from an observation tower on Cannon Mountain, which seemed to move around because of the way their route twisted and turned as they drove. It’s a pretty neat takedown.

  2. jayhawk88 says:

    No offense….
    <i>I do not love, however, watching an incredibly shabby scientific process narrated with the wild rantings of someone who has obviously made the leap from science to faith.</i>

    …but if you use valid, solid science for something like this then you’re literally left with nothing. It’s Paranormal Mythbusters except every myth is busted.

    • Timeshredder says:

      Occam’s Barbershop: Season One

      …but if you use valid, solid science for something like this then you’re literally left with nothing. It’s Paranormal Mythbusters except every myth is busted.

      A handful of cases (more accurately, details of cases), while they hardly amount to good evidence for visiting aliens, at least remain inconclusive or unexplained. A paranormal version of Mythbusters, would teach science in an interesting way, while putting scrutiny on those few anomalies.

  3. spideylinux says:

    Seriously disappointed
    I was browsing the TiVo and saw one of the episodes you described where the guy crashed his plane between Catalina and Long Beach. That was one of the worst UFO shows I’ve ever seen. All they did was talk to three people who saw one, no proof like pictures, video, etc. The only thing they had going for them was the fact that there were several other eyewitnesses who called the authorities about the same sighing.

    Then there was the plane crash. Maybe I’ve too many of the CSI, Cold Case, Law and Order type shows, but I was thinking the same thing. This guy could have killed his cousin, either by mistake or on purpose and then said "A USO pulled us in the water!".

    I live very close to where this show was talking about, so I hoped to learn something about this area, but they could have given me all the information in about 10 minutes. Oh and the whole section on figuring out where the plane might have drifted to was such bull since they didn’t even find the plane. So instead of getting some real experts to find it, they chalked it up to the USO’s taking it away to their underground base.

    Anyway, glad to hear that I wasn’t the only one disappointed.

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