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Wonders of the Solar System
djellison
post Mar 12 2010, 08:52 PM
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That IS a minority opinion, because whilst you're writing a list of things wrong with it and giving up after 10 minutes I can't think of ANYTHING, and I mean ANYTHING wrong with it and I have NEVER seen so many positive opinions of something on the interwebs. Ever.
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ngunn
post Mar 12 2010, 09:01 PM
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Well said, Stu. It's about communicating enthusiasm and using exciting information to do it. I watched it in hope of learning something about how to do that, and it turned out to be a masterclass. Now if I wanted to learn a lot of new facts about the topic of a TV programme I'd watch one about the history of embroidery or something.
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Stu
post Mar 12 2010, 09:02 PM
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Wow, if you liked it Doug, just say so... laugh.gif


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Stu
post Mar 12 2010, 09:11 PM
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If anything it was a bit too good; I'm giving one of my Outreach talks tomorrow afternoon in Kendal Museum - "Earth", for National Science and Engineering Week - and I now feel more than a little "Ha! Follow that!" pressure, to be honest! It's bad enough that Brian Cox is knowledgeable and likeable, but he's suddenly made people think that scientists can be sexy. Guess I'll shatter that illusion tomorrow! laugh.gif

Anyway, all I know is that I have literally been stopped in the street half a dozen times this week, since ""Wonders" aired, by people I know who just wanted to tell me (Universe knows why!) how much they'd enjoyed it. So now, knowing that many of the people in the Museum tomorrow will have seen "Wonders" I'm going to have to stand there knowing that the bar has been raised. Horizon, with its boring stock footage, droning narration and poor production values is dead, and deservedly so. "Wonders" has the potential to inspire and excite a huge number of people. I think this could be quite a moment, to be honest.


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ngunn
post Mar 12 2010, 11:11 PM
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QUOTE (Stu @ Mar 12 2010, 09:11 PM) *
Horizon


I agree. I watched the cosmology one. Repetition, hesitation and deviation throughout. They wouldn't last two seconds on 'Just a Minute'.
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djellison
post Mar 12 2010, 11:34 PM
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The recent Horizon? God it was dreadful. Stock petrol-explosion after stock petrol explosion, every time someone said 'Bang'. It spent a very very long time saying very very little. So much abstract fluffy visual FX - it was like a showreal for 12 year old who just discovered Adobe After Effects.

It was crap.
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Stu
post Mar 13 2010, 05:54 AM
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QUOTE (ngunn @ Mar 12 2010, 11:11 PM) *
I agree. I watched the cosmology one. Repetition, hesitation and deviation throughout. They wouldn't last two seconds on 'Just a Minute'.


(BUZZ)

Sorry, you used the word "I" twice...

My turn. laugh.gif


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Stu
post Mar 13 2010, 06:01 AM
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It's a shame Horizon has gone that way. I am sure a lot of us here grew up with Horizon being a regular 'science fix', and we looked forward to the specials after a probe's planetary encounter. They were THE science documentaries to watch. I remember playing video-taped V2 and Magellan Horizons and photographing the screen to make slides for using in my talks (pre Net and Powerpoint and USB sticks and Smartboards and digital projectors... cripes, how did we manage?!). Following the slow death of Horizon has been quite sad. I think Brian Cox just gave it an injection to put it out of its misery.


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nprev
post Mar 13 2010, 06:26 AM
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Heck, I'm jealous of you UKers who had what sounds like a real science program that lasted long enough to deteriorate... rolleyes.gif

(Nothing against PBS's Nova here in the US, but it sounds as if Horizon was much more in tune with current events.)


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A few will take this knowledge and use this power of a dream realized as a force for change, an impetus for further discovery to make less ancient dreams real.
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AndyG
post Mar 13 2010, 12:37 PM
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In my opinion, Horizon seemed to slide in quality shortly after the time that its rival Equinox started, what with its funkier camera angles and off-the-wall shooting than the staid old Beeb would ever have considered.

I suppose the real problem is that TV producers, researchers and directors are largely from meedja studies and arts environments. There have been more than a few occasions when I've got the distinct impression that a Horizon programme explaining something was written by people who don't quite understand it (or, worse, believe it) themselves.

On a meta-level rolleyes.gif I thought the recent Horizon worked quite well: while the first fifty minutes was full of boring balloons and explosions, irritating interviews and, indeed, saying nothing about Dark Energy until the last ten minutes, it did suggest Space Filler rather well. Which is what Dark Energy's all about, no? laugh.gif

Andy

(Seemingly unable to type a reply in the box using the latest FF update)
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Guest_Sunspot_*
post Mar 13 2010, 02:45 PM
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QUOTE (nprev @ Mar 13 2010, 06:26 AM) *
(Nothing against PBS's Nova here in the US, but it sounds as if Horizon was much more in tune with current events.)



I thought Horizon and Nova were the same program or at least a co production...
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djellison
post Mar 13 2010, 05:01 PM
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Nova may occasionally play some Horizon episodes - but most Nova episodes only make it to Nat Geo channel over here.
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jasedm
post Mar 13 2010, 05:34 PM
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Wow, the first episode has certainly elicited some passionate comments!
I thought it was very well put together, and the presenter's enthusiasm is great to see. I agree with some that science documentaries seem to have generally slipped in standard though. I'm looking forward to the next episode very much.

The best science documentary I ever saw was 'The secret treasures of Zeugma' on the BBC in 2000 - all about the flooding of the ancient site of Zeugma in Turkey to make way for a dam/hydroelectric scheme, and the race against time to excavate the fabulous mosaics before the water levels inundated them forever - thoroughly absorbing, and with no whizz-bang frippery (the revelations spoke for themselves). I'd highly recommend it if you can track down a copy.
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Guest_Sunspot_*
post Mar 13 2010, 05:54 PM
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I would have liked to have seen more real space craft imagery - I think images from SOHO, TRACE and STEREO are so spectacular we don't need CGI

I tihink this a short preview of episode 2 http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/8564405.stm
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djellison
post Mar 13 2010, 06:34 PM
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SOHO, TRACE and STEREO imagery, great though it is - can't fly you through the chronosphere. The CGI - especially for that - was superb.
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