If you’ve been watching National Geographic Channel this week, then you know it’s Expedition Week, where programs have been exploring recent discoveries and major expeditions. I have a preview DVD set of the entire week of programming and it’s been tremendous to watch. Plus, you learn a few things in a very entertaining way.
Let’s give you some of the documentaries that will fill out the rest of Expedition Week, plus give you some other upcoming programming on NatGeo. Tomorrow night, we look at how we can make Mars habitable for humans.
EXPEDITION WEEK: Mars: Making the New EarthThursday, November 19 at 9PM ET/PT
The notion of bringing Mars to life ? transforming a cold, dry, uninhabitable desert into a living planet ? called terraforming, has been around for almost a century. Initially just a science fiction concept, it has become a subject of serious scientific investigation. NASA astrobiologist Dr. Chris McKay has spent 30 years researching extreme environments to understand the potential of such planetary engineering. On the surface, the red planet’s freeze-dried world of rocks, ice and dust looks like an unlikely place to plant a garden. But rocks and minerals found by the Mars rovers show it must once have had warmer, habitable living conditions. Now, using photorealistic CGI visualizations, we’ll make a science fiction dream of Mars — a world of trees, rivers and blue skies — a plausible future.Early stage terraformed Mars (no vegetation), orbital view. This stage will be the first of many that will take hundreds of years. (Photo credit: © National Geographic Channel)
Video “Preview: Mars: Making the New Earth” – An 18,500 foot volcano in Mexico is a living laboratory for NASA scientist Chris McKay as he investigates how to transform Mars from a cold, dead planet into a living world like planet Earth.
Video “Preview: Mars: Making the New Earth” – Even if we transform Mars into a home for humans, should we?
Video “Preview: Mars: Making the New Earth” – Could global warming, a problem here on Earth, be the solution to making Mars a habitable planet?
On Friday, National Geographic looks at the evidence behind Simon of Peraea, the man believed to be the King of the Jews.
EXPEDITION WEEK: The First Jesus?Friday, November 20 at 9PM ET/PT
He was called the King of the Jews, believed to be a Messiah. Just before Passover, the Romans beheaded him and crucified many of his followers outside Jerusalem. But his name was not Jesus … it was Simon, a self-proclaimed Messiah who died four years before Christ was born. Now, new analysis of a three-foot-tall stone tablet from the first century B.C., being hailed by scholars as a “Dead Sea Scroll on stone,” speaks of an early Messiah and his resurrection. Was Simon of Peraea real? Did his life serve as the prototype of a Messiah for Jesus and his followers? And could this tablet shake up the basic premise of Christianity? We’ll go to Israel to assess this unique and mysterious artifact, including testing by a leading archeological geologist and comprehensive review of the letters, script and content by a Dead Sea Scroll expert. Then, from Jerusalem to Jericho, we’ll investigate key archeological ruins that could help prove Simon was indeed real — all of which just might sway the skeptics.
The crew films the Jewish graves on the Mount of Olives. (Photo Credit © Hoggard Films / Catherine Yrisarri)Video “Preview: The First Jesus?” – Explore the mysteries of a recently discovered stone tablet that may speak of a messiah before Christ, who rose from the dead after three days.
Video “Preview: The First Jesus?” – A three-foot-tall stone tablet from the first century B.C. may speak of an early Messiah and his resurrection.
Video “Preview: The First Jesus?” – Many scholars are convinced that Jesus came to the temple in Jerusalem and overturned the money tables, knowing there would be grave consequences. Was he taking lessons from Simon to fulfill his messianic destiny?
And next Monday, National Geographic Channel airs The Lost JFK Tapes: The Assassination. This looks very fascinating.
THE LOST JFK TAPES: THE ASSASSINATIONMonday, November 23 at 9PM ET/PT
For over 45 years, news footage and radio reports of Kennedy’s assassination and the days following have quietly languished in Dallas – first kept under wraps by the news stations who owned them, then in the vault of a museum dedicated to preserving the memory of the day Kennedy was cut down. Now, for the first time, this remarkable record will be assembled in an unprecedented two-hour documentary. The film will detail the events of those four days in a way not seen in more than four decades, letting the images unfold in real time. That’s what sets this film apart – a “you are there” approach. The film features this footage in its original form – for the first time since it was broadcast in 1963.
Video: “Preview: THE LOST JFK TAPES”- On November 22, 1963, hundreds of hours of news footage, radio reports, audio recordings and home movies captured history as it was chaotically unfolding.
So, stuff to look forward to. National Geographic Channel never fails to entertain and educate.