Have you heard? Have you seen? Bill Nye is BACK! You may remember the PBS show Bill Nye the Science Guy, featuring a geeky scientist, Bill Nye, in his blue lab coat and red bowtie mixing up his brand of humor with science, making it fun for kids (and in my case, teenagers). I know that I was always entertained and I’m sure walked away each episode a little bit smarter than I was before. After being off the air for years, Emmy Award-winning Bill Nye is making a comeback. He is the host of 100 Greatest Discoveries on the Science Discovery Channel, but more importantly he has hit the TV airwaves again with a NEW science show – this time aimed at adults – discussing scientific ideas and concepts which are contemporary and timely to us (i.e. cloning, race, addiction, etc..) . This new show is called The Eyes of Nye. I’m not a big fan of the title (what do his eyeballs have to do with anything??), but the show itself is awesome. Just as fun, quirky and informative as the old show, but much more for adults. Bill has lost the blue coat and bowtie and opted for a suit and tie, or whatever outfit the scene requires. He has also aged, visibly. He seems a little slower in body, but just as quick and funny mentally as he ever was.

The Nye Marketing Team Have Played The Game Perfectly.
It seems that Bill Nye (or his people) understand that a very specific generation made him successful. In marketing, it’s vital that you understand your audience. That you understand their habits, their goals, their demographic, their level of education, their TV habits, EVERYTHING ABOUT THEM. Unfortunately, like all good shows, his “Science Guy” gig ran its course. The kids that loved him got a little older and less interested in science and maybe even became a little “too cool” for Bill Nye. Me included. If his marketing team played their cards correctly, they are releasing him back into the public eye (no pun intended) just as that same generation of kids & teens are reaching a maturity in their mid-late 20s. Hopefully, they have finished being “cool,” finished “finding themselves” and have entered into a more enlightened, exploratory stage of life where not only is gaining new knowledge on their priority list, they may have a nostalgia for media figures of their youth.

I’m not so sure this theory of mine is so far-fetched. I can only speak for myself that if this were the actual scenario, I am a perfect example of the pawn the marketers are playing with – AND I LOVE BEING A PAWN TO MARKETING AND ADVERTISING. As another example, I know that as a new father, Sesame Street has yet to lose its appeal for me. I enjoy watching it with my 1-year old just as much as I did when I was a toddler. Is that simply pure nostalgia for my childhood, or do the folks over at the Children’s Television Workshop understand that the kids that grew up on them are now adults with their own kids? Of course they do, they’d be stupid not to. On a side note, isn’t it a little strange that Gordon and Maria haven’t aged in 30 years? Not a wrinkle. I know it freaks me out a little bit.

Both Bill Nye’s science work and Sesame Street have been, and will continue to be, valuable educational resources for generations to come. I’m glad they’ve stuck around so long and have found new life in this new generation. For myself, it’s just nice to see us marketing and advertising sharks using our powers for good, instead of evil.

Be sure to visit: billnye.com