What can I say about this show that hasn’t already been said more eloquently by others, dozens of times before?
In case nobody else noticed, I’d like to point out that I’ve been unable to find anybody interviewed on that show in any prominent manner with a Phd in history, archaeology, or mythology, and series favourite, Swiss speculative journo Erich von Däniken, is especially lacking — he’s also the source for Carl Sagan’s famous quote, later (erroneously) applied to religious narratives by “large-A Atheists” (Sagan himself was not an atheist, but instead a a self-identified agnostic whose definition of Deity was very pantheist), “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence” in the “Encyclopaedia Galactica” episode of Sagan’s 1980 PBS series Cosmos; Sagan never outright dismissed von Däniken’s claims of pre-historic extra-terrestrial visitations, but made his opinion of its implausibility clear, pointing out that not a lick of real evidence exists to support such a notion so far outside the realm of known science.
While true that a lot of scientific breakthroughs have been made by delving into the realm of the seemingly-impossible, a lot of pseudoscience also goes there. To further quote Sagan, just because some geniuses are laughed at does not mean all who are laughed at are geniuses.
Furthermore, the stretches made to make even Graeco-Roman mythological narratives and Norse mythologies “match” (thus “supporting” the idea that “it was all the same aliens”) are even thinner than what Joseph Campbell makes to support his notion of a single unifying world mythos that has nothing to do with aliens. I think I actually felt daimons of stupidity whittling away some IQ points as some author or another made no attempts to “explain” that Thor’s hammer is somehow precisely analogous to Zeus’ thunderbolt, cos they’re both hand-held (no, that’s seriously his reasoning); this is the kind of thing that can make people stupider just for watching it.
The only way I can pardon this festering pile of crap for existing is that it’ll create a great litmus test for who and who not to take seriously in the reconstructionist community, but even then, it’ll just point out the bottom-of-the-barrel types that are to traditional polytheism what… I dunno, “indigo children” are to Wicca? Hell if I know, since this is such an irredeemably stupid show that it makes The Naked Archaeologist, which is already a show that makes ridiculous stretches with the facts in an effort to support a Judeo-Christioan biblical interpretation of “history” (and hosted not by an archaeologist, but a man with a Masters’ in “International Relations” and a Bachelors’ in Philosophy) look like Burkert, in comparison. The only reason this review is even on here is cos I got the bright idea in my head, after South Park‘s episode, “A History Channel Thanksgiving”, to DVR a few eppies for a larf, and could barely finish a single one, so overcome was I by the far stretches in basic logic, much less mythological “similarities”, and so flabbergasted than any-one in their right mind would give this concept a series that did not have the goal of dismantling every preposterous pseudo-archaeological notion that crosses the screen, but instead entertain it as having the same merit as archaeological Troy. The end result is that to anybody with more than two cells of grey matter to rub together for luck, it makes all the Murrayisms the Dianics just eat up seem far more plausible in comparison — and if you think that sounds ridiculous, then you at least have an idea how much Ancient Aliens will insult your intelligence.
Sure, as Carl Sagan once implied, surely anything is possible, especially when we mere mortals are only just beginning to understand the inner workings of the cosmos, but even at this stage in our understanding, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, and Ancient Aliens fails to deliver the latter by any stretch of the imagination to even make it seem plausible.