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Neil deGrasse Tyson Reads “Mean Tweets,” Then Patiently/Hilariously Responds

Why can’t Neil deGrasse Tyson just enjoy watching Gravity like the rest of us, without pointing out its glaring scientific inaccuracies after the fact? Because he can’t help but see those inaccuracies and feel bothered by them every time he watches a sci-fi movie — as he patiently explains in this excerpt from his show StarTalk, in which he reads some “mean tweets” he has received from folks who are annoyed at him for his observations.

Confession: before watching this, I too didn’t understand Tyson’s habit of tweeting about inaccuracies in sci-fi films. His observations didn’t make me angry, mind you — I just didn’t get it. After hearing his explanation about his own inability to feel immersed in films once he notices these inconsistencies, however, I felt much more sympathetic. If I knew as much about space as Tyson does, then I can imagine how irritated I might feel – just as annoyed as I feel when I see films make other inaccurate errors that could easily be fixed with a little research. I do know how it feels to watch a movie and get bothered midway through by simple mistakes — we’ve all been there, right? For Tyson, it’s the same deal, except that it’s his extensive knowledge about science that is making it hard for him to suspend his disbelief.

I think I do prefer Tyson’s science-heavy corrections to those “well, I read the book” movie-goers … of which I usually am a part, heh. But just as Tyson tells us in this video, no matter what sort of pedantic complaint we lodge, we must always wait until after the movie is over before we share it with our friends. Talking during the movie is right out! (Well … with some exceptions.)

(via Vulture)

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Maddy Myers, journalist and arts critic, has written for the Boston Phoenix, Paste Magazine, MIT Technology Review, and tons more. She is a host on a videogame podcast called Isometric (, and she plays the keytar in a band called the Robot Knights (