The Trailer for the Rebooted Cosmos TV Series Is Out

Earlier tonight, at Comic-Con in San Diego, host Neil deGrasse Tyson, writer Ann Druyan (Carl Sagan‘s widow), and director Brannon Braga premiered a trailer for the Seth MacFarlane-produced reboot of Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey

More. I need more.

Looks incredible. I can’t wait to watch this. The show premieres in the spring of 2014. [Read more...]

On Being an Apple ‘Catholic’

It is no new thing to compare Apple, Inc. to a religion. The fanatical devotion it has inspired over the decades has made many outsiders eye it suspiciously, as it hawks a kind of techno-faith in which the textbook charismatic leader, Steve Jobs, emits a Reality Distortion Field that turns the skeptical into zealots, hungry for the latest sleek combinations of glass and aluminum like the damned crave absolution. The term “Cult of Mac,” begun by Leander Kahney in his book and website of that title, both pokes fun at and celebrates this comparison.

Those who live inside the Reality Distortion Field, in my experience, rarely resent this. Just as true religious zealots do not mind being known for their blind faith, but wear it as a badge of honor. This is a bit of an exaggeration, of course, as even the most doughy-eyed Apple user will still vent criticisms and complaints, but very often this is done in the spirit of keeping true to a central credo; as in, if device X does or does not have Y feature, is that really keeping with The Apple Way? Is it What Steve Would Have Done? Et cetera.

I, too, have embraced this. Being an atheist, in particular, it’s actually kind of fun to have a pretend religion to subscribe to. I follow the teachings of The Steve, Apple keynotes are like a twice-yearly mass, and I look for signs from the prophets Tim Cook and Jony Ive, just as much as I shook my head in despair at the heretics Scott Forestall and John Browett as they fell from grace.

At New York Review of Books, Edward Mendelson explores the idea of Apple-as-religion anew:

[Click headline for more...] [Read more...]

50 Years of Humanism in ‘Doctor Who’

Brandon Fibbs honors the 50th anniversary of “Doctor Who,” calling it a “consistent beacon of humanism,” with this fantastic clip compilation:

[Read more...]

Jenny McCarthy, Who Wrongly Believes Vaccinations Cause Autism, Named Co-Host of The View

If you want to have a panel of opinionated women for a TV show like The View, it makes sense to include a couple of conservative Christians like Elisabeth Hasselbeck and Sherri Shepherd to offer a dose of opposition to the liberal Joy Behar and Whoopi Goldberg. Sure, it’s infuriating at times, but it makes for a spirited debate.

I didn’t think The View would sink lower after the departure of Hasselbeck. But they’ve now gone from woefully misguided to dangerously ignorant, hiring Jenny McCarthy to replace her:

[Click headline for more...] [Read more...]

Another Celebrity Scientologist Leaves the Church

According to “King of Queens” star Leah Remini, the latest celebrity to leave the Church of Scientology, millions of Scientologists have it wrong.

Anonymous sources for the New York Post had plenty to say about Remini’s departure. They claimed that she suffered through years of “interrogations” and “thought modification” after she allowed herself to engage in a bit of freethinking and then — gasp! — question the church leadership about their policies and practices. (Questioning the leader, David Miscavige, is simply not allowed.) Remini didn’t stop there; she went a step further and spoke up about the abuses at Sea Org.

[Click headline for more...] [Read more...]


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X