Some subjects are fascinating and we would all love to have the time to really delve deeper into them. Of course, that's not always possible and sometimes the highlights are just as informative and entertaining. That's where the documentary series History 101 comes in.
Using archive footage, a narrator, and plenty of images and infographics, this is your bite-size guide to some of the most interesting topics. I say bite-size as each episode is only 22 minutes long. Not enough to become an expert but certainly enough to give you a solid summary of any given issue.
So what can you expect to learn more about on History 101? First up is ‘Fast Food', the multi-trillion worldwide industry that has its roots all the way back to when McDonald's opened its first restaurant in 1948. How and why did fast food become so popular and what are the downsides to us munching on the occasional cheeseburger?
We then move on to ‘The Space Race' and the battle between the US and Russia to not only sent the first rocket into space but to land a man on the moon. From the origins of NASA to the advancements in technology, just how much money has been spent and what have we learned over the last 70 years.
Other subjects covered in History 101 include ‘The Rise of China' which is both very appropriate and frightening in equal measure. There is also ‘Plastics' which is one of the more interesting as few of us are even remotely aware of how they were created and just how much of them we use on an annual basis.
Robots, Feminism, Oil & The Middle East, Genetics, AIDS, and Nuclear Power round off the 10 episodes in the series.
It's interesting, informative and easily binged on as you broaden your horizons about the world around you. The narration is excellent but on the downside, some subjects are just too complicated to neatly wrap up in 20 minutes. That means that some ‘facts' are not right. There is also a very obvious slant to the left, comparisons that are more ‘apples and oranges' than actual comparable events and it is very pro-American – just check out the ‘Oil & The Middle East' episode!
That said, its simple presentation does make it more easily digestible and it really does make you think a lot more about the day to day things we all take for granted. Just do a little bit more research and don't take everything you see at its word.