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Michael Wood's The Story of England

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lauragill
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Michael Wood's The Story of England

Post by lauragill » Wed July 4th, 2012, 7:32 pm

For American audiences, the PBS premiere was last night. Thoughts? I found it amazing that the Kibworth villagers could dig a foot down into their own gardens and find ancient pottery and other artifacts, and that it could have been their own ancestors. I certainly can't do that where I live (Los Angeles).

And that one gentleman was so tickled to learn he had Viking DNA!

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Post by Susan » Wed July 4th, 2012, 8:36 pm

I've DVRed it and have yet to watch.
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Post by DianeL » Wed July 4th, 2012, 9:59 pm

Glad I saw this; I will need to check the local schedule! Thank you, lauragill.
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Susan
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Post by Susan » Thu July 5th, 2012, 12:46 am

[quote=""lauragill""]For American audiences, the PBS premiere was last night. Thoughts? I found it amazing that the Kibworth villagers could dig a foot down into their own gardens and find ancient pottery and other artifacts, and that it could have been their own ancestors. I certainly can't do that where I live (Los Angeles).

And that one gentleman was so tickled to learn he had Viking DNA![/quote]

I watched part of the show, but I stopped because I want my husband to see it. It's fascinating! The shows are on my PBS station more than once, so do check your PBS local station. In certain areas of the US, we would find artifacts in our gardens. The artifacts wouldn't be as old as the ones in Kibworth, but there could be Native American and colonial era artifacts. In my area of New Jersey, there needs to be an archeological survey before any development of the land is allowed.
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Post by SGM » Thu July 5th, 2012, 4:28 am

Aah, Michael Wood - otherwise known in the British press as "the thinking woman's crumpet".

I've always enjoyed his programmes partly because he does understand how to bring history to TV rather than those who provide a gallop through to the finishing line and telling you nothing you didn't know already. I think here of Melvyn Bragg's programme about the King James Bible or Helen Castor's about the English Queens.

Although, I personally liked his "In the footsteps of Alexander the Great" and "History of India" best. The Story of England was enjoyable, if not without criticism from the press.
Last edited by SGM on Thu July 5th, 2012, 4:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by lauragill » Thu July 5th, 2012, 5:45 am

[quote=""SGM""]
Although, I personally liked his "In the footsteps of Alexander the Great" and "History of India" best. The Story of England was enjoyable, if not without criticism from the press.[/quote]

My personal all-time Wood favorite is "In Search of the Trojan War."

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Post by SGM » Thu July 5th, 2012, 5:12 pm

[quote=""lauragill""]My personal all-time Wood favorite is "In Search of the Trojan War."[/quote]

Yes, they are all pretty good. The programmes he filmed among the Marsh Arabs were particularly poignant.

I ran into him once at the British Library......
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Post by Madeleine » Fri July 6th, 2012, 8:59 am

[quote=""SGM""]Aah, Michael Wood - otherwise known in the British press as "the thinking woman's crumpet". [/quote]

Oh yes, he was quite the heart-throb in the mid 1980s :)
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Post by SGM » Fri July 6th, 2012, 3:53 pm

[quote=""Madeleine""]Oh yes, he was quite the heart-throb in the mid 1980s :) [/quote]

Oh, I know he is a little older and wrinklier but it still works. But most of all, I like that, as I mentioned before, he knows how to present history for TV, even if that often means leaving out some stuff that some people think is important or taking a rather different slant on some issues. He knows that you do have to tell a story and that means it has to be coherent for an audience who might know nothing about it. After all, that is who you should be trying to pull in. He also does it without it seeming rushed.

Crucially, he delivers with an enthusiasm which is infectious. I tend to think of him as an archaeological David Attenborough. Nothing beats enthusiasm which is why I was able to watch a programme that covered all the stuff I had done for years at school anyway (in the days when they did teach history) and still enjoy it.
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Post by sweetpotatoboy » Fri July 6th, 2012, 3:59 pm

I saw him on the Tube a year or so ago and said excitedly to the friend I was with: "Oh look, that's Michael Wood!". She, not being a history buff, had no idea who I was talking about and looked decidedly uninterested...

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