Project Blue Book Goes Full Strangelove

DATELINE: Actors in Hats

 Best Actor in a Hat!

In the penultimate episode of season 2, the Blue Bookshow began to grab onto whatever past history fiction provided, rather than the “based on Hyneck’s true events.”

We presume the series has enough oomph to return, but it isn’t taking any chances with its increasingly shrill plots.

With Captain Quinn (Mike Malarkey) on a bender after being stripped of his role for cavorting (unwittingly) with a Soviet agent, he is holed up in his FBI ransacked apartment in a T-shirt, sipping colas.

Hynek (Aiden Gillen) comes to his rescue with one last sunset ride. It appears a UFO has abducted an airplane in British Columbia. And, Mike Malarkey gets to wear another swell hat and fly a seaplane into the logging camps of Canada.

Two mysterious pilots talk like they’re from Jackson Heights and cannot control their plane as it shows a radar collison with a UFO.

Continuing to be able to find needles in haystacks, Gillen and Malarkey show up in the woods, hike a bit, and can locate a crash site before the RAF. The two survivors turn out to be Soviet plants—and when discovered, they develop accents like extras from Kubrick’s Dr. Strangelove.

Dr. Hynek has to disarm a nuclear bomb with a screwdriver, which is fairly impressive. And, they turn out to be Canadian heroes.

Back in the office, they find that Senator John F. Kennedy (not yet President and a nobody in 1953) seems to be a powerhouse in the UFO community, giving them a new mission for the season finale.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blue Book Tells Truth, or It’s Out There

DATELINE: Dem Bones?

 

When your typical fictional show about Roswell promises to tell you the truth, you better line up for the sales slip for your ownership of the Brooklyn Bridge. Project Blue Book is giving the business in the second part of a two-part revelation about Roswell’s 1947 crash.

To do so, you must return with us now to six years later.

Yes, the truth is out there—shamelessly taking their nod from the X-Files, or is that now Shatner’s UnXplained files?

When you have one man staging elaborate charades, like putting a large flying saucer in the middle of town as a gag that no one sees, your credibility may already have taken a hit from the Phaser Gun on stun.

The credibility is sorely tested when Air Force personnel waterboard American citizens not under arrest. And, there is footage of an alien autopsy that has been debunked in recent years, but here it is merely a device to restore the abiding friendship between the two stars (Malarkey and Gillen).

With the lid back on Roswell, the military thinks they have bought at least ten more years before the American public is ready for balderdash. Of course, we’re still not ready for alien bones dug up under a tree.

These weird little creatures are, it is explained, the cruel and sadistic work of Dr. Josef Mengele who has apparently switched his allegiance from Nazis to some other force.

To top it all off, our ramrod cutie hero (Mike Malarkey) is still the unwitting dupe of some kind of Commie pinko space alien agent. Oh, yes, it’s a beautiful woman.

A few more shows like this, and we will be done with Project Blue Book.

 

 

 

 

Project Blue Book, S2 Backtracks to Roswell

 DATELINE: More Malarkey! 

Since the veracity of the series means that the actual investigators of Project Blue Bookcame after Roswell by six years, there had to be a way to send them back.  Season 2 makes a start in that direction.

 

Aiden Gillen returns as the historical figure of Dr. Allen Hynek amid a bunch of fictional supporting names. Hynek was a major opponent of UFOs, but in this series he is the archangel of UFOlogists. Go figure.

Out of clever re-construction of history, however dubious in the entire science fiction genre, nothing is impossible. And, the impossible ties to the past are made. If you’re claiming a spaceship landed in Roswell, you can claim anything.

There is someone blackmailing the overzealous and fictional Gen. Harding (Neal McDonough in a bravura rotten villain role). He has made more enemies than a commie traitor facing the Un-American Activities Committee in the 1950s. The entire town of Roswell may be out to get him. His loyal aide, Captain Quinn (Michael Malarkey) is a ramrod cutie-pie who is starting to have doubts about his mission (not his sexuality).

Some kind of soap opera subplot continues with a Russian asset (or alien asset) now romancing Quinn on the side, after going after Dr. Hynek’s wife. Who said the 1950s were dull?

The show continues this season to be atmospheric and suggestive of the era: the names have been changed to protect someone. There is a great deal of cigarette smoking, swallows of whiskey straight, and pay phones on every corner.

The show suggests the government paid off many residents of Roswell with money, not necessarily with threats of death and maiming. We have again heroic Americans standing up to their corrupt government, however inaccurate that is.

In a two-part opener, we are back at Roswell where dead aliens may still lurk.

 

 

 

 

 

 

End of Season 1 on Project Blue Book

 DATELINE: They’ll be Back!

Season Ending 

Let’s end the suspense right now. The History Channel has renewed the series for ten more episodes next year. Phew! We were worried that they’d prefer more gold searches in remote places.

For the ultimate series finale, Project Blue Book goes for the jugular. No, not the aliens: the believers.

If anything has made an impression on us on the show, it has been the variety of uniforms that Air Force captain ‘Mike Malarkey’ as Quinn wears. It seems he has a wide-range to choose from.

Since major male TV characters tend to wear the same clothes every week, we are curious as to the Captain’s military wardrobe. He wears snazzy ‘50s  civilian wardrobe for the final episode. We have recently seen his regulation military underwear (just that white T-shirt) that has remained uncomfortable and ugly, as a fashion statement, since Roswell.

Wherever our two heroes go, space-shot aliens are sure to follow—even to Washington, D.C., where paranoid right-wing military Blue Book honcho Neal McDonough is having space kittens.

We do like the fact that Captain Ramrod Quinn is one of the few characters on television nowadays who smokes and drinks booze. We didn’t realize how much we missed this 1950s foible with political correctness everywhere.

Perhaps it is government budget cuts, but the show all season has had only one Man in Black. Of course, end of season may surprise us. It did not surprise with the lesbian subplot, of the two women watching Lucy and Ethel in a 1952 episode of I Love Lucy.

The Washington incident of 1952 occurred at night when a half-dozen UFOs shocked the United States, but here it is daytime—and Captain Quinn is going up in a jet to shoot them down.  At the same time, a heavy-set President Harry Truman shows up to give’em hell.

He is acquainted with Dr. Hynek. And the series episode is familiar with The Day the Earth Stood Still, which it copies.

After considerable hostilities, the two characters of Quinn and Hynek unbelievably seem to smooth things over. They must have heard there is another season on the horizon.

A small coda was clearly added after a decision to extend the series was made, trying to make a minor cliff-hanger.

Blue Book Penultimate Abduction

DATELINE: Blue versus Green Book

nemesis  Gillen & Mularkey.

The series Project Blue Book is heading for the final round-up with an episode on alien abduction. What actually happens is that Blue Book Meets Green Book.

Yes, this is supposed to be a re-telling of the Betty and Barney Hill abduction in 1961. It is so far off that even the year is wrong: the episode takes place in 1951.

Also, professional Barney Hill in this series comes off as a crazed, hostage-taking madman who happens to be black. The real Barney was nothing like this TV version, except that he was kidnapped and lost time. His wife is not with him for the encounter, and he draws the map of the universe that Barney’s wife actually recalled for scientists.

Even more peculiar, the show features Captain Quinn in his most unpleasant demeanor yet: we don’t recall a protagonist who exhibits racism as in this episode.

Granted, it might be part of the times, but Hynek is horrified by Quinn’s lack of care about a black man. Well, Quinn has a lack of care about everyone.

In one marvelous moment, the wife of the abductee takes Quinn down a peg. The moment is priceless, and the female soldier next to Quinn gives him such a look as to make everything worth it.

Project Blue Book is wrapping up, but the use of subtle racism echoes the Best Picture, Green Book, because the military headquarters of the project would not be a friendly spot for people of color, or aliens for that matter. The Russian spy/lesbian subplot has gone off its rocker as well.

Dr. Hynek (Aiden Gillen) finally has enough of the arrogant Air Force captain—and they literally come to blows in this episode. High time.

The series conclusion cannot come fast enough, likely with Harry Truman as a centerpiece, just to go out with historical inaccuracies galore.

Project Blue Book Takes on Twilight Zone

DATELINE: Off We Go…

Gremlin on Wing

Dr. Hynek sees a Gremlin on the plane’s wing!

With the fourth episode, this series has gone into full paranoia mode. All stops are cleared—and even crop circles (not really well-known until a few decades ago) are part of the secret American space program under German operatives brought to the country from Nazi Germany.

It’s Project Blue Book quickly making a long drive off that short bridge.

“Operation Paperclip” is, accordingly, a disturbing neo-Nazi military space program led by the treacherous Werner Von Braun. This may be the most critical depiction ever given of the scientist who once worked for Hitler and then for NASA.

We begin to note some weird parallels to classic Twilight Zone episodes on Project Blue Book. This fits clearly into the metamorphosis from muted thriller to outright nut-cake presentation.

Yes, this series has been developing on several fronts, and it has hooked skeptics who thought Allen Hynek was a government hack, more of the problem than the solution, in history.

Hynek is receiving the hagiographic treatment: yes, in a few short weeks he has become the saint of UFOs and patron poster boy for those who have found the government a giant monolithic stone wall, long before Trump.

As for Mike Malarkey’s hostile Captain Quinn, he takes on Von Braun and the German transplants with a less than welcoming immigrant bouquet.

Government bribes, human experimentation, and massive black budget coverups with Russian spies everywhere, especially following Hynek’s wife (are they the men in black hats?) comes out in this latest episode.

The strain on credulity may not bend much more after this showing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Back for More of Blue Book

DATELINE: Flatwoods Conundrum

flatwoods Kid illo of West Virginia Monster?

Project Blue Book, the teasing docudrama, has high production values and dubious manipulative techniques. So, we tuned in for another episode, despite being sick as a dog this week.

We were not as sick as the kids who encountered “The Flatwoods Monster,” some kind of alien creature who popped out of a crashed UFO.

The show did not cure us of our UFO-it is, or from a nasty case of laryngitis. It did take our mind off the self-pity party we have been suffering.

Dr. Hynek continues to find people worse off than any of us from their UFO encounters. And his less than helpful young military attaché continues to be a man following orders to disrupt the research.

Of course, we remain puzzled as to why these advanced beings in their souped-up space ships keep crashing. If you can fly across the universe, what’s the problem flying around the United States?

In the meantime, some mysterious people are following Hynek (are they really men in black?), and his insipid family is under scrutiny by rejects from the Un-Americans series about Soviet-style spies.

Based on the experiences of a mother and a group of kids in the early 1950s, we are shown how clever the professorial Dr. Hynek can be when it comes to finding a perfect debunking story to explain away whatever lunacy citizens report.

We have to admit he comes up with a lulu on this episode, and everyone is left to a temporary happy ending. Not according, however, to the taglines at the end. Each episode ends with real photos and real reactions of the witnesses.

 

Project Blue Book Dramatized

DATELINE: Faux History?

mcdonough & malarkey McDonough (foreground).

History Channel occasionally veers off the reservation of truly documentary-style films with re-enactors, to dabble in actual fictionalized history. Welcome to Fake History that brought you fake Vikings from 1000 fantasy years earlier.

Project Blue Book is some kind of docudrama about one of the government’s hacks, Dr. Alan Hynek, who was brought on to cover up UFO activity, but became (so they theorize) a true believer, not a debunker.

So the new series will show how this progressed as Hynek begins to lose faith with his monolithic government and its attempt to stifle information to the public.

In the first episode the most compelling moment was to show MJ-12, the secret government overseers, watching The Day the Earth Stood Still in 1951.  It’s the best scene in the movie from Robert Wise’s brilliant sci-fi classic. It could only go downhill from there.

A pilot of an aircraft claimed to have been in a dogfight with some kind of light force UFO. Well, you have some hotshot firing at will at something he cannot identify. Hmmm. This may be a series about idiocy.

If this is meant to be convincing truth from the annals of UFOlogy, then they have pulled a rabbit out of their anal area.

Hynek (Aiden Gillen) is paired with a young, handsome, all-military obstructionist co-star (Mike Malarkey). That’s compelling if you like ratings beefcake. We cannot fault the actors (Gillen of Game of Thrones and Malarkey of Dracula Diaries, both of whom play American in reel-life only).  We will resist the urge to say this show is a bunch of Malarkey.

Neal McDonough is our favorite villain from Justified. Here he plays some kind of MJ-12 lackey. The stars surely deserve their paychecks from the government in script, or from the cable giant for on-air performing.

We are not sure that this mini-series can be sustained over the long haul, if that is even the intention of the producers. History Channel dabbles before diving into any new series, and this could take-off or it could be submerged into a USO.

We shall see if we will see another episode. There is no point in being hooked if History will leave us dangling. This limited series is scheduled for ten episodes.