Science Night 12/16

This week, Science Night takes an eclectic look at some of the more mysterious corners of life. First, Nature examines the behavior of the honey badger – an animal with antics so infamous, it became a meme. Then, NOVA probes the ancient city of the Catacombs underneath Rome, and finds new insights into the everyday lives of the ancient Roman people.

Nature Honey Badgers: Masters of Mayhem at 7 p.m.

“Honey badger is bad ass.” Those words and corresponding video became a YouTube sensation with 51 million hits. This relentless little creature is renowned for its ability to confront grown lions, castrate charging buffalo, and shrug off the toxic defenses of stinging bees, scorpions, and snakes. Little is known about its behavior in the wild or why it is so aggressive.

NOVA Roman Catacomb Mystery at 8 p.m.

Beneath the streets of Rome lies an ancient city of the dead known as the Catacombs – a labyrinth of tunnels, hundreds of miles long, lined with tombs. Now, NOVA goes inside a previously-unknown complex within the tunnel system: a mysterious mass grave, locked away for nearly 2000 years. NOVA’s forensic investigation opens up fascinating new insights into the daily life and health of Roman citizens at the heyday of its mighty empire.