When it comes to nature documentaries the BBC’s natural history unit is the best of the best. Over and over again they have produced top-notch programming, and their new multi-part series Life is perhaps the best I have ever seen. The series contains some familiar moments, such as a sengi running down its carefully-groomed pathways, but the bulk of the series consists of vignettes that I have never seen on screen before. One of the most compelling is the story of the slow death of a water buffalo at the jaws of a horde of patient Komodo dragons, a portion of which I have posted above.
I know all this because my lovely wife was able to rig our DVD player to play the Region 2 version of the show (which has been available for some time). It will air in the United States via the Discovery Channel starting on March 21st, but, unfortunately, Discovery tapped the celebrity pseudo-science peddler Oprah Winfrey to do the narration. I think this was a mistake. Oprah’s love for “live your best life now” nonsense aside, her narration is terrible. Her voice is not well-suited to the medium and delivery is just awful. My suggestion to you would be to either 1) unlock the ability to play Region 2 DVDs on your player and order the David Attenborough-narrated version available in the UK, or 2) wait for the Region 1 version of the original program. Whichever you decide to do, it will be well worth it. Life is one of the few documentaries that I can throw into the player when I have company over and say “You’re not going to believe this…”