Aug 05 2011


Some people are planning to make a sequel, another 13 part series, to Carl Sagan’s Cosmos. This may be a greater heresy than giving Star Trek a reboot with a time-travel movie, or turning Star Wars into Jar Jar Binks land, but there is one glimmer of sunshine: it’s going to star Neil deGrasse Tyson. He’s our only hope.

(Also on Sb)


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  1. 1
    Anthony K

    Meesa can’t wait.

  2. 2

    I’m excited about this!
    It’s being done by Seth MacFarlane, who I wasn’t really a fan of until he went on Dr. Tyson’s podcast and discussed his love of science and Carl Sagan.
    It’s also going to be on during primetime on a major network! Hopefully this is even half as inspiring as the original. And if it isn’t, we still have the original.

    Sadly, too, there is much more talk about MacFarlane re-doing The Flinstones, which (I think) helps to perpetuate the belief that humans and dinosaurs lived together. Another generation of kids ready to believe the creationists… possibly.

  3. 3

    No, there is another…

  4. 4

    Well dude, the “some people” you refer to is a collection of Sagan collaborators and devotees (including Ann Dryuan and Steven Soter!) who I seriously doubt would let it go down the shitter if it can possibly be avoided.

  5. 5

    *Druyan, my bad

  6. 6
    Marcus Ranum

    At least it doesn’t have Ben Stein. ;)

  7. 7

    …Hang on, the sequel to COSMOS is going to air on primetime ON FOX??? Gaaah… did someone in production lose a bet?

  8. 8

    Very nice. Glad to hear Neil will be at the helm of the reboot.

  9. 9
    Die Anyway

    Although I adore Neil and watch every episode of Nova Science Now (even reruns) I’m sorry to hear that he’s “our only hope”. Surely in all of the world there’s another scientist with talent, charisma and a dramatic but humorous flair.

    P.S. I hope they install the new servers soon, this took over 10 minutes out of my lunch hour for the pages to load with several time-out errors in the process.

  10. 10
    Vern Balbert

    Why do I find it odd that I hear about this from a biology blog and not from some place like Phil Plait’s blog?

  11. 11

    I can see it. There has been some pretty significant progress since Cosmos. Tyson is great and I’ll be interested to see where this goes.

  12. 12

    Neil DeGrasse Tyson is one of the few I could see being able to pull off the hosting duties for an endeavor like this. In an odd sort of way, I was already thinking of Brian Cox’s shows as kind of a Cosmos for today. But not with as wide of a variety of topics as Cosmos. I will watch this. Despite it’s being on Fox, which I have not watched in years.

  13. 13

    seth macfarlane makes me cautious, but I trust that the rest of the folks involved wouldn’t go along with it if he wanted to do something stupid. I will definitely watch this if it actually ends up airing.

  14. 14

    The entire original Cosmos series is available from several sources, including BTTorrent. A couple are linked to below.



  15. 15
    Robin Marie

    If anyone can do it Tyson can. Huzzah.

  16. 16
    Marcus Ranum

    I just hope that he’s practicing how to say “Billions” properly. It won’t be COSMOS without the “Billions.”

  17. 17
    Tim DeLaney

    Oh, I think NdGT will use the word “billions” to best effect. He’s not merely a great science spokesman, but he has a wonderful sense of humor. He’ll do just fine. Also, you gotta admire somebody who has the cojones to follow such a class act as Carl Sagan. Plus, he’s an atheist even Phil Plait can love.

  18. 18
    Brice Gilbert

    With Seth MacFarlane only producing (with his noted love of the original series) and no doubt getting Fox to put this on prime time I have no doubt that this will be amazing. The rest of the people are all the right people as well, so I have no reason to not think this is going to be perfect.

  19. 19
    Mike de Fleuriot

    More importantly, from my point of view, what do the anti-science guys think about this. Anyone heard any mutterings from the churches about this? Any denouncements, prophecies, etc?

  20. 20
    Alethea Kuiper-Belt

    Someone posted this on the Sb version. Seth McFarlane’s earlier attempt at Sagan – edited for rednecks!

    Let’s see if this link shortening works to not embed…

  21. 21
    Sandiseattle, still hoarding his rum


    bil-yuns :-)

    Loved Carl Sagan, for both science and his book, later a movie.

    “an awful waste of space”

  22. 22

    I’m currently working my way through Cosmos and I’m enjoying it so much. When I watch it, it fills me with so much woder about the universe. It’s such an amazing feeling it makes me wonder why people need something like the Bible to feel connected when we’re a part of something so much better.

  23. 23

    Cosmos was what made me atheist.

  24. 24

    Sorry, Neil DeGrasse Tyson is no Carl Sagan. The only possible successor to Carl might be Brian Cox. He has that same sense of wonder; and I just don’t get that from NdGT. I do hope they fix a few of the minor historical errors I was dismayed to discover as an adult (that I obviously never noticed as a kid).

  25. 25

    Carl Sagan was the strength of Cosmos. Its subtitle was “a personal journey” and it was. I can’t see a show, scripted by some anonymous rube to put words in the mouth of Tyson being even a pale candle to Cosmos. The idea that anyone cares about the special effects seems to miss the point entirely.

  26. 26

    Tyson would be great.

    When will they remake “Ascent of Man”? Originally done by Jacob Bronowski.


  27. 27

    I think this is a great combination. It’s not easy getting something intelligent on TV these days. You have to sneak it by the suits who seem to believe that anything a six year old can’t instantly understand is too complicated.

    Seth McFarlane gives them someone with pull at the producers spot. He’s got a successful show that the suits can understand, so he’ll get a little freedom.

    Neil DeGrasse Tyson has name recognition. The suits may have heard of him so he’ll be a little harder to push around.

    Using the name Cosmos gives the show name recognition so that it may get enough viewers so that Fox will let it show at least 3 or 4 episodes before they cancel it.

  28. 28

    Neil DeGrasse Tyson could make a great new tv series if he was given carte blanche to do his own thing completely. He can be really inspiring through his passion for science (in common with Sagan) that is quite infectious.

    Otherwise, I trust the powers-that-be can at least recognise he is quite a different personality. There is a lot of leeway to do new things if they stick to the old formula of inspiring a new generation without ever talking down or pulling punches.

  29. 29

    Fox TV != Fox News.

    Seriously people, have any of you seen their sunday lineup?

  30. 30

    The entire ascent of man is also available on the internet.



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