Band of Brothers

Culture Warrior

There are those on the right who have said that Game Change is a partisan smear. At the same time, some on the left may have gone into the program expecting a SNL-style “look-how-dumb-Palin-is” work of predictable affirmation. But while hit jobs and hagiographies might make for effective 30-second political ads, they can’t sustain a two-hour block of television. Game Change, by contrast, is a gripping (though by no means perfect) two-hour block of television. But the term “block of television” does not necessarily carry the same connotations as “TV movie.” The distinction here is important. Game Change’s central thesis is not a political point about either John McCain or Sarah Palin as candidates (what could a TV movie possibly say that’s new or urgent in this respect?), but is instead a lamentation about how our political landscape is determined (on all sides of the ideological spectrum) by the media cycles of Celebrity 2.0. HBO has been preoccupied for quite some time by the major chapters in American history, rolling out expensive and impressive miniseries detailing the canonical moments that Americans learned about during their primary education: whether it be The Revolutionary War and the stories of the Founding Fathers (John Adams (2008)), WWII (Band of Brothers (2001) and The Pacific (2010)), or man’s journey to the moon (From the Earth to the Moon). However, HBO’s original programming has also taken microscopic examinations of recent, not-so-canonized history with smaller-scale projects like Recount (2008), Too Big to Fail (2011), and, of […]


Ron Livingston Band of Brothers

Many fans know Ron Livingston as cubical crusader Peter Gibbons in Office Space, or as fellow swinging, Vegas Loving buddy Rob in John Favreau’s Swingers. Over the years, however, Livingston has put in time acting out and telling the harrowing stories of The Greatest Generation’s experiences in WWII over sixty years ago. In 2001, the award winning Band of Brothers was aired on HBO, Livingston playing the part of Captain Lewis Nixon of the famous Easy Company, of the Army’s 101st Airborne Division. Five years later, he hosted the History Channel documentary, Brother’s In Arms: The Untold Story of  the 502, and three years later narrated the voice of injured serviceman Lt. Charles Scheffel in WWII in HD, another History Channel documentary. Ron had a quick moment to sit down with me and talk about his involvement in WWII related projects, and what they mean to him.


From where I’m sitting, this internet meme of throwing together the same quote one hundred times in a single clip began with Sawyer (Josh Holloway) from Lost and his catch-phrase, “son of a bitch.” Now it’s branching out into cross-platform, cross-property clip mashing for phrases that permeate entire genres.


If you haven’t seen HBOs incredible, Tom Hanks and Steve Spielberg-produced miniseries, Band of Brothers, then I want you to stop reading this right now and go out and buy it. It will prepare you for The Pacific…



As part of our Year in Review, we’ve asked our resident DVDologist Brian Gibson to lay down his 15 favorite releases from 2008.


DVDs I Bought This Week!

Brian Gibson loves to buy DVDs. Come with him on his weekly journey into the depths of credit card debt as he tells you what to buy, rent and avoid.

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