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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Initial Reactions – America: The Story of Us Part 1

This past Sunday was the kick-off episode, Rebels, of the series America: The Story of Us on The History Channel. I wanted to just throw a few things out there that I was thinking as I watched the episode.

• I felt that there was a disjointedness between the discussion of the early Colonial years and the Revolution. There wasn’t a great transition – it was talking about Plymouth one minute and then the next we are in Boston with the Massacre and Tea Party. I would have liked a better transition between the two.

• While I understand that there is a finite number of things that can be discussed in a television show (even with a series of this size) – I felt some very important things were missed. At the moment I am drawing a little bit of a blank (that’s what happens when the show is on so late) but I don’t remember Columbus being mentioned.

• I thought that the CGI and graphics were very good and everything looked beautiful. For me, all the settings and events looked a lot like I had imagined them in my mind.

• Usually with these sorts of shows there are experts in the field – while there were definitely some good ones, other choices threw me. Some of the commentators were famous celebrities, which really didn’t add much to the show for me.

I am anxiously anticipating the next episode, Sunday May 2nd – hopefully I will be able to stay up for it. After the episode ended, I checked out the message board on The History Channel and I was shocked to find there was not one good comment on there – most of these comments were berating the choice of President Obama as the opening speaker for the show. I don’t find this to be so egregious – who would you really expect to open a show about this country other than the president (whoever it might be at the time)? While some of the above things did bother me, I would rate this episode a solid B.

Here is a clip from the episode

If you saw the episode, I would love to hear what you thought.

Copyright © 2010 by The Maiden’s Court


  1. I liked it overall, but was disappointed with all the names left out of the Revolution. While I was glad with mentions of Daniel Morgan and the Baron von Steuben, I would have liked mentions of Lafayette and Greene, among others.

  2. I totally agree with you Christy! There were a lot of people left out that were pretty important. And now that you mention it - I would have liked Lafayette as well!

  3. I'm sorry I missed this! But thanks for the clip- I enjoyed it...and I'm with Newt on this; if 'someone wants to know what it takes to be free,they should study the American Revolution'- I agree completely with that statement. Thanks Heather:)

  4. There was a brief mention of Columbus. I enjoyed it and was enjoyed learning some of the lessor know facts and people but I felt the inclusion of the "celebrity" commentators was unnecessary and didn't really add anything to the show.

  5. Pricilla - thanks for setting me straight about Columbus! I also liked how it wasn't all about the famous people of the time.

  6. I caught this as well (having seen the previews and intending to watch it, then forgetting all about it until I was flipping through the channels!) and enjoyed it. While I am not as big an American history buff as I am a British history buff (go figure!) I do enjoy seeing more about the history of our country. Planning on watching the rest of the mini-series as I am very interested to see how they cover WWII.

    I do agree, some of the celebrity choices were a bit...odd.

  7. Like you I enjoyed the show, but felt it missed something. With the length of the series, they could have spent a bit more time on the beginning. Not enough was mentioned of all the Founding Fathers. They failed to mention that the Six Nation Confederacy is the oldest living democracy on Earth and that Jefferson used it as a model for the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. A major contribution by the Native Peoples that few people even realize.

    Just a side note about the negative comments about Obama opening the segment. As you said, who else would have been more appropriate. I am getting very tired of the knee jerk negative comments and reactions to our President. It is starting to go beyond politics and crossing over into bigotry and racism.

  8. LibraryPat - I couldn't agree more about wanting more about the Founding Fathers - that was sorely skimmed over. I also couldn't believe that the fact that the president was the opening speaker was what every one was talking about and not the show itself. It is sad.


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