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He who does not remember history is… I forget the rest.

18 June 2012

Remember when The History Channel was all about historical documentaries? It was like PBS, only less PBS-ish. Anyway, I was watching History this morning, and my wife walked into the living room and asked “Is the History Channel just American Pickers and Pawn Stars now?”

Immediately springing to the channel’s defense, I replied: “Well, there’s also Cajun Pawn Stars.”

Now, I’m not getting down on the History Channel’s current lineup. I obviously dig what they’ve got going on (I was watching it, after all), and my wife has a buddy on one of those shows. But I did start to wonder — what happened to the three-hour documentaries on Hannibal’s march across the Alps? Were those not drawing in enough viewers?

Now, I know about the Military Channel, of course. If you want your daily dose of Nazis, that’s a good place to find them. (They do more than that, of course, but there is an inordinate amount of World War II European Theater stuff). And I like the Military Channel too, but…

I’m a big fan of historical documentary films, ones that teach me something I didn’t even know existed before. PBS is still good for that (their Prohibition series was great), but where else do y’all find that stuff? Suggestions?

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One Comment leave one →
  1. christophergronlund permalink
    19 June 2012 0556

    My wife has said the same thing about History Channel. It really has become all about picking through old yards, restoring those picks, or selling things at pawn shops. That, or shooting targets while spinning around strapped to a wheel, or…jousting competitions. And don’t they also run Swamp People? Oh, and don’t forget how similar Ice Road Truckers is to Hannibal’s march across the Alps! 🙂

    Now, I’m guilty of watching all these shows, here and there, with the exception of Swamp People. But…it’s sad to see not much history on History Channel. At least the old, “The Reich’s Quest for the Ark and other Paranormal Shit,” was about, you know, something back then. I definitely miss history on the History Channel. Especially when they had some stuff hosted by Peter Weller…nothing like learning about history from Buckaroo Banzai and Robocop!

    These days, I go online to find history. And, like you, PBS.

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