NOVA "The Mystery of Easter Island"

(Rochester, NY) – This fall, PBS’ premiere science series returns for a 39th season of satisfying the curious mind. NOVA, the seminal primetime documentary series, travels to the South Pacific Ocean to explore the mystery of Easter Island, the remote subject of stories and research by countless historians, scientists, and anthropologists. The Mystery of Easter Island premieres Wednesday, November 7, 2012 at 9 p.m. on WXXI-TV/HD (DT21.1/cable 1011 and 11).

A remote, bleak speck of rock in the middle of the Pacific, Easter Island, or Rapa Nui, has mystified the world ever since the first Europeans arrived in 1722. How and why did the ancient islanders build and move nearly 900 giant statues, or moai, weighing up to 86 tons? And how did they transform a presumed paradise into a treeless wasteland, bringing ruin upon their island and themselves? NOVA and National Geographic explore controversial recent claims that challenge decades of previous thinking about the islanders, who have been accused of everything from ecocide to cannibalism. Among the radical new theories is that the islanders used ropes to “walk” the statues upright, like moving a fridge. With the help of an accurate 15-ton replica statue, a NOVA team sets out to test this high-risk, seemingly unlikely theory — serving up plenty of action and surprises in this fresh investigation of one of the ancient world’s most intriguing enigmas.

Now in its 39th season, NOVA is the most-watched primetime science series on American television, reaching an average of five million viewers weekly. The series remains committed to producing in-depth science programming in the form of hour-long (and occasionally longer) documentaries, from the latest breakthroughs in technology to the deepest mysteries of the natural world. 

Pictured: Ahu Tongariki with the cast / crew chilling in front of it.
Credit: Courtesy of Ben Krueger/National Geographic Television 

 


WXXI is the essential, life-long educational media resource for the Greater Rochester area. WXXI puts the community first with programming that stimulates and expands thought, inspires the spirit, opens cultural horizons and promotes understanding of diverse community issues. Log on to wxxi.org for more information about our services and programs.

 

WXXI Media Contact:

Kristin Tutino

Creative Services Department

585-258-0253
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