Seth MacFarlane’s Scientific Influences

This Sunday on StarTalk, host Neil deGrasse Tyson features his interview with Seth MacFarlane, who became the youngest showrunner in television history when his animated series Family Guy aired on Fox. MacFarlane also executive produced the 21st century version of Cosmos: A Space Time Odyssey. In addition to creating some of the most popular content on television and film today, he is also expanding his career in the worlds of music, literature, and philanthropy.

In front of a live studio audience, Tyson and guests discuss the science of Family Guy, social issues in cartoons, and the science-fiction parodies that abound in the series. In this clip, MacFarlane discusses how science found its way into the animated series:

This week, Tyson is also joined in the Hall of the Universe by comedian co-host Chuck Nice and guest Charles Liu. Liu is a professor of astrophysics at the City University of New York’s College of Staten Island, and an associate with the Hayden Planetarium and Department of Astrophysics at the American Museum of Natural History. His research focuses on colliding galaxies, quasars, and the star formation history of the Universe.

Adding to the discussion, author Simon Singh patches into the studio via live video call to talk about The Simpsons and Their Mathematical Secrets, fans’ cosmic queries about the science of Family Guy are answered by the experts in the studio, and Bill Nye gives his take on cartoons and animation.

Don’t miss this week’s StarTalk at a special time, 11:30/10:30c, immediately following the live broadcast of the Breakthrough Prize awards ceremony, which is hosted by Seth MacFarlane.