Band of Brothers TV series and books

Since they are replaying Band of Brothers on heavy rotation, I can now appreciate why one of my coworkers was mesmerized by it: it is a beautiful production of a very difficult topic. I was checking on the Net and the books related to the story portrayed also receive high praise. I was wondering if any of you guys have read them and what you thought about them.

I really enjoyed this mini-series, too.

The book was written by Stephen Ambrose. It isn’t bad, although I had already seen the series when I read it. The series is so true to the book that my only real memory is ‘this may have been a waste of my time.’

Ambrose was a good man even though he was caught red-handed plagiarizing. He was kicked out of my home state, Kansas, in 1970 for heckling President Nixon at a Landon Lecture on the campus of Kansas State University (Ambrose was teaching history there at the time).

One of the most remarkable aspects of the HBO production is that most of the actors are British - including a very brief appearance by a pre-Shaun of the Dead Simon Pegg (in England Pegg’s Sgt. Evans hands a letter to Lt. Winters, played by another Brit, Damian Lewis). British actors are amazingly good, if you ask this American.

We have a poster here whose dad was a colleague of Ambrose’s.
I have the book, you’re welcome to borrow it anytime.
Previous poster is right, they were amazingly faithful to the book (with one glaring exception into which I won’t get here), but I still found it an interesting read.
PM if you want to borrow it.

ps I have the whole boxed DVD set, too if you want to borrow it as well

Thank you so much for the offer. I’ll take it after India.

I saw that Ambrose also wrote a book expanding on his experiences, like Beyond Band of Brothers. Plus Malarky -sorry spelling- also has one. Quite something, if you ask me.

[quote=“Icon”]Thank you so much for the offer. I’ll take it after India.

I saw that Ambrose also wrote a book expanding on his experiences, like Beyond Band of Brothers. Plus Malarky -sorry spelling- also has one. Quite something, if you ask me.[/quote]

Bill Guarnere and Babe Heffron also wrote one, I think it’s on Guarnere’s website.
The DVD has an extra of the 2 of them going back to Bastogne (in summer, thankfully) and walkin around pointing places out,it’s pretty wild.

What do you mean by “wild”? Gotta check this DVD extra, I didn’t watch it yet I guess…

But it reminds me of an episode I’d like to share: In December 2004 I had the luck of staying in and around Bastogne before and during the celebration of the 60th anniversary of the liberation.

When a friend and I went to have a look at the surviving foxholes in the Bois Jacques near Foy (where the action episode “Braking Point” is based on took place), we noticed lots of parking cars, crowds of people, and some TV vehicles. When we ventured on we finally ran into a group of American soldiers, plus some American and German veterans, who where talking and checking out the foxholes. In total, the following BOB veterans were there: Earl McCloung, Babe Heffron, Buck Compton, Shifty Powers, Donald Malarkey and Bill Guarnere.

Some days later I went there again to show this area to another friend, only to run into Shifty Powers and Earl McLung again. This time there were not so many people there, only those two plus, if I recall correctly, two guys from a TV or Radio team, whom they were talking to.

Anyway, both times it felt really creepy to stand at the very place where those events took place, and listen to the American veterans talking about what happened and pointing to (or at least trying to locate) the places where they lay in their foxholes. Also, of course, the German and American veterans talking to each other, how they perceived the situation in the woods and the village of Foy, was very interesting.

If anyone wants to see some pictures of this (and other pics from before and after, albeit all only with German descriptions), some of these are posted here: rde-clan.net/smf/index.php?board=38.0

S. Ambrose is a bit of a lightweight in serious historical circles. He’s a rather poor, dumbed down imitation of Cornelius Ryan. Good for an airport session, but if you want some more meat on those bones, I would try something more along the lines of these:
amazon.com/Four-Stars-Valor- … 309&sr=1-1

[quote=“Icon”]Thank you so much for the offer. I’ll take it after India.

I saw that Ambrose also wrote a book expanding on his experiences, like Beyond Band of Brothers. Plus Malarky -sorry spelling- also has one. Quite something, if you ask me.[/quote]

Jeez Louise, spend all week trying to get my PM deal working and then lost Internet at home.
Consider this a PM (everyone else don’t look) :

Episode 9

Also check out Ken Burns “The War”. Very well done. The footage and commentary is quite amazing.

As far as oral histories are concerned, you wouldn’t go far wrong with Stud Terkel’s The Good War

They had two of the books -the companion after Band of Brothers, and Winters’ biography- at Page One. Very tempting…

I don’t know if you saw this, but they are doing another miniseries but this one is based in the Pacific. It debuts on HBO in about two and a half weeks. If you liked the Band of Brothers series, and the book, I think you’ll like this too.

The Pacific (HBO site)

The Pacific Trailer 1

The Pacific Trailer 2

Isn’t there supposed to be some kind of Spielberg-produced sequel coming out very soon? Like in a month or so? Titled “The Pacific”?
(Pretend you read this post BEFORE the one above) :laughing:

Thanks for the Youtube links. Been watching a bunch of trailers.
What the hell’s wrong with me? What was I expecting? Why was I disappointed to see that its just Band of Brothers with palm trees?
Wonder when the box set will become available here? Looks every bit as good as BoB.

Ehem, I also mentioned in other thread but here it goes: broadcast starts April 4th HBO Taiwan.

Dunno about box set, but I’ll give it a year or two.

[quote=“Icon”]Ehem, I also mentioned in other thread but here it goes: broadcast starts April 4th HBO Taiwan.

Dunno about box set, but I’ll give it a year or two.[/quote]

Oops! :laughing:

[quote=“lbksig”][quote=“Icon”]Ehem, I also mentioned in other thread but here it goes: broadcast starts April 4th HBO Taiwan.

Dunno about box set, but I’ll give it a year or two.[/quote]

Oops! :laughing:[/quote]

No hay problema. :wink:

It’s not even worth watching ‘Band of Brothers’ on HBO. They edit a lot of scenes, some for cussing, and some for no apparent reason whatsoever.
I wonder if ‘The Pacific’ will be the same. And will the actors be mostly English, as they were in ‘BoB’?

[quote=“TheGingerMan”]It’s not even worth watching ‘Band of Brothers’ on HBO. They edit a lot of scenes, some for cussing, and some for no apparent reason whatsoever.
I wonder if ‘The Pacific’ will be the same. And will the actors be mostly English, as they were in ‘BoB’?[/quote]
I haven’t seen BoB except on poagao’s DVD box set. But surely, that’s by HBO, too? Or do they even edit their OWN shows for TV broadcasting?
I’ll be pissed if I discover there’s a better version out there that I haven’t seen.
The box set would be the real deal, surely?
I’m glad I don’t have cable – there’s no WAY I’d be able to resist watching even an edited version. No option for me but waiting for the DVDs to come out.

Should I change the title to show a discussion not only of the books but the TV series too? Mods?

And I guess that would also rule out downloading torrents, as they’d be off the TV broadcasts too, right?
So definitely need to wait for the DVDs. Hope its less than two years, though!