One reason science fiction fans love our genre is the creative ways it ties into and extrapolates from genuine scientific theories, thoughts and discoveries underway in the real world. Flights of fancy, grounded in hard science — yeah, that’s the stuff of a sci-fi fan’s dreams.
So, when it comes to delving into the science behind the fiction, where do you turn?
Why, YouTube, of course. It’s not all QAnon and booktubers over there. There are experts in any fiend to be found there, including science. And one of the go-to’s for sicence lovers is a show called OFFWORLD, a feature on Adam Savage’s Tested channel. Hosts Ariel Waldman (explorer, creator, and chair of the council for NASA’s Innovative Advanced Concepts program) and Norman Chan (journalist at Tested) discuss just about every topic you can imagine, especially if it’s related to a SF film you’ve probably seen.
The science in Brad Pitt’s Ad Astra? Check.
Black holes in sci-fi? Check.
Space billionaires… you know, like that old James Bond flick, Moonraker? Yeah. Check.
In other words, viewers can have a lot of fun looking through older videos on this channel, and finding discussions on those little niggling questions you’ve had about everything from Arrival to The Expanse.
What makes OFFWORLD fun is the geeky conversations that happen as hosts Waldman and Chan evaluate the popular science, bringing in guests and experts to weigh in. In some ways, it’s like hanging out with your friends and having a chat. In others, it’s like attending a panel at a sci-fi convention and just enjoying what it’s like to discuss hard science.
OFFWORLD makes a nice addition to the exploration and experimentation that Adam Savage is known for. And you can also check out Adam’s videos on Tested, as well as the Adam Savage Project podcast, which is now back after their summer break.