If you like your viewing epic, it doesn’t get much bigger than this.
Across five one-hour episodes, Zachary Quinto explores the dramatic history of the eight planetary siblings in our solar system, as it unfolded over 4.5billion years. Using extensive computer-generated imagery and footage from space missions, including NASA’s Cassini–Huygens mission and the New Horizons probe, the series reveals the spectacular landscapes, apocalyptic weather systems and unbelievable science (on Saturn, it rains diamonds) of our neighbouring worlds.
“The cutting-edge visuals are worthy of a space movie, not least the cosmic round of ten-pin bowling at the dawn of the galaxy,” says the Times (UK), and the Guardian reviewer Rebecca Nicholson says, “The wonder of Cox’s arguments, which take in the staggering, incomprehensible vastness of time and space, provides the kind of television that made this particular viewer stop and say ‘whoa’ every few seconds.”
Starlust listed it among the eight Best Space Documentaries to Binge Watch in 2020, saying The Planets is “one of our favourite space documentaries of 2019 thanks to Brian’s ability to explain the most complex mechanism at work for planets to form and develop. The production and filmography are outstanding and the show has some of the best CGI we have ever seen in space documentaries. The BBC clearly went all-out budget-wise and it shows!”
IMDB rating: 9.1/10
Rotten Tomatoes rating: 100%