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Hockey: A People's History


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#1 scotian1

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 08:20 PM

If you have never had the opportunity to watch this series it is well worth your time. The first episode doesn't give enough credit to Nova Scotia as the birthplace of hockey but other than that it is pretty darn good. You will have to invest a lot of time to see the complete series but it is well worth it.


#2 scotian1

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 08:22 PM

It is worth it to see the stories of great players from their childhood on including Bobby Orr.

#3 Jordu

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Posted 29 December 2012 - 09:00 PM

If you have never had the opportunity to watch this series it is well worth your time. The first episode doesn't give enough credit to Nova Scotia as the birthplace of hockey but other than that it is pretty darn good. You will have to invest a lot of time to see the complete series but it is well worth it.


If you watch the whole series you will have invested your time wisely.

For my money (and I shelled out for the DVD box set years ago), "Hockey: A People's History" is superior in pretty much every way to Ken Burns' "Baseball." Better archival footage, more knowledgable and articulate interviewees, and a firmer grasp of the history of the sport in society.

Even if you have only a passing interest in hockey, check this out. It's such a well made documentary it'll draw you in.

#4 Spacemans Bong


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Posted 30 December 2012 - 07:32 AM

Nah, it's not as good. More knowledgeable interviewees? They have Gretzky commenting on the start of professional hockey in Michigan, in fact they have Gretzky commenting on everything and he doesn't know shit about any of it. Gretzky on screen was when I knew it was time to get my drink. Not even Doris Kearns Goodwin was that bad, since they didn't have ol' Doris commenting on Christy Mathewson's fadeaway. As for archival footage - they don't have any before the 50s, that's why they have to reenact everything. Which is outstanding and adds a lot to the documentary - face it, how else were we going to visualise 19th century hockey - but it just puts into perspective how the NHL seemed to operate before the TV era without anybody deciding that a camera was a good thing to bring into the building. That league is so dumb.

The whole "Terry Sawchuk's face symbolises the post war ethnic Canadian male's desire to be accepted by the establishment" is what Ken Burns gets accused of, but it's much more ham handed here. Burns is actually much more subtle, here you don't go an episode without five pearl clutching moments telling the viewer just how much hockey means to Canadians.

And technically nothing like the Ken Burns effect or the use of contemporary popular music. Bassball's a lot funnier too.

It's still a great documentary of course, but it would have been better if the CBC weren't so CBC about it.





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