Legends & Lies
- TV Series
- 2015– 2015–
Profiles of notable figures in American history, through dramatic re-enactments, interviews with descendants and historians, and archival photographs.Profiles of notable figures in American history, through dramatic re-enactments, interviews with descendants and historians, and archival photographs.Profiles of notable figures in American history, through dramatic re-enactments, interviews with descendants and historians, and archival photographs.
Shallow and Amateurish
This series is ironically named "Legends & Lies," for it not only perpetuates lies and myths but it is notable for its many important omissions. In fact, it is on the level of a school book primer. For example, the episode on Jesse James doesn't mention his association with a KKK-like white supremacist group for which his robberies were fund raisers. This is a glaring omission and reveals the lack of knowledge of its writers, narrators and researchers. If you don't know about this side of James, you know nothing, because it was his sole motivation before, during and after the Civil War - to help this organization create a slave empire and see the South rise again. It did not mention his joining Quantrill's Raiders, either - a vicious and barbaric guerrilla group noted for its atrocities. Nor did it mention the millions in gold he'd accumulated to fund his cause, which is reputedly still out there to be found. Also not mentioned - terribly important - is the fact that the man buried as James looks nothing like him and was just a fall guy enabling James to make a clean escape from justice. Just examine the photo of the man said to be James in death and compare it to his known photos and you can see this for yourself. Yet O'Reilly and his associates seem totally unaware of this side of the story. I could go on but I think I've made my point. And this kind of thing is true of all the episodes I've seen so far - but I have another gripe, too. The acting is horrible. (Likely non-union, by the way.) It is so corny as to distract from the story and present an inaccurate picture of true events. The narration is monotone and often overshadowed by the overly loud background noise and annoying music score. This series is the worst of all supposed Western era expose shows popping up everywhere on cable TV these days and - shame on you, Bill O'Reilly - reflects a lack of proper research and respect for the documentary genre itself. This is sophomoric stuff, to be kind, with the pompous pretense of presenting much more. There is much more to reveal but this show doesn't begin to get at the truths rarely told about the legendary characters it chooses to showcase. In fact, I haven't seen one new fact presented on this show. This series is just a dull rehash of familiar and faulty fairy tales.
- May 3, 2015
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