Some of the most addicting and mind tingling shows that are on television today are mystery and crime solving series. One show that captures the imagination, and incorporates a love and necessity of math in every day life, is the TV series Numb3rs.
As you can tell by the title of this show, the characters use numbers and math to determine truth, and solve crimes. There are a few different groups of people that all come together, and help each other when there is a problem that needs a solution.
The first group of people include Alan Eppes, who works for the FBI, Charlie who is his brother and mathematician, and their father Don Eppes. The dynamic between the men in the family is real and dysfunctional, and at times is strained and confrontational. However, they always pull together and show their love and family support for each other.
Don is the one that brings the problems and crimes into the situation, because he is the lead FBI agent, and he brings an entire group of agents into the show with him. The other agents that appear regularly, are Megan Reeves, David Sinclair, Colby Granger, Liz Warner, and Nikki Betancourt. Each of these agents have their own specialties, and add to the resolution of each case.
Charlie Eppes is a professor at CalSci, which is a fictitious Institute in California, and he is a mathematical genius. Charlie helps his brother solve crimes with the help of his mentor Larry Fleinhardt, who he constantly seeks counsel from, along with fellow professor Amita Ramanujan.
Charlie and Amita have a mutual friendship and respect for each other that leads to a relationship, and eventually to an engagement. Their relationship is sometimes strained, and because they get involved in police work, they are all put in danger at different points. These situations just seem to bring Charlie and Amita closer together, and lead to their marriage.
The father of Charlie and Don is a widow and former city planner, and is supportive and loving of both of his sons. He provides emotional support for his sons in their professional and personal lives, as he goes through personal struggles of his own.
The idea of the show is to express how we use math every day, and how it can be used to solve problems and mysteries in ways that we didn't realize. There are several mathematicians that are consultants for each episode, and they make sure that the equations and validity of the solutions are exact.
At the beginning of each episode, you are presented with a problem, and it unfolds as you try to figure out the case along with the characters. By the end of the episode, Charlie will take you step by step through the mathematical process that eventually leads to the answer to the current mystery.
Numb3rs uses a skill that we all learned in school, and makes it important, interesting and fun to watch. By taking the logic and science of subjects that may seem beyond our understanding, and mixing it with common human emotions and family connections, you are left with a heartwarming and intriguing series that can't be missed.