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Monday Music Video: An Epic Rap Battle Between Newton and Nye!

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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Today on YouTube we see a showdown between two science greats, with an additional big scicomm name included for good measure!

I’ve written about Epic Rap Battles of History previously about the immensely entertaining Einstein vs. Stephen Hawking Rap Battle

Epic Rap Battles of History is the creative brainchild of Epic Lloyd and Nice Peter on Youtube. They have produced three seasons of Epic Rap Battles featuring put downs between similar yet disparate historical and modern figures. For instance, authors Shakespeare and Dr. Seuss get in a verbal knock-down while musicians Beethoven and Bieber spend time trading barbs about whose music gets more women swooning. Jobs and Gates have rap battled as have Obama and Romney. No one is safe!

Today we see American scientist Bill Nye (played by Nice Peter), battling English physicist Sir Isaac Newton (played by Weird Al Yankovic). At the second half of the battle American astrophysicist and COSMOS star Neil deGrasse Tyson (played by Tay Zonday) adds his two cents!

As fun as it is to watch this,  the folks at ERB want to take this to the next level. All of us science fans can join in a conversation about this video!

If you can, take 10-15min out of your day to join in on the conversation by tweeting at @ERBofHistory using the hashtag #NewtonVSNye today or tomorrow. Some ideas on how you can join in include:

  • Tweeting in support of one scientist or the other, expressing your opinion over who won the battle – linking to the video
  • Fact checking the lyrics/insults in the video
  • Tweeting at @ERBofHistory or @YouTube in science puns or rhymes
  • Add credibility to the debate through scientific facts

Joining in means you can take part in an internet moment that celebrates science culture, not to mention you might receive a retweet or response from @YouTube, @ERBofHistory @NicePeter, and @EpicLLOYD .



How did they snag Weird Al to be Newton? Learn more in this behind the scenes video!


Joanne Manaster About the Author: Joanne Manaster is a university level cell and molecular biology lecturer with an insatiable passion for science outreach to all ages. Enjoy her quirky videos at, on twitter @sciencegoddess and on her Facebook page at JoanneLovesScience Follow on Twitter @sciencegoddess.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

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  1. 1. gsherman83 9:39 pm 06/16/2014

    Awesome episode! Only Dr. Tyson is played by Chali 2na from Jurassic 5.

    Link to this
  2. 2. Cosmic 4:13 pm 06/17/2014

    Sorry to the living but crazy Newton is still my favorite.

    Link to this
  3. 3. DrProximo 2:03 am 06/18/2014

    um, no. while Tay Zonday did have a silent role as Sammy Davis Jr in Freddie Mercury vs Frank Sinatra, he had nothing to do with this battle. NDT was portrayed by Chali 2na (sounds like “Charlie Tuna” with a mild speech impediment) from the legendary hip-hop group Jurassic 5. not even sure how you made this mistake, Chali’s name is in the video during the “end plate”, and in the “about” section on the YouTube page. I’d expect a little more accuracy from someone writing for SA, but I guess when it comes to fun little YouTube clips, fact-checking is optional and nearly inexplicable assumptions are sufficient.

    Link to this

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