You might not know the TV series Beyond Belief: Fact or Fiction, but you almost certainly know the memes surrounding it. Johnathan Frakes, of Star Trek fame, hosted the mystery-solving ’90s show, where he’d investigate bizarre claims and declare if they’re true or not.
His reactions to falsehoods have been subject to many compilations, since when you watch them in sequence, they’re absurd. Anyway, he’s aware of the videos, and very much approves of them. “I couldn’t be more thrilled,” he tells Collider, “it makes me feel current, it makes me feel young, it makes me feel part of where the – kids don’t have TVs, they don’t watch TV, they don’t have a television.”
The memes are a compliment and carry the same humour as the comedy series, Frakes explains. “Memes are a source of communication that didn’t exist in the ’90s,” he says. “It’s a strange award for the absurdity of what you do because the tone of the memes is always a little tongue-in-cheek and a little playful, and the tone of our show was like that.”
As Beyond Belief turns 25, with a German continuation now a season in, Frakes explains how much pride he has in seeing all the renewed relevance. “I’m very proud actually, of the memes,” he says, “and particularly the funniest I think is the sort of half-speed, have you ever been to a Chinese restaurant? Where it sounds like Frakes is drunk, it’s very clever, somebody spent some real time editing those things together.”
Beyond Belief: Fact or Fiction season 5 isn’t available in English-language countries yet, however, the first four seasons can be found on Amazon Prime Video and other services thanks to FilmRise. Frakes filmed the introductions for the new episodes from the US, while the segments were produced in Germany.
On the sci-fi series front, you can see Frakes in Star Trek: Picard season 3. Have a look at our guide to the best detective movies if you want to do some investigation yourself.