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← The BBC announces a major season marking the life and work of Charles Darwin

The BBC announces a major season marking the life and work of Charles Darwin - Comments

Am I Evil?'s Avatar Comment 1 by Am I Evil?

Excellent! Now to source a new DVD recorder...

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 10:51:00 UTC | #196687

randumbness47's Avatar Comment 2 by randumbness47

I look forward to seeing this. Will Dawkins be appearing in any of these programs?

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 10:55:00 UTC | #196689

IaninPA's Avatar Comment 3 by IaninPA


Let's hope they don't go soft and allow any input from the 'other side'. You can bet that when 'they' see this line up they will be on the phone to the beeb asking for the right to respond me thinks.

I hope I am wrong.

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 10:59:00 UTC | #196693

alexmzk's Avatar Comment 4 by alexmzk

o god i hope they get Dembski on board, it'd be hilarious. maybe Behe if they were really desperate for some light relief.

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 11:14:00 UTC | #196700

Barry Pearson's Avatar Comment 5 by Barry Pearson

This sounds like the sort of programming that justifies the licence fee. (Along with Doctor Who).

Presumably the BBC will sell a lot of this worldwide, and it will keep getting repeated over the next decade or two.

I hope it becomes readily available for use in all venues where high quality arguments for evolution is needed.

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 11:35:00 UTC | #196709

HourglassMemory's Avatar Comment 6 by HourglassMemory

I wonder if I'll be able to catch it in my television here in Portugal.
I can only watch one BBC.
We don't have stuff like BBC 4 and 2 here.
I don't even know if the BBC here has a number.

I hope something big is released on DVD so it is then sold here in Portugal and I can buy it.

Richard Dawkins' new series "Dawkins on Darwin"(I think that's the title) should also appear in this period.

For people to watch these programmes there has to be some major marketing tactics, like...publicity for them everywhere.

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 11:42:00 UTC | #196713

D'Arcy's Avatar Comment 7 by D'Arcy

Bring on the Darwin programmes! It should provide some counterbalance to the daily, mainly, Christian religious broadcasts. Most CoE believers accept Darwin's ideas because they have become "sophisticated" and look for metaphors rather than literal truth in the Bible. The fact that Darwin's own observations gradually turned him away from his religion must be a clarion call for everyone to investigate nature more.

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 11:52:00 UTC | #196717

Big City's Avatar Comment 8 by Big City

If they didn't interview (or at least consult) Dawkins, something is seriously wrong.

I wish this would happen in America. I just watched a crazy video of Ken Ham preaching to children that really illustrated how absurd the stories in the Bible are.

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 11:57:00 UTC | #196723

JammyB's Avatar Comment 9 by JammyB

"Science programming continues to be at the heart of the BBC schedule"

Err.. yeah.. ok, whatever you say. Better late than never Beeb, great to see such a U-turn in their largely negative attitude towards science - these programmes sound like essential viewing. Hopefully the Large Hadron Collider will get plenty of coverage too. 2009 is shaping up to be a great year for science.

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 12:32:00 UTC | #196737

Haymoon's Avatar Comment 10 by Haymoon

May I ask again about the BBC Mini series
"The Voyage of Charles Darwin" made in 1978 ?

This was an excellent docu drama centered around the Voyage of the Beagle. Some info on it here

Anyone out there who might make it available to this web site - or would there be a copyright issue in doing this ?

Could BBC be persuaded to re screen it as part of their "Darwin Tribute"

Anyone got a contact emil address where one could send such a request ?

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 13:01:00 UTC | #196753

Border Collie's Avatar Comment 11 by Border Collie

If any of you Brits have information on how we Yanks can see this on satellite, Internet, DVD, etc., here in the US, please post it on this site. Thanks.

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 13:05:00 UTC | #196756

phatbat's Avatar Comment 12 by phatbat

This sounds fantastic - can't wait. Love Attenborough and will be interesting to see Jimmy Doherty not farming.

Good work Auntie.

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 13:07:00 UTC | #196759

jaytee_555's Avatar Comment 13 by jaytee_555

Look out for the theologians and religious moderates scrambling to get their noses in the BBC trough! Watch them try to twist everything to make it appear as if everything Darwin said is what they were saying all along.

Am I being unecessarily cynical? Anyone wanna bet?

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 13:37:00 UTC | #196770

BryanEvans's Avatar Comment 14 by BryanEvans

This BBC endeavour will not be complete without a significant contribution from Richard Dawkins, with all due respect to David Attenborough, whom, it goes without saying, we all admire.

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 14:02:00 UTC | #196781

GregPhillips's Avatar Comment 15 by GregPhillips

Go Beeb!

This is great news, really great news - it is about time we got some decent scientific content to really kick the Xtian IDiots in the nuts. Hopefully these Beeb programmes and Dawkins new series which I hadnt heard of either will give many people a serious challenge.

If they can be arsed to watch it and not throw vegetables at the TV.

No doubt there will also be a series of fools parading across the discussion programmes nay saying thumping their scriptures and running down Darwin, making themselves look extremely stupid, which is a bonus :)

What we really NEED is for the scientific community to formalise Darwins great ideas into a biological Law - surely we are due a gestalt shift? Isnt it the nature of science to test hypotheses, refine, test and test again then formalise a Law?

Its been 150 years and nobody has proved Darwins 'theory' wrong, every scrap of scientifically gathered evidence has backed Darwins proposal so it is time to stop fannying around, grow some testicles and turn Evolution by Natural Selection into a fully fledged scientific Law.

Its my opinion Darwin is the UKs number one national treasure.


PS I will definately be watching the CBBC series :)

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 14:15:00 UTC | #196788

ingodwerust's Avatar Comment 16 by ingodwerust

Just what we need. 2009 should be a great year, not just from the bbc. The whole country should be celebrating Darwin's legacy. I look foward to a cacophany of real science discussion and great media - i also look forward to the religious nuts going wild.

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 14:34:00 UTC | #196803

julianstirling's Avatar Comment 17 by julianstirling

Wow. I am almost tempted to buy a TV and a licence!

Wed, 09 Jul 2008 15:30:00 UTC | #196820

V'Ger's Avatar Comment 18 by V'Ger

Come on BBC... time to get back to what your good at. I'm sick to death of all the 'celebrity' dancing, or singing shite you've lowered yourself to lately.

I heard a while ago about Attenboroughs next project being on Darwin... so I guess it must be part of this.

And as to giving the 'other side' a voice... I can't see that happening. Attenborough is already pissed of at the beeb for cutting funds to science programmes, and even suggesting an ID topic might just push him too far. Unless, of course, he and Dawkins are in need of a punch bag ;-)

Thu, 10 Jul 2008 01:06:00 UTC | #196939

irate_atheist's Avatar Comment 19 by irate_atheist

Splendid news, splendid indeed.

Thu, 10 Jul 2008 02:32:00 UTC | #197004

Apathy personified's Avatar Comment 20 by Apathy personified

Shame they recently cut the funding for science programs - although anything with David Attenborough is always good.
To my american brethren who are worried about not being able to watch the stuff - can you use the bbc iplayer on the bbc website, or do you need a brit IP?

Thu, 10 Jul 2008 02:50:00 UTC | #197014

sheepscarer's Avatar Comment 21 by sheepscarer

Great news - just hope Horizon returns to the scientific fold - the last few years it's been so dumbed down I thought I was watching a graphic designers promtional video. Cut the geewizardry and give us the benefit of an attention span of more then 10 seconds.

Thu, 10 Jul 2008 02:51:00 UTC | #197017

bugaboo's Avatar Comment 22 by bugaboo

Should be good
Remember early 80's Docudramas shown in the UK. There was a TV drama called "The Forgotten Voyage" about Alfred Russel Wallace. Also one on Mendel called "The Garden Of Inheritance" These were great as I remember but never to be seen again on the beeb. They really should dig them out and show them. Some of the older Horizons were also great.

Thu, 10 Jul 2008 02:53:00 UTC | #197018

j.mills's Avatar Comment 23 by j.mills

Some people above asked how they could see this stuff outside the UK. Lots of BBC programmes are now made available online for a week(?) after broadcast, through their iPlayer facility. You don't even need a TV! (Much less a licence...) And you can listen to the radio stuff live over the net or (for the following week) on their Listen Again facility. All hail Auntie Beeb!

(They're doing a natural history show called 'Life'? One of these days they're gonna run out of titles.)

Thu, 10 Jul 2008 03:00:00 UTC | #197023

GodMyArse's Avatar Comment 24 by GodMyArse

Can't wait for this. I only yesterday rang my daughter's school's Head to ask what he was planning to mark these anniversaries, as we live only 20 miles from Darwin's place of birth (Shrewsbury, Shropshire in case you wondered). But I strongly suspect, and have done for some time, that the guy is a freakin cretinist and he virtually confirmed this by stating that even though the school isn't a church school they always like to give the children every side of a story so they can make up their own minds in life, and Evolution is another way of 'looking at creation' whether you're xtian, muslim or whatever. I am now very pissed off. This is 'teach the controversy' in the UK and we don't have any first amendment with which to fight back. A head teacher in this country can put any spin on any subject and imply whatever he likes as long as he disguises it as 'fair and balanced'. I think he plans to suggest quietly that there is 'no proof' of Evolution and other 'theories' are out there. Sorry for the long post about my own personal situation. If anyone's still reading have you got any suggestions?

Thu, 10 Jul 2008 04:00:00 UTC | #197068

Roger Stanyard's Avatar Comment 25 by Roger Stanyard

What's the betting that the creationists and the Democratic Unionist Party in Northern Ireland will be pressuring the BBC on this? Either to pull it or include disclaimers or transmit a creationist programme at the same time.

I dunno if everyone is aware but the DUP is pressurising local science firms in the province not to support celebrations of Darwin's 200/150 anniversary.

Expect also Truth in Science, if it is still in existance by then, to foam at the mouth about it.

Thu, 10 Jul 2008 04:36:00 UTC | #197090

errm...'s Avatar Comment 26 by errm...

Good! we're just getting a new aerial system, including satellite dish, installed.
Re Comment #207266 by alexmzk. Or perhaps they could get professional (as distinct from amateur) comedians to play these parts? Who would you cast as "Te-he and Dumbski"?

Thu, 10 Jul 2008 09:02:00 UTC | #197318

Miss Harry's Avatar Comment 27 by Miss Harry

Only UK residents can use the iPlayer facility for TV programmes, since it's paid for by the license fee and it would use too much bandwidth, or something like that to offer it abroad. You can use iPlayer to access BBC radio programmes online, though.

These BBC programmes seem to be tied in to a new science short course on Darwin and Evolution by the Open University, which I plan to do when it's available next year. Maybe I'll get all the vids with the course materials, since I also live outside the UK so won't see them all.

As I understand it, Richard Dawkins is involved in a separate project on Darwin with Channel 4 in the UK, so not sure if he'll be involved in the BBC one. If so, I'm sure they would have mentioned it in their promos.

Thu, 10 Jul 2008 11:25:00 UTC | #197387

PaulJ's Avatar Comment 28 by PaulJ

Comment #207996 by Miss Harry:

Only UK residents can use the iPlayer facility for TV programmes, since it's paid for by the license fee and it would use too much bandwidth, or something like that to offer it abroad.
It seems likely, based on what's happened with other popular TV documentaries, that these programmes will become available via bittorrent fairly quickly.

Not that such a thing would be at all legal, of course....

Thu, 10 Jul 2008 12:32:00 UTC | #197402

ghuckin's Avatar Comment 29 by ghuckin

This is great, but I hope the scheduling of the programs here in Canada doesn't conflict with the inevitable Bill O'Reilly and Pat Robertson tributes to Darwin.
Come to think of it, I wonder what network TV in the US has planned.

Thu, 10 Jul 2008 16:47:00 UTC | #197592

Vendetta's Avatar Comment 30 by Vendetta

One of the worst things about living in the US is that we don't get all of these BBC channels and programs. Are there any fellow Americans here who know where/how to catch these programs? Or are we stuck waiting for it to come out on dvd and buying it?

We might not get BBC, but we do get Fox News, so that's a comfort. laksjdfl;kjaweifjaowiefnmaweflkn

Fri, 11 Jul 2008 08:40:00 UTC | #198157