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Bill Nye Explains Why The End Is Nye - Exclusive

Throughout his long career in media, Bill Nye has appeared in a wide variety of television programs. Of course, he's best known for his time as the host of the 1993 PBS series "Bill Nye the Science Guy." For many children, Nye's most famous role not only proved that "science rules" — it also let them know that learning could be educational and fun at the same time. 

In the decades since, Nye has become a popular media figure and regular talk-show guest (via IMDb). He's also followed up his most well-known series with a number of markedly different productions. In 2005, Nye hosted "The Eyes of Nye," another program geared toward educating the public about science. But where "Bill Nye the Science Guy" brought a kid-friendly levity to every situation, the one and only season of "The Eyes of Nye" took a serious look at issues in the scientific community. Topics of choice ranged from climate change to nuclear energy. 

In more recent years, Nye has applied a similar routine to a number of other shows, including Netflix's "Bill Nye Saves the World," which ended after three seasons in 2018. That series looked closely at topics like overpopulation and addiction. Now, with Peacock's "The End Is Nye," the celebrity scientist is tackling one of the most depressing prospects possible: the end of the world. If you think the series sounds remarkably less optimistic than its predecessor, Nye wants you to know there's a reason for that.

In an exclusive interview with Looper at San Diego Comic-Con 2022, Nye explained exactly why his new series sounds so much dourer than his last. Nye and "The End Is Nye" executive producer Brannon Braga also offered a few tantalizing sneak peeks at the six disasters covered in the new Peacock series.

We're living in anxious times

To hear Bill Nye talk about it, "The End Is Nye" isn't a show that would have been nearly as interesting to viewers at any other point in the history of the world. According to him, the apocalyptic series is abundantly perfect for this very moment. "We are living in anxious times," Nye said. "Everybody's worried about stuff." 

Although he didn't elaborate on the exact crises he was referring to, we can all probably guess that the top causes for concern in Nye's mind include climate change (via Smithsonian Magazine) and the COVID-19 pandemic (via NBC News). As if those prospects aren't alarming enough, Nye's newest series zooms in on six different apocalyptic disasters that could hit Earth at any moment. These vary from a solar flare-induced global blackout to multiple comet impacts. So what could possibly have persuaded Nye to think that now is the right time to delve into such existential dread?

According to Nye, many people look for their entertainment to reflect the qualities of the world around them, no matter how disastrous things might seem. "When things are going well, people watch romantic comedies," Nye said. Surprisingly, he added that the opposite is also true. "When things are anxious, people watch disaster movies," he said. "It's some human nature thing." 

With this knowledge in mind, Nye decided that now would be the perfect time to address such potential calamities, aided by the hope that viewers might also tune in to learn about potential solutions. "In the first half, it's a disaster," Nye said. "In the second half, we show how everything could be great with the optimistic view of the future and science."

All six episodes of "The End Is Nye" are available for streaming on Peacock.