X-Files "The Truth is Out There" pun intended?

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Iskia

Member
China,Chinese
Any X-Files fan would be familiar with the show's famous catchphrase:"The Truth is Out There"

The obvious meaning is that the truth is out there for you to discover/out there hidden by the government/etc.

But just the other day, it suddenly came to me that "out there" here might also mean "crazy, out of the ordinary" as used in American English, thus it could also mean that the truth is sometimes so strange and complex that it is beyond people's comprehension.

Being a non-native speaker, I'm not totally sure about my sudden realization. Is there really a pun intended?
 
  • cropje_jnr

    Senior Member
    English - Australia
    I don't think so, because I don't really associate 'out there' with that meaning - to me it either means in an indefined location away from where the speaker is (the literal meaning) or, when describing a person, someone who is boisterous and outgoing, with lots of confidence.
     

    veracity

    Senior Member
    The Truth is Out There. In a mystical different world. In the other world. In the alien's world. It is uncanny. Brrr. Definitely they wanted to convey this meaning.

    Take care...:p
     

    Iskia

    Member
    China,Chinese
    I can remember in one episode, even Mulder himself is disparaged by an FBI agent as not just crazy but out there...
     

    Cagey

    post mod (English Only / Latin)
    English - US
    It seems to me that this would depend on when the catch phrase was written. In the sixties especially, and the early seventies "out there" was a familiar phrase with the meaning you suggest. In later decades, the writers could have expected fewer people in the audience to make the connection.
     

    Avignonais

    Senior Member
    USA
    USA, Anglophone
    I think the pun could very well be intentional, a joke put in by the clever writers of this clever series.

    Even more important than whether it is intentional, is the question whether it is effective. And I, for one, have always found this punny aspect of the title funny.
     

    mgarizona

    Senior Member
    US - American English
    My vote: DEFINITELY intentional.

    The truth is out there ... meaning that it exists and simply needs to be 'found out' ... but also 'out there' as in 'stranger than you can possibly imagine.'
     
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