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'Science Guy' Bill Nye is set to get his own talk show - here's what we know

Posted September 8

Bill Nye achieved national fame with his popular 1990s kids show "Bill Nye the Science Guy," though, today, he's often in the news for taking hard-line positions against religious views he believes conflict with popular science.

And it seems the public will soon be seeing a lot more of Nye because he's slated to head back to the small screen next year — nearly two decades after his light-hearted and comical kids show concluded.

Netflix announced this week that Nye will be joining the company with a new on-demand talk show titled, "Bill Nye Saves the World." The company said the project will mark the "science guy's" "long-awaited return to TV."

While Nye's original show, which ran from 1993-98, was more entertaining than controversial, there are some signs that this new talk show — set to premiere in spring 2017 — will deal with some heavier and more contentious subjects.

Just consider this line in the Netflix description: "Each episode will tackle a topic from a scientific point of view, dispelling myths and refuting anti-scientific claims that may be espoused by politicians, religious leaders or titans of industry."

It's unclear, of course, how these topics will be framed and the tone through which they'll be explored, though it's quite possible debate will abound.

"Bill Nye Saves the World" will include guests, experiments and demonstrations, with Nye proclaiming in a Netflix statement that he's "been on a mission to change the world" by helping people get excited about science.

He also gave a bit of a lens into some of the topics the show will cover.

"We’ll discuss the complex scientific issues facing us today, with episodes on vaccinations, genetically modified foods and climate change," Nye said. "With the right science and good writing, we’ll do our best to enlighten and entertain our audience. And, perhaps we’ll change the world a little."

As Quartz noted, this is Netflix's second talk show, following this year's premiere of Chelsea Handler's "Chelsea," which was recently renewed for a second season.

Nye, who was a contestant on "Dancing With the Stars" in 2013, attracted international attention when he debated Christian leader Ken Ham in 2014, with the two famously facing-off over evolution and creationism.

Since that debate, Nye and Ham have traded barbs, with the two men recently attracting headlines when Nye visited Ham's new Ark Encounter theme park in Kentucky, which features a life-size Noah's ark replica and Bible-themed exhibits.

As previously reported, they once again debated a variety of issues, including the morality of why human beings wear clothing as well as creation.

During one of those exchanges, Ham attempted to share his faith with Nye, explaining the concept of what it means to be "born again." Nye responded, "I would prefer that you weren't indoctrinating young people with anti-science."

In recent years, Nye hasn't shied away from controversial social and political issues, appearing in a Big Think video about abortion in 2015, as well as in media debates surrounding global warming, among other subjects.

Nye even published a book in 2014 titled, "Undeniable: Evolution and the Science of Creation," a text that promises to "spread awareness of evolution and the powerful way it shapes our lives."

Email: bhallowell@deseretnews.com Twitter: billyhallowell Facebook: facebook.com/billyhallowell

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