I caught most of the much hyped (on the ABC) show Stargazing Live last night, and found it all a bit odd.
I liked that it was Siding Spring observatory, which I had only re-visited a few years ago; I don't mind that Julia Zamiro was the co-host (I just find her extremely likeable on anything she does); and I did learn a thing or two. (One thing is something I am embarrassed to say I had not already worked out for myself.)
But, it was a bit, I don't know, trying too hard to drum up enthusiasm for an audience that probably wasn't there in the first place. I could understand if it was an educational show that schools were forced to show in science class, but the sort of people who didn't know some of the very basic stuff were almost certainly not watching it anyway. And Brian Cox seemed a bit oddly uncomfortable, although it seemed at one point the producers told him to throw away the script, which he did, and it was perhaps for the better. The worst participant was Josh Thomas in a pre-recorded piece in which he giggled his way pretty inanely, and pointlessly, at historical items at the Sydney Observatory. (His fans already have me marked as the enemy for writing about the mystery of his non-Brisbane accent, and not caring for his dramady show, so I may as well double down.)
What I did enjoy more was the casual, unscripted, half hour after the main show on ABC 2, where a relaxed panel of highly qualified people (and Julia Zamiro) drank "space beer" and answered questions about the universe and astronomy. It was like sitting in a group someone like me would love to talk to in a pub.
I'll be watching at least that part again tonight.