Here’s an interesting thing. I was watching Alien and in the beginning, after they have been awakened by the computer, they assume they have arrived back home, more or less. Veronica Cartwright, as Lambert, is sitting in front of a computer screen that was probably high tech in the late 1970s but is no longer, and says, “That’s not our system.”
They attempt to contact Antarctica control (which, given this situation, is probably hours away by radio, given the speed of light) and receives no answer. Sigourney Weaver, as Ripley, then says, “That’s not our system.”
Lambert says, “I know that.”
But, and this is the part relevant to us here, she says, “It’s Zeta II Reticuli.”
Of all the systems out there, why pick this one. And, which came first, Marjorie Fish’s discovery about the Betty Hill Star Map, or Alien.
That question is simple to answer. Marjorie Fish. The information was published in 1976 or about three years before Alien was released. Rather than the movie contaminating the search for the stars in Betty Hill’s map, it seems that Fish’s work came first.
And I would venture to say that someone with the production company at some level knew this. They needed the name of a star system and this one was available and easy to pronounce. It was just another one of those little inside jokes that are spread through most movies.
It also shows how deep some of the information about UFOs can penetrate into pop culture. I suspect that most people would pick up on the reference, but some of us did. The fact that it was used at all is the interesting part of this, but proves nothing about the really of Fish’s interpretation of the Star Map…
Oh, and I think it warns us not to go near that star system. Zeta I Reticuli might be safe but certainly not Zeta II.