Who Forted? Magazine

Television Viewer Captures “Very Weird Subliminal Message”

A television viewer in the UK thought he noticed something odd flash across the screen last evening, and lucky for us, his DVR was running and he was able to post the strange capture to a forum. After a bit of back and forth rewinding, he managed to pause it at just the right second, presenting us with what he believes is a “very weird subliminal message”.

The flash, which was broadcast on Comedy Central during a commercial break for the Mr. Bean episode “Goodnight, Mr. Bean”, contains a huge block of text impossible to read unless paused, with several of the words highlighted as though important. Even weirder, is that it seems to be an ode to financially troubled record store HMV. The caps locked text reads about the “shared experience” of visiting the record store with your “tribe”, and ends with the question of whether or not one can “fight progress”.

The highlighted words are VOICE, MEMORIES, COLLECTION, JOY, EXPERIENCE, and PROGRESS.

You can view the capture below, or read our transcription further down the page:

Subliminal message broadcast on UK television?

The transcription is as follows:

ANOTHER VESTIGE OF OUR PAST HAS BITTEN THE DUST. HIS MASTER’S VOICE HAS FALLEN SILENT. THE NATION’S MOST-FAMOUS RECORD STORE IS GOING DOWN. IT’S NOT SURPRISING, BUT IT’S A SHAME. AFTER ALL, WHO HASN’T FOND MEMORIES OF GOING INTO THEIR LOCAL BRANCH AND BROWSING THROUGH THE RECORDS, TAPES, CDS, VIDEOS AND DVDS? THAT EXCITING WEEKEND TRIP, BRIMMING WITH MAGICAL PROMISE OF AN EXCHANGE THAT WILL ADD TO THE COLLECTION. POURING OVER ALBUM ARTWORK ON THE BUS HOME, ONLY FUELLING FURTHER IMPATIENCE TO GET BACK AND ENGULF THE SENSES IN THE LATEST RELEASE BY A FAVOURITE BAND OR SINGER. WILL IT BE AS GOOD AS THEIR LAST ONE? WHAT IT IT’S WORSE? RELIVING THE JOY OF SEEING A FILM THAT BLEW YOUR MIND IN THE CINEMA BUT IN THE COMFORT OF YOUR LIVING ROOM. YEAH IT’S GREAT WE CAN INSTANTLY BUY EVERYTHING WE CANT AT THE CLICK OF A BUTTON, DELIVERED STRAIGHT TO YOUR DOOR, BUT IT’S NO LONGER A SHARED EXPERIENCE. THERE WAS A PRECIOUS COMMODITY IN BUYING STUFF FROM SHOPS IN THOSE DAYS; YOU WERE PART OF A TRIBE. FOR MANY, A TRIP TO THE RECORD SHOP WAS AN EVENT. HELL, FOR SOME IT WAS A PLACE TO JUST HANG OUT. BUT YOU CAN’T FIGHT PROGRESS, CAN YOU? AND SELLING CDS FOR UP TO EIGHTEEN QUID IN 2013 PROBABLY DIDN’T HELP. SO FAREWELL HMV, THE HIGH STREET WON’T BE THE SAME WITHOUT YOU.

Very weird indeed.

In a forum thread where the find was posted, some users wagered the bits could be part of a modern day “numbers station”, a sort of updated version of the radio signals used by spies to relay information to those who knew how to decipher it. Then again, there are others who believe it it’s a message urging viewers to sacrifice Rowin Atkinson. Regardless of whether it’s meant for 007 or the cult we all unknowingly belong to, it appears that this isn’t the first time these strange messages have popped up on the UK’s Comedy Central.

Do you have any idea what the messages mean? Have you seen any for yourself? We want to know! Tweet us at @whoforted, contact us on our new facebook pageor let us know what you think in the comments below!

Greg Newkirk

Greg Newkirk

Senior Editor at Who Forted
Documentary film-maker, professional monster chaser, and mystery monger, Greg is the senior editor for Who Forted? 'Zine. When he's not occupied by writing about the wide world of the weird, he's busy directing and editing documentary films like The Bigfoot Hunter: Still Searching or writing about offbeat travel for Roadtrippers. He's currently in production on his new project: an original documentary web series titled Planet Weird. He currently lives in Cincinnati.
Greg Newkirk
Greg Newkirk

14 Comments

  1. Pingback: Television Viewer Captures “Very Weird Subliminal Message”

  2. KitchenKnives

    01/21/2013 at 1:30 PM

    Comedy Central has been showing these messages for a long time in the UK. At almost every commercial break, in fact. They don’t even come close to being subliminal as they’re shown on the screen for almost a second, far too long to be appealing to anyone’s subconscious.

    Whether or not the text is encoded with secret messages, I don’t know, but they were definitely designed to be seen and the fact they exist is no secret. My best guess? It’s just Comedy Central giving us something interesting to think about. An amusing tidbit designed to take advantage of our ability to pause and rewind live television, rather like Chuck Lorre’s vanity cards: http://www.chucklorre.com/index-bbt.php

    • Greg Newkirk

      01/21/2013 at 2:38 PM

      This is in line with what I was thinking. It actually gives viewers an incentive to record their shows with the DVRs, which I doubt is an accident, considering that DVR recording is starting to become the new way to judge a show’s popularity. It’s an ingenious way to boost their own numbers, should that be the case.

  3. mxyzptlk

    01/22/2013 at 12:32 AM

    And, since this is occurring at the commercial break, could it be a way to drive attention toward that space of ad time between actual programming? It at least gets you to pay attention when the commercials are running — and that’s another problem with DVRing, getting the audience to pay attention to commercials.

    Well done.

  4. Manny

    01/22/2013 at 6:28 AM

    Hi – Comedy Central have been showing these “humurous” messages in between programming for what must be years.

    Nothing really weird or sinister about it imo – with the advent of sky+ where you can pause & read the messages, it’s obvious CC are just trying to entertain.

    Cheers, Manny

  5. Pingback: Television Viewer Captures “Very Weird Subliminal Message” | Who Forted? Magazine « Gimme A Steaming Bowl

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  7. TemplarScribe

    01/22/2013 at 3:09 PM

    Don’t sacrifice Rowan Atkinson! Please! If you need someone to sacrifice, might I suggest a rather useless Australian media mogul? Sad to say, he’s not exactly a virgin.

    And a bug thumbs up to the media geniuses at CC UK. Smart bit o’ thinking, there.

    Unless MI6 has infiltrated the Com’s, and are messing with our minds.

    And our RSS feeds.

  8. Pingback: Did A British Television Viewer Capture A Subliminal, Encoded Message? | Disinformation

  9. sid

    01/25/2013 at 8:21 AM

    I’ve seen those quite a bit on other channels too – always slightly different. Luckily, Virgin Plus boxes have re-wind function so you can read them. They are most surreal, but I did see a quite subversive one about financial institutions once and how we should all withdraw our money and store it under the bed!

  10. Flucksy

    02/09/2013 at 9:34 PM

    I don’t think it’d work on most people. Netflix killed Blockbuster for a reason.

    • butch

      03/19/2013 at 12:59 AM

      video killed the radio star

  11. jennifer siagian

    03/14/2014 at 10:49 AM

    I began to see and continue to see weird demonic imagery and wordage within All Christian television networks programs.
    One night while watching 3ABN station identification and program introduction to “Behold the Lamb presents” I accidentally hit the pause button then the FF to 1X 1/15 on my
    DVR while viewing on my old SD set. The playback was greatly slowed down when I suddenly began to see images of human skulls and alien heads, strange hieroglyphic symbols (which look similar to ancient Hebrew but reversed). Areas of screen show patches of pixel distortion where I beleieve some type of overdubbing was/is taking place. I began recording what I was watching and did the playbacks at the slowest speed and was/am able to see these stange messaging not only on the 3ABN network but in ALL Christian broadcasts on ALL Christian networks, In the lightened blue screen banners bottom of screen wordage is continuously scrolling by. The images of human skulls are layered upon layers of more skulls and classic alien (greys) with the borders of the screens and they appear to be talking. When the programming morphed from 3ABN station identification to program introduction to “Behold the Lamb presents a crescent moon is shown turns into what looks like a saucer shaped ship within it illuminated windows where alien silohettes are standing inside. All programs on all the Christian networks show the same imagery and hieroglyphic symbols and skulls and phallus’s In the blue banners words scrolling by and similar motifys are found in EVERY single program!

  12. Lillian Haywards

    03/30/2014 at 7:34 AM

    It’s horrible knowing that daily we are being brainwashed by strange things that influence our attitude and the way we live. I personally think that it’s wrong. So wrong. Why can’t a human be a free person?

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