Friday, December 6, 2013
'Wild Wales/Rugged Wales' DVD: Naturally Awesome Documentary Series
BFS Entertainment's October 29, 2013 DVD single-set release of the BBC nature series "Wild Wales" and "Rugged Wales" definitely is all treat without a trace of trick. Wildlife expert (and righteous Welsh dude) Iolo Williams is the best ever science teacher, and his programs create even more excitement for Wales than the scenes of that country in "Torchwood" and the original "The Prisoner."
"Wild" is a three-part series in which each episode focuses on a specific region of Wales. Williams starts in South Wales, moves onto the heart of Wales, and wraps things up in the "rugged northwest" of that country.
The two episodes in "Rugged" move around a bit more freely and largely focus on the natural and man-made aspects of the Welsh terrain. This wide-ranging scope takes the viewers from high elevations, to the viaducts that the railroad companies built, to a massive man-made mine inside a mountain, to the rivers and wetlands that seem to be Williams' favorites.
We also get to see a robber baron's castle that owls now call their home. Another highlight is an absolutely spectacular cavern that requires squeezing and other cringe-worthy activity that Williams (and the audience) considers well worth the effort. The formations on the ceiling alone are breath-taking.
It additionally is neat to see how nature is reclaiming former industrial sites to the extent that the altered habitat is attracting new species and birds are making large housing complexes out of surviving walls.
Williams' enthusiasm for literally every animal, vegetable, and mineral in the Welsh eco-system in "Wild" is incredibly infectious; further, his knowledge extends to the history of the appearances and disappearances of various species.
Our guide's glee on finding an incredibly cute red squirrel during the South Wales episode of "Wild" equals what the rest of us would experience on finding a $100 bill on the sidewalk.
Williams additionally offers exceptional close-ups of birds and other woodland creatures while providing fascinating context regarding what we are seeing. One message is that some species of birds engage in thoroughly despicable behavior that warrants calling them names that are inappropriate in this (mostly) family-friendly format.
Other "Wild" topics include interesting family-friendly looks at the mating habits of seals and additional animals, the creatures who make their homes in the dungeons of dilapidated castles, and seemingly everything else that roots, flies, scurries, or swims anywhere in Wales.
The natural conclusion from all this is that the obvious enthusiasm of everyone associated with these series make this set a must-own for anyone with even the slightest interest in the natural world around us.
Anyone with questions about "Wild," "Rugged," or other nature-related topics is welcome to email me. I can also be found in the Twitter habitat via @tvdvdguy.