In a change of pace, rather than interview, I chatted with Paul Hynek about History’s Project Blue Book. This all came about, as I have mentioned, because I wondered how the Hynek family was reacting to the program. Many of us thought that J. Allen Hynek would be upset by the way he was presented. Paul thought his father would sit there, a big bowl of popcorn in his lap, and enjoy what he was watching. You can listen to the show here:
The thing that came out in the discussion, was that the Hynek family, and some of us in the UFO community, understand that this is a drama and not a documentary. Paul took it a little farther than that, suggesting that it was put
the way it is because of other considerations. For example, it is set in the
early 1950s (though the timeline is certainly skewed) so that it would address
some other issues including Russian meddling. While I don’t want to get dragged
into political discussions here because that isn’t the purpose of the blog, I
will note that there certainly is a tie in between the spying of the cold war
and the meddling with public opinion today… and yes, I was more than a little
careful with the wording to avoid those political discussions.
We did discuss some of Allen Hynek’s favorite cases. Paul mentioned the Socorro UFO landing specifically. He said that his father was impressed with Lonnie Zamora as a witness. I didn’t mention that there had been an opportunity to find additional witnesses in 1964 based on what Captain Holder, of the Army, had learned on the night of the landing. Nor did I mention that another sighting, in northern New Mexico, a day or so later was not investigated by Hynek, though, according to the record, he had requested permission to do so.
We also talked about David O’Leary, the creator of the series and Auturo Interian, who is a vice president at A&E, and directly involved in the show. Both men are well versed in the UFO field. In my communications with Interian, I have been impressed with his depth of knowledge that moves into some rather esoteric areas. In talking about some of the background, he mentioned the 4602d Air Intelligence Service Squadron, an organization that some of those deep into Ufology know nothing about.
Paul is of the opinion that even though Project Blue Book is very loosely based on real events, it does spark an interest in UFOs. If it moves some to explore the topic more deeply, or search for more information, then that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
You can listen to the interview and see what you all think about it. I should have the opportunity in the near future to interview some of the others involved with the show. If there are questions you’d like to hear answered, or short points that you’d like to make, append them here in the comments, and I’ll do what I can to get them answered.