New science show ‘StarTalk’ hosted by Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson premiers Monday 11pm EST on the National Geographic Channel.
BY VICTORIA AHEARN, THE CANADIAN PRESS
APRIL 17, 2015 6:20 PM
TORONTO – Kim Kardashian may not seem like a natural fit for “Star Talk,” the new talk show hosted by celebrity astrophysicist Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson on the National Geographic Channel.
But once in his studio, he would help Kardashian and viewers realize that “science is everywhere and it manifests even in people you think of in pop culture,” he says.
“If I have the opportunity to get Kim Kardashian on ‘Star Talk’ … what will I talk about? … We’ll look at all the things she does,” Tyson says in a phone interview, noting he really would like to have her on the show.
“Does she use a hair straightener? What are the chemicals in that hair straightener? I’ll bring in a chemist to talk about cosmetics that she uses.
“Then all of a sudden you see pop culture analyzed from the point of view of science.”
Premiering Monday at 11 p.m. ET, the hour-long, weekly show sees Tyson interviewing various pop-culture personalities about the ways in which science has influenced their lives and livelihoods.
“How do you get people to think about science who don’t know that they like it, or know that they don’t like it? You have to give them some other reason to participate in a science conversation, and one way to do that is to comb the elements of pop culture,” says Tyson.
“Look around and say, ‘Are there singers, actors, directors, performers that have huge followings? Let’s get them on ‘Star Talk’ and we will find all the ways that science emanates from their profession, even in ways they might not have been aware of themselves.
“And in there we might find out that the guest has a little bit of geek in them.”
The series is based on Tyson’s radio show and podcast of the same name. Bill Nye the Science Guy appears in each episode.
“Star Trek” star George Takei is featured in the first instalment.
Future guests include former U.S. president Jimmy Carter (May 25), director-screenwriter Christopher Nolan (April 27) and retired Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield (June 1).
Tyson says Hadfield sings the lullaby that he composed for his daughter while he was in space to sing her to sleep. He also talks about why and how he became an astronaut.
“It was a fun interview, and ideally every one of our interviews would go just that way,” says Tyson, who also hosted the miniseries “Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey.”
Hadfield isn’t the only thing about Canada that Tyson loves.
He also applauds our country’s $5 bill, which depicts Canadarm 2 and Dextre, a robot used on the International Space Station.
“That’s in all of my lectures, by the way,” Tyson says of the Canadarm.