The Best Episodes of Through the Wormhole

Is There a God Particle?

#1 - Is There a God Particle? 8.26

Season 4 - Episode 1

Scientists explore the effects of the Higgs Boson discovery, which validates the Standard Model in particle physics and solidifies the understanding of subatomic particles; highlights include an in-depth discussion of the Higgs field and mass.

What Are We Really Made of?

#2 - What Are We Really Made of? 8.23

Season 1 - Episode 7

Our understanding of the universe and the nature of reality itself has drastically changed over the last 100 years, and it's on the verge of another seismic shift. In a 17-mile-long tunnel buried 570 feet beneath the Franco-Swiss border, the world's largest and most powerful atom smasher, the Large Hadron Collider, is powering up. Its goal is nothing less than recreating the first instants of creation, when the universe was unimaginably hot and long-extinct forms of matter sizzled and cooled into stars, planets, and ultimately, us. These incredibly small and exotic particles hold the keys to the greatest mysteries of the universe. What we find could validate our long-held theories about how the world works and what we are made of. Or, all of our notions about the essence of what is real will fall apart.

Directors: Geoffrey Sharp
Will We Survive First Contact?

#3 - Will We Survive First Contact? 8.17

Season 3 - Episode 1

Mankind longs for proof that we are not alone in the universe, but the moment of first contact will certainly mean the end of the world as we know it. Whether that is a bad thing for humanity or the start of a great future is uncertain.

Does Time Really Exist?

#4 - Does Time Really Exist? 8.16

Season 2 - Episode 3

It is a question that has vexed philosophers and scientists for centuries; 'What is Time?' Exactly how is our past, present, and future connected by that arrow of cause and effect that we call Time? Is time simply another dimension, just like the dimensions of space we know? Can you run time backwards just as easily as it runs forward, just as left-to-right can swap for right-to-left? If other universes exist, then what is time like in them: could their Time be different from ours? And we'll probe the biggest question about time: Is our future determined? Do we exercise free will? Or, is time merely a dream?

Can We Outlive the Sun?

#5 - Can We Outlive the Sun? 8.14

Season 4 - Episode 3

We are all at the mercy of the Sun. Its glowing disc sustains nearly all life on Earth. But the Sun also holds a dark secret: someday, our aging, expanding star will bathe the Earth in a fiery holocaust. Everything we know will turn to hot, bubbling, plasma.

Can We Live Forever?

#6 - Can We Live Forever? 8.11

Season 2 - Episode 8

Medical advances have doubled human life expectancy in past centuries. But can humans ever beat death altogether? Can we control and fix the errors that build up in our DNA over the years? Can we find a way to replace the chemistry of life with something more durable? This episode wonders into the mystifying definition of 'eternity' as it relates to human lifespan.

Can We Eliminate Evil?

#7 - Can We Eliminate Evil? 8.09

Season 3 - Episode 7

What drives some to torture and kill without remorse? Why do seemingly normal people commit acts of cruelty and violence. Researchers are exploring our inner demons, looking for ways to isolate and neutralize the source of evil in the brain. Is it really possible to change human nature?

Are There Parallel Universes?

#8 - Are There Parallel Universes? 8.09

Season 2 - Episode 10

Most scientists believe that you are not really you, but rather, you all. On the edge of space, buried in a black hole, or right on top of you, there could be an exact copy of yourself living a parallel reality. In those parallel worlds, you may be living your wildest dreams, or your worst nightmares. Finding them is no longer restricted to the realm of science fiction. Recent game-changing theories now suggest that if these worlds exist, intelligent life in these alternative worlds could be trying to send us messages. As scientists further unravel this astounding possibility, a new possibility emerges: the fate of our entire universe may depend on these hidden cosmic twins.

Is Gravity an Illusion?

#9 - Is Gravity an Illusion? 8.08

Season 5 - Episode 7

We feel it every moment of our lives but for physicists, gravity is the longest running unsolved mystery of the universe. Why do all objects that have mass pull on one another? Cutting-edge theories are proposing unexpected answers: Gravity could be another force in disguise, a thermodynamic mirage, or even, a shadow of a hidden holographic universe. If so, the force that holds us to the surface of the earth, and holds the earth in orbit around the sun, may be a trick of the mind. We feel it, but it may not be real. Is Gravity an Illusion?

Are Robots the Future of Human Evolution?

#10 - Are Robots the Future of Human Evolution? 8.06

Season 4 - Episode 7

We are in the midst of a revolution so insidious we can't even see it. From our telephones to our vacuum cleaners to our cars, we have robots that live and work beside us. And now we're designing them to think for themselves, giving them the power to learn to move on their own.

Is There a Superior Race?

#11 - Is There a Superior Race? 8.06

Season 3 - Episode 2

How different are the races? Is there even such a thing as race? Could technology create a superior race? The answer may tell us where humanity is headed, what our descendants will look like and how they will think.

What Makes Us Who We Are?

#12 - What Makes Us Who We Are? 8.06

Season 3 - Episode 4

What is it that makes you you? Scientists are searching the brain for the core of who we are - some would call it the soul, others, our personal identity. How do we become who we are?

Did We Invent God?

#13 - Did We Invent God? 8.04

Season 3 - Episode 10

Our belief in a God above explains all we can't understand. Where do religious beliefs come from? Some experts believe God may exist only in our brain, that we are wired to worship the supernatural and that faith in a higher power gives us an evolutionary advantage. Is it possible that God is really just a neurological accident? And does that make Him any less real? Did God invent humanity, or did humanity invent God?

What is Nothing?

#14 - What is Nothing? 8.03

Season 3 - Episode 5

Is empty space really empty? Scientists regard understanding the true nature of empty space may explain where the universe came from, whether it is fated to expand into oblivion or whether it will undergo another dramatic transformation that could destroy everything we know.

How Does the Universe Work?

#15 - How Does the Universe Work? 8.00

Season 2 - Episode 6

Since the ancient Greeks first speculated that everything they observed in reality was the result of the interaction of tiny particles they called atoms, great thinkers have tried to find a single mathematical formula that governs and explains the workings of the entire universe. So far, though, even minds as brilliant as physicists Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking have been unable to come up with that single grand equation of everything, also known as the theory of everything, or the final theory. Nevertheless, they continue to try, because without that final piece of the puzzle that is reality, the sum total of what we know falls a bit short of making sense.

Is There a Shadow Universe?

#16 - Is There a Shadow Universe? 8.00

Season 5 - Episode 9

When we look up into the sky it appears we live in a universe that is filled with light. But scientists are now certain there is far more matter in the dark portions of our universe that we can’t see or touch. There’s something hiding in the shadows. Cosmologists agree that "dark matter" has helped shape our Universe, but now they need to figure out what dark matter is. What’s going on in this hidden world? Could it have formed its own dark stars, planets, and even life forms? Could this Shadow Universe threaten our world of light?

Is There an Edge to the Universe?

#17 - Is There an Edge to the Universe? 8.00

Season 2 - Episode 2

It is commonly theorized that the universe began with the Big Bang 13.7 billion years ago. But since we can only see as far as light has traveled in that time, we can't actually make out the edge of the universe. Could it be that the universe is infinite? Is there any way to find out what the shape of the universe really is? Can we find the edge, discover what might lie beyond it, and perhaps even discover a universe next to ours?

Can We Travel Faster Than Light?

#18 - Can We Travel Faster Than Light? 7.97

Season 2 - Episode 7

It's called the speed limit of the universe. Einstein blew all of our minds when he worked out the Theory of Relativity, and showed that space and time were malleable substances. He also theorized that we as humans can never travel faster than the speed of light, which leaves the stars and other galaxies almost impossibly out of our reach. But the dreams of Star Wars and Star Trek are not dead. In fact, there could be ways to travel faster than the speed of light - and some of them are already being tested in labs around the world.

Is Reality Real?

#19 - Is Reality Real? 7.97

Season 4 - Episode 8

o we live in the "real world," or is it all in our mind? Our basic assumptions about life and the universe may be false. Is nothing certain? Or is reality real?

Beyond the Darkness

#20 - Beyond the Darkness 7.96

Season 1 - Episode 8

What is the universe made of? If you answered stars, planets, gas and dust, you'd be dead wrong. Thirty years ago, scientists first realized that some unknown dark substance was affecting the way galaxies moved. Today, they think there must be five times as much dark matter as regular matter out there. But they have no idea what it is — only that it's not made of atoms, or any other matter we are familiar with. And Dark Matter is not the only strange substance in the Universe — a newly discovered force, called Dark Energy, seems to be pushing the very fabric of the cosmos apart.

Directors: Geoffrey Sharp
Do We Have Free Will?

#21 - Do We Have Free Will? 7.91

Season 4 - Episode 9

We like to think we are the masters of our fates. But is that really true? What if everything that has happened or will happen in the universe has already been set, from the Big Bang to the Last Gasp, and we are unable to change our inevitable destinies?

The Riddle of Black Holes

#22 - The Riddle of Black Holes 7.91

Season 1 - Episode 2

They are the most powerful objects in the universe. Nothing, not even light, can escape the gravitational pull of a black hole. Astronomers now believe there are billions of them out in the cosmos, swallowing up planets, even entire stars in violent feeding frenzies. New theoretical research into the twisted reality of black holes suggests that three-dimensional space could be an illusion. That reality actually takes place on a two-dimensional hologram at the edge of the universe.

Directors: Geoffrey Sharp
Can We Resurrect the Dead?

#23 - Can We Resurrect the Dead? 7.90

Season 3 - Episode 6

With cloning and genetic engineering, we can bring back extinct animals. But could we also bring back dead humans? Is it possible to keep our brains alive after our bodies have died? Could we rise from the dead in some strange new form? Can we - should we - resurrect the dead?

Is a Zombie Apocalypse Possible?

#24 - Is a Zombie Apocalypse Possible? 7.89

Season 5 - Episode 6

It is a nightmare that has stalked us for centuries: hordes of human beings transformed into mindless, cannibalistic monsters. Could this civilization-ending nightmare become reality? Scientists have discovered pathogens that turn insects into the walking dead. New strains of viruses are attacking humans every day. Mathematicians have calculated the likelihood of surviving a zombie virus outbreak: they’re not hopeful. Now neuroscientists are discovering how easy it is for us to lose conscious control of our bodies. Are we at risk of becoming puppets? If we were in the middle of a zombie apocalypse, would we even know it?

Is There a Sixth Sense?

#25 - Is There a Sixth Sense? 7.89

Season 2 - Episode 5

Can we perceive objects and events beyond the world detected by our five senses? The true limits of our human brain remain a scientific mystery. New studies in neuroscience are showing that our minds can really detect events and objects that our conscious selves know nothing about. Can we predict events in the future? Is there such a thing as a global consciousness? Could physical laws on the cusp of being discovered be at the root of all this?