A thirteen hour series which focuses on the Germanic, Britannic and other barbarian tribal wars with Rome which ultimately led to the decline and fall of the Roman Empire. This series is ... See full summary »
Andre de Nesnera
Ruined by bad audio, and its attempt to be hyper-exciting
A great subject, and we have no doubt the host is an expert that could lead us to knowledge.
But Mary Beard narrates, and she has prominent speech impediments which turn the letter"S" into an irritating sensation in the listener's ear. And she uses the letter"S" (possibly, tens of) thousand of times in each episode. (count the number of "S"'s, and soft "C"'s, in this short review. Multiply by one hour)
This series also suffers from a common modern blight on documentaries, the desire to make them ultra-exciting in every second of the show.
Mary Beard is overly familiar with her audience, indulging in clumsy vulgarities, just minutes into the first program.
You also feel a sort of tension from the rapid edits, bombastic music, and a new image every half second throughout the program.
The viewer never gets a satisfying look at the marvelous Roman architecture and art that are a substantial portion of the narrative in the show.
Perhaps the producers believe that the audience does not posses enough of an attention span left to enjoy informative documentaries without pyrotechnics.
Pity, the subject matter is most interesting, but the viewer will have difficult job of relating due to the over blown production values and the constant spitting noise in the narration.
And this is typical of other recent BBC documentaries.
We need a new champion of documentaries and history based TV. The BBC used to be that, but not so much anymore.
7 of 16 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?