What On Earth coverThere's a classic The Far Side comic where two aliens, cleverly disguised as traffic lights, discuss eliminating the Earth's population slowly, one at a time. The joke, of course, is that things aren't always what they seem.

Apparently, filmmakers Les Drew and Kaj Pindal had a similar idea back in 1966, when they made the animated short called What on Earth! The nine-minute movie is a satirical look at Earth from outer space. Specifically, when Martians arrive on our blue rock, they assume, based on the observable conditions, the automobile is the dominant species. It's a warm and funny little video, especially the part about how getting crushed and heading to the junk yard is an individual's final contribution to society. The Film Board says, "This animated short proposes what many earthlings have long feared – that the automobile has inherited the planet. When life on Earth is portrayed as one long, unending conga-line of cars, a crew of extra-terrestrial visitors understandably assume they are the dominant race. While humans, on the other hand, are merely parasites."

What On Earth! was nominated for an Oscar for Best Animated Short in 1967, but lost to something called The Box. Produced by the National Film Board of Canada, the movie was shown in theaters and on ABC television in the US in the 1960s. Now, it is available for your viewing pleasure simply by clicking below.

What on Earth! by Les Drew & by Kaj Pindal, National Film Board of Canada



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 17 Comments
      Kris Snow
      • 2 Years Ago
      how would the martians view junkyards?
      adrive7
      • 2 Years Ago
      Hi! My name is Ford Prefect!
      Giza Plateau
      • 2 Years Ago
      I guess it's a slightly amusing perspective but of course nonsense. ETs know our cars are vehicles. They understand the concept of a vehicle. If you think about it.. And they often take in interest in our cars. From above where they come from, a car with headlights stand out at night on deserted roads. They often stalk lone cars, pick them up or stop the car and borrow the human for a while for a bit of examination.
        EZEE
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Giza Plateau
        But why is it ALWAYS anal probes? I mean, haven't they learned everything that they can learn from an anal probe already?
          EZEE
          • 2 Years Ago
          @EZEE
          And your name is suspiciously like blue waffle....
          Giza Plateau
          • 2 Years Ago
          @EZEE
          It's more or less never anal probes. That's mostly the idiot's take on the abduction phenomenon. Usually it's semen extraction and egg extraction and insemination in the massive reproduction experiment program that the little greys are running. Other races might just pick us up and examine us a bit and put us back.
          bluepongo1
          • 2 Years Ago
          @EZEE
          2 E.T.s 1 probe ?
      Mark Fraser
      • 2 Years Ago
      I remember watching that in grade school in the early 70s. We watched a lot of National Film Board movies in school in Canada.
      Ron W.
      • 2 Years Ago
      Please forgive me if I'm the first one to post, but did anyone else notice at about the 4:30 mark one of the billboards says "smoke"? Then a few moments later you see a billboard that says "pot". And right next to that is a billboard that says "555". Needless to say, the 1960's were pretty trippy!
        M Lange
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Ron W.
        And the little circles in the headlights at the following movie theatre say "Salted Beans"
        Buzzskyline
        • 2 Years Ago
        @Ron W.
        555? what does that mean?
      Archonic
      • 2 Years Ago
      Just wanted to say congratulations on properly linking the featured post image!
      stumpy
      • 2 Years Ago
      what on earth did I just watch?
      dukeisduke
      • 2 Years Ago
      I was a kid when that came out. I don't know how it is that I never saw it.
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