February 16, 2020 6:58 pm

Monday, Geek Out with Olivia Munn and Neil deGrasse Tyson

On this week’s episode of StarTalk Radio, we’re diving headfirst into the geekiverse. Neil deGrasse Tyson sits down with actress Olivia Munn, known for her roles in The Predator, X-Men: Apocalypse, The Newsroom, and many more to discuss a role she’s played her entire life: being a geek. Neil is joined in-studio by comic co-host Chuck Nice and astrophysicist and StarTalk geek-in-chief Charles Liu, PhD.

StarTalk’s photo of Neil deGrasse Tyson and Olivia Munn.

Neil deGrasse Tyson and Olivia Munn. Photo Credit: StarTalk.

Before we get into Olivia’s geek upbringing, we try and nail down what being a “geek” means. What’s the difference between a geek and a nerd? Are there different types of geeks? Olivia gives us her definition of geek and why she thinks geekdom means freedom. Charles tells us why he thinks biohacking is the next frontier of geekdom.

Then, we get the scoop on Olivia’s early geek influences. She talks about her upbringing and how her struggles with algebra helped establish her work ethic. We investigate her role as Psylocke in X-Men: Apocalypse and why she would want to fly if she could choose her superpower. Neil, Charles, and Chuck also tell us what superpower they would choose and you’ll learn why Neil’s superhero alter ego would be “Java Man”.

We debate the idea that “if everyone is special, no one is special.” We explore what superpowers we could create in the real world: the Iron Man suit, genetic mutations, becoming immortal. You’ll hear about the relationship between science and magic.

To finish off the episode, our entire last segment is devoted to Cosmic Queries that Olivia has brought for Neil! They discuss the likelihood of discovering aliens. Neil explains why he has no reason to doubt we’re not alone. Olivia wants to know if the planets impact us individually. All that, plus, Charles and Neil weigh in on how much humans actually “know” about the universe.

Please join us tomorrow for Geekdom 101, with Olivia Munn at 3pm ET right here on our website, as well as on Apple Podcasts, Google Play Music, SoundCloud, Spotify, Stitcher, and TuneIn. If you’re a StarTalk+ Patron or an All-Access subscriber, you can watch or listen to this episode ad-free at 3pm, too.

That’s it for now. Keep Looking Up!
-Ian Mullen

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