(thanks to the BBC for providing me with a review copy!)
The Planet Earth series has set a new gold standard for what nature programs should be. It features wonderful information, great music, excellent narration and, oh, my goodness…the sights. The sights! If you haven’t got an HDTV, this title alone is valid reason to get one. It’s just flat-out beautiful to look at, and the best way to look at it is through blu ray.
And I’m not kidding. On my TV (1080p, 42 inches), it looks just stunning. I really could go on for days about how perfect the picture is. The series never looked this good when shown on TV, and it doesn’t even look as good streaming (I own the whole set on Amazon Instant Video). It’s truly a wonder to behold.
Planet Earth, the Six Disc Special Edition contains not only all eleven episodes of the ground-breaking series, but you also get a whole raft of special bonus features, including a special about the snow leopard, one about the Mayan underworld, another focusing on elephants trying to survive in the Namibian desert (better them than me!), as well as commentaries, production diaries, “Planet Earth: The Future”, a sneak peek at Frozen Planet and, fascinatingly, a music-only option. Yes, you can sit down and simply listen to the music as you watch the incredible beauty unfold on your screen.
Better still, for those of us in the USA, you get David Attenborough’s original narration. Don’t get me wrong; Sigourney Weaver did just fine. But, well, Attenborough. The guy’s just flat-out incredible, and really knows his stuff. He makes for a much better VO choice than Weaver did.
This really is the best nature documentary series ever made. Blu ray really is the best way to see it. If you want a great way to celebrate Earth Day, or really just want to have a great time watching some TV, this is a perfect choice. I cannot recommend it highly enough.