Human Senses (2003)
Videos in this documentary
|1||Part 1: Smell and Taste||Play Video|
|2||Part 2: Hearing and Balance||Play Video|
|3||Part 3: Touch and Vision||Play Video|
This sensory romp around the globe goes in search of the biological roots of our senses to uncover the reasons why particular sights, sounds, smells and tastes have such powerful effects on us. How do we manage to block out intense pain? How does our sense of balance keep working under the most extreme conditions? Live action combined with special effects creates incredible imagery to convey the 'feeling' of how our senses work. As an alarm bell goes off, we 'see' the noise, slowed down thousands of times. Ripples of sound roll towards us; we spin around and follow a sound wave as it travels into the dark outer ear canal.
The senses are our guide to the world, keeping us out of danger and directing us to pleasure. But how sensitive and accurate are they? And Just how intense a sensation can we bear? On a global assault course for the senses, our chief volunteer must endure many a sensory extreme - from the foulest smell to the hottest chilli pepper, while other, unsuspecting "volunteers" will unwittingly demonstrate just how easily our senses can be misled. We will also meet the sensory superstar of the animal kingdom, who can help to explain the biological roots of our own senses.
Are your eyes being tricked by your brain? Do you know what a supertaster is? Or how to avoid travel sickness? Put your senses to the test in our Senses Challenge.
Discover why food tastes bland if you can't smell.
The light hearted but revealing series explores, sense by sense, how they function and why we need them. Then delves so deep... you'll never hear, taste, touch, smell, stand, or see the same way again.
 Smell and Taste
In the first programme of the series Nigel Marven goes in search of the most disgusting , the most attractive smells and sets out to discover the biological reasons why humans eat such a diverse range of foods, from rotten raw ducks eggs to a sweaty blue cheese. At a chilli eating contest, he pushes his taste buds to the limit.
 Hearing and Balance
Sound can have a very powerful effect on how we feel about the world and Nigel Marven is on a quest to track down the sounds which have the most powerful emotional effects on us.Balance is our true sixth sense - it enables us to sense how our bodies are moving around in the world and keep us upright. There are only two kinds of animal that spend their whole lives performing the tricky balancing act of walking on two legs – humans and some flightless birds, like ostriches.
 Touch and Vision
Humans are very sensitive to touch, but different parts of our body have different sensitivities. Nigel demonstrates that when it comes to our sense of touch, humans are similar to elephants.Nigel Marven sets out to discover why we are excellent at seeing some things, but sometimes miss what's right in front of our eyes.