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John Oliver Talks About UFOs on HBO’s Last Week Tonight

John Oliver’s Last Week Tonight show on HBO, like Comedy Central’s The Daily Show (where he began his TV career in the US) is supposed to give his audience a light-hearted editorialization of real news; something college students might check out to get a sense of worldly affairs while they light up another bong.

And yet, the segment he produced about UFOs last Sunday night gives a better assessment on the history of UFOs —from the beginnings of the flying saucer era in 1947 to the recent congressional hearings on UAP— than most ‘serious’ documentaries currently available to viewers.

The segment manages to capture the frustration regular citizens might have when trying to form an opinion of the subject, after decades of obfuscation by the US government which have heavily manipulated public perception on the subject.

A good indicator that John and his writers did their homework was the fact they had writer Mark O’Connell featured in one of their clips. Mark is the author of The Close Encounters Man, a biography of Blue Book scientific consultant J. Allen Hynek which should be required reading to anyone with a serious interest in the topic.

The segment finishes by advocating for a middle-ground, data-driven and scientific (read, “boring AF” using John’s own words) study of UFOs. Hopefully, I might add, one which is not subservient to the same government agencies which have muddied the very waters a new generation of researchers are trying to now navigate.

Unfortunately, recent developments in the online UFO scene are an indicator that unreliable ‘whistleblowers’ and snake oil salesmen will yet continue to fill the gap left by academic institutions, who are probably waiting for the current public interest in the topic to die down; at least until the next big UFO story blows up on their faces, as they always tend to do.

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