Overall an excellent series
The other comments on this series only cover the 'Hiroshima' episode. In fact the series covers a large number of Historic 'days' including the Wright Brothers' Flight, the Assassinations of Kennedy and Lincoln, the Death of Primncess Diana and the declaration of the state of Israel. The original series had hour long episodes with two thematically-related 'days' (e.g. the Wright Brothers and the First Moon Landing'. Later on there were half-hour episodes on single days and a few hour-long specials (on e.g. the 1967 Middle East War and the 1918 Armistice.). The overall standard of the series is high and I use many of them in my High School teaching. In this regard I would rate the best as : the Assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, the Murder of the Romanovs and Kristallnacht. Other excellent episodes, not so immediately useful for my teaching, include the death of Diana, the Moon landing and the resignation of President Nixon. Unfortunately some of the episodes clearly suffer from budgetary constraints. The St Valentine's Day Massacre episode appears to have been filmed in mid-Summer, while the Theft of The Crown Jewels features only half a dozen actors. A couple of potentially good episodes are spoiled by poor casting. I know that it's not always possible to get good lookalikes for Historic figures but they couldn't have chosen actors less like their real-life counterparts to play Nehru, Jinnah and Mountbatten in the Indian Independence episode. Jinnah, for example, a slight, elderly and dying man is played by a young, tall and well-built actor in very unconvincing 'old' makeup. These quibbles aside I would recommend the series, available in the UK in a boxed DVD set, to teachers and anyone interested in how History happened.
- Dec 5, 2008
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