The Cell – The Chemistry Of Life Review: Gods and Monsters

August 19, 2009 by  
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3bloody good, geddit?THE CELL – THE CHEMISTRY OF LIFE: Wednesday 19th, BBC4, 9pm Alert Me

Wouldn’t it be much easier if science was magic?

Well, no, probably not.

Dr. Adam Rutherford walked us through science-y goodness last week and it was so good we thought we’d tell the world about his show. Though the good doctor is probably better suited to something like Bang Goes The Science, he’s here teaching us about the beginnings of life and stuff.

In this episode we explore genetics and the discoveries made about cells and DNA that makes us, us. Excited?

You don’t have to be into science to enjoy this show but by God does it help. We’re not gonna lie, it’s a little bit of a snoozefest in parts but there are some intriguing little experiments going on here.

Everyone remembers from school that actual experiments are way more fun than just being talked at and reading boring facts off the blackboard, and if you enjoyed dissecting frogs in biology class you’re in for a treat.

I don’t know about you but I had always wondered what a pig’s stomach looked like, so thank God that the doctor needed a special sticky substance that only a pig can provide so I could finally see a pigs tummy. It’s pretty much what I expected; gross.

Other gross but really rather interesting exploits of the good doctor including cracking open a sea urchin and drinking its…um…sperm.

There are probably a few ethical and moral questions that should have been addressed here such as experimenting on animals. Watching Dr. Adam inject a fly with the DNA of a rat is a little unnerving but utterly fascinating. The deformed fly that is the result of the test is a weird sight and reminded me of Frankenstein and the power that scientists have. An ethical discussion may have bogged the show down but it would have been nice to give it a mention.

In between Dr. Adam talking about science in a slightly patronizing tone, he’s dishing out very interesting facts that I know my teachers were too lazy to tell me in school. He hasn’t quite got an even balance of lighthearted humour and information but he’s a competent presenter and I wouldn’t be surprised if he was given another series.

Emily Moulder