The Starting 5: Doomsday Clock, Boeing 777X, Sundance, Stormy Weather, 'Star Trek: Picard'

Sign up to get The Starting 5 dropped into your inbox first thing every morning

The Doomsday Clock actually has nothing to do with the ongoing Donald Trump impeachment hearings, but they sure feel related. And apocalyptic weather isn't helping. Luckily, the always optimistic Star Trek universe is here to help.

Here's what you need to know today:

Doomsday Countdown

At 10am EST, we will know just how close we are to annihilation. The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists will livestream its "Doomsday Clock" time announcement, with the metaphor of midnight representing the self-destruction of humanity due to the careless use of our own technologies. The event held at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., will be moderated by Jerry Brown (former Governor of California), Mary Robinson (former President of Ireland) and Ban Ki-moon (former UN Secretary-General), among others. In 2019, our two greatest threats were nuclear weapons and climate change. The clock currently stands at two minutes to midnight. We'll soon find out if we're even closer to disaster.

Doomsday Clock
Doomsday clock showing two minutes until "midnight" Win McNamee/Staff/Getty

Turbulence and Take-Off

The first Boeing 777X was due take-off today at 10am PST at Boeing's commercial facility outside of Seattle, but has been postponed due to weather and will now instead take place on Friday. The anticipated flight-test is good news for Boeing—it comes after numerous delays and setbacks stemming from manufacturing issues and the grounding of Boeing's 737 Max airplane after two crashes and 346 deaths. First unveiled as a concept in 2013, the airliner should be ready for commercial production in 2021. The long-range, wide-bodied, folding wing-tipped aircraft is set to become the world's largest and most efficient twin-engine jet.

Boeing 777X
Model of Boeing's new 777X jet Yuli Seperi/Stringer/Getty

Lights, Camera, Action

The 2020 Sundance Film Festival begins today in Park City, Utah. It is the largest independent film festival in the United States. With more than 124,000 people attending over the 10-day period, the festival gives American and international filmmakers the opportunity to showcase their films and to compete for career-making awards in select categories. Famous films to first appear at Sundance include Reservoir Dogs, Whiplash and Get Out. Tickets for individual film screenings cost about $25.

Sundance Film Festival
Awards presented at 2019 Sundance Film Festival Matt Winkelmeyer/Staff/Getty

Winter Weather Incoming

The storm system moving over the middle part of the country is shifting eastward. The Central Plains, the upper and mid-Mississippi valleys and the western Great Lakes should expect inclement weather in the form of snow, ice, rain or a mixture of the three. The western section of the Bible belt will receive heavy rain. A flood advisory alert is active in Galveston, Texas. And abnormally freezing weather is affecting parts of Florida. Yeah, it's awful.

Snowy Weather
Pedestrians walking through snowfall Timothy A. Clary/Staff/Getty

Beam Me Up

The eagerly awaited Star Trek: Picard releases today on CBS's streaming service, CBS All Access. The show follows the life of Jean-Luc Picard, captain of the USS Enterprise starship in one of the most successful and iconic franchises ever. The role of Picard is played by Sir Patrick Stewart, who played the same character on Star Trek: The Next Generation from 1987-1994, and in four additional movies. The 10-episode series has already been renewed for a second season. Star Trek: Picard comes at a time when streaming services offering original content around established franchises have shown they can generate massive revenue, as exemplified by Disney+'s The Mandalorian.

Star Trek: Picard
Sir Patrick Stewart and co. pose on red carpet Tristar Media/Contributor/Getty
The Starting 5: Doomsday Clock, Boeing 777X, Sundance, Stormy Weather, 'Star Trek: Picard' | News