Archive for the ‘Television’ Category

WWWTP? – Garnier Fructis Shampoo Edition

Thursday, March 14th, 2013

Sometime last year, my girlfriend DVR’d a copy of this commercial for Garnier Fructis shampoo because she saw it had chemistry in it and because she is awesome:


If you pause the video at 0:13, you will notice quite a few chemical atrocities:


Basically, nothing is right. Note the surfeit of Texas carbons. I also love the asymmetry of their elemental fluorine, though maybe those things labeled “F” are atoms of fruit? And what is up with that ideal gas law? You’d think they’d be able to get a structure for biotin in there, considering how big they wrote the word on the chalkboard. Argh…

Anyway, great catch by the ol’ g/f…whom I am now happy and proud to call my fiancée.

Lab Accident on TV

Tuesday, February 26th, 2013

Some people just can’t handle the excitement of chemistry:


It seems that this is from a show named “Školski sat”. I think they’re Croatian. A Facebook page for the show is here. I wish there were more clips on YouTube of their doing chemistry.

Meet the Lab

Friday, September 7th, 2012

I would love for C&EN or Chemistry World to produce a hard-hitting, chemistry news show, but I doubt it will ever happen. Making a regular program would be a lot of work, assuming you could even find guests to show up. That said, a boy can dream, can’t he?

So, while I am not especially proud of this effort, I’ll throw it out there as food for thought:

Blergh! Go ahead and add “a nice voice” to the list of things I wish I had. Also, my deepest apologies to Jyllian Kemsley, Neil Withers, Rudy Baum, Derek Lowe, and E.J. Corey.

(And for those of you who have no idea what this post is about, watch this.)

WWWTP? – HF Stupidity on House, M.D.

Tuesday, February 14th, 2012

A concerned labmate brought my attention to a chemical abomination on last week’s episode of the increasingly unpopular television show House, M.D.

Thanks to a very special friend of mine, we can all enjoy video footage of what Hollywood writers believe constitutes a realistic demonstration for a high school chemistry class:


Marvelous, isn’t it? Notice how the teacher isn’t wearing a single piece of personal protective equipment—no gloves, no goggles, no lab coat—whilst working in front of a poster that reads “LAB SAFETY RULES”.

Who knows what this demonstration was supposed to be, but the last time I checked, HF wasn’t combustible. In fact, its NFPA 704 flammability rating is zero. Oh well, I doubt the flame coming out of the Bunsen burner is real anyway, seeing as how the dude just picked up the metal with his bare hands. The limp gas line and the fact that the blue flame doesn’t deflect upward when it is tilted are also nice pieces of laziness on the part of the production staff.

If you plan to replicate this experiment at home, I suggest that you work with hydrofluoric acid in plastic containers instead of glass ones. HF is a great etchant for glass and many other materials that contain silicon. Furthermore, if you have an accident and get HF on your skin or in your lungs, you are going to be in a world of hurt. That stuff is nasty and goes right for the calcium in your body. In the event of an accident, you should apply calcium gluconate gel to the affected areas of your skin and seek medical attention immediately. Preferably, not from Dr. Gregory House.

Do Starfleet Captains Really Need Orgo?

Monday, October 10th, 2011

Pre-meds often wonder whether they really need a year of organic chemistry, but what about prospective Starfleet officers? Will organic chemistry still be important for explorers in the 24th century?

Apparently not. (Skip to 7:45)