F-16 fighter planes scramble to intercept a rogue Learjet over the Midwest. A tiny airport in the Canary Islands plays host to the worst aviation accident of all time. And the colossal investigation into the 9/11 attack on the Pentagon. Every time a plane crashes, the world takes notice. And so do the experts whose job it is to figure out what happened. This season, we revisit some of history’s most catastrophic plane crashes, brought to life through eyewitness accounts, harrowing reenactments, and interviews with the investigators who ultimately determined what went wrong.
Embark on a series of first-class luxury cruises to remote islands, exotic cities, untamed coasts, and historic wonders. These Mighty Cruise Ships go anywhere adventure calls, whisking passengers to high-end, far-off destinations in Indonesia, French Polynesia, Cape Horn, Russia, and beyond. Delivering breathtaking experiences, however, often means overcoming substantial obstacles, from dangerous waters to extreme weather to temperamental vessels. It’s up to each crew to ensure a smooth ride for all aboard.
Take off on a thrilling flight across America. This epic series offers rare glimpses of our nation's most treasured landmarks, all seen from breathtaking heights. From busy cityscapes to quiet landscapes, we capture the history and the pageantry of our amazing country, which is as diverse as the people who occupy it.
Join Elizabeth McGovern as she takes an in-depth look at the young American heiresses whose real life stories inspired the acclaimed TV drama “Downton Abbey.” This series takes you from the late 1800s, when daughters of America's new industrial millionaires marry into the money-strapped British aristocracy, to the 20th century, when a new kind of American Princess wields power not through wealth, but through character, style, and wit. Through the decades, these women bring dramatic change to the European aristocracy and eventually the world.
America's most notorious spy plane. A fighter that hovers like a helicopter and blasts off like a jet. An aerial refueler that pumps 1,200 gallons of fuel per minute. These are the go-to aircraft for the CIA, the Marines, and the U.S. Air Force, pushing the boundaries of aviation and gravity, and changing the face of battle. Discover the inside stories of the U-2 Dragon Lady, the Harrier, and the KC-135 Stratotanker, brought to life through rarely seen combat footage and the testimonies of the designers, pilots, and engineers behind them.
From nearly the time she was born, Cleopatra had to fight for the throne and for her life. She was raised in the palace of one of history’s most ruthless royal families and had to use every skill in her arsenal—her brains, her charm, and her body—in order to survive. She would seduce the world’s greatest leaders, form powerful alliances, and cement her place in history. This is the story of the real Cleopatra, told through lavish reconstructions and testimony from the world’s leading historians.
From the 1920s through the 1960s, America transformed from a young country on the rise into a global superpower. It’s a decisive period in our nation’s history that most of us have only witnessed in black and white, until now. Using digital colorization technology, we present these formative decades as few have seen them, revisiting 50 vibrant years of good times and great despair, technological triumphs and natural disasters, and global villains and national heroes.
Actor Robert Powell, star of the TV miniseries “Jesus of Nazareth,” is on a journey across the Holy Land to discover the real story of the role he played decades ago. Guided by the Gospels and the latest archaeological and historical research, Powell will travel to Israel, Lebanon, Syria, and Egypt. With the help of scholars and theologians, he will examine Jesus’s lost adolescent years, the start and growth of his ministry, and his death and believed resurrection, which would spark the birth of one of the largest religions on the planet.
Some used captivating style to boost diplomacy. Some offered compassionate calm in days of war. Some embraced the role they never expected to make a difference. And some seized the role they always dreamed of to blaze a trail. Every first lady has their own tale to tell, and this series examines some of the women who left their indelible mark on the White House and in history. Join us as we go beyond the public lives to tell the private stories of Dolley Madison, Eleanor Roosevelt, Jackie Kennedy, Nancy Reagan, Hillary Clinton, and more.
Think a root canal is tough? Try performing one on a tiger. Caring for animals is the ultimate medical challenge. These are patients who can’t speak, are often dangerous, and represent countless unique anatomical systems. Yet zoo vets somehow manage to give specialized care to each creature they treat. We go behind the scenes at our country’s largest zoos and aquariums to witness these doctors handle every imaginable emergency, from an otter with kidney stones to a Silverback Gorilla in need of an ultrasound. It’s all in a day’s work.
When disaster strikes, it often comes without warning, catching people off guard and forcing split-second decisions that mean the difference between life and death. This series revisits some of the most harrowing calamities of the last 75 years, from the Oklahoma monster tornado of 1999 to the Mount St. Helens eruption to the sinking of the USS Indianapolis. Through firsthand accounts, we follow the fortunes of those who found themselves in the middle of catastrophe and fought to make it out alive.
A monument that may explain why the people of a thriving ancient city vanished from Earth. A tablet that reveals a towering truth about one of the Bible’s strangest stories. Evidence that the 10 plagues of Egypt were real natural phenomena. Join us as we follow a team of investigators around the globe, using modern science and technology to uncover ancient mysteries surrounding these and other puzzles from our past. By examining these relics and legends, we hope to gain insights into who we are, where we come from, and where we are going.
Join acclaimed broadcaster and naturalist David Attenborough on a worldwide journey charting the incredible rise of the creatures that dominate the Earth's land, seas and skies: the vertebrates. This exploration whisks you to excavation sites in China, Germany, North America and beyond, unearthing new fossil evidence that's providing explosive insights into our evolutionary past. From the first fish with a backbone to the growth of today's major mammal groups, it's a remarkable 500 million-year story that only continues to develop over time.
From the first secret agent training school in North America to one-of-a-kind color footage of the Pacific theater to the inspirational story of seven Jewish dwarfs living under Nazi rule, Smithsonian Channel has collected its most remarkable WWII docs for military junkies and history buffs alike.
On the outskirts of Yellowstone National Park is Paradise Valley, Montana, home to bears, wolves, elk, and an animal so secretive, few ever get to see it: the mountain lion. Wildlife filmmaker Casey Anderson became one of those lucky few after following the tracks of the elusive cat from his backyard into the world of a mother and her three cubs. It was the beginning of what would become a remarkable relationship that gave Casey a rare glimpse into the life of a mountain lion family and a new understanding of an animal we know so little about.
When “Star Trek” first aired in 1966, it expanded the imagination of viewers about what was possible in our lifetime. Today, many of the space-age technologies displayed on the show, like space shuttles, cell phones, and desktop computers, have already gone from science fiction to science fact. Other innovations, like warp drive, teleportation, and medical tricorders are actively in development. Join us as we celebrate the 50th Anniversary of “Star Trek” - a show that continues to inform, enrich, and inspire.
Set sail on the world’s mightiest ships as they embark on some of the most challenging, dangerous jobs a working boat will ever face. These marvels of marine technology are built for anything the heavens and oceans can dole out. The dedicated men and women who work aboard these vessels are equally battle-tested. From armed-to-the-teeth warships and super-sized cruise liners, from serene tropical waters to fierce Southern Oceans, experience it all firsthand on this first-rate high seas adventure.
“Mad Men” gave audiences an all-access glimpse into the world of advertising in America during the tumultuous decade of the 1960s. It was inspired by the real men and women of Madison Avenue who perfected the art of the sale and transformed American culture in the process. Who were these people and what were the campaigns that created this consumer culture? Follow the evolution of advertising from the 1950s through the 1980s, via interviews with the industry’s top ad executives, and through classic ads and commercials.
In 1959, a 33-year-old minister from the Nation of Islam gains notoriety with his fiery rhetoric and keen intellect. His name is Malcolm X and over the next five years, this influential yet highly controversial civil rights leader will become an ideological hero to some and a dangerous enemy to others. Presented entirely through his speeches, newscasts, and rarely seen archival footage, The Lost Tapes: Malcolm X tells the story of the man who, by any means necessary, willingly put his life at risk to bring change and equality to black America.
The very first submarine, which legend claims lurked beneath New York Harbor during the American Revolutionary War. The small ships that rescued thousands from Dunkirk. The destroyer that forced the easing of the Cuban Missile Crisis. Over the centuries, conflicts have prompted advances to ship designs, making vessels stronger, faster, smarter, and capable of changing the course of wars. Join us as we examine the world’s greatest Combat Ships, and reveal how they shaped world history and inspired men and women to acts of incredible courage.
This collection features some of the coolest, weirdest and cutest critters on Earth. From newborns at the zoo to creepazoids living in your backyard, Smithsonian Channel knows how to deliver the "oohs" and "ahhs." These are the kinds of thrills that inspire kids to find out more about the natural world and its many incredible wonders.
A supersonic spy plane that can reach Mach 3 and the very edge of space. A seven-story, flying double-decker that can carry up to 853 people. And the Holy Grail of aircraft design that revolutionized air travel as we know it today. These are the amazing journeys of three planes that changed the world: the SR-71 Blackbird, the DC-3, and the Airbus A380. Each extraordinary plane has an extraordinary story to match, including big gambles, brilliant minds, maverick figures, and life-threatening challenges.
Throughout history, warfare has been seen as the preserve of men, but evidence shows that over the centuries, women were often in on the fight. Join us as we tell the tales of history's most iconic female fighters, from the legendary Amazons of Central Asia to the gladiators of the Roman Empire to the all-female fighting force of West Africa. Discover the extraordinary lives of women who, just as fiercely as men, bravely fought, endured, and sacrificed.
A Roman soldier buried under Mount Vesuvius ash. An Irish king preserved in a bog. A teenage Inca girl frozen in time at the peak of the world’s tallest active volcano. Mummies are everywhere, and they are turning up in the most unexpected places. Most are in astonishingly good condition, and all have astonishingly good stories to tell. Discover their secrets as we conduct modern day virtual autopsies to solve ancient cold cases and get unprecedented looks into lost civilizations.
It's harder and harder to get away with murder. Today, detectives are catching and convicting more criminals than ever before, thanks to enormous leaps in forensic science. Fingerprints, bones, hair and genetic markers are now forms of indisputable evidence, but that wasn't always the case. Revisit the most dramatic murder mysteries in history and see how forensic tools forever changed the way crimes are solved.
They glide across the prairies of Canada and the deserts of Australia. They power through the cold of the Norwegian Arctic Circle and up the steepest slopes of the mighty Swiss Alps. They zoom into the future in Japan and go back in time in Alaska. Ride the rails to witness the world’s mightiest trains in action and join us as we embark on challenging missions, high-speed thrills, and cross-country adventures aboard these fast and powerful marvels of design and engineering.
They traveled alone and in packs. They collected intelligence and launched attacks. They rose above the ocean depths and ultimately changed the course of war. Chart some of the most dramatic and influential submarine patrols of World War II, from the perspective of the naval masterminds who plotted the strategies to the tenacious and aggressive commanders who carried them out. Follow the ongoing challenges the Axis and Allies faced as they pushed the limits of their vessels in pursuit or in escape.
Every day, almost 200,000 people pass through Frankfurt Airport. Flying has become so routine, that most travelers never consider what a remarkable feat of human ingenuity it is. But that’s about to change. X-Ray: Mega Airport takes you behind the scenes, from the tarmac to the terminal to the aircraft, revealing how everything in this intricately designed mini-city functions. Using state-of-the-art camera technology and computer imagery, we detail the engineering inside the planes, the machinery, and even the brains of the people who work here.
Meet Titanoboa: She's longer than a bus, eats crocodiles for breakfast and makes the anaconda look like a garter snake.
Weather balloons. Atmospheric phenomena. Experimental military aircraft. There are explanations for most unknown flying objects, but not all of them. So, are flying saucers real? Many Americans believe extraterrestrial visits are possible, and in 1952, the U.S. Air Force even launched Project Blue Book, history's most extensive government investigation into UFOs. Join us as we pour over recently declassified reports, meet with science experts, and hear eyewitness accounts to see if we are indeed sharing our friendly skies.
Ancient stories of the Roman city of Carnuntum, China’s Valley of the Kings, and Pompeii have been blurred by the passage of time. Join archaeologists as they use modern technology to reveal the fascinating ways of life of the most prosperous ancient empires across the globe.
Discover the true stories involving very real people, places and events -- some known to the public, others hidden from it -- that went on to inspire some of Hollywood's biggest hits, most iconic heroes and notorious villains.
The Great Barrier Reef. A natural wonder so enormous it can be seen from space and home to one of the most extraordinary communities of animals on the planet. Nearly 60 years since his last visit to this marine paradise, Sir David Attenborough returns, this time armed with a team of scientists and the latest technology. His mission: to explore the reef’s diverse residents and visitors in ways we never could before, to learn more of its surprising origins, and to save it from its most serious threat—mankind.
In the industry known as "ferry flying," only pilots with nerves of steel need apply. Buckle up with ferry flier entrepreneur Cory Bengtzen and his daring team of cowboy pilots as they deliver secondhand, small planes across distances they were never meant to fly. Their job is to deliver aircrafts, anywhere at anytime. Witness the challenges of this big risk, big reward business, from massive storms and major malfunctions to underdeveloped airports and over-demanding clients.
Welcome to The Way We Wore®, a high-end vintage clothing boutique and red carpet mainstay owned by Doris Raymond. Doris has been bringing glamour and glitz to the world's most influential stylists and costume designers. Follow Doris and her team of “vintage virtuosos” around the country, high-end auctions, flea markets and private estates in search of lost treasures. Doris’s fabulous finds give designer gowns and fine vintage frocks a second chance to shine in the spotlight at today’s biggest red-carpet events.
Meet the experts who make the Smithsonian Gardens a stunning living museum year round. See how our horticulturists work tirelessly to overcome urban conditions and freezing temperatures. Learn how all gardeners, from amateur to seasoned, can use their secrets to make their own gardens grow.
From its Florida Everglades to its Great Lakes, its Rocky Mountains to its Manhattan skyline, America is filled with breathtaking beauty. Take a moment to observe the awe-inspiring views of America's stunning landscapes and fuel your fire to travel like never before.
In celebration of Black History Month, Smithsonian Channel has compiled a thought-provoking series of original programs that explore important milestones made by African Americans throughout history, while also taking a look at contemporary cultural topics.
Rebuilds of a Vietnam vehicle and a giant anti-aircraft cannon. A mission to piece together a Frankengun known as the Stinger. A D-Day reconstruction like no other. Military history buff Paul Shull continues his quest to touch, hold, and fire some of the greatest pieces of weaponry on the planet. Follow him across the country as he tracks down some of the most iconic weapons from World War II and the Vietnam War, puts them to the test, and hears firsthand accounts from the veterans who used them.
In the ultra-competitive automotive environment, they out-race and outperform the pack. These are the world’s most powerful, stylish, and desirable supercars. Buckle up as we lift the hoods and gun the engines on the latest exotic vehicles from Porsche, Rolls Royce, Jaguar, and more. From the boardrooms to the factories to the showrooms, Supercar Superbuild reveals the high-stakes gambles, engineering challenges, and years of sacrifice designers and craftspeople face to bring these ultimate fantasy cars to life.
The National Park Service has been active for over a century preserving and protecting over 400 units across America, from the wild and natural to the man-made and historic. Take a tour through iconic Yellowstone and the Grand Canyon and discover smaller, hidden treasures throughout the country as we explore the agency’s evolution over the last century. Through rarely seen footage and stunning aerial views, we celebrate the sites and stories of the national landmarks that reflect our country’s past, present, and future.
Was the remarkable mountain-carved city of Petra once ruled by women? Did the Knights Templar belong to an obscure cult that worshipped John the Baptist? Did the Pueblo civilization of Chaco Canyon practice cannibalism? Sacred Sites spans the globe to visit some of the world’s most remarkable ancient religious structures. Through recent archaeological discoveries and scientific breakthroughs, we offer fresh insights into the civilizations that built these sites, and examine their sometimes controversial, taboo practices.
Take off on a thrilling flight across America, a journey that allows you to leave yourself, and your travel organizer, at home. Shot entirely in high definition, this series offers rare glimpses of some of our nation’s most treasured landmarks, all seen from breathtaking heights. From busy cityscapes to quiet landscapes, from historical and cultural landmarks to untouched locations inaccessible by road, we offer the history and the pageantry of our amazing country, which is as diverse as the people occupy it.
Who is Jack the Ripper? Why are planes vanishing over Nevada? How did Marilyn Monroe really die? What is the truth behind Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster? Do we know all there is to know about the collapse of the Twin Towers? This series investigates compelling testimonies and explosive accusations surrounding history’s great mysteries and legends. By using cutting-edge technology and analytics, we examine data and eyewitness accounts in search of the missing evidence that will finally separate reality from mystery.
These moving stories feature rare footage and personal accounts as well as a unique insight in to America's military history and the bravery of ordinary people asked to do extraordinary things.
A celebrated Nazi general who plots Hitler's assassination. A sunken U-boat that mysteriously vanishes. An Alpine Fortress that may house millions in lost Nazi gold. Decades after World War II, there are still many Secrets of the Third Reich unfolding. We go into the minds of some of the conflict’s most prominent events and notorious figures, and uncover the little-known stories that played a large role in determining the fate of the WWII and those who fought in it.
Enter a world filled with the most spectacular freaks of nature on the planet. Here you will find a weird and wonderful collection of leaping spiders, snot-casting fish, blood-sucking bats, flesh-boring bugs, and other bizarre creatures occupying our land, sea, and sky. Join us as we celebrate oddities of all shapes, sizes, and species, giving an up-close view of them in their natural habitat, and revealing how these misfits of nature have developed their strange adaptations over tens of millions of years.
Get up close & personal with some of the biggest, stangest, deadliest, and rarest creatures on earth. Nobody covers the animal kingdom quite like our globe-spanning scientists, researchers and filmmakers, who match their incredible expertise with stunning videography to produce lush images of a world few have ever seen...until now.
On May 2, 2011 Osama bin Laden, the mastermind behind the 9/11 bombings, was killed by American special forces, marking an end to the longest, most expensive manhunt in American history. Witness the 20-year search for the most wanted man on Earth, as counter-terrorism experts in the White House, the CIA, and the FBI divulge their firsthand accounts. This inside story reveals the presidential frustrations, missed opportunities, and vicious turf wars that tainted the operation right up until the night Navy SEALs ended Bin Laden's reign of terror.
Explore history’s perfect storms and witness catastrophic moments when man and nature collided.
Enter the battlefields of Africa, arenas bathed in a history of savagery and blood, where big cats and big crocs have reigned supreme for centuries. Here in the open plains, muddy swamps, and deep rivers, these super predators don’t simply survive in hostile and unforgiving conditions, they thrive because of them. See how these four-legged assassins adapt to their surroundings and use the terrain to unlock new hunting techniques, seek out new prey, and amplify their age-old skills by using the lay of the land.
Windsor: the oldest and largest continually inhabited castle in the world. For millennia, it’s been the symbol of Britain’s royal dynasties, and for decades it’s been the stage for a series of scandals, secrets, and spectacles for Queen Elizabeth II and her family. Join us as we reveal the stories that took place behind this castle’s walls, from early beginnings to today. Interviews with former castle insiders show what life was, and is, like for the world’s most famous family.
They eject us from planes when disaster strikes. They gently guide us to Earth from thousands of feet in the air. They transport us with amazing speed and remarkable safety. And they keep us alive in the most extreme environments humans have ever explored. This series tells the stories behind the machines and devices that help us survive in the skies—space suits, parachutes, ejection seats, and jet engines—and how they evolved from humble beginnings to incredible instruments that have changed the world and lifted us to new heights.
Insects, pterosaurs, and birds all have conquered the skies over the course of 320 million years, thanks to evolution. Follow David Attenborough across the globe as he uncovers the mysteries of nature's most fascinating creatures, from the first flying beasts to the wonderfully strange arthropods that dominate our world.
We all know Neil Armstrong, John Glenn, Sally Ride, and other icons of America’s space program. But behind the scenes, engineers have been the secret heroes, building the spacecraft and instruments that have helped man leave Earth and explore the stars. We reveal the inside stories of how these brilliant minds created such superior machines as the Saturn V moon rocket, the Space Shuttle, and the Hubble Space Telescope, often against incredible odds.
Christianity is considered to be the world’s largest religion. With huge followers of faith come vast meanings behind the religious practices and the divine word of God. Learn more about the origins of Christianity and the Bible.
Ever wonder what's hiding behind the scenes of America's most renowned museum complex? Find out as host Tom Cavanagh ("Ed") takes you on an entertaining insider's tour of the private rooms, high-tech vaults, and cutting edge labs of the Smithsonian Institution, revealing some of the amazing artifacts and rarely seen treasures that visitors can't see. Follow along as Tom uncovers the history of each object-its origins, how it's being preserved and studied, and what it might tell us.
Since the emergence of technology, there has always been an allure to the design and capabilities of machines. From mechanical eye-candy to multifunctional proficiency, these transports are moving works of art. Buckle up and explore the remarkable evolution of the way we travel.