Do you remember when Cosmos hit the airwaves 30 years ago? Weren’t you thrilled when Carl Sagan gave you a tour of the universe in his spaceship of the imagination?
As I mentioned in the last post, there has been a huge (accelerated) improvement in the science and technology of astronomy. As a result, some of the information provided in Cosmos is now outdated. What to do? Redo the series?
This is exactly what will happen. Honest! This updated series should give us a vivid sense as to the impact of accelerating tech on astronomy.
The Cosmos refresh, officially titled Cosmos: A Space-Time Odyssey, is being produced by self-professed nerd Seth MacFarlane, creator of Family Guy. And the 13-episode series will be written by Ann Druyam, Carl Sagan’s widow and a writer/producer on the original series, along with astrophysicist Steven Soter.
Standing in for Sagan as host will be famed astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson. Having Tyson onboard with the new series not only ensures that it will be up to snuff for even the most avid science fans, but his relative celebrity (he’s been on The Colbert Report multiple times, for instance) should help draw in viewers.
Perhaps the most peculiar thing about the new Cosmos is where and when it will be airing. Rather than appearing on a channel like Discovery or National Geographic, Cosmos will run on none other than Fox (not known for its promotion of science), and will reportedly have a primetime slot — a rare thing for a show devoted toward serious scientific thought.