|Posted: 02 October 2018 at 5:02pm | IP Logged | 7
Anything by James Burke is well worth watching but first series of CONNECTIONS is something really special. His (unconventional at the time) views on how history and technology are intertwined are more on point now than they were 40 years ago. Burke's leisure suits with giant collars and enormous flares along with his signature wit and presentation style all make a compelling watch. The later series for some reason just don't grab me like that first one -- perhaps because they were shot on videotape and seem to be missing something.. The original and it's sister show THE DAY THE UNIVERSE CHANGED were shot on film and have a grittyness in their presentation that could only have been done in the late 70s.
THE SECRET LIFE OF MACHINES:
Like Burke, Tim Hunkin and Rex Garrod present how things work in a unique way that make this show a compulsive watch. I love how stuff Tim is demonstrating sometimes doesn't work or just plain blows up in his face. All sorts of crazy stuff like demonstrating how heat affects crystal structure by roasting digital watches in an oven, showing how a fuel injector works by turning it into a rudimentary flame thrower, and a giant flaming pyramid of TV sets still pluged into the mains -- er... just because.
Tim's dabbling in cartooning, engineering and performance sculpture has led him down some interesting paths, such as designing and building large unusual clocks (including water clocks) all around the world, unusual and rude/off colour coin operated machines, and the flying pigs and sheep used for Pink Floyd's Animals tour. Rex is like the British equivalent of Al Borland to Tim Hunkin's out-there-ness.