Wednesday, June 1, 2011


I've talked about teledons and my love of PBS - for Nova, or history, "Secrets of the Dead", archaeology, whatever. I actually Netflick up History Channel specials and other things - most recently backing up a recent Terry Jones, and a History Channnel pairing of bits of "Barbarian" ... erm, history.

Of course I just love Terry, and he's looking fit and well in his take, but for my money, as little as I like whig historianism, it doesn't follow that ax-grinding (hee) is necessarily my thing moreso just because someone flips to the other side of the blade. Questioning conentional wisdom, I feel is necessary; but nanny-nanny-boo-boo-ing it I don't see. Yes, the juggernaut reputation of "Roman civilization" needs to be considered, and explored. But entirely contradicting it is no more enlightened than traditional dismissals of "Barbarian" cultures. And repeatedly complaining that Romans exposed their babies and watched death-for-entertainment ... rather misses the fact that, actually, people throughout the world - and throughout history - have done the same things, unfortunately.

Barbarian law NEEDS to become a part of historic scholarship. It needs to be acknowledged, the accomplishments and attainments of Barbarian culture deserve a place in general understanding, and the wall built around them by millennia of propaganda DOES need to come down.

But standing on the wall taunting with an outrageous French accent, as popularly effective as it probably is, shortchanges a depth of consideration ...

And this brings me to Clancy, narrating an American take on the subject.

Oh, my.

Clancy Brown, Clancy Brown: I love you, I always have, I watched that show you did with Billy Zane (and I am weird enough, I watched for YOU - and that magnificent head of hair of yours - not for him, even though he slightly resembles Mr. X). And I don't hold you responsible for your script.

But ohhhh. This script.

Oh, History Channel. Seriously. With the declamatory, and the ... well, defamatory. The Romans would have loved it, even the bit where they starved the Goths and bought their childrend for slaves with payment-by-dog-meat. Ehm.

I like clustering my themes in my Netflix qeue, but am glad my new copies of DS9 Season 4 are on the way momentarily - and that after The True Story of Hannibal (see also: Ben Kane), it'll be time for a stretch of actual movies again ...

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