Horizon

The BEST episodes of Horizon

Every episode of Horizon ever, ranked from best to worst by thousands of votes from fans of the show. The best episodes of Horizon!

Amazing science stories, unravels mysteries and reveals worlds you've never seen before.

Last Updated: 8/6/2022Network: BBC Two
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Tsunami: Naming the Dead
star
10.00
28 votes

#1 - Tsunami: Naming the Dead

Season 2005 - Episode 12 - Aired 9/1/2005

How the biggest international forensic operation in history identified the victims of the most devastating natural disaster of recent times.

Prof. Regan's Supermarket Secrets
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10.00
28 votes

#2 - Prof. Regan's Supermarket Secrets

Season 2008 - Episode 7 - Aired 2/26/2008

Friendly bacteria, superfoods, cholesterol busting spreads, 99% germ free, whiter than white...it's almost impossible to find a product in the supermarket today that doesn't come with impressive claims...a scientific claims, but do they actually do what they say? Are they worth the price? Are they worth a place in Prof. Regan's shopping trolly?

New Star in Orbit
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10.00
28 votes

#3 - New Star in Orbit

Season 1999 - Episode 6 - Aired 3/11/1999

In this report, Horizon explores the arguments for and against the building of the Space Station Freedom and will it ever justify it's huge cost.

Inside Chernobyl's Sarcophagus (Update)
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10.00
28 votes

#4 - Inside Chernobyl's Sarcophagus (Update)

Season 1996 - Episode 10 - Aired 3/25/1996

In this episode of Horizon, which is a follow-up to the 1991 documentary, we follow a group of soviet scientists on a suicide mission as they search for the missing nuclear fuel inside the remains of the nuclear reactor 4.

The Blind Watchmaker
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10.00
28 votes

#5 - The Blind Watchmaker

Season 1987 - Episode 3 - Aired 1/19/1987

In this interview by Horizon, zoologist Richard Dawkins investigates an attack on evolution by scientific creationists, based on the book of the same name by the famous zoologist.

Directors: Sean Smith
The Pleasure Of Finding Things Out
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10.00
28 votes

#6 - The Pleasure Of Finding Things Out

Season 1981 - Episode 24 - Aired 11/23/1981

Richard Feymann was one of the most brilliant theoretical physicists and original thinkers or the 20th century. He rebuilt the theory of quantum electrodynamics, and it was for this work that he won the Nobel Prize in 1965. In this documentary he talks about his motivations to be a scientist and a teacher of science.

Watch Now:Amazon
Smoker's Luck
star
10.00
28 votes

#7 - Smoker's Luck

Season 1980 - Episode 20 - Aired 11/3/1980

Documentary about smoking and about the secondary effects of it. Britain leads the world in smoking deaths at 200 per day. The film looks at prognosis of deat h and at the chances of those who give up smoking of dying of the effects.

The Secret You
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10.00
28 votes

#8 - The Secret You

Season 2009 - Episode 13 - Aired 10/20/2009

With the help of a hammer-wielding scientist, Jennifer Aniston and a general anaesthetic, Professor Marcus du Sautoy goes in search of answers to one of science's greatest mysteries: how do we know who we are? While the thoughts that make us feel as though we know ourselves are easy to experience, they are notoriously difficult to explain. So, in order to find out where they come from, Marcus subjects himself to a series of probing experiments. He learns at what age our self-awareness emerges and whether other species share this trait. Next, he has his mind scrambled by a cutting-edge experiment in anaesthesia. Having survived that ordeal, Marcus is given an out-of-body experience in a bid to locate his true self. And in Hollywood, he learns how celebrities are helping scientists understand the microscopic activities of our brain. Finally, he takes part in a mind-reading experiment that both helps explain and radically alters his understanding of who he is.

Watch Now:Amazon
Molecules With Sunglasses
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10.00
28 votes

#9 - Molecules With Sunglasses

Season 1992 - Episode 3 - Aired 1/20/1992

About the original discovery in 1985 of a third form of solid carbon, named Buckminsterfullerene after the architect who invented geodesic domes. The two scientists who discovered the material glimpsed it for brief seconds only in their lasers but neither they nor other scientists subsequently could make the substance last long enough in the laser to prove their theory. Then in 1990, a couple of physicists with an arc-welder in a bell-jar found they could make as much Buckminsterfullerene as they liked, and industrial applications opened up, with talk of new polymers, molecular ball-bearings, lubricants and super- conductors. Meanwhile, the original discoverers were turning back to the fundamental questions surrounding the discovery, such as how and why does it form; does it exist in space or is it the solution to one of the great mysteries of the universe.

Is Your Brain Male or Female?
star
10.00
28 votes

#10 - Is Your Brain Male or Female?

Season 2014 - Episode 15 - Aired 9/29/2014

Dr Michael Mosley and Professor Alice Roberts investigate if male and female brains really are wired differently. New research suggests that the connections in men and women's brains follow different patterns, patterns which may explain typical forms of male and female behaviour. But are these patterns innate, or are they shaped by the world around us? Using a team of human lab rats and a troop of barbary monkeys, Michael and Alice test the science and challenge old stereotypes. They ask whether this new scientific research will benefit both men and women - or whether it could drive the sexes even further apart.

Does the MMR Jab Cause Autism?
star
9.87
30 votes

#11 - Does the MMR Jab Cause Autism?

Season 2005 - Episode 10 - Aired 5/29/2005

In this documentary, Horizon presents the largest public health issue of recent years that has attracted such heated debate as the question of whether the MMR vaccine can cause autism. The MMR jab combines three childhood vaccines, against measles, mumps and rubella, into one injection, which is first given to children at around 12-18 months. Horizon presents new, exclusive evidence about the MMR jab.

Homeopathy: The Test
star
9.74
31 votes

#12 - Homeopathy: The Test

Season 2002 - Episode 16 - Aired 11/26/2002

Homoeopathy was pioneered over 200 years ago. Practitioners and patients are convinced it has the power to heal. Today, some of the most famous and influential people in the world, including pop stars, politicians, footballers and even Prince Charles, all use homoeopathic remedies. Yet according to traditional science, they are wasting their money. Sceptic James Randi is so convinced that homoeopathy will not work, that he has offered $1m to anyone who can provide convincing evidence of its effects. For the first time in the programme's history, Horizon conducts its own scientific experiment, to try and win his money. If they succeed, they will not only be $1m richer - they will also force scientists to rethink some of their fundamental beliefs. The basic principle of homoeopathy is that like cures like: that an ailment can be cured by small quantities of substances which produce the same symptoms. For example, it is believed that onions, which produce streaming, itchy eyes, can be used to relieve the symptoms of hay fever.

Strange Signals from Outer Space!
star
9.50
56 votes

#13 - Strange Signals from Outer Space!

Season 2017 - Episode 5 - Aired 5/16/2017

Horizon investigates claims of signals from extra terrestrials. In 2006, Duncan Lorimer and Maura McLaughlin discovered a enigmatic signal from space, known as a fast radio burst. It was a pulse of radiation so bright, it didn't appear to be caused by any known object in the universe. Explanations ranged from colliding neutron stars to communication signals from an alien civilisation. Scientists have been searching the cosmos for strange signals like the 'Lorimer Burst' for more than 50 years, ever since astronomer Frank Drake convened a secretive meeting of a group of scientists calling themselves the 'Order of the Dolphin'. The film ends with scientists latest search for extra-terrestial intelligence - Horizon obtained exclusive access to film researchers at the Green Bank Telescope searching for radio signals from 'Tabby's Star' - a star so mysterious some scientists believe might be surrounded by a Dyson Sphere - a vast energy collector built by advanced aliens.

Einstein's Unfinished Symphony
star
9.46
59 votes

#14 - Einstein's Unfinished Symphony

Season 2005 - Episode 2 - Aired 1/20/2005

The unpredictable results of the Theory of Relativity. Horizon brings you the second part of a two-part series on Albert Einsten. In the summer of 1939 Albert Einstein was on holiday in a small resort town on the tip of Long Island. His peaceful summer, however, was about to be shattered by a visit from an old friend and colleague from his years in Berlin. The visitor was the physicist Leo Szilard. He had come to tell Einstein that he feared the Nazis could soon be in possession of a terrible new weapon and that something had to be done.

How Big Is the Universe?
star
9.20
140 votes

#15 - How Big Is the Universe?

Season 2012 - Episode 12 - Aired 8/27/2012

Cosmologists talk about their project to create a map of everything in existence, and also reveal that their research has some highly unexpected results, creating a picture stranger than anything they had ever imagined.

Directors: Kenny Scott
Watch Now:Amazon
What is Reality?
star
9.10
224 votes

#16 - What is Reality?

Season 2011 - Episode 2 - Aired 1/17/2011

There is a strange and mysterious world that surrounds us, a world largely hidden from our senses. The quest to explain the true nature of reality is one of the great scientific detective stories. Clues have been pieced together from deep within the atom, from the event horizon of black holes, and from the far reaches of the cosmos. It may be that that we are part of a cosmic hologram, projected from the edge of the universe. Or that we exist in an infinity of parallel worlds. Your reality may never look quite the same again.

Watch Now:Amazon
Do You Know What Time It Is?
star
9.00
28 votes

#17 - Do You Know What Time It Is?

Season 2008 - Episode 15 - Aired 12/2/2008

Particle physicist Professor Brian Cox asks, 'What time is it?' It's a simple question and it sounds like it has a simple answer. But do we really know what it is that we're asking? Brian visits the ancient Mayan pyramids in Mexico where the Maya built temples to time. He finds out that a day is never 24 hours and meets Earth's very own Director of Time. He journeys to the beginning of time, and goes beyond within the realms of string theory, and explores the very limit of time. He discovers that we not only travel through time at the speed of light, but the experience we feel as the passing of time could be an illusion.

Watch Now:Amazon
Now the Chips Are Down
star
9.00
28 votes

#18 - Now the Chips Are Down

Season 1978 - Episode 9 - Aired 3/31/1978

About the applications and implications for the future, particularly the effects on the labour market, of microprocessors.

Einstein's Equation of Life and Death
star
9.00
28 votes

#19 - Einstein's Equation of Life and Death

Season 2005 - Episode 3 - Aired 1/27/2005

The story of Einstein's most famous equation E=mc² – its role in the creation of the atom bomb and our understanding of the beginnings of the Universe. Horizon brings you the second part of a two-part series on Albert Einsten. In the summer of 1939 Albert Einstein was on holiday in a small resort town on the tip of Long Island. His peaceful summer, however, was about to be shattered by a visit from an old friend and colleague from his years in Berlin. The visitor was the physicist Leo Szilard. He had come to tell Einstein that he feared the Nazis could soon be in possession of a terrible new weapon and that something had to be done.

Malaria: Defeating the Curse
star
9.00
28 votes

#20 - Malaria: Defeating the Curse

Season 2005 - Episode 11 - Aired 6/5/2005

This is the story by Horizon of an epic battle between science and nature. It's a battle to destroy a disease that is one of the biggest killers on the planet: malaria.

The Ghost in Your Genes
star
9.00
28 votes

#21 - The Ghost in Your Genes

Season 2005 - Episode 20 - Aired 12/15/2005

The controversial science of epigenetics suggests you may inherit a lot more than you imagine from your forebears. The scientists who believe your genes are shaped in part by your ancestors' life experiences.

How Violent Are You?
star
9.00
28 votes

#22 - How Violent Are You?

Season 2009 - Episode 11 - Aired 5/12/2009

What makes ordinary people commit extreme acts of violence? Michael Portillo investigates the dark side of human nature, and discovers what it is like to inflict pain.

Project Poltergeist
star
9.00
28 votes

#23 - Project Poltergeist

Season 2004 - Episode 9 - Aired 3/18/2004

This is the story of two genuine scientific heroes. For forty years, John Bahcall and Ray Davis were engaged in a single extraordinary experiment - to find out why the Sun shines. In the end they would triumph. Davis would win the Nobel Prize and, thanks to their work, a whole new theory about how the universe is put together may have to be created. At the heart of this story is a tiny, utterly mysterious thing called a neutrino. Trillions of them pass through your body every second, touching nothing, leaving no trace. Yet neutrinos are one of a handful of fundamental particles in the universe, essential to every atom in existence and clues to what makes the Sun work. But their ghost-like quality made trapping and understanding them immensely difficult. What then followed was a bizarre series of experiments. They led from a vat containing 600 tons of cleaning fluid, to a vast cavern in a Japanese mountain, to a hole in the ground in Canada two kilometres deep. What they would reveal would stun the world of science. It seems that neutrinos may be our parents. They may be the reason why everything, including us, exists.

Dr Money and the Boy with No Penis
star
9.00
28 votes

#24 - Dr Money and the Boy with No Penis

Season 2004 - Episode 18 - Aired 11/4/2004

On 22 August 1965 Janet Reimer was granted her dearest wish: she gave birth to twins. The two boys, Brian and Bruce, were healthy babies, but they would lead tragic lives, blighted by one scientist's radical theory. When they were seven months old, the boys, who lived in Winnipeg, Canada, were sent to the local hospital for a routine circumcision. Unfortunately the doctor in charge of the procedure was using electrical equipment, which malfunctioned several times. On the last trial, Bruce's entire penis was burnt off. Brian was not operated on. The family were distraught. In the Sixties plastic surgery was not an option: even today it is not recommended that new-borns undergo penis reconstruction operations. It wasn't until several months later that Janet and her husband, Ron, saw a television programme that gave them some hope. Dr John Money, a highly renowned sexologist, featured in a debate about sex change operations on transsexuals. He had brought a transsexual with him who was convincingly feminine looking. Perhaps, thought Janet Reimer, this was the solution - they could turn their baby son into a daughter. She wrote to Dr Money immediately. He responded swiftly and invited them to come and visit him in Baltimore, Maryland. Dr Money is a highly intelligent, well respected, charismatic individual. He suggested to the Reimers that they bring their son up as a girl. Thus, when Bruce was 18 months old, he was castrated and a rudimentary vulva was created for him. The family now called him Brenda and tried to treat him like a little girl. Dr Money was the answer to the Reimers' prayers, but they were the answer to his too. He had studied people known then as hermaphrodites, now referred to as intersex, who are physically both male and female. As it was surgically easier to turn these people into females, this was standard practice. Dr Money had used case studies of hermaphrodites to show that there was a window of opportunity for surgery - a 'gen

The Big Chill
star
9.00
56 votes

#25 - The Big Chill

Season 2003 - Episode 14 - Aired 11/13/2003

Remember that long, hot summer? You might never see its like again. And all that talk of global warming? Forget it. This season's first Horizon reveals that a growing number of experts fear Britain could be heading for a climate like Alaska. Our ports could be frozen over. Ice storms could ravage the country, and London could see snow lying for weeks on end. It would be the biggest change in the British way of life since the last Ice Age. The first signs that such a disaster could happen came from deep within the ice sheet of Greenland. Scientists discovered that the Earth's past was littered with sudden, drastic drops in temperature. The big question was: could it ever happen again? Clues came from tiny shells at the bottom of the Atlantic; a huge glacier on the move in Arctic and some alarming discoveries in the far north of Russia. In the end there came the terrifying revelation: the Gulf Stream, that vast current of water that keeps us warm, could be cut off. According to one scientist, there is a one in two chance it will happen in the next century. Others say a climatic catastrophe could be heading our way in just twenty years time.

Watch Now:Amazon

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