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Cosmic vocab
June 5, 2012 8:41 PM   Subscribe

Professor Brian Cox (previously) wondering about things.
posted by Artw (31 comments total) 24 users marked this as a favorite

 
Wonders of the Universe
posted by Artw at 8:43 PM on June 5, 2012


Oh god this is just pitch perfect. I love Brian Cox, and this is...oh man, so perfect. The little pause before......magnesium....so good.
posted by lazaruslong at 9:30 PM on June 5, 2012


Second one isn't quite as good but has it's moments, like the description of the Manchester scablands.
posted by Artw at 9:33 PM on June 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


"I'm significantly denser.....and fifty times wetter...than before."

Yeah, I'm sold.
posted by lazaruslong at 9:34 PM on June 5, 2012


This might be the rum talking, but I came in here hoping this would be narrated by a different Brian Cox. Either way bravo.
posted by Drumhellz at 10:03 PM on June 5, 2012 [3 favorites]


Huh, I'd never heard of this guy before, so I didn't even realize it was dubbed when i was looking at the first video. They really did a good job of syncing up with his face. I was kind of confused about why they'd spend so much money sending someone out to all those locations to make such stupid jokes for a 2 minute sketch.

Looking at his TED Talk his voice matches really well too, at least from the perspective of someone who'd never heard of him before.
posted by delmoi at 10:28 PM on June 5, 2012 [1 favorite]


Thanks for the link delmoi. Best TED talk I've seen so far.
posted by Quack at 11:09 PM on June 5, 2012 [11 favorites]


Delmoi now I'm really confused!
posted by Drumhellz at 11:21 PM on June 5, 2012


That was very funny; nice find.
posted by smoke at 12:02 AM on June 6, 2012


This is why British people were invented.
posted by cmoj at 12:42 AM on June 6, 2012


Cox's over-the-top enactments of awe leave me feeling uncomfortable. Watching him I feel like I'm being lectured on how I'm supposed to respond to the scale and complexity of things by a school drama teacher.
posted by pipeski at 1:01 AM on June 6, 2012 [2 favorites]


I love Wonders of the Universe, but The Infinite Monkey Cage is still my fave Brian Cox project. All the science, all the humor (mostly from Robin Ince), and none of the sweeping landscape shots (which just don't work on radio.)
posted by Wylla at 1:23 AM on June 6, 2012 [2 favorites]


Not actually all that amazing an impression, but very funny and the lip syncing was well done. Jon Culshaw (a professional impressionist) does a pretty good impression. If you hear him do it on the radio it's slightly disconcerting in its accuracy.
posted by Happy Dave at 1:27 AM on June 6, 2012 [2 favorites]


Pipeski - keep in mind that Cox's BBC shows are part of the BBC's educational mandate...a big part of what they are supposed to be doing is reaching out to teenagers. So the occasional high school vibe is not out of place.
posted by Wylla at 1:45 AM on June 6, 2012


Oh I know. It's not the slightly-too-dumbed-down science that bothers me. It's the breathless presentation. Jim Al-Khalili is much easier to watch.
posted by pipeski at 1:51 AM on June 6, 2012 [1 favorite]


This is perfect, and I suspect it makes exactly as much sense as his programmes do to people who don't already understand the science. Pipeski's comment rings true, but watching Wonders of the Universe I managed to be filled with a certain sense of awe in his ability to get paid to visit so many wonderful terrestrial locations in order to talk about stuff that's exactly as close to his office in Manchester.

There is a definite trend in the BBC's factual programming these days to send attractive young academics to exotic locations to talk about themselves and their reactions to science/history/whatever. I don't feel I learn anything from these programmes, but they're certainly easy on the eye.
posted by nowonmai at 3:10 AM on June 6, 2012 [1 favorite]


Thanks for the new red wine stains I just spat all over the keyboard. Good .... stuff.
posted by arha at 4:26 AM on June 6, 2012


arha: I find the bit about his hotel works for multiple viewings - in case you want to go for a full Jackson Pollock effect.
posted by rongorongo at 4:53 AM on June 6, 2012


Seconding The Infinite Monkey Cage. Also, I understand that having an enthusiastic physics professor with Oasis hair can be disconcerting if you weren't expecting it.
posted by Kitteh at 5:10 AM on June 6, 2012


I like Brian Cox. I was first introduced to him on QI and quite enjoyed his enthusiasm.
posted by jamincan at 7:34 AM on June 6, 2012


Could we just get Brian Cox and Neil Degrasse Tyson to team up and do all of the science tv?
posted by jason_steakums at 8:48 AM on June 6, 2012 [4 favorites]


Everything that can happen does happen... This has been my standard definition of reality for a long time now I was pleasantly surprised to see it as a book title.
posted by pdxpogo at 9:34 AM on June 6, 2012


You guys must be kidding. Listen to the totality of what he's saying. There's barely anything there. What an asshole.
posted by Seekerofsplendor at 9:39 AM on June 6, 2012


You guys must be kidding. Listen to the totality of what he's saying. There's barely anything there. What an asshole.

What.
posted by atrazine at 9:55 AM on June 6, 2012


Seekerofsplendor: "You guys must be kidding. Listen to the totality of what he's saying. There's barely anything there. What an asshole."

Well, he may not be as lucid there as he was in what is by many considered to be his best work, but come on.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane at 10:51 AM on June 6, 2012


Said it before and say it again - Brian Cox - the Davy Jones of the physics world.
posted by symbioid at 11:15 AM on June 6, 2012 [2 favorites]


There's barely anything there.

Yes, precisely. And if you examine matter closely? There's barely anything there; it is nearly all empty space. And if we look outward into the universe? it's exacIly the same story. And in the same way, in the gaps of nothingness that comprise the overwhelming majority of what he says here, we get a distillation of the universe itself. I'm sorry you missed that.
posted by George_Spiggott at 12:00 PM on June 6, 2012 [2 favorites]


the Davy Jones of the physics world

Ha! But I'll admit I do appreciate this approach to science presentation. As opposed, say, to endless twirlings of glass stir rods in a beakers or firing a railgun at a piece of armor plating and going ooo-aaah, or rhapsodizing about the beauties of nuclear power, or any of the endless applied science/technology programs that have NOTHING to do with nature, just usury.

Because nature IS awesome, and that's what motivates a LOT of us to pay attention to it, even dedicate our lives, honors and "sacred" fortunes to it (like Alexander Humboldt did ... inspiring Charles Darwin). Consume the right chemicals and our usually stupid taking-for-granted gives way to a genuine appreciation of the magic of existence. Making it a littler harder to be consumed by the dross of mere furry mammalian existence, thence suckered into lifelong anti-depressant consumption.

Too much of modern science education is narcisstic dawdling on all of our fancy theorums and tech toys. Back to basics? I'm buying.
posted by Twang at 1:40 PM on June 6, 2012 [1 favorite]


Great, now I can't unsee Brian Cox doing his hair flip and playing keyboards.
posted by Kitteh at 3:21 PM on June 6, 2012


I fucking love rail guns and nuclear powered things. But I love the Total Perspective Vortex shit as well. Clearly I am a man of many sciences.
posted by Artw at 8:02 PM on June 6, 2012


Seekerofsplendor: "You guys must be kidding. Listen to the totality of what he's saying. There's barely anything there. What an asshole."

You do realize this was parody, right?
posted by lazaruslong at 6:17 AM on June 7, 2012


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