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paul mc c

Sky at Night!

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I'm just rewatching it and I don't see what the problem is. They are busily explaining something complex, the precession of the Moon's orbit, and they are doing it well. I knew this happened but now can visualise it. I really like these simple demonstrations with balls, hoops and people rushing about, it's entirely in the informal but thoroughly professional spirit of how S@N has always been.

There's more to Astronomy than news of the latest developments in cosmology. History of Astronomy is just as relevant - and goes back a long way before the invention of the telescope.

Chris

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I'm just rewatching it and I don't see what the problem is. They are busily explaining something complex, the precession of the Moon's orbit, and they are doing it well. I knew this happened but now can visualise it. I really like these simple demonstrations with balls, hoops and people rushing about, it's entirely in the informal but thoroughly professional spirit of how S@N has always been.

There's more to Astronomy than news of the latest developments in cosmology. History of Astronomy is just as relevant - and goes back a long way before the invention of the telescope.

Chris

True, the history of astronomy is very interesting. But since Patrick's last episode, there hasn't been any reporting of current research at all...

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Chris, Paul and Pete (with SPM) chit-chatting and chewing the astro fat was incredibly simple but just worked! Like tuning in to a pub conversation about astronomy. With the current format, trying to appeal to everyone is appealing to no-one.

My 2p.

Steve

I really liked the late chat sessions they had on Star Gazing Live. You need a mix, but some more sessions like this would be great, with a guest researcher.

one key is a new presenter to string it all together and engage new viewers. I don't think any of the current lot have the screen presence and charisma to carry that role. I like Chris Lintott but he talks like a typical academic physisist. I don't think new young viewers can warm to him. The likes of iain stewart and Alice Roberts can really draw viewers into their areas. Astronomy needs someone similar.

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started watching the latest episode last night but was too tired to finish it.

what i saw seemed ok though. surely the orbit of the Moon is a valid topic

for an astronomy show isn't it ? and if stone henge is an ancient astronomical device

surely that's relevant too ? they also showed a clip of SPM doing a similar report

back in the 70s so it is the sort of thing S@N used to cover when he was able bodied.

i think we've just got used to SPM being unable to do outside broadcasts so maybe the

current format with Lintott et al on location is closer to how it used to be when

SPM was younger and fitter?

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I've got to be honest, I actually thought it was fairly interesting - but it did feel more like a general 'popular science' show, rather than specifically astronomy, and frankly, if seriously discussing Stonehenge, druids should not be mentioned! And I totally agree with the point "where's the latest research?" I mean, the magazine mentions some of it - and it's interesting!

I watched 'Eyes on the Sky' on youtube the other day and found myself thinking 'if only the sky at night mentioned what was up' - is that a bad sign for an astronomy show? Then again, they're so limited on time...

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The show certainly needs tweaking, for sure, and i think it can continue if you bring back what was great about the show in the first place. I think the major problem we are all facing is that annoyingly hateful thing: nostalgia. We all spent years with SPM bumbling about on the telly and unfortunately his death left not only a vast hole but also very few tools in which to fill the hole. The producers really need to sit down, have a chat and rectify the problem otherwise it will be canned. Someone said above that we need to state what the problems are with the current format instead of simply complaining and i agree.

* Bring back the vitally important sections on latest research.

* Bring back Pete and Paul's monthly guides (most of us knew the routine but this was still a major part of the show)

* Bring back viewers pictures.

* Pop the blooming inflatables

* Bring back the studio/house setting.

Lastly please stick with some out and about reports, but just don't set the thing outside like a roving production. It can still be fixed.

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Just watched this months show and found a vast improvement to July's offering , I hope it continues to focus towards monthly target subjects rather than wide general items. If Jon Culshaw stuck to being himself that would be better IMO .

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The previous month was the only S@N I can remember that I didn't really enjoy. For me, normal service was resumed this month and I really enjoyed it. The Mars images were mind-blowing and I like the team and their chats with the various experts explaining things in a way I can grasp (most of the time!). I'll be giving the Moore Moon Marathon a crack:

http://www.bbc.co.uk...e-moon-marathon

Edited by Luke

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I noticed last night - Saturday - there was a repeat of the half hour S@N at about 12.45 am so if u miss the original broadcast and u really want to see the longer show then keep an eye on saturday night tv listings. for some reason they don't put the 30 min show on iplayer or not last time i checked. NB not sure if this is a regular repeat slot.

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Well, I did not enjoy the August show either. The new format does not appeal to me at all. Each to their own I suppose. I hope everyone else likes it.

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I was mildly amused to spot someone optimistically dressed as Tom Baker's Dr Who when they were doing the moon photo competition results, very glad nothing was made of it in the show. Clearly John Culshaw is attracting some of his fans in, but would they have been there anyway? Difficult to say. Still he had to get a Dr Who thing in there anyway with the Cyberman... le sigh.

Edited by jonathan

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I have been a long time follower of S@N and my interest in the program has not diminished since the sad passing of Sir Patrick.

The BBC have a great oppertunity to make this something really special but they won't because they would rather P**s our licence fee on Rubbish dancing & singing programs to compete with ITV.

Personally I would like to see a one hour slot instead of the 30mins (always thought it felt rushed) with subjects for the complete amateur, including advice on equipment etc. Eg. Types of eyepieces and uses. It's not like the BBC haven't been product placing for years even though they would deny it. A slot for astrophotography wouldn't go amiss ethier.

Items for the experienced astronomer. Yes auntie even the casual amateur can enjoy technical & in depth descusions without it being dumbed down, even if like me the math will go sailing over my head faster than a comet. I STILL ENJOY IT BECAUSE I'M LEARNING SOMETHING.

I don't understand why all the bitching about the presenters its not their fault & if we are all honest Sir Patrick only has been

Contributing about fives minutes per show for the last year due to his health. (Which must have frustrated the hell out of him.)

The winter & moon marathon are great fun for all and yes do start showing the viewers photographs again.

The program does need a revamp but the sadist thing of all would be if The Sky at Night disappeared from our screens for good.

How many here started their love of astronomy thanks to S@N and more recently stargazing live. Anything that gets children & adults alike interested in astronomy is shorly worth keeping?

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I saw the start of it then realised that it was at an end. I had basically switched off.

That isn't really good.

Maybe a more technical approach would be useful, as has been said not everyone is non-technical and others may want a lead in to a bit more knowlesge.

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Told Dr. Paul Abel (from S@N ) on Saturday that Jon Culshaw irritates me with his contstant use of daft voices. He said that even they don't know his real voice!

Edited by mallorcasaint
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I just watched the 30min show on iPlayer and quite enjoyed it.

The Mars slot was particularly well presented I thought.

Interestingly I spotted John Culshaw's real voice. While he was taking a picture of the moon with his iPhone through an eyepiece he was talking perfectly normally in his native Lancashire twang!

Didn't last long though, what with yet more SPM and some Tom Baker thrown in for good measure.

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i used to look foward to the part of the show when paul and peter did there thing, and chris was coming on board nicely so please come back peter come back paul.

Edited by faulksy

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I enjoyed this months show, the presenters seem to be stepping up to the plate. I also crave a little more time to allow for a fixed format, with say half the time on the special of the month with the rest of the time on an observing slot/ equipment slot/ in the news this month/ guest etc. (the top gear approach)

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I do miss PM's style of presentation and his accent. Having said that, I love current series of SAN. I really did enjoy the latest program about Mars.

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I just watched the 30min show on iPlayer and quite enjoyed it.

The Mars slot was particularly well presented I thought.

Interestingly I spotted John Culshaw's real voice. While he was taking a picture of the moon with his iPhone through an eyepiece he was talking perfectly normally in his native Lancashire twang!

Didn't last long though, what with yet more SPM and some Tom Baker thrown in for good measure.

I was wondering when someone would mention the spm impersonation. 7 seconds since January...He really is bleeding it dry isn't he.

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I think we all need to give it time to find its feet, it was never going to be the same without Patrick.

im sure given time they will find a format that works. at the moment they seem to be trying to get all the regulars into every episode.

saying that i would like to see Pete and Paul resume there slot.

keep up the good work guys.

p.s maybe we should on mass contact the bbc about giving it more airtime.

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HEY - My one time office now looks out onto a simulated Martian Landscape! :D

(Cool that the STFC have finally made better use of their resources?) [teasing]

But I have particularly enjoyed the outside braadcasts from our *National Labs*

A reminder that they exist... that young (women) scientists work at them etc. :)

Edited by Macavity

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For my penneth ...

1) I guess something is better than nothing, so we should be thankful that the Beeb didn't decide to can the show completely when SirP died and we should be glad that the show is still running, albeit in a different format.

2) I too find John Culshaw increadibly irritating and think the show would be much better (and taken more seriously) without him. S@N doesn't need an impressionist.... and I just won a bet with myself that he couldn't go a single show without resorting to his cringeworthy immitation SirP - which he duly did when presenting the winner of the best moon show with a mobile camera. Sad and pathetic. Please stop it! (I nearly turned off at that point too!)

3) Given that the vast majority of people here seem to be of the similar opinion - the best thing to do would be to come to some collective constructive suggestions for ways to improve the show and make the cast of the show aware of these suggestions ... I'm pretty sure most of the presenters are on Twitter these days - so that shouldn't be too difficult to make them aware.

So in terms of my 'helpful suggesions'....

a) Keep at it. We love the show and would be sad to see it stop ... but please take onboard some comments / feedback from your beloved fans.

B) Please tell JohnC to stop immitating SirP - it's not clever or funny and everyone hates it and is actually putting people off watching the show.

I thank you...(Stands down from soap box....)

Mike

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I just checked on Twitter and all the current S@N presenters are on Twitter and actively Tweeting .... even JonC....

I feel a flurry of tweets coming on... ;-)

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