This just in: Earth has started to receive television broadcasts from deep space. Lest anyone set their DVR to record the latest Ganymede Shore or Big Brother LV-426, be advised: these are re-runs that originate from our planet.
It’s no secret that television signals routinely leave Earth and go rocketing off toward the great beyond. When they face a significantly large obstruction, some of those signals bounce back in our direction.
In a shocking turn of events, some of these broadcasts are previously lost episodes of Doctor Who.
In and of itself, this phenomenon is amazing. Unfortunately, the Hubble Space Telescope is as of yet unable to pin down the source of the massive obstruction. Let’s fill in the gaps for NASA by exploring possible reasons behind the “Bounce Anomaly:”
1) Aliens don’t appreciate free cable
After too many marathons of Gilligan’s Island, deep space denizens established an energy field that repels broadcast television. I can’t blame them. The Universe is too vast to dwell on a handful of castaways and their coconut radios. At the same time, our extraterrestrial neighbors might regret their decision when their barrier inadvertently block out the last season of Breaking Bad.
2) Daleks want to set the record straight.
Episodes of Doctor Who have passed through the grand filter of deep space. I have to believe that we’ve offended our share of Daleks in the process. I’m even willing to bet that some of the dialogue from bygone episodes is suspiciously re-dubbed. Instead of “EXTERMINATE!” get ready for the less-abrasive “HYDROGENATE!” or “EXFOLIATE!”
3) Vega has a sense of humor.
Remember the ominous signal from Contact that was actually a televised speech from Hitler bounced back from Vegan intelligence? It turns out that Vega’s top scientists thought it would be funny to send a scatter-shot of data back to the planet of origin and freak us out. Hidden somewhere in a commercial break is an encrypted message from across time and space: LOL, N00BS.
4) The impediment is Cthulhu
If I was an episode of The Andy Griffith Show flying through deep space, I would feel pretty intimidated at the sight of a sanity-devouring space octopus. As a planet, we should welcome back the frightened stream of data, give it a mug of hot cocoa, and encourage it to tell us all about what happened out there in the scary space between the stars.
Personally, I'm holding out for the first intergalactic Twilight Zone marathon. I'd like to think that somewhere out there, perhaps resting his hand on the Curiosity rover, Rod Serling smirks with a private sense of accomplishment.
What shows do you hope bounce back for a second viewing?