Wednesday Roundup: Robbie Williams Loves "Coast to Coast," "Ancient Aliens" Sees Ratings Rise, and More!
Coronavirus has blasted almost everything else out of the news, including what would otherwise be a big push to promote History’s new Secret of Skinwalker Ranch series, which aired its first episode last night. I have no interest in reviewing the show weekly since its paranormal investigation is beyond my area of interest. I will review the pilot episode and post either later today or tomorrow, since it aired too late for me to watch and review last night and still get up when my toddler wakes before 6 AM. I thought it was cute that George Knapp tried to piggyback on the show by running clips on his Mystery Wire paranormal news service from an unaired year-old interview with singer Robbie Williams in which Williams talks about loving Coast to Coast A.M. and George Knapp. Knapp also writes about Williams being a guest at Skinwalker Ranch (with Knapp, though Knapp declined to share that fact on Mystery Wire despite crowing about it in social media) to hunt for ghosts or aliens or whatever.
With nearly a third of Americans sheltering in their homes under government order and many of the other two-thirds staying in out of prudence and caution, television viewing numbers are growing. Ancient Aliens saw some interesting ratings changes this past weekend. Its total number of viewers did not rise significantly—coming in at 1.043 million—but the number of younger viewers watching nearly doubled. A chunk of the show’s older viewers tuned out (they seemingly flocked to cable news coverage of the corona virus), but younger viewers switched to Ancient Aliens to make up the difference. Oddly, The UnXplained with William Shatner, which previously had more total viewers and more viewers 18-49 than Ancient Aliens, saw its ratings fall to just 883,000 viewers as younger fans apparently sated themselves on Ancient Aliens and turned the channel or went to bed.
As coronavirus continues to shut down much of global life, there isn’t a lot of news from the world of fake history, space aliens, and other imaginary things. The real virus commands much more attention than fictitious threats. So, today I am going to devote some of my time to making progress on revising the chapters for my upcoming book on pyramid legends. I’m not sure what will happen when the deadline hits since the publisher currently has its offices closed and the staff are working remotely, though not consistently. In the meantime, here are the latest ratings figures for Rob Riggle: Global Investigator and Ancient Aliens in a week when people are stuck inside and watching more TV.
Diana Walsh Pasulka is back with a new article in Tank magazine following her unceremonious exit from social media a few weeks ago. That’s when she said that a hacker had infiltrated her social media accounts and posted wild conspiracy theories in her name, some of which she conceded had been taken from her private emails. In her new piece, Pasulka returns to the subject of her expertise, religious belief, and outlines the many ways that Americans have dealt with the decline of traditional religion by creating an alternative spirituality mediated through technology and centered on “improbable coincidence” as signs from the divine.
The Conscious Life Expo is one of the leading gatherings New Agers in the United States. Earlier this month, 12,000 people came to listen to lectures on Reiki, tarot, astral projection and all manner of alternative spiritualities. It also draws a roster of cable TV conspiracy theorists, YouTube speculators, and professional New Age believers. Wandering the halls of the Los Angeles Airport Hilton, you will find members of the Ancient Aliens cast, Gaia TV personalities, etc. The Conscious Life Expo this year made quite clear that the UFO movement and its ancient astronaut appendage is inexorably intwined with a desperate search for God in a world where traditional religion has lost much of its power.
I'm an author and editor who has published on a range of topics, including archaeology, science, and horror fiction. There's more about me in the About Jason tab.
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