Dark Skies (1996)

Dark Skies is an American UFO conspiracy theory-based sci-fi television series that aired from the 1996 to 1997 season for 18 episodes, plus a two-hour pilot episode. The success of The X-Files on Fox proved there was an audience for science fiction shows, resulting in NBC commissioning this proposed competitor following a pitch from producers Bryce Zabel and Brent Friedman. The series debuted September 21, 1996 on NBC, and was later rerun by the Sci-Fi Channel. Its tagline was “History as we know it is a lie.”




PLOT SUMMARY

The series presents the idea that 20th century history as people know it is a lie. It depicts aliens having been among humans since the late 1940s, with a government cover-up concealing their existence from the public. As the series progresses, viewers follow John Loengard and Kim Sayers through the 1960s as they attempt to foil the plots of the alien “Hive”. The Hive is an alien race that planned to invade Earth through a manipulation of historical events and famous figures, including most notably the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. In addition, the pair must stay one step ahead of Majestic 12, a covert government agency that has mixed motives. The show depicted a number of real-life 1960s personalities in the plot, such as The Beatles, Robert Kennedy, Jim Morrison, and J. Edgar Hoover.

The series was cancelled before the end of the first season, due to low ratings. Although the last episode produced provides some form of closure for the series, with Kim Sayers becoming possessed by the Hive and the head of Majestic 12 being apparently assassinated, the show’s creators had originally hoped to create five seasons, as indicated by the show’s “Bible” or major planning document. According to Zabel and Friedman’s original plan, the pilot and first season (given the overall title “Official Denial”) would cover the period from 1961 to 1969, the second season (“Progenitor”) 1970 to 1976, the third season (“Cloak of Fear”) 1977 to 1986, the fourth season (“New World Order”) would cover 1987 to 1999, and the fifth and final season (“Stroke of Midnight”) would break from the decade-spanning format to encompass the apocalyptic final conflict against the invaders, taking place from 2000 to 2001.

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TELEVISION SUBLIMINALS

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