Tag Archives: history channel

History of War Collection

History WarHistory Channel is pretty darn good at making documentaries. The History of War Collection is an excellent example of how well the History Channel produces documentaries. The 17-Disc set takes you on a tour of America’s military role through all of its major wars.

You will learn and see how warfare evolved from the time of the American Revolution up through the Civil War and into modern times. The discs offer so much information about how America became the land of the free and home of the brave.

I was able to immerse into the 17-disc set, which digs deep into the twists and turns of America’s most significant and deadly conflicts-from the American Revolution, the Mexican-American War, the War of 1812, the Civil War, and the Spanish-American War to WWI, WWII, and the Vietnam and Korean Wars.

Produced as a documentary, the set features over 42 hours of programming amassed from over 20 History Channel documentaries. The credits are impressive with renowned historians and scholars, special guest narrators Edward Herrmann, Oscar de la Hoya, and Sam Rockwell on several programs.

Teachers, historians, and students will find the set informative and eye-opening tour of America’s military role through all of its major wars.

I was most impressed with how warfare evolved from the time of the American Revolution into modern times. Evidence depicted with reenacted stories of the countless brave Americans who put their lives on the line to defend their country and their beliefs.

You might not get through the entire set, but I highly recommend The History of War Collection.

Gangland Undercover Season 1

ganglandHistory Channel produced an excellent series when they decided to capture the life of an undercover informant who was brave enough to sneak into three outlaw biker gangs. The fact that he lived to relate his story to the world is awe-inspiring as well. Charles Falco, the author of Vagos, Mongols, and Outlaws, goes from convict to infiltrator as he secretly documents the Vagos’ illegal activities and ultimately brings them to justice.

History Channel transports Falco’s story to real life in this fact-based series that sees him work as an informant for the Feds on a covert mission inside the dangerous Vagos world of violence, murder, and drug trafficking. Having climbed the gang’s ranks while facilitating 62 arrests, Charles Falco exposes how he crippled the criminal enterprise from the core of the biker underworld in this mind-blowing true story.

The series is by no means the same old thing about biker gangs but rises above the other motorcycle gang TV shows and movies.  Gangland is nothing like Son’s of Anarchy, so I will not bother to compare them.

Gangland will ring true for those who are familiar with bikers in the 70s. History Channel avoids soap opera characters and sensationalism. Instead, the show hits on the truth and scores a strong fan base.

Ari Cohen’s acting is good, and the writing is even good. What is interesting about this true story is that Falco was a meth cook, and he had a choice of jail or being an informant, which makes him and anti-hero in real life, but History Channel doesn’t depict him that way. That is Hollywood. The trailer below doesn’t do the television series justice.

Mountain Men, Season 4

mountainmenMountain Men is a decent reality TV show, and they are DVDs are worth getting, so I believed, until Season 4. Season 4 DVD has only 8 episodes, and the other half of the season is not available yet. The earlier seasons are all in one DVD package. When I bought Season 1, 2, 3, I got the whole season in each DVD package, so the change in packaging is confusing. It appears to be a bait and switch.

The promotion isn’t clear on what I am actually buying because it appears to be the whole season since there are on two discs. How can 8 episodes fill two discs?

Don’t get me wrong. It is a great program, but it is so disappointing to only have half the season in the DVD package. I looked at Amazon and most of the reviews state the same thing. They are disappointed because they only received half the season.

Despite the change in packing, Mountain Men is a great show. My favorite episode is when Marty finishes his cabin in time for his family to arrive.  Rich, in Montana, has dogs that are in danger after pursuing a bobcat too far. Then, Tom gets the once over after receiving a risky commission. In the beautiful North Carolina, a mishap brings Eustace’s lumber operation to a sudden halt.

As an afterthought, some of you might be happier viewing the streaming episodes on Amazon or History.  If you do the math, you might find it a better deal.

Swamp People Season 6

SP_S6_DVD_3D (1)Swamp People TV show is not necessarily for just outdoors people. Like Duck Dynasty, the series has a quality that appeals to people who are not hunters and fishermen.  Watching the Cajun’s speaking Cajun French on this series is rather interesting and unique.  That is all the bait I need to watch men get into the swamp and noodle successfully for catfish. To say nothing of the alligator hunting, and it is quite a chilling experience.

Yes, it is a reality TV show, but at least, they are civil and forego dramatizing their flaws like the Kardashians.  Most would say this is one of the best reality shows and is rated the top show on the History channel. They set a nice example of how to treat other people where they are pleasant to each other and help each other.

The show takes a look inside one of the last American frontiers when Troy and the other swampers go on a 30-day alligator hunt, avoiding flood water and outwitting the smartest gators. Swamp hunters fight massive alligators and Mother Nature and journey into previously unknown, hostile areas of the swamp. Shrewd gators try to outwit the hunters’ new methods of capturing their prey. Whether using new indigenous bait, old decoys or employing a primitive alternative to the modern hook, these hunters constantly adjust their tactics to catch and fill their tags.

The series is exciting and nerve wracking while they wrestle with an alligator. The swampers protect people from gigantic gators by going after them in areas where people are in danger. They even assist crayfishers when the gators go after their cages. In light of all that danger, the series embodies a way of living that is far better any other reality TV show.  All in all, the series is worth watching because it will be a learning experience while it keeps you on the edge of your seat.

Ancient Aliens

ancientalienbluThis is a great series, and I look forward to each new set when they are released. This particular set, I am inclined to tell you that some of the episodes were really farfetched in their theories.

Yet, if you are a true believer in what the producers bring to bear, then there are so many other things they bring up that just cannot be proved wrong.  I am talking about the historical and physical evidence. It is really quite amazing.

The series brings up questions that are hard to answer, though  You have contemplate the ancients were more technologically advanced than we are today, or they had help.  Unless we know where the technology they used is located because we don’t have it today.  These points are hard to determine, and are some of the questions that come up.  That is way the show is out of the ordinary.

You get a chance to explore the fascinating chance that ancient aliens formed our history. According to the series, humans have told stories about beings with super-human strength since the man could pain on walls.

The series introduces ideas like tales about Zeus, Thor and Hanuman and even contemporary subjects like Superman and Batman and more helped form the world we live in today. Did these tales originated from oral legends about extraterrestrials? Whether you believe it or not, it is fun to speculate.

Moreover, ancient myths from around the globe, gods are often found intervening in human affairs, from Sumerian myth to the story of Moses. Were these supernatural visitations really the work of aliens using advanced technology to shape our civilization? We’ll also consider whether the reptilian alien, a fixture of science fiction, is reflected in the serpent gods of ancient myth. Could they have been living beings? Find out, and much more.

Another good aspect about the set is the special features like English subtitles for the hearing impaired, 3 discs, 12 episodes and no extras.

The Definitive WWI & WWII Collection

The Definitive WWI & WWIII am amazed how The History Channel has produced an assortment of documentaries and episodes concerning the two Great Wars, WWI and WWII. The set is endless with titles that include The Color of War, an unrivaled five disc, 13-episode documentary about WWII, and The World Wars, a stellar production that spotlights a few of the more well-known individuals from the two wars.

Altogether, the complete package is over 44 hours and some content overlaps from disc to disc. The whole set could be organized better, and not so annoying while I try to come to terms of the flow from one disc to the next. The mixture of documentaries along with episodes from The History Channel series offer lot of views on both World Wars, but realize the product is a collection of distinct productions and not an epic told as a story from beginning to end. With that, don’t let the time, over 44 hours, allude you to the idea that each distinct disc covers all aspects of these two Great Wars. There was no way I could watch the entire set in order to review the product. I did catch some of the episodes and here are my thoughts.

Foremost, I found the discs had advertisements for other History Channel programs.  I wish it was an option instead of the trailers coming on right at the beginning of the disc. Sure, I fast forward, but it bugged me.  Here are some of the programs I had an opportunity to view.

The World Wars, a three-part mini-series, is well worth my time and energy to watch.  The series has a pretty decent overview of WWI and WWII told just about entirely through analysis of some key figures, including MacArthur, Stalin, Hitler, Churchill and Mussolini. The acting and production is appealing.  More vintage footage would make the series even better. The bonus content makes up for the lack of vintage footage. Characters have in depth overview of such notables as FDR, Truman, Hitler, Truman, Churchill, and Eisenhower. The feature is presented as a discussion by the panel of historians and professors who also contributed to the main program. They hold their discussions while clips from the program are shown.

100 Years of WWI is a two-disc set that offers a several episodes worth mentioning. They are Armored Beasts, Clouds of Death, Massive Air Attacks, and Underwater Killers. This documentary concentrates on how the industrialized world modernized to make horrific weapons of war like tanks, mustard gas, flamethrowers and submarines. The blend of vintage footage with modern, re-enactment footage is worth watching.

75 Years of WWII is also a two disc set with disc one containing D-Day material is worth watching, but disc two is nowhere near in comparison.

The Color of War is close to ten hours long and is probably the best program out of the whole package. The program takes a unique turn and offers an honest view of the civilians and home front. There is a lot of vintage footage and color film.  There is however lots of battle footage that incorporates violent imagery. If you are faint at heart this set might be difficult to view. Peter Coyote does a fine job narrating the whole series.

WWII In Space is a different approach to the Great Wars with a visual presentation incorporating many maps and CG animations, more than any documentary. The visuals keep the geography in proportion to the size of the planet we live on.  I like that because it gives me an idea of how the world is influence by the both wars.