Cosmos 2014

I just read that Fox and National Geographic is releasing a new series of “Cosmos” hosted by Neil DeGrasse Tyson. The aim of the show is to provide updates on areas of science that have changed since the seminal show from the 1980s as well as new material that has subsequently come to light.

I have to say that my first instinctive reaction was one of horror, as if something nasty had just crawled into my mouth and taken residence. For me, as for so many people the original Carl Sagan Cosmos was a once-in-a-lifetime experience and I couldn’t imagine how anyone could possibly attempt to recreate that (or be dumb enough to even make the attempt).

They also refer to the new show as a “reboot,” a term that I hate; for me conveying the image of a group of dullards trying to hide their complete lack of originality by leaching off an earlier, fondly remembered original (how many times does Batman need to be “reborn” for example?).

However, when I read closer I found that there are some good people involved, including Carl Sagan’s widow, Ann Druyan, and I started to feel a little more comfortable with the idea. I also read this quote from Brannon Braga, one of the new show’s producers.

Science doesn’t have to be the opposite of religion in terms of its emotional value,” he said. “Science can move you like any other story. Science can be a visceral, emotional experience. Religion doesn’t own awe and mystery. Science does it better.
When I saw that I thought to myself that maybe, just maybe, they really do get it. One of the incredible aspects of the original show was the sense of wonder and awe that Carl Sagan brought to the series. Through his eyes everything from a drop of water to a giant galaxy became an amazing part of our Universe, unimaginably connected with all the others.
I look forward to watching the new show and hope it lives up to it’s predecessor.

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