I watched the movie "The Abyss" yesterday. Unadulterated hollywood alien-sci-fi garbage. Pseudo-emotions mixed with american-arrogance, so much crap that it would have given Karan Johar some serious inferiority complex. But, this made me think why so many alien stories are so similar.
Lets come to the assumptions in the alien movies:
1) Aliens always love to make contact with the humans (If I were an alien, I would try to make contact with crocodiles - much more interesting, right?)
2) Aliens are generally much more intelligent than humans (Its hard to beat the dumbness of humans - probably aliens don't watch Big Boss! Also, since 'they' contact us by reaching 'our' planet, they must be better than us!)
3) Aliens by default understand or learn English (by intercepting the cerebral signals and interpreting with the aural waves and decoding to hexadecimal system - you will be given some such nonsense by the story writers) If you tell the aliens "howdy" or "hey buddy, howz it goin?", they would give you a hi-five, without blinking those magnetic eyelids!
4) Aliens will generally be shorter than humans (I can easily hit the ramp in an alien fashion week!) They will have lesser fingers than humans (thank God, more than five fingers in a hand can be very confusing!) and an antenna (Cant believe this - with so much advancement in technology, cant they have an internal signal receiver instead of a protruded antenna! May be in their world, being short, two-fingered and having an antenna is considered sexy!)
Don't you think nobody has tried to think beyond this? Why cant these hopelessly crazy things be possible?
1) There may be aliens in the world who just don't like contacting other species. May be they are homesick or plain xenophobic.
2) Why the hell should the aliens be similar to humans? (okay I will rephrase, resembling Uday Chopra!) Why cant aliens look like purple-colored isosceles triangle with the smell of a rotten tomato? Like semi-vitrified tiles? Or why cant they be invisible? May be they are everywhere on earth - one of them may be watching movies with me everyday, without my knowledge.
3) If I wave at an alien or smile at them, why do they expect the aliens to "understand" that and respond the same way? A smile according to them may be a frown and waving could be their gesture of a middle finger!
4) May be they have a completely different set of senses - senses number seven to thirteen. So, they wont even understand what we are communicating. (May be they have another sense in which their "cwerit ctreww" - did not understand? May be they wont understand "eyes see" or "nose smells"!)
5) They may not understand good and bad, love and hate. (So don't tell an alien "its cool" or "I ain't gonna hurt nobody" or "We are friends" if you happen to meet one) May be they don't die (okay, don't tell me their batteries will drain out. So childish!) or procreative.
Crazy? Yes! Impossible? No!
This convinced me that be it anything, we imagine most of the things by adding or subtracting to human qualities.
Man - 2 feet - 2 fingers + 1 antenna = Alien
Man + wings + wand + few twinkling stars = Angel
Man + superpower + goodness + immortality + solution to all problems + more heads and more hands (optional) = God
Man + badness + ugliness + loud laugh = Demon
Don't you think our imagination is so programmed and limited?