History Channel

Does anyone else here think that the History Channel has been going down hill recently? Personally, I don’t particularly enjoy these new reality shows like Ice Road Truckers and Axemen. I don’t really mind Pawn Stars i guess.

A greater source of concern to me, however, is that among the documentaries they do show, the topics are becoming increasingly bizarre. A majority of them seem to be about aliens; aliens building the pyramids, aliens building the Statue of Liberty (no wait, that was the Illuminati); when they’re not about aliens, they’re about the Knights Templar and the Freemasons ruling the world. It seems like so many of these shows are pandering to conspiracy theorists. And many of the “experts” they get to come on the shows to are controversial to say the least; many are well-known pseudo-historians. I will say to their credit, they did recently do one show which systematically debunked all the 9/11 conspiracy theories. But I think this was an outlier.

I know people were getting tired of all the WW2 stuff on before, but they’ve occasionally managed to make good programs on a whole variety of valid subjects, like the barbarian invasions, the black death; they recently made a good one on the history of Russia. Why they’re going the aliens and freemasons route I have no idea. Many of those programs are not only not educational, they’re actually rather misleading.

So does anyone else have any thoughts on the recent developments of the History Channel?

They have a lot of time to kill and they put on whatever their sponsors are willing to pay for.

But, I agree, I don’t like those shows, either.

I like Modern Marvels, from time to time. I like Engineering Disasters. they also have “escape” shows like “Money” or something like that.

I think they have one or two other ‘history’ channels, like history international, (I think – I don’t get it).

I like their astronomy shows, when they come up.

But, definitely, they have lost the ‘edge’ on history programming. We have basic and expanded cable.

After I finalize my income taxes this year, I may be able to get a couple premium channels, or, have dish TV installed in the bedroom.

History is always controversial. Even their programs on the Bible were produced with a broad point of view, with various contributors.

It’s hard to make history entertaining, isn’t it?

They will be running specials for Black History Month, in February, won’t they?

It hasn’t been the History Channel for a very long time now. For a while it was the Hitler Channel as you mentioned. Now it is just another reality channel.

Maybe they realized they can’t compete with free, as in Google and Wikipedia, and didn’t want to invest in the level of quality that would be necessary to do so, and thus we have the capitulation to reality TV.

I like Modern Marvels, from time to time. I like Engineering Disasters. they also have “escape” shows like “Money” or something like that.

I think they have one or two other ‘history’ channels, like history international, (I think – I don’t get it).

I like their astronomy shows, when they come up.

Me too. My parents (and myself before I moved off to college) have history international as well as the military channel, both of which were pretty interesting. Of course, they also have a good deal of WW2 and Nazi documentaries as well, which is what some people dread about the History Channel.

History is always controversial. Even their programs on the Bible were produced with a broad point of view, with various contributors.

It’s hard to make history entertaining, isn’t it?

Sure is. I’m majoring in history in college, and even many history majors are quite selective about their interests. I’m kind of old-fashioned, in that I like histories of wars and revolutions, political history, and history of science and technology too. Interests today are changing a lot ang going away from that. I suppose if I enter acedemia (not currently my first choice as a profession) I’d have my work cut out for me trying to persuade kids that the War of Spanish succession is vitally pertinent to their lives.

Well I haven’t had much respect for the History Channel for several reasons, which I will dictate below:

  1. They’re utterly biased to the English-speaking world.
  2. They don’t even care about History anymore.
  3. “The Story of us” series, if you notice, JUMPS 50 friggin years! That’s a huge gap on American history, one that’s important. Like the Invasion of Puerto Rico? And several other things aswell, like the invasion of eastern Russia, which failed.
  4. Battles BC; a show talking about the Old Testament wars, they do a bad job to make the information accurate.

If the Channel were really interested in History, they’d get rid of all that reality show nonsense and go back to what really matters. Telling history. We haven’t seen enough documentaries on the Samurai, nor ones on Charlemagne, Charles Martel, The Crusades (And a good one of this one cause I’ve seen REALLY bad ones), or The Order of the Hospitaller Knights of Malta. Their whole history is full of awesome.

-Sir MontChevalier

Hi Crumpy,
I agree. I recently bought the History channel Bible series on DVD and, while it contained some good information, it opted too much for the “talking heads” format. A sure sign that they were faced with budgetary restraints.
God Bless,

I don’t like watching the History channel very much. From what I’ve noticed, they have this strange tendency to rewrite any history pertaining to the Church to their own fictitious accord, constantly lying about it. It’s very tiring to hear about how some Pope did this/said that (when he either did not or they ripped it out of context), the Church teaches that women were of little value that… Same old mendacious garbage.

I, for one, always liked all that WWII programming.
I do tend now more toward HI due to all that awful ghosties and gobblies stuff. I’ve notice a real trend lately towards that as well as all the alien crapola too. I want to tell HC, “THAT is conjecture, NOT history!”.Same with the BIO channel. Seems most of the time I check it it’s celebrity ghost stories and garbage like that.

I like “Modern Marvels” on the channel.

I am not fond of some of the series they show and some of the subject matter. I simple just choose not to watch them.

I do find many of the programs fascinating especially the recent World War 2 series.

Here and there, I’ve noticed the History Channel, National Geographic and maybe the Discovery Channel will show end of the world types of programming. It was quite bothersome for a while.

Is it just me or is Hitler on television at least once every day? I wonder why he is shown so much on the television.

I know what you mean. I’m sick of History and Discovery being nothing but… truckers, loggers, crab fishers… It’s incredibly annoying. You turn on Discovery during the day, and all you get is American Chopper. All day long. Everyday.

However, about the alien stuff… It’s been that way for awhile, most these specials are old, and re-airing.

History, Discover, etc go through phases. Usually, it’s… Egypt, WW2, aliens… Repeat process.

I quite like the stuff on Egypt. I sometimes enjoy it when History turns into The Hitler Channel… Of course he was a horrible person, but I just find him interesting. As for aliens… Eh, boring most of the time. Aliens have never really interested me, even on sci-fi shows I enjoy.

Anyway, History Channel has phased through these subjects for awhile. As for the end of the world stuff… 2012, they know it’ll spark interest. As stupid and boring as most of it is. :shrug:

Anyway, I’m good with all those subjects, really, I just want the blasted reality TV to go away. Because I seriously wonder… Ice Road Truckers? Swamp Loggers? WHO watches this junk?

I don’t think anyone watches that stuff, which is why most of it only gets played once or twice and it never surfaces again.

I’m surprised that the History Channel still has enough money to keep itself afloat.

Why doesn’t history channel talk about Charlemagne? He was an interesting person. Or his Grandfather, Charles The Hammer? Or Poland!!! O:

Poland has a long and gloriously excellent history! They’re just as awesome to rival that of France or England or even my most enjoyed and beloved nation, Sacred Spain! :thumbsup:

And wasn’t Poland Pope John Paul II’s homeland? :eek:
Why haven’t they looked at Poland?

Poland would be fun. There’s hardly been a boring decade in Poland for a thousand years. Since they’ve done a lot of programs on the crusades, they could do one on the Baltic crudades between the Teutonic Knights and the Polish and Lithuanian Empires.

I also wouldn’t mind if they did something on Germany other than WW2.

I don’t think anyone watches that stuff, which is why most of it only gets played once or twice and it never surfaces again.

I’m surprised that the History Channel still has enough money to keep itself afloat.

Maybe they got some stimulus money we don’t know about?

Aliens, truckers and crab fishermen are a HUGE improvement on the skewed polemic hack jobs they used to do on just about ANYTHING that touched on the catholic church.

Aw c’mon guys. I like the the truckers.

But, yeah, I too am bothered by the alien conspiracies. I watched a few of those with my mom and I spent the entire two hours pointing out flaws in their logic. I have two major complaints that come up over and over. One is that although they spend a lot of time talking about the Mayans and the Egyptians, they never mention the Chinese (or anybody else for that matter). They were advanced. Why why didn’t the aliens visit them?
My other problem is that when they discuss ancient Egypt Zahi Hawass is never around. If it were a legitimate Egyptology program, Zahi would be in it.

I totally agree…the only good documentaries on it anymore are on at really weird times of the day and were made a while ago and are being reaired as filler. They show to much reality stuff, and wacko conspiracy and alien shows that are based on little or no science. I think their stuff on religon is a little skewed too. I’m not Catholic but seriously every problem in Europe was not caused by the Catholic Church and solved by the Reformation. I saw a program on the history of sex and seriously it was laughable how skewed it was.

I wish they would go back to doing straight history documentaries on a variety of topics. Discovery has gone that way too, lots of reality and weirdness very little science.

Side note: Zahi is not a fan of the alien or super advanced lost civilzation theories and is constantly accused of cover ups by those that advance them…not surprising he is not on their shows. That being said there are lots of experts (legitmate ones) who are also not fond of Zahi, he is kinda known as a spot light hog and a bit of a prima donna. There have been many docimentaries that are really good about ancient Egypt that he has not been involved in making. He visited our city recently with the King Tut exhibit and offended a few people with his attitude.
He also has made many in the international museum committee upset with his constant demand that all Egyptian antiquities should be returned to Egypt. Not only would this be impossible, and impractical, but it would severly limit the exposure and knowledge of ancient Egypt. I volunteer at the local museum and we have two mummies and a few artifacts, I’ve seen how they really interest and excite kids about Egypt, more so than a replica or model would. I hope they are never returned as they were obtained legally, and there are lots of kids in our city who will probably never actually be able to visit Washington DC let alone Egypt. (OK I’m off my soap box)

I wholeheartedly agree with you. The History channel has spoken about George Washington and Abe Lincoln, why not Boleslaw the Brave? He was an excellent tactician and still considered to this day as the father of Poland. Or something like that, I don’t know. I don’t know if Poland even existed beyond the Dukedom. =/

It’s funny that I came across this thread because my family and I were just discussing this yesterday. We used to love the History Channel. They had some really good programs on there, but now I never watch it. I remember when The History Channel first began it was all WWII, which although interesting, was just too much. Then they started to branch out into other periods of history, which I enjoyed. Then it seemed to be just all military history again and now there’s these reality shows and they’re always showing the same thing on the freemasons in the US (I love 18th century US and European history - there’s so much more interesting history during that time period than what was going on with the freemasons) and other things similar.

I also know what you mean by the pseudo-historians. We have a few friends who majored in history and are working as actual historians, history professors, etc. and they laugh at some of the people they use on the programs.

This was one of the few stations I enjoyed watching on Cable, and now we’re actually planning to cancel our cable subscription. There really is nothing worthwhile to watch on there anymore.

I agree with all of you the History Channel is going down the tubes. The past couple seasons of reality shows,Nostradamus,aliens, etc. are just so much junk. I like the suggestion someone had about showing something on countries like Poland, heck why not histories of all of Eastern Europe? It would be so interesting, I am Hungarian so I would be interested in hearing more about the Magyars. They did some good stuff on American history years ago but there is so much more they could do there too.Really, so much interesting stuff they could do but they had to jump on the reality show bandwagon, since when are ice road truckers history? And where do they get these phonies they use to back stuff up? As far as their religous slant I just stay away from it because all they want to do is bash the Church. Maybe if ratings go down, and I think they would have to be with the junk they have on now, they might wake up, But I won`t hold my breath.Too bad cause at one time it was one of my favorite channels.:mad:

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