The seven-episode series flexes its broadcaster’s mastery of a genre that it created. Over excellent footage shot on a circumglobal photo safari, the venerable narrator David Attenborough orates zoological narratives as if delivering a state-of-nature address.
It's a visually astonishing and riveting seven-part collection of images so surreal they almost feel like science fiction. ... Something like this doesn't happen overnight or come around very often. This is television as an educating device for the globe.
David Attenborough, as has been said many times, is wholly deserving of being called a national treasure, although it is a term he happens to not like. He has done so many treasures and even his lesser output of a long and consistently impressive career is still good.
Absolutely adore the first 'The Blue Planet', one of my favourites of his, so was psyched to hear that there was a second 'Blue Planet' series. Luckily, 'Blue Planet II' turned out to be every bit as amazing, easily a highlight of 2017 television (a strong contender for the best BBC produced one and the best nature documentary series) and one of not many 2017 dramas/series that had me looking forward to see the entire lot. This is saying a lot, seeing as apart from the odd gem 2017 has not seen me watching new television by habit, often find myself seeing re-runs or films.
OK, so 'Blue Planet II' may not be as ground-breaking as 'The Blue Planet' and not everything is new here. This doesn't matter, because 'Blue Planet II' is just as beautiful to watch, non-stop transfixing, educational, inspirational and emotionally complex.
Visually, 'Blue Planet II' was, as it was with 'The Blue Planet' and the best of Attenborough's work, a wonder. It has gorgeous scenery and rich colours, while the animals and marine life are captured in all their glory. Standing out even more is the photography, the underwater sequences are just as stunning as 'The Blue Planet' (unequalled when it comes to underwater sequences).
While not with the involvement of George Fenton, the music here soars, rouses just as much and touches the soul just as much, definitely worthy of cinematic quality. It not only complements the visuals but enhances them to a greater level.
Really can't fault the narrative aspects in 'Blue Planet II' either. There are things already known to me, still delivered with a lot of freshness, but there was a lot that was quite an education and after watching the full series it honestly felt like the series taught me a lot about the mysteries of the ocean and the marine life that inhabit it. One episode explores the consequences of environmental waste and, while it may seem out of place for some, it was very much relevant and important and well-handled.
Attenborough's narration helps quite significantly too, he clearly knows his stuff and knows what to say and how to say it. He delivers it with his usual richness, soft-spoken enthusiasm and sincerity, never talking down to the viewer and keeping them riveted and wanting to know more.
'Blue Planet II' has a lot of effective scenes. It's not easy picking a standout, because there is a lot of emotional complexity here. There are shockingly gut-wrenching moments, especially the whale carcass (a strong contender for the most shocking scene of 2017). There are emotional moments, such as the mother with the dead calf. There are tense moments like the octopus and the shark. There are awe-inspiring moments like with the dolphins. There are also moments of great surprise, like in the first episode where one expects a bird to fall prey to an underwater predator but instead something that one cannot believe was able to be filmed let alone found happens.
Nothing episodic or repetitive here. Instead, it feels like its own individual story with real, complex emotions and conflicts. One roots for the animals, whether prey or predator. The behind the scenes footage "The Deep Blue" brings honesty and humanity, what the crew go through and how they work against sometimes volatile conditions makes the viewer feel admiration for them.
In short, utterly amazing and calling 'Blue Planet II' a must watch does it no justice. 10/10 Bethany Cox
Blue Planet II is jaw-dropping. ... Instead of simply exhorting the Right Thing to Do, the show strives to create the awe and interest required to not just care about the fate of the world’s oceans, but to grow to love them, too. It’s working.
There really cannot be enough praise for the series, which knows how important it is to engage viewers on both an emotional and intellectual level. The results are a riveting, often heartbreaking look at both the strength and fragility of the world’s oceans.
The BBC never fails to amaze me with the quality of it's nature documentaries and The Blue Planet II is no exception. With amazing footage and expert narration this is documentary film making at it's very best.
The underwater photography is outstanding of course and Attenborough makes it magical. David Attenborough is simply the best nature narrator that ever was and ever will be. The warnings about how we are slowly but steadily destroying our planet are subtle and powerful without being scoldful. The environmental movement needs more communicators like Sir David and less antagonistic ones like Greta Thunberg.