Seth MacFarlane has been quietly working on a reboot of Carl Sagan’s documentary series about space, Cosmos, for years now, which is at least a little bit weird, but also fair enough, why not, and if anyone can get a thing done it is that guy. And now FOX has announced that the show has found its host in Tumblr-celebrated astro-physicist Neil Degrasse Tyson. From the Los Angeles Times:
At their upfront presentation Monday at the Beacon Theatre in New York City, the network announced plans to reboot “Cosmos,” Carl Sagan’s massively popular documentary series. The new, 13-episode version will air sometime in 2014.
In one of the more unlikely pairings in recent memory, it is produced by Seth MacFarlane and will be hosted by astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson, the director of the Hayden Planetarium and a popular recurring guest on “The Daily Show.”
I’ve actually been thinking about Neil Degrasse Tyson a lot lately (no astro) because he’s such a unique and odd celeb. Can you think of the last PhD holding museum director who regularly sells out shows at the Bell House with Eugene Mirman and is often featured in viral, inspirational YouTubes, and whose old photos circulate widely in hunk comment threads? If anything, it is surprising that he is only just getting his own TV show now, considering all of the HEAT that has been on this guy over the past couple of years. But that’s part of it, too, he’s obviously been a pretty smart astro-physicist and had the same face for his entire career, but it is only in the past couple of years that he has suddenly emerged as this whole thing. Why? Well here, I postulate, is the thing about Neil Degrasse Tyson:
HE ACTUALLY KNOWS STUFF.
And we are officially living in an era when NOBODY KNOWS ANYTHING.
It’s genuinely EXCITING to listen to someone talk about something and realize that they FOR SURE KNOW WHAT THEY ARE TALKING ABOUT. That is a rarity nowadays. Neil Degrasse Tyson is not riffing about science off the top of his head based on a casual Wiki search he did three days ago. He is not RECAPPING SPACE. Genuine knowledge gained through hard work and a keen intellect is not a MEME. We all have instant and constant access to the infinite range of human understanding, and it doesn’t mean anything because we wouldn’t even know what to do with it if we found it. But here comes a dude who actually does, and that, it turns out, is the neatest thing of all. I guess my point is: