The World Wars on the History Channel

Big ChiefBig Chief Senior MemberPosts: 32,995 Senior Member
Three part series. Well I watched part one last night. I almost changed the channel because it opened with Obammy giving his take on WWI, come on he is about the least qualified to make any comments on The Great War, I muted him, but continued watching.

So very good commentaries by others and some good scenes, with some weapons blunders like Germans in one scene shooting SMLEs (the cocked bolt showed the two "Rods" on the plunger) and Hitler shootin then inserting a magazine in a rifle and then back to a Mauser with an internal magazine.

LTC Patton's Tanks looked a little more advanced than those used in WWI. Good stuff about him and MacArthur influencing the war and the influence it had on them.

It said Woodrow Wilson's reason for us entering the war was an intercepted telegraph cable from a German official named Zimmerman to Mexico encouraging them to take back Texas/New Mexico/Arizona which would divert our attention elsewhere, at home and in theory keep us outta Europe. I read where the British actually intercepted the cable, but didn't release it to us for some time because it would tip off the Huns they could break their codes.

Hitler getting gassed did happen, but him cutting his mustache back to that famous/infamous style of his with a bayonet in the trench because he couldn't get a good seal with it was probably embellished as were many of his wartime exploits, especially after he came to power in Germany.

The gut wrenching scene was when Hitler was unarmed, stunned, possibly wounded and climbing outta a crater after an attack and a British private had him in the sights of his .303 fairly close , but for some reason didn't shoot the little bastard and let him walk off. They actually named the soldier. This is a major "What If" if there was ever one.

The tricky Germans also arranged the release/train trip of Lenin with a lot of currency to start the Russian Red Revolution and overthrow the Czarist government, which he did after hooking up with Stalin who had escaped from Exile again. The Russians were allies, but after the Revolution ceased their involvement in the war. Hitler paid them back years later for their cooperation didn't he?

Another good point/scene was at Versailles the reparations demanded by our allies and imposed on Germany were unrealistic and probably had a lot to do with them starting WWII than anything else other than the way territories were divided up.

The Japanese who were an ally were pretty much ignored and had no say in the procedures.............another "What If'"...


So, I'm not Historian and not an expert on WWI, but this was what I took away from the first of three episodes. Not all that bad of a show, all in all. Besides the opening remarks (F), I give it a C+ or B-.
It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
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Replies

  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,995 Senior Member
    Oh, I forgot to mention Winston Churchill:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/today/hi/today/newsid_8234000/8234106.stm

    "In 1915, as First Lord of the Admiralty, Churchill was a prime mover behind the Gallipoli campaign, a disastrous attempt to land troops on the shores of the Dardanelles strait prior to capturing Istanbul and forcing route through the Black Sea to Russia. In nine months of fighting the Allies sustained 140,000 casualties and the ensuing defeat damaged Churchill's political career."

    He was forced out and enlisted in the British Army to rise through the ranks and make a name for himself.
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
    Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
    I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 7,045 Senior Member
    Yeah...gun errors in historical films - especially documentaries - bug me in the extreme. Probably couldn't have an actor running a live stripper clip into a Mauser on the set, so they had him load an empty mag into something else for dramatic effect. Yep. They dramatically make themselves look like idiots.

    IIRC, Patton's tanks were French Renaults, which were the first tank to follow what has become the standard pattern of a single gun on a revolving turret. They look like what WE think of as a tank, albeit really small and cartoony.

    Hitler's mustache and other exploits. . .the question not so much that this story may have been embellished - it's more a question of what WASN'T embellished. Hitler and Stalin both had some consummate spin doctors working for them, who not just told a good yarn, but occasionally may have paid off or shot anyone who would contradict it. When Enemy at the Gates came out, I did a good amount of digging into the Vassili Zaitsev story, and it's darn near impossible to separate what really happened i Stalingrad from fabrications that support the Soviet political agenda. And it certainly wasn't only the Nazis and Reds: consider all the deceptions the U.S. and Brits threw out to make D-Day a reality. You can bet a lot of those lies were so successful that they are part of the accepted narrative to this day. Hitler - like any politician - did what he needed to look like a stud to his countrymen.

    The Germans sending Lenin to Russia. . .probably one of the most cost-effective moves employed by anyone during the any war. Probably would have worked for them too, had the resulting troop diversions to the Western Front not been countered at least in part by America's entry into the war.

    Versailes - yep, a real blunder and certainly excessive. Unlike WWII, the Germans were not blasted down to almost the last man - they merely ran out of resources first. There was plenty of blame to go around as to who started the whole mess, and it would have ultimately been better had everyone simply looked at it and said "Let's not do this again." But what ya gonna do? France and Britain were both bled white and needed to appear to salvage something out of the affair.
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • Big Al1Big Al1 Senior Member Posts: 7,052 Senior Member
    The weapons errors were driving me NUTS!! Patton's men were using Enfields in Mexico, and his machine guns wasn't even invented yet. I also noticed someone using a BAR in a trench, and that wasn't even adapted by the Army until 1923!! I'm available as technical advisor!!
  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,995 Senior Member
    You're right, the tanks were Renaults, I had a picture in my mind of earlier ones whose tracks were as tall as the tank body!

    Check out some of these monstrosities!

    https://www.google.com/search?q=french+wwi+tanks&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=OKOEU7yjLOPmsAS2vIDQCA&sqi=2&ved=0CC8Q7Ak&biw=911&bih=400

    Heck AL, you expect them to pay attention to details! I do remember the movie the Sand Pebbles with Steve McQueen and the BAR he was using...cool beans. But set in 1920s China, not the First WW.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Sand_Pebbles_(film)


    Oh well, another episode tonight. Should be interesting.
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
    Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
    I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 10,255 Senior Member
    It's a good sign that the History Channel is showing some real history and not Ancient Aliens.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,995 Senior Member
    Gene L wrote: »
    It's a good sign that the History Channel is showing some real history and not Ancient Aliens.

    I call it the Hitler Channel!
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
    Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
    I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,995 Senior Member
    Episode two was on par with the first one, although I may have dozed of fer 15 or 20 minutes in the second hour. I can catch up what i missed with the replay on before it starts tonight.
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
    Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
    I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
  • bisleybisley Senior Member Posts: 10,658 Senior Member
    I don't care much for documentaries with dramatized video, especially when introduced by the Traitor-In-Chief. The other one he did was a sad joke targeted at the same morons that elected him.
  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,995 Senior Member
    Well, Dick Cheney gave a few comments last night on Winston Churchill.
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
    Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
    I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
  • JKPJKP Senior Member Posts: 1,838 Senior Member
    What has gotten into the History Channel? A show that is actually about history!?
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 7,045 Senior Member
    JKP wrote: »
    What has gotten into the History Channel? A show that is actually about history!?

    Truly! What's next? MTV going back to playing music videos?
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,995 Senior Member
    Bigslug wrote: »
    Truly! What's next? MTV going back to playing music videos?


    Well, I'm determined to finish watching it tonight. Although their weapons boo boos are a real annoyance to me. Some of the narrators comments left quite a bit out, but all in all they at least made an effort to condense a whole lot of history into 6 hours (less with ads) of TV.

    I almost get the impression this is for folks who never have seen/read much on the World Wars, sorta a Cliff's Notes version.
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
    Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
    I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
  • knitepoetknitepoet Senior Member Posts: 18,866 Senior Member
    I've had a busy week, so I haven't watched any of it yet, but I have DVR'd the first two and will get the third tonight, so I can watch them at my convenience and fast forward through the commercials
    Seven Habits of Highly Effective Pirates, Rule #37: There is no “overkill”. There is only “open fire” and “I need to reload”.


  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 10,255 Senior Member
    I'm watching it now and it's awful from a visual standpoint. German helmets like I've never seen, Russians toting SMLEs, etc. Maybe it's historically accurate, seems to be, but the production values are godawful.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 21,857 Senior Member
    Big Chief wrote: »
    Three part series. Well I watched part one last night. I almost changed the channel because it opened with Obammy giving his take on WWI, come on he is about the least qualified to make any comments on The Great War, I muted him, but continued watching.

    So very good commentaries by others and some good scenes, with some weapons blunders like Germans in one scene shooting SMLEs (the cocked bolt showed the two "Rods" on the plunger) and Hitler shootin then inserting a magazine in a rifle and then back to a Mauser with an internal magazine.

    LTC Patton's Tanks looked a little more advanced than those used in WWI. Good stuff about him and MacArthur influencing the war and the influence it had on them.

    It said Woodrow Wilson's reason for us entering the war was an intercepted telegraph cable from a German official named Zimmerman to Mexico encouraging them to take back Texas/New Mexico/Arizona which would divert our attention elsewhere, at home and in theory keep us outta Europe. I read where the British actually intercepted the cable, but didn't release it to us for some time because it would tip off the Huns they could break their codes.

    Hitler getting gassed did happen, but him cutting his mustache back to that famous/infamous style of his with a bayonet in the trench because he couldn't get a good seal with it was probably embellished as were many of his wartime exploits, especially after he came to power in Germany.

    The gut wrenching scene was when Hitler was unarmed, stunned, possibly wounded and climbing outta a crater after an attack and a British private had him in the sights of his .303 fairly close , but for some reason didn't shoot the little bastard and let him walk off. They actually named the soldier. This is a major "What If" if there was ever one.

    The tricky Germans also arranged the release/train trip of Lenin with a lot of currency to start the Russian Red Revolution and overthrow the Czarist government, which he did after hooking up with Stalin who had escaped from Exile again. The Russians were allies, but after the Revolution ceased their involvement in the war. Hitler paid them back years later for their cooperation didn't he?

    Another good point/scene was at Versailles the reparations demanded by our allies and imposed on Germany were unrealistic and probably had a lot to do with them starting WWII than anything else other than the way territories were divided up.

    The Japanese who were an ally were pretty much ignored and had no say in the procedures.............another "What If'"...


    So, I'm not Historian and not an expert on WWI, but this was what I took away from the first of three episodes. Not all that bad of a show, all in all. Besides the opening remarks (F), I give it a C+ or B-.

    Chief, do you also get the Military Channel, Recently renamed the American Heroes Channel? They play that one over and over at least once a month it seems. There is a great Documentary on Manfred von Richthofen, the Red Barron that they play every so often that is very interesting. I watch this channel more often than the History Channel because it concentrates on the world wars, Korea, Vietnam, and the Middle East. It's really a great channel if you can get it.

    Anyway, WWI, at least to me, was a complicated series of events leading up to a horrible waste of humanity. World War II Was also a waste of humanity and resources, but at least it had a purpose on our end, of stopping some fanatics from taking over the world.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 10,255 Senior Member
    The American Heroes Channel has lately been running two or three days a week on Egyptian mummies. Tomorrow it's Mega Engineering; dome over Houston, a skyscraper in Shanghai, China's Mega Dam, The Mystery of the Parthenon, Egypt: What Lies Beneath, Nefertiti: Mummy Queen mystery, and Ramses. What's going on?

    On The World Wars, it showed Japanese troops invading China with MP 34s.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 21,857 Senior Member
    Gene L wrote: »
    The American Heroes Channel has lately been running two or three days a week on Egyptian mummies. Tomorrow it's Mega Engineering; dome over Houston, a skyscraper in Shanghai, China's Mega Dam, The Mystery of the Parthenon, Egypt: What Lies Beneath, Nefertiti: Mummy Queen mystery, and Ramses. What's going on?

    On The World Wars, it showed Japanese troops invading China with MP 34s.







    I wasn't bad mouthing the History Channel, but was only asking if Chief knew about the Military Channel (American Heroes Channel). Many people I've talked to don't know it exists because their cable or rather their service provider doesn't offer it on their base line programming.

    I wasn't in the military but I've sure learned a lot watching it. And I've confirmed most of it in reading other sources. They show stuff that interests me more so overall than the History Channel having to do with military history.

    When it was called the military channel it was pretty well more about the military. It has changed a little, but it's still mostly about military history, especially in the evening. As for the Japanese carrying German weapons, that's not so strange to me. They were allies just like with us and the British. The British were known to carry American arms sometimes just like on D-Day American troops carried some British arms.

    I've seen and heard discrepancies on the History Channel as well. None of them are perfect. But overall I enjoy this type of programming than most other Television.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • Big ChiefBig Chief Senior Member Posts: 32,995 Senior Member
    I used to get it on Extended Basic here, but don't anymore. It was called Knology cable then went to WOW and then they sent little boxes out needed to receive HD. I used to watch it a lot and do miss it, but not enough to subscribe to the next higher tier of services.
    It's only true if it's on this forum where opinions are facts and facts are opinions
    Words of wisdom from Big Chief: Flush twice, it's a long way to the Mess Hall
    I'd rather have my sister work in a whorehouse than own another Taurus!
  • Big Al1Big Al1 Senior Member Posts: 7,052 Senior Member
    I think we got the Common Core version of WWII, not one mention of Ike's role in D-Day
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 10,255 Senior Member
    snake284 wrote: »
    I wasn't bad mouthing the History Channel, but was only asking if Chief knew about the Military Channel (American Heroes Channel). Many people I've talked to don't know it exists because their cable or rather their service provider doesn't offer it on their base line programming.

    I wasn't in the military but I've sure learned a lot watching it. And I've confirmed most of it in reading other sources. They show stuff that interests me more so overall than the History Channel having to do with military history.

    When it was called the military channel it was pretty well more about the military. It has changed a little, but it's still mostly about military history, especially in the evening. As for the Japanese carrying German weapons, that's not so strange to me. They were allies just like with us and the British. The British were known to carry American arms sometimes just like on D-Day American troops carried some British arms.

    I've seen and heard discrepancies on the History Channel as well. None of them are perfect. But overall I enjoy this type of programming than most other Television.

    The invasion of China happened in 1937, long before Japan and Germany were allies. It just isn't correct. Russians with SMLEs, Japanese with MPs, Germans with helmets that are clearly inappropriate for the time. The Japanese v China invasion was obviously from an earlier German attack, except they just made it happen in poor light hoping no one would notice.

    If you turn the picture off and listen to the narration, it's not bad history.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 26,106 Senior Member
    They did make a lot of technical errors on the firearms, uniforms, and other stuff. But it was an interesting series.

    If you want a good watch on the WWII naval campaign, then the "Victory at Sea" series is available on Amazon.com for around $10 for the complete series. Well worth the price. Has both Atlantic and Pacific Campaign covered. They also have a lot of selections on WWI and WWII air and ground campaigns. The videos are of the actual action, not recreated.

    If there is one takeaway on the start of WWI it is that mutual protection alliances can get countries in deep doo doo fast. Look at the ones the U.S. is party to; NATO and SEATO, and the ever present UN stuff. Our alliances hamstring us to protect many things not in our national interest.
    If the U.S. Congress was put in charge of the Sahara Desert, there would be a shortage of sand in under six months.



  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 10,255 Senior Member
    You can also watch Victory at Sea on Youtube for free. I remember when it first came out (or when I first saw it.) It was in the late 50s, I believe. Excellent movie with fantastic music. It's not just about sea battles, but it is kind of sea related.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • tennmiketennmike Senior Member Posts: 26,106 Senior Member
    Gene L wrote: »
    You can also watch Victory at Sea on Youtube for free. I remember when it first came out (or when I first saw it.) It was in the late 50s, I believe. Excellent movie with fantastic music. It's not just about sea battles, but it is kind of sea related.

    You're probably right about the time it came out. Watched it in the 50's; it came on Saturday afternoons where I lived. Covered a lot of the land battles in the island hopping in the Pacific as well as the battles in Europe with the landing of troops from ships.
    If the U.S. Congress was put in charge of the Sahara Desert, there would be a shortage of sand in under six months.



  • NomadacNomadac Senior Member Posts: 890 Senior Member
    With all of the errors in firearms, uniforms, etc. it is still light years ahead of anything our young people hear or learn about WWI or WWII in school. I watched Watters World last night on O'Reilly ask young people on a beach in NJ about different wars and with one exception they were pathetic in their answers.
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 10,255 Senior Member
    A picture is worth a thousand words, and an erroneous picture is worth 10,100 wrong words. TV is a pictorial medium and poor pictures that foment wrong ideas mask the message, IMO. The narration was excellent, but the camera work was worse than a joke. I say this because various Axis and Allies weapons and uniforms are easy to come by and should be proper to the era.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 21,857 Senior Member
    Gene L wrote: »
    The invasion of China happened in 1937, long before Japan and Germany were allies. It just isn't correct. Russians with SMLEs, Japanese with MPs, Germans with helmets that are clearly inappropriate for the time. The Japanese v China invasion was obviously from an earlier German attack, except they just made it happen in poor light hoping no one would notice.

    If you turn the picture off and listen to the narration, it's not bad history.

    I may be mistakened on what you're talking about. What I watch mostly on American Heroes channel and what I'm referring to is mostly actual footage, not recreations.

    What you're referring to must have been a clip from a movie. Anything to do with Hollywood or the movie business all bets are off.
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 10,255 Senior Member
    As for the AHC, American Heroes Channel, formerly the Military Channel reference in the first part of our post: As of 1630 hrs. they're showing the Mystery of the Parthenon, followed by Riddle of the Desert Mummies, and then Egypt: What Lies Beneath. Following that, in order, is Nefertiti, then Ramses, and the Atlantis Uncovered.

    They do some military stuff, but I don't see the connection with an American Hero and Nefertiti. Let alone Atlantis Uncovered. The change from the Military Channel has apparently not been an easy transition.

    But the World Wars, which was on the History Channel, had mostly modern film stuff and actors with some original footage. And they saved money by doing the modern stuff poorly.
    Not too many problems you can't fix
    With a 1911 and a 30-06
  • JayhawkerJayhawker Moderator Posts: 15,072 Senior Member
    We started calling AHC the All Hitler Channel....I mean, how many times can you run the Rise and Fall of the Third Reich? It's history and I love it, but comon!
    Sharps Model 1874 - "The rifle that made the west safe for Winchester"
  • snake284snake284 Senior Member Posts: 21,857 Senior Member
    Jayhawker wrote: »
    We started calling AHC the All Hitler Channel....I mean, how many times can you run the Rise and Fall of the Third Reich? It's history and I love it, but comon!

    Well I guess they could have called it the All Yamamato Channel as well. How many times can you run Pearl Harbor or Midway? Or the Battle of Leyte Gulf for that matter. I guess that's why they have "OTHER" Programming. These wars were a finite entity and there are a finite number of events that they can make a program out of. So if you watch it like I do that's something you have to expect, a lot of repetition. Those wars are over now so there's not much new material. But I don't mind. It's sort of like listening to an Oldies channel on the radio. After awhile the same old songs get a little boring. So then I just change the channel and watch Golf or weather or whatever is there that interests me for a while. Then when I get my second wind and come back for more of the same, :jester::jester::jester:
    Daddy, what's an enabler?
    Son that's somebody with nothing to do with his time but keep me in trouble with mom.
  • Pelagic KayakerPelagic Kayaker Banned Posts: 1,503 Senior Member
    Gene L wrote: »
    It's a good sign that the History Channel is showing some real history and not Ancient Aliens.

    I'd rather watch Ancient Aliens than have to see Pawn Stars airing over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over... at least there's comedy with that big hair dude.
    "The reflection upon my situation and that of this army produces many an uneasy hour when all around me are wrapped in sleep. Few people know the predicament we are in" ~General George Washington, January 14, 1776
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