4 July 2015

Scientists In TV Shows You May Have Missed

There is often a stigma attached to scientists in that they are normally seen as being rather eccentric and not in touch with pop culture, but if the truth be told that is not always the case. Instead, a number of them have made special guest appearances on popular TV shows and the craziest part is that you might not even have been aware of it. Wonder what we mean? Well, how about these prime examples:

Richard Dawkins appearing in Doctor Who

The scientist Richard Dawkins is an evolutionary biologist, but a number of people will be completely unaware that he actually appeared in an episode of Doctor Who in the UK. The episode in question was “The Stolen Earth” where he played himself in a short clip. However, perhaps the most surprising part is that he admits that he is not even a fan of the show whereas there are so many people that would love to appear and are never given the chance.

Neil deGrasse Tyson in The Big Bang Theory

Neil deGrasse Tyson is one of the most amazing astrophysicists in the world and he has certainly had an impressive career. However, he has tried to show that scientists do have a funny side to them and this is perhaps best seen in his appearance in The Big Bang Theory. The episode he appeared in was “The Apology Insufficiency” in which he stood in a corridor with Raj before he was then introduced to Sheldon. He was then ridiculed due to him having demoted Pluto to a dwarf planet (since Sheldon apparently loved Pluto) and this skit certainly helped people to see that he could at least laugh at himself.

Stephen Hawking playing poker with Newton and Einstein in TNG

Cast your mind back to season 6 of Star Trek: The Next Generation and in particular the episode entitled “Descent Part 1.” At the beginning of the episode, the British scientist Stephen Hawking is seen playing poker with Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein as well as Data, but all in hologram form.  This is not the only time that Hawking has appeared on TV as he has also shown up on The Big Bang Theory and even a skit with Jim Carey on The Conan O'Brian Show. Of course we also cannot forget that he has also appeared on The Simpsons and indeed Hawking was known to be extremely happy at appearing on the show.

Buzz Aldrin in The Big Bang Theory

Buzz Aldrin is of course known as an astronaut and for walking on the moon, but you also need to remember that he is also classed as being a scientist in order to become an astronaut in the first place. He is just one of several scientists that have appeared on The Big Bang Theory and in this instance he appears in season 6 when some kids come to his door on Halloween to trick-or-treat. In his part, he talks about walking on the moon. It might be a small part and you might have missed it if you are not paying attention, but it is rather cool that somebody that has walked on the moon is willing to then appear on a TV show such as this. If you knew that Buzz Aldrin lived there, would you not go trick-or-treat as well?

Bill Nye in Stargate Atlantis

Bill Nye “The Science Guy” has really helped to make science seem like fun to so many people across the United States. He has actually appeared in a number of different shows, but he is one of the few people that have managed to appear in Stargate Atlantis as themselves. He appears in the episode “Brain Storm” which is the 16th episode of the fifth season and he actually appears alongside Neil deGrasse Tyson where they are shown as being friends. In it, he is invited to a scientific presentation by Dr. Malcolm Tunney. The cameo is just a few minutes long, so blink and you might miss it.

As you can see, scientists are not all about just being in the laboratory or trying to come up with new theories, and famous scientists are working hard at changing how people view them. OK, some appear in science-based shows, but there are also comedies in there as well, so it just shows that you never know where they will show up next.