From Milestone Media, The Big Bang was both a play on words and the event (a large gang fight, or Gang Bang) that helped get their fictional universe started.

All the major street gangs of Dakota came together on Paris Island to decide who was the top dog once and for all. Unfourtunately for the gang members, the police had found out about the Bang an planned to be there with a special radioactive tear gas. This would 'tag' all the partcipants, allowing the police to pick them up over the next few days. What the police didn't know was that this 'tear gas' was actually Quantum Juice, a substance with variable and unpredictable effects. Of the 500 bangers involved, most (along with the police) were killed instantly by the Juice. The few survivors were radically changed, mentally and physically. Many gained superhuman powers. Members or the Paris Bloods and the Force Syndicate merged to become the Blood Syndicate, the supreme gang of Paris Island.

Actually, it should be noted that while Stephen Hawking was a big supporter of the big bang theory in the 70's, he has changed his mind in more recent times. The idea of the big bang basically came from Einstein's thoery of general relativity, which predicted that due to the current expansion of the universe and our observations of the past, the universe must have been born from a singularity in which matter was infinitely dense and time was infinately slow (basically an infinite warp in the fabric of space-time). In his book, A Brief History of Time (revised 1998), he points out a few features of the big bang that simply don't add up.
  • If the universe began as a singularity, why was it so hot? (as evidenced by cosmic background radiation)
  • Why is the universe uniform on a macroscopic scale? Most notably, radiation is very nearly the same from every direction is space indicating that heat is coming to us from all directions equally rather than one direction as one would expect from a singularity.
  • Why did the universe start expanding at a critical rate that would allow it to continue to be expanding at nearly the same critical rate today?
  • What is the origin of the density fluctuations that must have existed in order to form clumps of matter in galaxies surrounded by empty space? An exploding infinitely small, infinitely dense singularity should be very uniform in how it distributes matter.

Hawking investigated the quantum effects of the past and believes that the universe never began nor will it end, it just is. That is to say, space-time has no boundaries, yet it is still finite. This is pretty hard to grasp because we cannot really comprehend this a 4 dimensional world. The example Hawking uses is that it's like the earth, which in two dimensions has no boundaries (you can go around and around without reaching a boundary) but it does have a finite size. The tricky part is extrapolating this concept to 4 dimensions instead of 2 :)

One of the more current theories about the big bang suggests that it did not begin as a singularity containing all the mass of the universe, but as an incident in which a virtual particle pair (shall we call them Adam and Eve?) of sufficient mass and velocity to escape each other erupted into existence and in the wake of this extremely unlikely event ripped the universe into being.

That, in a hugely over-simplified nutshell, is where all this came from.

The Adam and Eve particles did not make up the entire mass of the universe, in fact, their total energy was only equal to more than 20 pounds, but they were the spark that lit the fire of inflation. Hawking radiation is responsible for the matter in our universe.

A topic like this is almost impossible to cover thoroughly. I'm sorry if my write-up leaves you confused, angry, or wanting more. I feel the need to go more in-depth explaining virtual particles, hawking radiation, Decay of the X boson, infinite spatial dimensions, Inflation, Conservation of Energy, cosmic background radiation, the anthropic principle, vacuum genesis, Black-holes as the breeding grounds of universes... etc. I will see what I can do to cover these topics.

Infinite thanks goes to Dr. Steve Brusca of Humboldt State University for making it possible for a motivationally-challenged liberal arts student to qualitatively understand so much of the workings of our universe. Infinite apologies for any mistakes I might make, I am barely a step above a troglodyte.
The problem I have with a lot of Big Bang theories is that theoreticians can pretty much say whatever they like, due to the fact that it is impossible to look back to the early Universe.

The normal drill if you want to explore the early World is to get a huge telescope and look at distant objects; a galaxy 20 million light years away gives you an indication if what a galaxy looked like 20 million years ago.

This is impossible in principle for the early universe, as when it was a youngster the Big U was opaque to EM radiation.

This allows theories like inflation (which was invented to fill discrepancies in the Big Bang model) to be put forward, rather than questioning the BB model itself.
This kind of shenanigans (postulating theories that can't be verified) is rife in cosmology.
That's what turned me off it after I got my degree.

Well, that and the math.

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The name "Big Bang" gives one an idea that the universe's start is somehow an uncontrolled explosion, like a grenade. In fact, to arrive at the flat universe that we live in, its energy density needs to be extremely fine-tuned: 1 part in 10^120, at least. (While it is mathematically comprehendable, it is very hard to actually grasp the sheer largeness of 10^120.) If the value were 0.0000000000 0000000000 0000000000 0000000000 0000000000 0000000000 0000000000 0000000000 0000000000 0000000000 0000000000 00000001% smaller or larger, we would not be in a flat universe. This is significant to us, because a non-flat universe would crunch soon after the big bang, or it would not contain any galaxies or stars. These two things have nasty consequences for life.

This fine-tuning, along with many other examples, has led to a consensus among physicists: The initial conditions of our universe really are astounding.

Unfortunately, there isn't any better name than "big bang" that is as short, because nothing in human experience carries anything even close to the proper amount of precision.

Evidences for the Big Bang:

  • The cosmic background radiation. It fits, in all manner, exactly what the Big Bang model would predict. There used to be some aspects in the radiation that appeared to conflict with the Big Bang, but when analysed further there only was more evidence.
  • Universal expansion. In astronomy there is a law called "Hubble's Law", which basically says that far away objects are usually moving away from us. It has been verified time and time again, and it serves as a good evidence for the Big Bang. (If we extrapolate backwards in time we find all the visible matter coming from a small point)
  • The abundance of light elements - not all have been turned into heavier ones as we would happen in an old universe

(We now have the ability to explain the big bang right up to t = 0, using string theory. Unfortunately, it is a very difficult theory to test. But it is a start - we are no longer needing to rely on wild speculations.)

A theory of language.

Non-utilitarian artifacts, such as complex cave paintings, (the Chauvet,) Venus statues, as well as more effective hand-axes, have been dated back to 50,000 years ago.

The big bang theory concludes that these artifacts indicate that during this time we became distinctly human; the artifacts must be linked to a sudden change in the process of human evolution, as well as the birth of full-blown language.

However, it is good to keep in mind that absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.

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