The X-Files: The Lost Art of Forehead Sweat
Last week’s episode of The X-Files dealt with a mysterious man named Reggie, possible parallel universes, and the Mandela Effect. I know I’m a bit late on this episode, it came out last week. But I just watched it, so lay off. The episode reminds me of the one-off mystery episodes from when the show was in its heyday. But honestly that isn’t really what I wanted to talk about though, it’s the Mandela Effect.
The Mandela Effect
The “Mandela Effect” is what happens when someone has a clear, personal memory of something that never happened in this reality. Many people — mostly total strangers — seem to remember several of the exact same events with the exact same details. However, those memories are different from what’s in history books, newspaper archives, and so on.
There are many things people remember differently from what actually happened. The name comes from people misremembering Nelson Mandela dying in prison in the 1980s, when in fact he actually lived to see freedom and died in 2013. For me and many around my age, our biggest memory of the Mandela Effect is The Berenstain Bears, or as I remember it The Berenstein Bears. I’ve had long discussions with people about this and they were always as shocked as I was. I even pulled out the books, that I learned to read with, and it was Berenstain.
So what does this mean?
There are many theories as to what causes the Mandela Effect. Three theories are mentioned in The X-Files episode;
- Simple misremembering. This theory, the most likely, is that we as a people have just misremembered it. Someone somewhere or a movie said the wrong thing and now we believe it. While this is most likely, and Scully seems to agree, many say the false memory too common to be just misremembered.
- Mind Control. This theory is shared by the mysterious and quirky, Reggie. This theory involves government and corporate conspiracies. It’s said that an entity would want to control the masses or change the perception of an event. So they plant false information into the general population so we either feel crazy or believe an untruth. This is evident in this theory on the assassination of JFK.
- Parallel universes. Mulder’s half-joking theory is a fairly popular one and my favorite. This theory is that we are either remembering fragments from parallel universes or that we are from a parallel universe. There are several different versions of this theory. One theory is that a catastrophic event happened on Earth and we all would have died. This theory speculated that at the exact moment we would have died, our entire existence jumped into the parallel universe and that’s why our memories don’t reflect the facts of our current universe.
The X-Files brings to light this strange occurrence in a humorous way, but is it real? While I would like to think my memory isn’t that bad;
Once you eliminate the impossible, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, must be the truth.
and as we know, the truth is out there.