Christine Amanpour: Sex & Love Around the World (CNN)

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Christine Amanpour: Sex & Love Around the World (CNN) – Premieres 17th March – Miniseries

A docu-series where in each episode journalist Christine Amanpour travels to a specific country and talks to women how the countries culture to sex and relationships affects them. 

In the show Amanpour visits a variety of people where their views range from the conservative to the more outlandish, and explain how cultural and technological influences have altered their personal life.

The programme is like a mix between a more conservative take on Slutever with the travel and interaction with the locals of Watt’s World. While it’s an easy enough bit of viewing, it’s not something you go out of your way to watch.

4.7/10

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American Dynasties: The Kennedys (CNN)

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American Dynasties: The Kennedys (CNN) – Premieres 11th March

A documentary the follows the rise of the Kennedy family in the world of American politics and the various incidents that befell them.

The first episode of the programme shows how the family first entered US politics. As Joe Kennedy switched from his business life to becoming the ambassador to the UK, where his reluctance for the US to join the allies in WW2 stopped his own chances at becoming President. From there it shows how he pinned his hopes onto his children, and how he aided and helped them achieve his goals he had set.

The programme is very similar to The Kennedy Files where along with showing the footage of the time, it has interviews with historians and members of the Kennedy family. As they explain what was going on at the time and the internal politics.

Though by covering the whole family and the pre-JFK presidency, it does seem to go into a lot more depth than The Kennedy Files. And is a more interesting bit of viewing for it.

4.7/10

Pope: The Most Powerful Man In History (CNN)

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Pope: The Most Powerful Man In History (CNN) – Premieres 11th March

Documentary that looks into the formation of the Catholic church and the role the Pope has taken throughout its history during various moments in history.

With interviews from religious scholars and members of the church, the programme tells of how the church, using The Didache, begins the spread of the religion throughout Europe. 

The programme then goes into explaining how the church gained it’s legality within the Roman Empire, when Emperor Constantine converted and proceeded to spread the religion through out the Empire. Then after the downfall of Rome, it shows how the Pope created the Holy Roman Empire to keep the religion alive in the area, through to how the church grew to the point it started the Crusades.

As religious documentaries go it’s pretty interesting, though it’s not one you’d go out of your way to watch.

4.4/10

The Radical Story of Patty Hearst (CNN)

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The Radical Story of Patty Hearst (CNN) – Premieres 11th February – Miniseries

A documentary that looks into the story of Patty Hearst, the daughter of one of the richest families in the US, who was kidnapped by the Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA) and then ended up joining them.

Though neither Patty or her family were interviewed, the programme talks to her fiancé about her early life and the relationship before the kidnapping. Then the programme interviews attornies, authors and a member of the SLA about the group formation and how they ended up deciding on the kidnapping plot.

As documentaries go it’s an interesting watch.

5.9/10

Soundtracks: Songs That Defined History (CNN)

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Soundtracks: Songs That Defined History (CNN) – Premieres 20th April

Docu-series that focuses on select important moments in US history and looks at how the social backdrop influenced the music produced at the time, and how the music affected the social climate.

As it covers the events in the show it uses archive footage along with interviews with musicians of the time, and the people that were involved in the events, as they describe what went on and how music played a part in it all.

For a docu-series it was reminiscent of The Seventies, where it seemed more intent in covering as many things as possible making it feel rushed and not the indepth.

4.6/10

Believer with Reza Aslan (CNN)

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Believer with Reza Aslan (CNN) – Premieres 5th March – Cancelled

Docuseries where author and religious scholar Reza Aslan heads off around the world to meet members of the more fringe sects of larger religions.

Reza initially meets up with people of the area to ask about their religion, before explaining the fundamentals of the beliefs of the area. He then heads out to meet the members of the lesser known denominations and find out how their take on the religion differs from the main church.

There he looks into the divisions within the group, taking part a ceremony with the more extreme aspects, then meeting up member of the moderate version to see how they are spreading their word.

For a religious docuseries it doesn’t delve to deep into the background of the denomination he’s looking into but it’s still an interesting enough watch.

4.9/10

The History Of Comedy (CNN)

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The History Of Comedy (CNN) – Premieres 9th February – Renewed

A docuseries that looks into the history of US standup comedy, this starts off looking into the early comedians that has to work within the strict obscenity laws that lead to a few being arrested just for dropping the occasional f-bomb.

While looking into three main comedians it shows how they paved the way on making blue comedy more accessible to the mainstream, and current comedians explaining how their work influenced them.

It’s a solid docuseries that does exactly what you’d expect.

4.9/10