The eminent theoretical physicist-cosmologist hosts “Genius by Stephen Hawking,” a new PBS series (premiering Wednesday, May 18, at 9 p.m.) in which he’ll try to prove that ordinary people are able to think like the greatest scientific minds in history. Here are five other TV series in which Hawking has appeared (perhaps not as high-minded as this one):
STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION In a 1993 episode, he played a holographic simulation of himself.
THE SIMPSONS An animated version of Hawking has appeared in several episodes, starting with “They Saved Lisa’s Brain” (1999), in which Lisa joins the local Springfield chapter of Mensa.
FUTURAMA An animated version appeared in three episodes of Matt Groening’s other series, notably “Anthology of Interest I” (2000). Hawking was a member of the Vice Presidential Action Rangers, guardians of the space-time continuum (the group also included Al Gore and “Star Trek” actress Nichelle Nichols).
THE BIG BANG THEORY A hero (natch) to the show’s nerdy protagonists, Hawking has been on TV’s highest-rated comedy several times. He was most recently seen in February on the show’s 200th episode, wishing Sheldon (Jim Parsons) a happy birthday via Skype.
MASTERS OF SCIENCE FICTION He hosted the 2007 ABC anthology series, which featured adaptations of science-fiction stories by well-known authors into one-hour episodes.