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Writer/producer in features & TV. Creator, five primetime series. Ex: TV Academy CEO; CNN reporter; USC professor. Author: Beatles, JFK what-ifs. UFO analyst.

Estimate of the Situation

The crash at Roswell in 1947 remains the original sin of the UFO cover-up. After years of denial and ridicule, confirmation is coming soon.

July 2022 will mark the 75th anniversary of the Roswell crash and retrieval operation.

After more than seven decades, with hundreds of witnesses all telling essentially the same story of wreckage and cover-up, it’s time to admit the Roswell case is more likely than not a true story about a crashed vehicle. The witnesses tell a powerfully consistent story that what came down violently in the New Mexico desert in 1947 was not made by the United States or any other foreign power. …

Culture Watch

Peloton’s most popular instructor is having a Zeitgeist moment. What does it say about him and about us?

The sassy and brassy Peloton instructor extraordinaire Cody Rigsby is having the ride of his life (and not just in spin class). Literally, in just the last week, he was featured in The Washington Post, The Evening Standard, and Insider. He has endorsement deals with Adidas, Therabody and GM. The Cult of Cody is in full motion. Who doesn’t love this guy?

“[I decided] to be myself, to be authentic, to lean into the things that I’m good at… People are really resonating with what I’m putting out there.”

Ten Things about Cody

I’ve been spinning with Cody Rigsby since my Peloton bike showed…

A Trail of the Saucers Investigation

On the 60th anniversary of the Hill UFO abduction, it’s time to set the record straight about how the story first received global attention in 1965 based on the journalism of John Luttrell Sr.

We all know how the Betty and Barney Hill abduction story became public, right? It was the subject of a 1966 book, The Interrupted Journey, by author John Fuller. It became a best-seller after being excerpted in two issues of Look magazine published in October of that year. That book was adapted to a TV movie in 1975, The UFO Incident, starring James Earl Jones and Estelle Parsons.

It’s a nice narrative, widely repeated in streaming documentaries, cable episodes, blog posts, and UFO books. It is accepted as fact.

The problem with that version is that it erases the history…

Twenty Years Ago

As today’s Emmys struggle with the coronavirus for a second year, former TV Academy chairman Bryce Zabel looks back at the 2001 Emmys that were canceled twice. Must the show go on?

Since the Emmy Awards came into existence in 1949, they had never been postponed or canceled until 2001. In that year of 9/11, it happened twice — on my watch. That year, the Emmys faced an existential threat when 9/11 occurred five days before a scheduled telecast.

I was elected Chairman/CEO of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences in August 2001, naively thinking that being the first writer since Rod Serling to hold that post might be what distinguished my term in office. Then, just a month later, 9/11 hit. …

Movie Smackdown

Try streaming these two sci-fi films back-to-back and ask yourself which one communicates the best about first contact.

The Smackdown

Contact arrived in our theaters 24 years ago this July — back when S.E.T.I. was cool instead of home base for people who can’t see the forest for all the UAP in our skies. The film captured the Carl Sagan world view and the hopeful zeitgeist that maybe radio signals could clear up this vast mystery about being alone in the Universe. Sagan passed away during production, and never got to see the film made from his book of the same name.

Nearly twenty years later, Arrival, well, arrived itself, checking story boxes from Contact and other classics. Aliens arrive…

UFOs and Journalism

Trail of the Saucers editors Bryce Zabel and David Bates talk about covering the UAP/UFO world as a breaking news story that’s moving with the speed of a Tic Tac. Plus the state of Disclosure, and a pair of black-and-white photos taken in 1950.

Bryce Zabel and David Bates are a couple of native Oregonians who both went to the University of Oregon and got degrees in Journalism. Yet both writers had never met (and still haven’t except virtually) until the middle of 2021. With this conversation, Bryce, who created Trail of the Saucers and brought it to Medium last year, welcomes David as both an editor and a writer.

Bryce: It’s been historic, writing about this when the UAP report came out.

David: Well, journalism is the “first draft of history,” as they say. …

UAP Report

The new Intelligence Assessment on UAP is more than we’ve gotten in the past but not so much as we may deserve in the present. Still, it’s not the end of the UFO story. It may be the end of the beginning.

The 180-day countdown is over. The surprise isn’t what’s in the UAP report. It’s that it was written at all and turned in on time. Even with expectations tempered mightily, it was still a rush felt by many to see a UAP report pop up on a website run by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, then download the PDF, and read the damn thing. Not quite the same feeling as where you were for JFK, the Moon landing, or 9/11, but important in its own way.

The report was written by the intelligence community and the Pentagon…

Estimate of the Situation

On the eve of the memorable (we hope) UAP Report to Congress, a system has revealed itself so we can figure out where we are in the game, and how long it may take for a robust Disclosure.

The UAP Report to Congress is due to drop any minute now. There have been leaks to the New York Times, rampant speculation (most of it trying to tamp down expectations), and classified briefings prepping Senators for what’s to come.

We won’t know what’s in the report until we see the report. It will likely be less than we hope for, more than nothing, and most readers will be at least vaguely unsatisfied.

Over at Trail of the Saucers on Twitter, we asked people what expectation they had and the results have been predictable.

As it turns out, the…

No Time Like the Present

Despite the past year’s history of pandemic, protests and politics, now is still the right time to end the UFO cover-up.

Times are tough. Just over a year ago, the coronavirus sent us indoors to watch the number of victims skyrocket and the economy crater. Even as we start to return to our normal lives, there are reminders everywhere about what a deeply divided nation America now is. We can’t agree on vaccines, social justice, border policy, or even who got elected in the last election.

Demanding to be dealt with are the existential challenges of climate disasters, species extinctions, poverty, refugees and nuclear proliferation. We have issues of war and peace with Russia, China, Iran, and North Korea, at minimum.

Here’s a collection of stories from our Medium publication on the subject of UFO/UAP reality. Written by Bryce Zabel, all of them are outside the site’s paywall and free to read.

We’ll start with our Top Two most read articles —

Next up, articles influenced by the UAP report delivered to Congress on June 25, 2021 —

We like to do deep dives into cases, here’s a few —

Bryce Zabel

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