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Project Blue Book - Series Premiere Discussion

Project Blue Book

Premise: College professor Dr. J. Allen Hynek (Aiden Gillen) is recruited by the US Air Force to be the Chief Scientific Advisor to a team that includes General James Harding (Neal McDonough), General Hugh Valentine (Michael Harney) and Captain Michael Quinn (Michael Malarkey) who will investigate cases of UFO phenomena in this series based on the real examinations conducted by the United States Air Force from 1952-1969.

?History[54/100] (score guide)
92% Upvoted
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level 1

a dude I know had a comment when we were discussing project blue book... " I moved to Fl when I was 16, my brother in law had been a muckty Muck in the Pentagon, and had retired from the AF. He worked somewhere and would come home and have 5 or 6 martinis, then sleep in his recliner as us kids watched TV. "Hanger 18" was on and me and my nephew were watching it, they showed a "Craft" and my BinL opened his eyes, uttered "that's not what it looked like" and went back to sleep. Never found out if he was trolling us or what. He would never admit that he did it.. Still creeps me out to think about it though. "

level 1

Watched the first episode and loved it BUT how much of it is accurate? Did a pilot really claim to engage in fire with a ufo? Did Hynek get pursued by I guess are the men in black or something similar? It makes for good tv but I get a string vibe a lot of this stuff is great embellished which will in return dampen my interest in the show!watching the trailers for this, I expected it to be a very accurate telling of Hynel and his experiences...

level 1

I noticed there's still no sub for this so I made /r/ProjectBlueBookTV for those interested

level 2
Sherlock1 point · 1 day ago

Thanks so much for creating this sub!

level 2

Thank you! This looks like it'll be fun to discuss the episodes. Happy there's a sub.

level 1
Sherlock2 points · 5 days ago

Still no sub for this series?

level 1
1 point · 7 days ago · edited 7 days ago

TROPE ALERT Why have a face mask if you aren't going to where it when flying? Why bother having both hands free when flying and talking on the radio?

level 1
1 point · 7 days ago

Is there any way I can see this from Europe? :\

level 1

I expected Project Blue Book to be fictionalized, of course, but its true awfulness exceeded my expectations. It had about as much to do with the actual people and events as Raiders of the Lost Ark had to do with the scientific expeditions of Roy Chapman Andrews (the purported "model" for Indiana Jones).

But resistance is useless, right? So, perhaps I will try to sell The History (sic) Channel an outline for another new series, this one based on the "files" of the Manhattan Project, but giving free reign to the imagination, not getting bogged down in tiresome physics or engineering, or being in any way constrained by what real people really did. So, then: Episode 1:  General Leslie Groves sends polymath scientist-adventurer "Robbie" Oppenheimer (played by Matthew McConaughey) to parachute into Norway to blow up the Nazi heavy water plant.  Episode 2:  Robbie, visiting the Hanover plutonium production facility, repels a Japanese commando attack, but only with a saving assist from OSS chief "Wild Bill" Donovan.  Episode 3:  Robbie joins forces with Captain America to foil a plot by The Red Skull to disrupt the Manhattan Project timetable . . . Hey, I think I am getting the hang of this.

For anyone out there who might be interested in the real J. Allen Hynek: He was an astronomer of substantial achievements in that field, including direction of the Smithsonian's Optical Tracking Program, a pioneering project that was part of the International Geophysical Year in 1957 -- an ambitious international scientific collaboration.  That story and more, but especially Hynek's long involvement in the study of UFO phenomena, are covered in a decent recent biography of the real man, The Close Encounters Man, by Mark O'Connell (HarperCollins, 2017). 

Regarding Hynek and UFOs, here is an excerpt from a letter by Dr. Hynek that was published ("not without difficulty") in Science, Oct. 21, 1966: "I cannot dismiss the UFO phenomenon with a shrug. The 'hard data' cases contain frequent allusions to recurrent kinematic, geometric, and luminescent characteristics. I have begun to feel that there is a tendency in 20th-century science to forget that there will be a 21st-century science, and indeed, a 30th-century science, from which vantage points our knowledge of the universe may appear quite different. We suffer perhaps, from temporal provincialism, a form of arrogance that has always irritated posterity."

level 2

That's very unfortunate..I loved the first episode but it seems to be much too fictionalized for my tastes..I expected a very authentic reselling of Hyneks experiences but I guess this isn't it..? I'm disappointed as to why they'd embellish so much?

level 1


The older I get, the more critical I am of Cable Channel television. Mind you, I'm not discounting there have been exceptional series, such as Narcos, Deadwood, The Wire, etc. Those shows have had thoughtful and compelling writing. Project Blue Book is nowhere near that high caliber. It's More a BB than a 50 cal.

For example, in the first episode, the military brass used terminology like "setting the narrative". That wasn't a fashionably used term/description in the 50's. Today, we hear it everywhere, it's overused, but in the 50's --NEVER!

I'd like to think "HISTORY CHANNEL" would be alert and faithful to period verbiage. Watch for more contemporary usage as the series progresses.,

And you can bet there'll be LGBTQ and Race pandering as the episodes unfold. A good example of that was the Lesbian ogling & foreplay between the two wives in the department store. Sad to see how American television has turned into a manipulative machine, sprinkling leftist ideology and social justice whenever it can. I don't mind a good message here and there. But too often do I see this type of obvious and forced messaging, as if on cue by legislative mandate.

On a more positive note, (some of) the actors (their careers) they are at the top of their game. Too bad this Blue Book vehicle doesn't allow them to shine. Finally, The production values were all A+.

My main beef was the show's immature writing! It just did not carry the subject matter.

This first Project Blue Book episode reminded me of that awful film that won best picture a couple years back, "The Shape of Water". More accurately, it's a hybrid, of both The X Files and The Shape of Water!

WARNING: Project Blue book rates 4/10

level 1
-6 points · 9 days ago(2 children)
level 2
Comment deleted by user8 days ago(0 children)
level 3
-6 points · 8 days ago(0 children)
level 1

I enjoyed it. Although the whole Hynek's wife with the department store woman thing went on way too long. I'm sure they're building to something, like a falling out with her new "friend" when she finds out that Hynek is an UFO investigator.

But good production values, good camerawork, good editing. The acting was solid by all parties. And pleasantly surprised that Robert Zmeckis co-produced it.

level 2

I thought the first episode was great, I'm hooked already biggest question is how accurate is the show? It already seems to be bordering more on fiction than reality

level 2

You didn't catch the department store woman taking pictures of Hynek and surveilling him at his house at the end of the episode?

level 3

No, I didn't. I have kids and animals in my house (if you're a parent, you'll understand). I will rewatch the end. Thanks for the tip.

level 1
4 points · 9 days ago

Pilot vs pilot this is my favorite History scripted show yet, I'm in love already.

level 1

Dr. Pavel, I'm US Air Force

level 1
Sherlock7 points · 9 days ago

I didn't really know what to expect but was pleasantly surprised. I definitely will keep watching. So far so good.

level 1
1 point · 9 days ago

I haven't seen the series premiere first episode yet but have already heard of Hynek and Project Blue Book for years through watching many UFO documentaries including Ancient Aliens and Hanger 1 which heavily reported Hynek's work. I hope the show keeps true to Hynek's work as being a skeptic at first and eventually becoming a true UFO believer and researcher. Also his obstacles and hurdles with the government which eventually lead to the project being terminated due to the government not taking any of the UFO reports seriously and looked at it as a joke. I would hate to see this show that does have potential to be a really good "X Files" type of show change direction and become this over the top "Men In Black" type of fiction drama nonsense just to gain ratings. I guess I have to wait and see. Looks promising and will definitely watch.

level 2

Agree..the whole chase scene where Hynek pursues some mysterious figure into the amusement park to then witness a cryptic slide bullshit meter was blowing up..too bad as I wanted an accurate rundown of what happened..I do not want another X-files type show..been there, done that

level 1

Okay, I'll give it a shot. I have already wasted too much of my life listening to Coast to Coast AM interview people about aliens, but a show starring Little Finger, I'm in.

level 1
7 points · 9 days ago

I always compare series premiers to first dates. And I look for the same things: Do I enjoy my time? Is the content interesting or thought provoking? Am I left wanting to spend more time with this person/series?

Project Blue Book did look good. That's always a point in a first date's favor. Showing up with excellent settings and effects does make a good first impression. Blue Book did have that. The department store in particular made me very nostalgic and evoked a sense of grace and style from the era very well.

I'm intrigued by Hynek. He shows the most promise to be an interesting character. I hope he does more amazing math seeking the proof because he made that seem fascinating. Which, frankly, is impressive. Way more impressive than Captain Cookie Cutter Malarkey who needs to be fleshed out more than just a pretty fly boy who knows how to crash a plane. I was hoping for Malarkey's character to have a sort of epiphany that maybe he's looking for something deeper than just rubber stamping reports. And for him to show a little more personal depth. We'll wait and see if that comes through.

I had a nice time and a second date for Project Blue Book is likely but I'm not waiting by the phone for a call.

level 2
Sherlock2 points · 9 days ago

Nice. I enjoyed reading this.

I think Captain Cookie Cutter will eventually have that epiphany you long for. He and Hynek seem to have a yin yang vibe going on, but eventually they may both be on the same page. Part of their effectiveness in unraveling the truth (after each case) will be their ability to keep quiet about their own conclusions. I don't see how the powers that be (the big bad nefarious military) would allow them to continue their "mission" otherwise. I especially enjoy the humor they've thrown into the dialogue, as if they aren't taking each other too seriously yet.

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