In 1980, the great astronomer and popular science figure Carl Sagan (top) premiered the acclaimed PBS series, Cosmos: A Personal Voyage, which introduced millions of people to the wonders of the universe for the first time. It remained the most watched America television series ever until The Civil War a decade later, and it has now been seen by over 500 million people worldwide.
Now, at long last, a sequel has been made, updated with modern special effects and the astounding astronomical discoveries of the past 34 years, from dark energy to exoplanets, and more. Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey begins tonight, hosted by the one living astronomer who can possibly match Carl Sagan’s popular recognition: Neil deGrasse Tyson.
The new Cosmos series will air on the Fox Network (and if that surprises you, that’s exactly why–to get a new, unreached audience) and the National Geographic Channel. Sadly, I do not get cable here, so I’ll be updating with other ways to see it in the coming days.
I had the good fortune to meet Neil deGrasse Tyson personally to discuss the show while it was in progress, and I was encouraged by what he said. I have high hopes for Dr. Tyson’s performance as a follow-up to Dr. Sagan’s, incorporating not just the science, but also the history behind it and the deep questions it raises about our future.
Whether you’re new to the wonders of the universe or a long-time lover of the original, I strongly urge you to see this update to one of the classic series of all time.