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Old March 24th 14, 19:05   #1
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Cosmos II: Armed and Fabulous

So is anyone watching the new "Cosmos" on Fox? Got any thoughts on it?

Personally, I thought the first ep was awful, the 2nd ep was a significant improvement, and the 3rd one was pretty good.

That said, there's a number of things I don't like (Crappy animation, lame soundtrack), one of which is sustantial: on two separate occasions now they've SIGNIFICANTLY misrepresented actual historical events to make an ideological point. I can't see Dr. Sagan allowing that, y'no?

Anyway: Thoughts?
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Old April 2nd 14, 16:51   #2
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Re: Cosmos II: Armed and Fabulous

I've watched some of it. For a show that encompasses the universe, they do seem preoccupied with attacking religion.
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Old April 2nd 14, 20:43   #3
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Re: Cosmos II: Armed and Fabulous

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I've watched some of it. For a show that encompasses the universe, they do seem preoccupied with attacking religion.
Oh, good, I'm not the only one who's noticed that. I'm somewhat religion-obsessed, I tend to see things in religious terms (Part of the reason I love B5 so much), so sometimes I'm not sure if I'm actually seeing a bias or merely imagining it. I'm relieved and disappointed to know it's not the latter.

I've been reviewing it for Republibot (They asked nice) and while I've never been a huge fan of Carl Sagan, I have to say he comes across as a charming raconteur compared to Tyson. Werid as a generally DO like Tyson.

I can provide links for my 'Bot review if anyone's interested. Short form, though: I feel it's rather unsuccessful both as an hommage to the original and as a standalone science series. It lacks magic. While Sagan's Cosmos had a lot of problems, it had an infectious excitement about everything. This thing is just dry as crackers in July.
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Old April 3rd 14, 17:20   #4
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Re: Cosmos II: Armed and Fabulous

I liked the original a lot. It was very ambitious in its day and the was nothing else like it - a miniseries devoted to science utilizing state of the art graphics and an ethereal soundtrack by Vangelis. Best yet, NO COMMERCIALS!

The new one is a pale, agenda-driven imitation in a market saturated with excellent science programming.
I did find the most touching part to be Tyson's recollections of Sagan, a wonderful man who died much too soon.
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Old April 4th 14, 01:31   #5
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Re: Cosmos II: Armed and Fabulous

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I liked the original a lot. It was very ambitious in its day and the was nothing else like it - a miniseries devoted to science utilizing state of the art graphics and an ethereal soundtrack by Vangelis. Best yet, NO COMMERCIALS!

The new one is a pale, agenda-driven imitation in a market saturated with excellent science programming.
I did find the most touching part to be Tyson's recollections of Sagan, a wonderful man who died much too soon.
I'd agree with all of that excepting the 'market saturated with excellent science programming' part. Yeah, we've got TDC and TSC and suchlike, but they're continually running shows about the Chupacabra and Ancient Astronauts and horse-crap like that. Honestly, the best science shows still come from PBS (Who are not motivated by a desire to plug an Indiana Jones movie), and the best of the best is still NOVA. (Did you ever see the one where they just RIPPED Gavin Menzies to shreds? Oh, that was beautiful!)

But everything else I'm on board with.
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Old April 4th 14, 14:50   #6
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Re: Cosmos II: Armed and Fabulous

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Originally Posted by Republibot 3.0 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by B5_Obsessed View Post
I liked the original a lot. It was very ambitious in its day and the was nothing else like it - a miniseries devoted to science utilizing state of the art graphics and an ethereal soundtrack by Vangelis. Best yet, NO COMMERCIALS!

The new one is a pale, agenda-driven imitation in a market saturated with excellent science programming.
I did find the most touching part to be Tyson's recollections of Sagan, a wonderful man who died much too soon.
I'd agree with all of that excepting the 'market saturated with excellent science programming' part. Yeah, we've got TDC and TSC and suchlike, but they're continually running shows about the Chupacabra and Ancient Astronauts and horse-crap like that. Honestly, the best science shows still come from PBS (Who are not motivated by a desire to plug an Indiana Jones movie), and the best of the best is still NOVA. (Did you ever see the one where they just RIPPED Gavin Menzies to shreds? Oh, that was beautiful!)

Well, I was referring to shows like The Universe, How the Universe Works, Secrets of the Universe with Brian Cox and Through the Wormhole with Morgan Freeman. All these shows examine cosmic oddities and theoretical physics on a regular basis with overt axe-grinding. And yes, through the decades Nova has continued to be the standard-bearer for quality educational programming.

But everything else I'm on board with.
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Old April 4th 14, 14:53   #7
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Re: Cosmos II: Armed and Fabulous

Make that "without" axe-grinding.
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Old April 5th 14, 14:10   #8
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Re: Cosmos II: Armed and Fabulous

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Make that "without" axe-grinding.
Honestly, I think you just proved me full of crap there. I may no longer know what I'm talking about. I gave up on TDC, TSC, etc, around the time "Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull" came out and the networks were essentially running feature-length commercials for the film disguised as 'documentaries' about the 'mysterious' Crystal Skulls. The Skulls have been debunked more times than I can count* in the last half-century.

I gave up on science shows on those channels around the time of "Sci-Fi Science" with Michio Kaku. I used to like Kaku, but he'd been rubbing me the wrong way for several years, and I just sort of gave up on him at that point.

But now that I think it over, I realize I'm dealing with old info. There MAY be some good science shows on, and I've just shut my mind down to the idea. I'll have to re-examine that.


Which admittedly is probably not that large a number as you might think. I'm bad at math.
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Old April 5th 14, 18:23   #9
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Re: Cosmos II: Armed and Fabulous

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Originally Posted by Republibot 3.0 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by B5_Obsessed View Post
Make that "without" axe-grinding.
Honestly, I think you just proved me full of crap there. I may no longer know what I'm talking about. I gave up on TDC, TSC, etc, around the time "Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull" came out and the networks were essentially running feature-length commercials for the film disguised as 'documentaries' about the 'mysterious' Crystal Skulls. The Skulls have been debunked more times than I can count* in the last half-century.

I gave up on science shows on those channels around the time of "Sci-Fi Science" with Michio Kaku. I used to like Kaku, but he'd been rubbing me the wrong way for several years, and I just sort of gave up on him at that point.

But now that I think it over, I realize I'm dealing with old info. There MAY be some good science shows on, and I've just shut my mind down to the idea. I'll have to re-examine that.


Which admittedly is probably not that large a number as you might think. I'm bad at math.
I kind of view Kaku and Tyson as the ambulance chasers (science whores?) of physics, as they seem to show up on all these shows constantly. They are definitely the tv-ready faces of physics, since Hawking is less than dynamic. I find Brian Cox very interesting, he has a boy's face along with grey hair, making it difficult to establish his age and a very peaceful and calming delivery. He seems to exude the wonder of what he's telling as opposed to selling theories to the audience.
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Old April 5th 14, 21:37   #10
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Re: Cosmos II: Armed and Fabulous

[QUOTE=B5_Obsessed;448430]
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Originally Posted by Republibot 3.0 View Post
I kind of view Kaku and Tyson as the ambulance chasers (science whores?) of physics, as they seem to show up on all these shows constantly. They are definitely the tv-ready faces of physics, since Hawking is less than dynamic. I find Brian Cox very interesting, he has a boy's face along with grey hair, making it difficult to establish his age and a very peaceful and calming delivery. He seems to exude the wonder of what he's telling as opposed to selling theories to the audience.
Well, Kaku is definitely a Discovery Communications Whore. (They own all the science channels, excepting possibly Nat Geo whcih I'm too lazy to look up now) He was on EVERY show, and if you listened to him talk, what he was saying was oddly disjointed and frequently seemed to have llittle to do with the subject at hand. It's almost like they took a 3-hour lecture by him, and just cut out bits and pieces that KINDA related to what the producers of the show wanted to talk about, and then just threw 'em in at random.

Example: In one episode, they were talking about whether or not stargates would be possible. Kaku uses the phrase "Stargate to another dimension" as opposed to, say, you know, a stargate between Colorado and the planet Chulak. So the rest of the episode is mostly a discussion of parallel universes, which kinda' has nothing to do with Stargates or eve other dimensions per se.

I liked Tyson up until this show. I never felt him a terribly compelling speaker, but he was likeable and straightforward. Not sure about the other guy you were talking about. I don't think I know him.
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