THIS IS ONE program that we admittedly bumped into accidentally. While we were channel surfing, looking for something of interest and importance (quoting Gerald Mohr*), stumbled onto this Episode of NOVA. Being that it was on that bastion of self importance and pedantic preachiness (PBS**), we almost passed on it in favour of GILLIGAN'S ISLAND repeats.
BUT SOMETHING STAYED our hand from switching away from the viewer supported, Tax funded gift to humanity. Perhaps it was the hand of Almighty GOD that made me stop and check this show out. After all, we already knew that "DOG" is "GOD" backwards.
SO, WE SET down our guns for a moment and put a book mark in our Bible, preparing to view something from the World of Darwinian Science,*** and we were sure glad that we did.
THE PROGRAM TRACES the History of Mankind's association with those of the canine family and gives us some solid evidence of research and experimentation that has been conducted in this very esoteric area of biological studies. Nothing is left to the imagination, no matter how Jules Verne-like it may be. The ongoing studies being conducted ongoing in Austria and other countries like that, are the focus of the hour long NOVA installment.
AMONG THE FIRST myths that is exploded is that of the Wolf's being able to be one's pet; as long as it is raised as a "doggie" from its infancy (Or is it "pupancy", Schultz?). Real and true on screen facts are presented that show us otherwise. A wolf is a wolf and never the twain shall meet!
GOING FAR BEYOND the anecdotal experiences that do so little at getting to the root of the symbiotic relationship of pup-dog and Homo Sapiens Sapiens, real and true experimentation with a species of Central European Fox (No, not a "Hot" Female, Schultz!) is followed for generations as so many noticeable appear. Changes in ears, colours and texture of hair/fur and of behaviour towards humans is noted, recorded and displayed before God and everybody.
WHILE THE THRUST of the episode's message is that of the scientist's proving that so much of the dog's life and behavior is so intimately intertwined with the Neanderthals, the Cro-Magnons and the "Modern" Man. Countless generations of breeding and domestication have given us some animal that was truly different from cousin Wolf.
THE VARIOUS ABILITIES, skills and idiosyncrasies of "Man's Best Friend" are defined, explored and fully documented before the NOVA camera. Skills such as ability to follow hand pointing directions, understanding of the words of man and the development of multi-sound "vocabulary", far superior to that of the Wolf's is presented for our viewing and examination.
BUT, ALL OF this might well be both superlative as well as redundant. For after all, they're only showing what we dog owners have known all along!
NOTE: * Gerald Mohr (1914-68) Actor on Stage, in Films, Radio and Television. He did voice over announcements and some narration such as this "messages of interest and importance" for the original series of THE LONDE RANGER (1949-58).
NOTE ** "PBS" or "Public Broadcasting System"; which we often refer to as being the "Pollit Bureau System."
NOTE *** These are the sentiments of our current President; as articulated and authenticated by his very own words, recorded for posterity.
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