Okay, so I’ve got a story and a news item worthy of mention on here, and I think they’ll work best in that order.
Sometime last year I discovered Carl Sagan’s glorious COSMOS series. I had maybe seen snippets of it when I was quite young, but never sat down and tackled the whole series, at an age when I could really appreciate what was being said and the context. As said elsewhere on here, it blew me away, seeing it effectively for the first time at this stage in life.
When I finished all the episodes and was still craving some more Sagan in my life, I decided to check out his books. Of course one of the appeals of COSMOS is Carl’s talent as an orator, so I sought out an audiobook copy of Pale Blue Dot. This I downloaded, and found out that it apparently (at least the copy I had) was narrated partially by someone else. There I was, sitting on the couch with the Kindle, reading along on the ebook version while the audiobook files played narration when some other dude’s voice took over. Like a seven year old I shouted in outrage “You’re not CARL!!” My girlfriend burst out laughing.
Since then, the refrain “You’re not CARL!” has served as a vehicle to express dissatisfation when presented with anything that isn’t the geniune article. Example: Standing in the grocery store and all the raspberries are from Driscolli’s instead of Richter’s? “You’re not CARL!”
Hehehehe, I like this method of mocking lesser imitators.
~ On to The News Portion ~
So. I read in the interwebs today that there is a television program called “Cosmos: A Space-Time Odyssey” being produced by Seth MacFarlane (mister Family Guy, American Dad, etc), Ann Druyan (Carl Sagan’s wife and co-writer of the Cosmos series), and Steven Soter (who is the other main writer on Cosmos and an astrophysicist). Starring Neil deGrasse Tyson, the famous popularizer of science/astronomy and Director at the The Hayden Planetarium in NYC. Wait, WHAT?!
They’re calling it a docu-series and it’ll be 13 parts long and air on primetime on Fox… of all places.
So yeah. …What?
I’m somewhere between elation and skepticism. Seth MacFarlane?? Not sure how he fits into all this, but well, this whole deal could really be superb. While Neil may not be Carl, as I was foreshadowing in the preamble, he IS a true astronomy warrior and decorated champion on his own right. Label me as cautiously quite optimistic. We’ll all get to see in 2013 if that’s the right outlook. I need more details…
The original COSMOS leaves a whole lot to live up to. The eloquence, the wide scope, the beautiful photography, a sweeping musical score, and just… the uplifting overall vibe of it; I think all that will be hard to recapture. At least all the right people are clearly on the case here. And prime time on Fox? That’s exactly where it belongs, really. Not on the discovery channel or PBS, preachin to the choir. I think a dose of Sagan’s company is just what they need. Awesome.
I can just picture it now: