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TV Review: Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey


Geek Alabama TV Reviews

Last Sunday, Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey premiered on FOX and many other networks.  And after watching it on my DVR, I have to say, I enjoyed an hour of science on primetime TV!  The ratings were not too good for the first episode of Cosmos, the first episode only got 8.5 million viewers across the 10 simulcasting networks.  Among Adults 18-49, the simulcast earned a 2.9 rating.  I thought Cosmos could have done better, if it was not airing at the same time as The Walking Dead, I talked about that last week, and I was right!

The first episode called “Standing Up In The Milky Way”, was a great tribute to the original host Carl Sagan.  I loved how Neil deGrasse Tyson talked about how Carl Sagan signed his journal and met Tyson when he was a kid.  This meeting inspired Tyson to become what he is today, and I am glad he talked about that!  Sometimes, meeting your idol or someone who mentors you can lead you to great things in your life.  The episode began with a tour of our solar system, we got to see each planet up close with that special computer graphics.  Tyson was in a computer animated space ship and went out to personally see all of the planets in our solar system.

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I loved seeing the Voyager 1 satellite, although it was computer animated, and had music on a record.  We also got to see where our solar system is at in the Milky Way Galaxy.  I enjoyed seeing our planets in action, I wish Tyson would have also explored the sun in more detail, that might be for a future episode.  I think anyone including geeks/nerds would love to ride in that Ship of the Imagination Tyson was riding in!  You can see why Neil deGrasse Tyson is one of the most popular scientists in our world today, and someone most geeks/nerds and technology savvy people look up too.  I did think the premiere tried a little bit too hard, especially in the part when they were talking about 16th Century Italian astronomer Glordano Bruno.  I thought they could have taken that out and only talked about space and our solar system in episode one.

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The episode had plenty of educational moments and the show is safe for the entire family!  I wish we saw more real video footage of our solar system instead of mostly everything being computer animated.  Then we get to the part, where Tyson is in Italy and they talk about Glordano Bruno, this is where some of the controversies begin.  Yes, they did talk about how Bruno was going around the Church about his beliefs about the solar system, that was later proven to be real.  Bruno was ex-communicated, thrown into prison, and later burned at the stake because of his beliefs.  This was a time when some believers of the Bible, God, and Jesus Christ had their moment on Twitter.

I enjoyed the animation in that piece, and it was probably the same animation from the team Seth McFarlane uses to animate Family Guy and his other shows.  Then we get to the part where Tyson talked about how our Earth was made.  In a Cosmic Calendar, it started with the big bang, and we see how our Earth becomes all what it is today, in a course of one year.  Of course, you knew the Earth is thousands of years old, and they were using a 365-day calendar to explain how our Earth formed to what it is today.  Even though Jesus and Moses was talked about in this part, evolution was also talked about, and this caused some people to get unhappy.

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So after watching the first episode, I thought Neil deGrasse Tyson did a great job as host.  He was very engaging and easy to understand while watching.  The animation and computer graphics was stunning and beautiful to watch.  And I will watch the other 12 episodes of this mini-series!  The mission of Cosmos is to reignite “that flame of curiosity in us all.”  And I hope teachers, students, and other people will use Cosmos as a moment to learn about science, and consider going into a science themed field.  As you know, more Americans are needed in STEM careers.  And sadly, some people who are strongly religious wants to make everyone else the same kind of religious way they are, and break down the door of the science classroom to put their religious philosophies in there.

Cosmos should also be used for people to learn what science is really all about.  Yes, I am a Christian and I believe in God and Jesus Christ, but our Earth is much older that what God and the Bible says it is.  And humans evolved into what we are today.  That is science, if you don’t agree, that’s too bad.  Watch new episodes of Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey on Sunday nights on FOX and Monday nights on the National Geographic Channel.  To learn more go to: http://www.cosmosontv.com/

All images and videos copyright from FOX.

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