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Season 3 1976

  • 1976-01-05T03:00:00+01:00 on PBS
  • 60 mins
  • 20 hours, 0 mins
  • United States
  • English
  • Documentary

Seen in more than 100 countries, NOVA is the most watched science television series in the world and the most watched documentary series on PBS. It is also one of television's most acclaimed series, having won every major television award, most of them many times over.


20 episodes

3x01 Predictable Disaster

  • Season Premiere

    1976-01-05T03:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

It is now possible to predict earthquakes. At least two successful predictions have already been made in the United States; and the NOVA crew was present and filming while a third prediction was being formulated. NOVA looks at why earthquakes occur, how predictions are made, the threat they pose to cities at risk, and examines the advantages and disadvantages of making an earthquake a predictable disaster.

3x02 Joey

  • 1976-01-12T03:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

NOVA takes viewers into the world of Joey Deacon, 54 years old and a spastic since birth. Joey has lived most of his life in institutions, unable to communicate with anyone until he met Ernie Roberts. The docudrama recreates Joey's story, with remarkable performances by two spastic actors portraying him as a boy and as a young man. Joey and Ernie themselves appear in the final sequences.

3x03 Meditation and the Mind

  • 1976-01-19T03:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

What do singer Peggy Lee, New York Jets Quarterback Joe Namath and Congressman Richard Nolas have in common? They all practice a ritual called TM—Transcendental Meditation. NOVA examines the recent phenomenal success of the TM movement in America.

3x04 The Planets

  • 1976-01-26T03:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

The last fourteen years have been a revolution in our understanding of our place in the stars, the Solar System. Beginning in 1961 with a Russian spacecraft flying to Venus, quickening with the Apollo manned missions to the Moon, it came of age in the Spring of 1974, when there were six spacecrafts traveling simultaneously from the Earth to the planets. NOVA looks at the era of manned and unmanned exploration of the Solar System.

3x05 A Desert Place

  • 1976-02-02T03:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

NOVA explores the mysterious ecosystem of the desert: a snowstorm; a lashing summer monsoon; and the emergence—in a pool created only minutes before—of a pair of adult spadefoot toads. Toads who had been waiting beneath the sand for a year for this brief and fortuitous moment to procreate the next generation...

3x06 A Small Imperfection

  • 1976-02-09T03:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

Every year, some 5,000 babies are born in the US with spina bifida, a congenital abnormality of the central nervous system. NOVA explores the mystery of what causes spina bifida and raises the issues of whether heroic measures should be taken to preserve the life of severely malformed babies.

3x07 Ninety Degrees Below

  • 1976-02-16T03:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

There's one place on earth where no one will ever catch a cold. And the freezing waters are so bitter there that a fish has been discovered to have developed its own anti-freeze. NOVA explores Antarctica—the coldest desert in the world.

3x08 The Race for the Double Helix

  • 1976-03-08T03:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

Author Isaac Asimov joins NOVA in the retelling of the remarkable story of the discovery of the structure of DNA. James Watson and his ex-colleague Francis Crick exchange memories of the events which led to their winning the race for the structure of the gene.

3x09 The Renewable Tree

  • 1976-03-08T03:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

Each Sunday edition of the New York Times consumes 153 acres of trees. The paper packs, napkins, paper cups and packing used by McDonald's gobble up 315 square miles of trees every day. NOVA asks if, at this rate, trees can remain a renewable resource.

3x10 The Williamsburgh File

  • 1976-03-15T03:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

NOVA joins chief archaeologist, Ivor Noel Hume, of Colonial Williamsburg, VA, for a fascinating glimpse of the lifestyles of the founders of this country, complete with detailed reconstructions of houses, stores, workshops, gardens, taverns and palaces.

3x11 The Overworked Miracle

  • 1976-03-22T03:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

Today we take antibiotics for granted, and by doing so are steadily eroding their medical value. NOVA examines the problem of resistance to antibiotics in the bacteria they are designed to kill.

3x12 The Transplant Experiment

  • 1976-04-12T03:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

Dr. Norman Shumway of Stanford University has performed more heart transplants than any other heart surgeon. NOVA explores those extraordinary days in 1968-69 when it appeared that everyone with a scalpel was doing heart transplants, and survival of patients was measured in days.

3x13 The Underground Movement

  • 1976-04-19T03:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

NOVA explores life underground, from foxes and badgers through moles and worms down to the myriad of micro-organisms that make soil the most complex substrate for life on earth. Included in the film is extraordinary footage of a mole burrowing and of roots growing.

3x14 Hunters of the Seal

  • 1976-05-03T02:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

NOVA shows the Netsilik eskimoes of Pelly Bay and their traditional way of life and what happens when Western civilization is imposed upon them.

3x15 Benjamin

  • 1976-05-10T02:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

Benjamin is a healthy, normal baby, whom we meet at birth and whose first year of life provides the backbone of this revealing NOVA about early child development.

3x16 The Women Rebel

  • 1976-05-24T02:00:00+01:00 — 60 mins

Margaret Sanger was responsible almost single-handedly for changing the whole attitude of the male-dominated medical profession towards "women's issues" and, above all, for gaining social and political acceptance for the concept of birth control. This NOVA docudrama reconstructs her life, told as flashbacks interspersed throughout an interview. Piper Laurie stars as Margaret Sanger.

3x17 Death of a Disease

  • 1976-06-07T03:00:00+02:00 — 60 mins

As late as 1967, smallpox struck as many as 15 million people in 43 countries and killed an estimated two or three million. Experts now believe that the disease is on the verge of extinction. NOVA looks at the recent success of the World Health Organization's program to eradicate this disease, considered a triumph of western-styled medicine.

3x18 Inside the Shark

  • 1976-06-14T03:00:00+02:00 — 60 mins

The "Jaws" phenomenon has given sharks a bad name. But is the shark really such a barbarian? NOVA looks at the lifestyle of this remarkable survivor from the days when dinosaurs ruled the earth.

3x19 The Genetic Chance

  • 1976-06-21T03:00:00+02:00 — 60 mins

Recent scientific developments have made it possible to detect a wide variety of defects in unborn babies. NOVA focuses on the ethical question that must be considered: What defines a defect? Should defective babies be aborted, or should they be allowed to live?

3x20 The Case of the Bermuda Triangle

  • 1976-06-28T03:00:00+02:00 — 60 mins

Since 1945, hundreds of ships and planes and thousands of people have mysteriously disappeared in an area of the Atlantic Ocean off of Florida, known as the Bermuda Triangle. NOVA penetrates the mystery of the terrifying Bermuda Triangle.