The Reality Check
Canada's weekly podcast that explores a wide range of controversies and curiosities using science and critical thinking.

Given the troubling sexual harassment and assault allegations in the news involving minors, Darren takes a look at age of consent laws worldwide. Cristina fields a Checker’s question regarding whether election campaign signs have any measurable impact on voter share. Finally, Adam digs into claims that Arabic characters spelling “Allah” are woven into ancient Viking funeral costumes.

Direct download: TRC_475.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 1:29pm EST

Darren digs into Warren Buffett’s challenge where he bet $1 million that a portfolio of hedge funds couldn’t beat the S&P 500 Index fund over a ten year period. So...did it? Cristina and Pat bring you part 2 of a great chat with Pediatric Allergy and Asthma Specialist Dr. Dave Stukus who schools us on the flu shot and answers more of your questions.

Direct download: TRC_474.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 2:36pm EST

Come for the Science, stay for the FUN! On this week’s show, Adam looks at the leading causes of diabetes after a listener calls Darren out on his joke linking sugar to the disease. Cristina and Pat bring you part 1 of a great chat with Pediatric Allergy and Asthma Specialist Dr. Dave Stukus who answers listener’s burning questions. Finally, Cristina and Pat hang with Dr. Ken Milne, host of Skeptic’s Guide to Emergency Medicine, and OB-GYN and master GOOP Debunker, Dr. Jen Gunter of Wielding The Lasso Of Truth.

Direct download: TRC_473.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:12am EST

On this week’s show, Darren wonders: why do filmmakers colour grade moonlight to be blue? Next, Cristina explores Halloween folklore vs Halloween facts.  Lastly, Adam asks: is there a Melania Trump double or doppelganger out there pretending to be her at press events?

Direct download: TRC_472.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 4:35pm EST

On this week’s show, Pat explains an illusion known as the McGurk Effect which demonstrates the interaction between hearing and vision in speech perception. We bring you part two of Darren and Adam’s discussion with author Britt Wray about her book ‘Rise Of The Necrofauna.’ Cristina checks into the clickbait headline ‘you’re more likely to be killed by a vending machine than a shark.’

Direct download: TRC_471.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 2:21am EST

On this week’s show, Pat checks into some of the more prevalent conspiracy theories related to the recent mass shooting in Las Vegas. Next up, the first of a 2 part interview featuring a fascinating conversation with Britt Wray, author of Rise Of The Necrofauna, about bringing extinct species back to life. Lastly, Adam takes a look into the validity of viral videos featuring Enchroma glasses for colour blindness

Direct download: TRC_470.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:09am EST

On this week’s show, Adam looks into an article suggesting that deep neural networks are more accurate than humans at detecting sexual orientation from facial images. Pat gives us another episode of everyone’s favourite mostly guessing game, name that: the world’s largest. Lastly, Darren addresses some commonly believed myths about nuclear weapons.

Direct download: TRC_469.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 1:59pm EST

Aaaaand we’re back! On this week’s show, Pat dives into whether a human could survive being swallowed by a whale. Cristina takes a serious look at dangerous claims made by clinics popping up promoting thermography for breast cancer screening. Finally, Adam schools us on whether a history researcher has cracked the code of The Voynich Manuscript.

Direct download: TRC_468.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 9:05am EST

This week Cristina tells us about a nonprofit called Truth in Advertising who have conducted an investigation into Gwyneth Paltrow’s site, Goop. Darren asks: is it better to boil hot water or cold water? Adam wonders why Cuba has so many classic cars.

Direct download: TRC_467.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 2:58pm EST

This week, Darren looks into the science of late summer and why we get that sudden feeling that summer is gone. Honorary TRC’er and resident machine learning expert Dallas Card joins the Toronto crew in-studio to dissect whether algorithms can be biased. Finally, after hearing a female adaptation of Lord of the Flies is in the works, Adam asks whether the movie’s concept is even plausible. PS. If you ‘get’ this week’s photo, you win the internet.

Direct download: TRC_466.mp3
Category: -- posted at: 11:43am EST