I remember fondly the innocent days of the mid-late 90s before my family got Sky TV and my daily viewing consisted of 'cooncil telly' fare such as Budgie the Little Helicopter, Scotsport, Bullseye, the Hurricanes, Gladiators and (Take the) High Road- quite a mix, I think you'll agree. (now, I look back and wonder why I wanted Sky so much at all!).
But want it I did... for Monday Night Football, the wrestling, Keenan and Kel and The Simpsons mainly. However, I also wanted it for the History Channel. As a teenage geek, I remember watching a documentary about Hitler at my friend's house, probably after Ultimate Warrior v Hulk Hogan or Raw is War or something equally sad and I think it must have been the first time I had learned anything substantial about him...Hitler that is, not Hulk Hogan. I always included that channel in my 'aww, how amazing would it be to get Sky in?' talks with my brother.
Anyway, after many months and years of desperate pleading, we got Sky in...probably because my Mum discovered the Sky package contained QVC or something...until I flopped at my Standard Grade exams as a result of watching too much fitba, apparently. Anyway, it was back to terrestrial tv for a while as punishment and to ensure I did better next time; I grew up and realised exams are actually more important than the Last Word with Andy Gray on a Sunday night.
But back to the point of this post which was...eh...oh aye, the History Channel. The reality of it is quite disappointing I think and should be re-named the Nazi channel due to it's devotion to all things Nazi: Nazis in Colour, Nazis in Black and White, Hitler's Maw, Hitler's Granny. Give us a break and put something else on!
In fairness, there are other programmes which don't contain 'Nazi' in the title but these also tend to be about the Second World War. I can't remember the last really good programme I watched on the History channel....I watched BBC's A History of Scotland with Neil Oliver last year on and there was a great programme on STV about Scottish International Brigaders in the Spanish Civil War based on a book called 'Homage to Caledonia' by Daniel Gray. Can the History Channel not cast the net a bit wider and put programmes like that on?
I realise the programmes have to appeal to the general public and so war features prominently in the schedule but why does it always have to be the Nazis and the Second World War? It seems like the History Channel is putting on the same programmes I watched as a teenage geek back in the 90s. Surely there is more to history than 1939-45?
So, what else do we want to see historians?