Over the years, the History Channel show Ancient Aliens has become the butt of a lot of jokes. Poor Giorgio A. Tsoukalos has been turned into a meme that just won’t go away. But early on in the existence of the show, Ancient Aliens actually made some pretty good points and re-sparked an interest in asking the eternal question: could extraterrestrial life actually exist?
In 2002, the Mars Odyssey Spacecraft discovered reservoirs of ice hidden beneath Mars’ surface, suggesting that life just might be able to be sustained on another planet. Then in 2008, the Vatican even acknowledged that life on other planets is possible, and declared that it does not negate the existence of God.
And long before either of those realizations occurred, Chariots of the Gods was published by Swiss author Erich von Däniken in 1968, in an attempt to prove that aliens had visited Earth thousands of years ago. Von Däniken was driven by the fact that every major religion revolves around the story of a heavenly figure visiting Earth, and used this as the basis for his famous Ancient Alien Theory. One year after it was published, Neil Armstrong walked on the moon and re-sparked America’s interest in outer space and aliens, but von Däniken’s theory that ancient Gods were actually alien visitors is still highly contested.
Ancient Aliens has made some pretty reasonable claims, and presented a lot of facts about unexplained phenomena. And while the accuracy of their scientific claims involving aliens may come into question from time to time, they certainly present some plausible explanations for otherwise unexplainable events. So, was Ancient Aliens right? Who knows – but here’s a list of every time their ideas made some sense. The truth is out there, but you’ll have to decide if they’ve found it.