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Proper Gander

Proper Gander: On The House

Proper Gander

‘When we live in a house, we’re just passing through. People have occupied it before us and others will take our place when we leave’.

Proper Gander: Out Of The Blue

Proper Gander

Programmes like Blue Planet II (BBC1) make us feel a bit less begrudging if and when we cough up for our TV Licence. A follow-up to 2001’s Blue Planet, the epic documentary series is a fascinating look at life in the world’s oceans. Its production involved 125 expeditions across four years, using the latest camera technology to record more than 6,000 hours of underwater dive footage alone. The lengths which the researchers and camera crews took to get the right shots shows an impressive amount of determination, such as staking out places over months waiting for rare events, like the Marbled Grouper Fish’s annual spawning in French Polynesia. The end result is both a jaw-dropping spectacle and a valuable piece of research, which has netted over 13 million viewers for Auntie Beeb.

Proper Gander: Nutters and Putters

Proper Gander

Television programmes (and magazine articles) about Donald Trump are rarely in short supply, thanks to his knack for being a symptom of just about everything wrong with society. The upcoming anniversary of his presidency starting has given another opportunity to try and explain how on earth he got where he is. For starters, Channel 4 have broadcast an epic four-part account of his life called 'Trump: An American Dream', although 'nightmare' would be a better description. Other shows have focused on particular aspects of his rise, such as who his supporters are and his relationship with Scotland.

Proper Gander: Music For The Masses

Proper Gander

The most oppressive regimes of the last century didn’t only use their military strength to maintain a hold over people. As the documentary Tunes For Tyrants: Music and Power with Suzy Klein (BBC4) shows, both the Russian and German states used music to reinforce compliance. The series’ three episodes cover the years between the end of the First World War and the end of the second, when both states were moving towards totalitarianism, reminding us of the similarities between the extreme left and right wings of capitalism. They endorsed and encouraged particular styles of music, but the styles they suppressed reveal just as much about politics and culture during this turbulent era. In the programme, alongside archive footage and performances by the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, Klein talks with experts and people who played music at the time.

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