345. NASA’s a sucker for any Very Large Array salesman.”

The episode:The Incredible Melting Man,” ep. 704

The riff: Sarcastically riffed by Mike as a very complicated-looking network of dishes and piping attached to a building is shown.

The explanation: The Very Large Array is a huge sequence of 27 separate large-scale radio transmitters/telescopes in the New Mexico desert that together function as one large receiver. It was built in the mid-1970s to aid in research into the mysteries of the universe, including radio galaxies, black holes, pulsars and quasars. In 2011 and 2012, the technology of the dishes was exponentially upgraded and the name was changed to the Karl Guthe Jansky Very Large Array in honor of the pioneering father of radio astronomy. It has been featured in many sci-fi movies such as “Contact,” where it was erroneously implied to be involved in the search for extra terrestrial intelligence.

Novelty factor: I’ve always chuckled at this riff. My inner sci-fi nerd knows all about the Very Large Array, although I was unaware it had been renamed.


What do you think, sirs?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s