Horribly presented with facts that might be critical of Western civilization often glossed over this feels more like a "puff piece", a feel good series for the benefit of those who feel intimidated by the rise of the 'Developing World'.
In episode one the causes and result of the Opium Wars are almost completely ignored with the presenter claiming that the Chinese had a unique weakness for opiates (because there is no substance abuse in 'Western nations'?). The presenter failed to state that the British had increased supply (from British ruled India) and thus substantially lowered the cost.
I have no doubt that there are more fallacies and considerable omissions to be found throughout the series but I shan't waste my time in discovering them. For a historian to put his name to such shoddy work is embarrassing. For that same historian to be so arrogant in his presentation of the work makes for cringe inducing television.
In short, this makes for sad viewing - an indictment of the state of British TV, media as a whole and society. One final desperate grasp for bygone glory days on a dying medium - two cultural failures for the price of one.
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