Ok, it’s shameless self-promotion time again. A few months back, I filmed a number of segments for the new Science Channel show called Dark Matters: Twisted But True. The show details cases in history where scientific research perhaps went too far and led down some dark roads. Some of the stories have a paranormal twist to them, and those are the stories I was interviewed for. The show is now airing, with new episodes every Wednesday night at 10pm ET. This week, you can catch the premiere episode at 8pm, which deals with the Philadelphia Experiment, Stalin’s Ape-Man Army and the invention of the electric chair. I’m featured on the first two segments.
Examine what happens when scientific research goes too far, with the world premiere of Dark Matters: Twisted But True. This series takes viewers inside the laboratory to profile strange science and expose some of history’s most bizarre experiments. Hosted by noted science fiction actor John Noble (Fringe, Lord of the Rings), Dark Matters: Twisted But Truedelves into the most unusual research ever conducted, including attempts to crossbreed humans and apes, actual zombie investigations and head transplantation studies. Cutting-edge CGI recreations enable viewers to witness the pivotal moments when brilliant minds face controversy or ethical crossroads on the fringes of science.
“The stories we share in Dark Matters: Twisted But True are as outlandish as a great sci-fi script or as disturbing as a classic horror tale — the only difference is that they’re all true,” said Noble. “The series offers a glimpse into the dark side of science, as well as human nature.”
“Dark Matters: Twisted But Trueoffers a fascinating insight into moments of scientific history where individuals went to extreme measures to achieve a breakthrough. It’s impossible to turn away from these true stories that you always assumed were just outlandish urban legends,” said Debbie Adler Myers, general manager and executive vice president of SCIENCE. “This is real science — just the dark side of it, featuring brilliant minds who eventually took a dramatic turn. John Noble is the perfect tour guide to escort viewers through this bizarre world of research gone horribly wrong, but that in some cases, actually led to technology and science that we use today.”
The series premiere features the shocking story of Soviet scientist Dr. Ilya Ivanov, who in the 1920s attempted to start his own “planet of the apes.” In an attempt to build an invincible army, Ivanov tried to crossbreed humans with apes to create a race of supersoldiers. Viewers also will be introduced to Morris Jessup, a self-identified UFO expert who attempted to expose what he believed to be a military cover-up involving experiments with invisibility. Finally, unorthodox studies by America’s greatest inventor, Thomas Edison, result in a dark and unintended invention which remains infamous today.
Also, I have to thank the online magazine Pop Matters for mentioning me in their review of the show.
The show tells this story with breathless enthusiasm, even when it’s revealed to be barely true. (Albert Einstein was a real person.) Along the way, a physicist and a neuroscientist appear; the former testifies that yes, bending light around an object would render it invisible, the latter explains that directed electromagnetic radiation can affect the brain. Neither, obviously, endorses the story, well known in paranormal circles as “The Philadelphia Experiment.”
Instead, Jason Stroming, founder of the New York Paranormal Society, picks up the tale. It’s compelling, with government intrigue, time travel, patriotic sailors made mad by science, and Jessup’s “apparent suicide.” And it’s not so prosaic as one researcher’s hypothesis, that the whole saga grew out of confusion and confabulation about degaussing, an electromagnetic application that made Allied ships “invisible” to mines.
There will be six episodes in all, with the original premiere and a new episode airing tonight, and then more new episodes airing over the next four weeks. Please tune in, and you’ll get to see me talk instead of write for a change!