Weapons Races (Acorn Media/Athena DVD Set)
B- Sound: B- Extras:
D Episodes: A
creators of the acclaimed series Hitler’s
Bodyguards comes Weapons Races.
This three disc, eight episode set from Athena collects this smart Discovery
Channel series for the first time on DVD. Following a highly successful
formula, each episode sets up the historical period in which the particular
weapon system was developed. All
successful battlefield weapons develop out of some need or shortcoming in the
actual theater of war.
the various powers needed something to break the stalemate of trench warfare.
The show’s producers identify and describe the horrific conditions prior to the
development of the first tanks during WWI. It was these lumbering,
temperamental, and sometimes unreliable behemoths that eventually broke the
stalemate. Many of the nations involved raced to field effective
machines, and it was Britain
that managed succeeded by fielding enough machines to allow their infantry to
sally from the trenches and dislodge the Germans. Post WWI, the
development of tanks continued, and it was Germany that won this leg of the
race, stealing the best ideas from abandoned French designs to create truly
reliable and impressive armored machines. Of course, Germany was
later out-produced by the Soviet war machine that developed more efficient
production methods that allowed them to outnumber Nazi tanks by a factor of 10
cases the weapons races detailed in this series are supported with amazing
archival footage of production and battles. Successes are enjoyed, but
the innovators often learned more from their and others’ failures.
boxed set also includes a sixteen page viewer’s guide containing historical
support material, biographies of notable weapons innovators, and a link to more
online information at athenalearning.com.
This set would provide ideal classroom learning support for any unit on
the eras it covers. Athena again delivers compelling and informative
- Scott Pyle