OUT WITH A BANG, E1: It’s Going To Get Bad

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BING HEINE – VAN FOSSEN: In this podcast, we discuss the end of the world and humanity itself. As a trigger warning, know that the topics of death, destruction and the apocalypse will ensue. If this makes you uncomfortable, this podcast may not be for you.




MARA HANKINS: Hello and welcome to Out With a Bang, a podcast about the end of the world. I’m your host, Mara Hankins, here with your other hosts, Bing Heine – Van Fossen and Diya Johny. The inspiration behind this podcast was just a fun idea we came up with one day in 5th period. Still, I think the fact that this topic jumped into our minds while brainstorming is very indicative.

HVF: One-hundred percent.

DIYA JOHNY: There’s just a lot of uncertainty these days. As optimistic as we all want to be, it’s human nature to jump to worst-case scenarios. 

HVF: Right and that is a fascinating piece of psychology. The fixation on doomsday is actually an evolutionary behavior. But more on that another time.

HANKINS: We wanted to know students’ thoughts on the end of the world. What will be the cause of the apocalypse? Why? And what’s influenced them to think that way? We prompted them with examples of alien invasions, and robot takeovers, and the entire Universe suddenly collapsing. But here’s what they all said.

HANKINS: What does the apocalypse look like to you or how do you think the world could end?

ELLA BROMS: Ella Broms, I’m in 9th grade, a freshman. I think apocalypse is definitely a very real scenario. Hopefully not from COVID. But I guess a lot of fire, everything being destroyed, people having to go undercover, I don’t know, it’s kind of scary. Like if there’s bunkers and everyone has to hide.

ANIKA RAVILLA: Anika Ravilla, grade 9. Okay practically, okay so it’s a fact that the sun’s going to come blasting into us in like a couple of million years, right, so I feel like practically we as humans will end it for ourselves first of all.

HANKINS: So before that happens?

RAVILLA: Yeah like I say give us 300 years. No, not even 300, 200 years. And yeah no, it’s going to get bad.

CASEY HIRSCH: If it was gonna end anytime soon, it would be some kind of nuclear fallout or we’re just going to destroy the planet to the point where we can’t, where there’s no more resources for us. It will be done by ourselves.

HANKINS: Echoing 11th grader Casey Hirsch, many think the apocalypse will involve human conflict.

JOCELYN JENSEN: Probably the government falling apart and people rioting and just destruction.

HVF: Do you think about this as warfare amongst different governments orwarfare amongst your own government?

JENSEN: Warfare amongst our own government.

GARRETT SLOAN: I think the world is going to end through one country invading another and starting a nuclear warfare and the nuclear winner is just gonna happen and take out the whole entire human race.

HANKINS: Please tell us your name, first and last, and your grade.

LAURA AGUIAR: So my name is Laura Aguiar and I’m a senior. I feel like it would be like in a war. Everything would be very, I don’t know, cloudy, and just chaotic.

MARINA CHEKLOBOVA: I am Marina Cheklobova, I’m in 10th grade. I think something like nuclear warfare is definitely also a possibility for the end of the world and I feel like that one is the most likely to end the world the soonest.

HANKINS: Marina also talked to us about climate change, a particularly common concern of students.

CHEKLOBOVA: Something as a result of climate change like it heats up too much at the north and south pole or it gets really cold in the, where the equator is.

JANA BEHAVAR: My name is Jana Behavar and I’m in ninth grade. It’s just so real to me and something that, we’re just not, I feel like it’s one of the most serious problems in our world right now and I think that’s what’s going to lead us to the end.

MAGGIE RUAN: Maggie Ruan, 9th grade. I think the world a hundred percent is going to end because of overpopulation and overconsumption and as people make too many babies, too many resources are going to be used up, there’s going to be no land for creating more resources and everyone is going to die from starvation and yeah.

HANKINS: There’s also the possibility of another pandemic. 

CHEKLOBOVA: Something like COVID could definitely wipe out the human population at least like a disease that spreads rapidly because obviously, we’re not doing a great job at controlling COVID at the moment.

HANKINS: Others chimed in.

YANA SEEDHAR: I think we’ve already seen a little bit of it already with the pandemic. I think disease is probably the most likely cause of the end of the human race. Considering, you know right now, we’re already not very good at preventing it or preventing the spread of it.

OLIVER GONZALEZ: Probably a virus. Definitely a virus

ABIGAIL CHADWICK: I feel like the world could definitely end due to the lack of resources and brains that people have.

JOHNY: So the big three, as we’re calling it, are war or human conflict, climate change and another pandemic. That’s what students came up with when asked on the spot. 

HANKINS: We got a good amount of responses. Some people gave us a lot in their interviews…

GRANT HILL: I’m Grant Hill and I’m in 9th grade.

HANKINS: How do you think the world is going to end?

HILL: Communism.

HANKINS: Would you like to elaborate on that?


HVF: Others were highly imaginative. 

TATE CREASON: My name is Tate Creason and I am in 9th grade. We’re going to die from an insane virus, maybe called COVID. No, I’m joking. I think it’s going to be- I don’t think it’s going to be alien invasion, I think it’s just our world’s going to fall apart and just going to start cracking and then we’re all just going to die. Also maybe all of our animals will just like all attack us and betray us and all of the animals in the world will just like kill us all and they will end up ruling the world. I would love it.

LILY SADAHIRO: Okay, so basically, Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg are going to form into one human called Melon and they’re going to design an AI system and make a cult by controlling them with the AI system and some people are going to rebel against the cult and make a humongous bomb. And they’re like, “we can’t live like this anymore,” so they’ll put the bomb in the center of the Earth and blow up the Earth.

ANDREA P: Probably, like, dinosaurs coming back. That would be funny. I really love dinosaurs and that makes me think about dinosaurs coming back all the time because I would kill to see one.

NICOLE SYKU: Oh my gosh, I’ve never actually thought of that. I don’t know, the first thing that I could think of if the world was ending it would just like explode like a big ball and would just like explode and just like break into like billions of pieces.

RAVALI VOLLURUPALI: My name is Ravali Vollurpali. I am a freshman. I think that magical unicorns and centaurs and pegasuses will come from under the ground, miraculously.

HVF: So are they aliens or have they always been here?

VOLLURUPALI: They’re like, the size of an army. Yeah, so then they get really angry and then they’re like, “yo, we should attack these people,” and so then, they just start shooting with their really futuristic blasty things.

HANKINS: That was interesting. 

HVF: An unexpected answer to say the least.

HANKINS: So I have to ask, what does the end of the world look like to you? Diya?

JOHNY: The end of the world would probably be something along the lines of political conflict or climate change as a lot of people have said because I feel like with the way our world’s going, the direction that it’s in, we might not be able to come back from climate change. While the human race might be wiped out, other species might still be living. 

HANKINS: And Bing?

HVF: I’d say the end of the world, we’re going to destroy ourselves. I’d say it’s some sort of war. As we can already see just starting off 2022, Russia might invade Ukraine and so we really don’t just know what could happen with that and knowing how much nuclear power there is currently in the world is really a touchy subject. 

HANKINS: Yeah, there’s just so many imaginative and crazy, interesting ways that you might see more in movies, but this is real life and climate change, the stuff that you guys have already mentioned, those are the real world-enders in my opinion.  


HANKINS: In this episode, we interviewed students of all grade levels to get their opinions on extinction-level events. Don’t miss the next few episodes where we get the perspective of teachers. Older and wiser, they might have a different take based on their educational careers. This has been Mara Hankins, Bing Heine – Van Fossen and Diya Johny, for the Talon, Out with a Bang. Thank you for listening.