Season Two

This season, we’re going to be looking at the general theme of rebels and rebellions, revolutionaries and revolts, insurrectionists and traitors, freedom fighters and patriots.
All of these are terms that have come up a lot over the past year, particularly since January 6th, 2021. So we’re going to take a long look at how Hollywood responded to contemporary events in the 20th and 21st centuries by retelling the stories of rebels and revolutionaries, and the rebellions and revolutions they were part of.
Along the way, we’ll also be exploring what gets called a revolution, and who gets counted as a revolutionary. Spoiler alert – sometimes those labels are compliments and sometimes they’re accusations.

Episode One:
The Adams Family

In our first episode, we compare and contrast the HBO prestige miniseries John Adams, which solemnly recounts the life of our founding father and second president, and the History Channel miniseries Sons of Liberty, which reshaped revolutionary history into an action-packed adventure tale starring his cousin, Sam.


Episode Two:
History from Below

In episode two we continue to examine the American Revolution, but we look at two series that focus less on the famous Founding Fathers and, instead, highlight the experiences of “ordinary people” people forced to negotiate fast-moving and complex events. They are Turn: Washington’s Spies and The Book of Negroes .  We really want to emphasize how Turn and The Book of Negroes bring the stories of ordinary people to life, but in very different ways.


Episode Three:
Revolution! The Musical

In this third and final episode on the American Revolution, we look at the momentous events through an entirely different genre – the musical. As Lin-Manuel Miranda stated about his ground breaking Hamilton!, “This is a story about America then, told by America now.” But, before he came along there was 1776, a musical and later film made in the shadow of the Vietnam War and the Civil Rights Movement.


Episode Four:
TBA

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Episode Five:
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Episode Six:
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Episode Seven:
TBA

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Episode Eight:
TBA

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