Frozen Planet (2011–2012)
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In Summer, the non-stop sunlight fires an unrelenting thaw, transforming much of the polar regions into fertile land and open sea, while immense masses of melted sweet water pour into the ... See full summary »


Paul Spillenger




Episode credited cast:
Doug Allan Doug Allan ... Self (as Doug Allen)
Doug Anderson Doug Anderson ... Self
David Attenborough ... Self - Narrator
Alec Baldwin ... Self - Narrator
Miles Barton Miles Barton ... Self
John Durban John Durban ... Self
Ted Giffords Ted Giffords ... Self
Bob Pitman Bob Pitman ... Self


In Summer, the non-stop sunlight fires an unrelenting thaw, transforming much of the polar regions into fertile land and open sea, while immense masses of melted sweet water pour into the oceans. Many species profit from the relatively benign conditions to mate, breed and raise their young. However for some, such as ice-bears, the lack of ice also causes major troubles in foraging and just moving around. Written by KGF Vissers

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one word episode title | bear | See All (2) »




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Featured in Universum: Eisige Welten - Im Sog der Sonne (2011) See more »

User Reviews

In the polar summer
25 November 2017 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

Despite how much he apparently dislikes the term "national treasure", that term really does sum up David Attenborough to a tee. He is such a great presenter (in his 90s and still sounds, and looks on a side note, great) and whenever a new series of his is aired they are often among the best the BBC has done in years.

Attenborough has done so many treasures over his long and remarkably consistent career (even his lesser work is still good) that picking a favourite is not easy. 'Frozen Planet' is one of those treasures, perhaps not as ground-breaking as something like 'Life on Earth' and anybody who was familiar beforehand with 'Planet Earth' may find themselves not finding much truly innovative. Having said that, it left me in the same amount of awe as when watching that series, both 'Planet Earth' series and 'Blue Planet' (am loving the second series too). It is a shame that despite being one of IMDb's highest rated shows, the ratings here for each episode individually has such a wide divide between them and that for the show overall. To me, the series overall is wholly deserving of its acclaim and the individual episodes are rated far too low.

"Summer" doesn't disappoint in any shape or form. Said in my review for 'Frozen Planet' that it transfixed, fascinated, moved and educated me more than any other documentary seen in a long time and is an example of how documentaries should be done. Still stand by that. Likewise with saying that one forgets they're watching a documentary and instead feeling like they're watching art.

Visually, like all the 'Frozen Planet' episodes and all of Attenborough's work, "Summer" looks wonderful. It is gorgeously filmed, done in a completely fluid and natural, sometimes intimate (a great way of connecting even more with the animals), way and never looking static. In fact much of it is remarkably cinematic. The polar region scenery is some of the most breath-taking personally seen anywhere, whether in visual media and real life. Favourites are too many to list, but the polar bear cubs and the snowy owl images are simply adorable and one is amazed at how the oxen and wolf, skuas and the penguin chicks and the killer whale and minke whale scenes were captured on film. The behind the scenes stuff gives a touch of honesty and humanity.

George Fenton's music score soars majestically, rousing the spirits while touching the soul. It not only complements the visuals but enhances them to a greater level. Some of my favourite work from him in fact, coming from someone who's liked a lot of what he's done. The main theme is unforgettable.

Can't fault the narrative aspects in "Summer" either. There are things already known to me, still delivered with a lot of freshness, but there was a lot that was quite an education and after watching the full series it honestly felt like the series taught me a lot (and no it's not just the Latin names for the animals), much more so than anything in my secondary school Geography class. Attenborough's narration helps quite significantly too, he clearly knows his stuff and knows what to say and how to say it. He delivers it with his usual richness, soft-spoken enthusiasm and sincerity, never talking down to the viewer and keeping them riveted and wanting to know more.

The animals are both cute (the polar bear cubs and the penguins) and predatory (the killer whales and the wolves). Mentioned the standout scenes before, with the highlights being the killer whales and minke whale and especially the oxen and wolves scenes, which are not for the most sensitive of viewers but are still captivating. People shouldn't be too upset by the more shocking and less family-friendly scenes, Attenborough's work before and since 'Frozen Planet' are hardly strangers to these kinds of scenes and they are just as equal in that kind of impact.

Nothing episodic or repetitive here. Instead, it feels like its own individual story with real, complex emotions and conflicts and animal characters developed in a way a human character would in a film but does it better than several.

In short, really wonderful. Don't let the low rating fool you which in no way does the episode or the series justice in my humble very subjective opinion. In no way trying to be arrogant, condescension is actually a bugbear of mine, but will say that part of me personally is suspicious of the large amount of 1/10 user votes, especially considering that the series is one of IMDb's highest rated and all the individual episodes have ratings under 7. 10/10 Bethany Cox

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Release Date:

25 March 2012 (USA) See more »

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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