Cosmos returns to the small-ish screen tonight. The original Cosmos, the personal journey by Carl Sagan was a landmark in popular science literacy television. Sure it suffered with too many lingering looks at Carl's face as he gazed at the wonders of the universe, but even if Carl Sagan could be a smug bastard, he was sincere. Yes, the "billions and billions" jokes almost wrote themselves, and line sketch animation does not "prove" evolution, but still week after week we were enthralled by the near infinite expanse and grandeur of the cosmos.
The new Cosmos is being brought back by one of the few legitimate rock stars of science today, Neil Degrasse Tyson. Oh sure, he's the guy who helped demote Pluto to less-than-planet status, but like the infernal designated hitter rule, I can live with it. The man's a professional astrophysicist and has a good sense of humor about it.
By using the imprimatur of Cosmos, he's not trying to ride on Carl Sagan's coattails, but connect with a good segment of the public. Realize that many parents today were exposed to Cosmos in their youth. Capturing some of that fire might encourage these parents to sit their children down tonight and bask in the badly needed update to Sagan. Because this is 2014 and there's been so much science since then. And so much retreat FROM science.
Given the latter, it is almost impossible that the new Cosmos is happening as a consortium of National Geographic and others... with FOX Television. Indeed, the 13 parts are being simulcasted on quite a number of different channels. Including, according to our paper, FOX Sports 1?
On general principles alone, I might choose to watch Cosmos on NatGeo, except I will be on channel 17.1 FOX, for the simple reason that it's one of the few HD channels we get. (grin)
I do so hope they do a good job. A lot is riding on this.
As Opposed To The Abandonment...
... by NBC of the Paralympics. Essentially no daytime coverage today. Odd smatterings of coverage starting late night where it shows up during the week, and a couple hours on Sunday.