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Cosmos Update segments


Is it me or did anyone else find these poorly placed when the show was rereleased. I'm not objecting to the content itself. It's always good to see Dr. Sagan with relevant information. But I call their placement in the episodes a bad editing choice on the part of the DVD crew. In all of the episodes, the Update segments abruptly interrupt the flow of the ending. Unlike non-PBS shows, Cosmos did not have a commercial break before end credits so placing the Update segment after Dr. Sagan's closing monologue and before the credits ruined the dramatic pacing of most of the endings, especially as his ending monologue flows seamlessly (along with Vangelis' music) into the end credits.

I hope that when they rerelease this with a much needed overall re-mastering (if possible), they present the episodes as they were originally aired in 1980, no edits, no cut-ins, no revisions. I did however, like the "option" of unobtrusive subtitles that appeared whenever something was said or shown onscreen in the series that we now know to be out of date. Ironically, the Cosmos Updates (being that they are from circa 1990) date the show much more noticably than anything in the show itself. In a future disk release, why not just have the Cosmos Updates present elsewhere on disk as extras for historical purposes?

Cosmos was never just about the "science" and being up to date. True that with increasing knowledge, more things mentioned in the show will become "dated" or "historical". What made the show different from other documentaries is the fact that much of the information presented will always be relevant because it deals with universal constants and concepts about science and the human condition. So it's not all that important that when we eventually get to Jupiter and Europa, we might not find those giant balloon creatures or underwater life. It's the presentation of ideas and how science ideally should be presented as opposed to deliberately esoteric elitist language accessible only to insiders. In that way, Cosmos has not dated at all.



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The show was about examining the thought processes that we go through when coming across things we don't yet understand. It wasn't a science show so much as a show about science itself. The update segments are essentially little "what's happened" in terms of the few facts presented in the TV show. It's an extension of the events that occurred during the time of the shows initial run.

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They seemed appropriate considering we didn't know back in 1980 what exactly killed off the dinosaurs 65 million years ago or that the existence of planets orbiting other stars was only theoretical. Those are just a few examples of how science is an ever-increasing source of knowledge.

"Kids, using the R word is gay." Stephen Colbert

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Its not the presence of the updates that really bothers me. It's just that I dislike the abrupt cutting into (and then out of) the ending of the episodes. It's kind of like how TV shows truncate (or window) the end credits in TV shows so that they can include a bumper ad for other shows on the station. The Update segments could simply be included as DVD extras related to that particular episode.

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