Just how the world found out that energy equals mass plus the speed of light squared is dramatized by Nova with more or less a straight face, even as it sometimes suggests a very old episode of You Are There. Aidan McArdle plays the young Albert Einstein stuck in a Swiss patent office in 1905. Shirley Henderson plays his first wife, Mileva Maric, whom he treated shamefully. Various physicists talk their excitable heads off. John Lithgow scoots us along with a minimum of heavy breathing and a maximum of aplomb.
Einstein's Big Idea
Tuesday, October 11, 8 P.M., Channel 13