Look what's coming to Blue Ridge PBS!
Wednesday, August 27 at 9:00pm
In recent years, an unusual spate of deadly shark attacks has gripped Australia, resulting in five deaths in 10 months. At the same time, great white sharks have begun appearing in growing numbers off the beaches of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, not far from the waters where Steven Spielberg filmed Jaws. What’s behind the mysterious arrival of this apex predator in an area where it’s rarely been seen for hundreds of years? Are deadly encounters with tourists inevitable?
To separate fact from fear, NOVA teams with leading shark experts in Australia and the United States to uncover the science behind the great white’s hunting instincts. With shark populations plummeting, scientists race to unlock the secrets of these powerful creatures of the deep in their quest to save people — and sharks.
PBS' premier science series helps viewers of all ages explore the science behind the headlines. Along the way, NOVA programs demystify science and technology, and highlight the people involved in scientific pursuits. Check out the NOVA Next website at pbs.org/wgbh/nova/next.
Wednesdays at 10:00pm
Veterinarian Mark Evans uses technology to tackle three deadly predators: the great white shark, Nile crocodile and polar bear. When these animals attack humans, both sides lose. As more people are killed or maimed, more animals are killed in retaliation. Evans wants to find ways to break this circle of violence and protect both humans and animals. Follow him as he tries out ingenious high-tech solutions to the most hostile wildlife conflicts on Earth.
August 27 - Great White Shark
Mark Evans travels to Western Australia, where seven people have been killed by sharks in the last three years. Authorities have implemented radical measures to catch and kill any shark they deem a threat. Evans wants to find non-lethal solutions to keep people — and sharks — safe. He enters the water to attach tracking tags to great whites; joins beach patrol teams searching for sharks; and tests a new “multi-spectral” camera that spots sharks from the air even when they are hidden several meters underwater.
September 3 – Polar Bear
Mark Evans travels to the shores of Canada’s Hudson Bay, where polar bears are causing havoc in isolated communities. He arrives in the town of Churchill hours after an attack has left two people seriously injured and a bear dead. He joins the Polar Bear Alert team as they transport a captured bear by helicopter to a release site outside town. In the Inuit town of Arviat, Evans works with wildlife officers to test an aerial drone early warning system, a military grade ultra-loud speaker to deter bears, and a controversial experiment to place meat out on the tundra to keep bears away from town.
September 10 – Crocodile
Mark Evans travels to Namibia’s Chobe River, a place that’s known as the croc attack capital of the world. Crocodiles here are growing in size and number and so is the frequency of attacks. Each time an attack occurs, the locals kill crocs in retaliation. To find a way to keep both people and crocodiles safe, Evans joins leading croc experts Rom Whitaker and Dr. Patrick Aust to carry out a radical new experiment. The idea is to train crocs to associate the sound of a bell with an electric shock. Evans meets attack victims and puts the croc training experiment to the test, with surprising results.
Mondays at at 10:00pm
The award-winning POV (a cinema term for “point of view”) series is the longest-running showcase on television to feature the work of America's best contemporary-issue independent filmmakers.
August 4 – 15 to Life: Kenneth’s Story
Does sentencing a teenager to life without parole serve our society well? The United States is the only country in the world that routinely condemns children to die in prison. This is the story of one of those children, now a young man, seeking a second chance in Florida. At age 15, Kenneth Young received four consecutive life sentences for a series of armed robberies. Imprisoned for more than a decade, he believed he would die behind bars. Now a U.S. Supreme Court decision could set him free. “15 to Life: Kenneth’s Story” follows Young’s struggle for redemption, revealing a justice system with thousands of young people serving sentences intended for society’s most dangerous criminals.
August 18 – A World Not Ours
A passionate, bittersweet account of one family’s multi-generational experience living as permanent refugees. Now a Danish resident, director Mahdi Fleifel grew up in the Ain el-Helweh refugee camp in southern Lebanon, established in 1948 as a temporary refuge for exiled Palestinians. Today, the camp houses 70,000 people and is the hometown of generations. The filmmaker’s childhood memories are surprisingly warm and humorous, a testament to the resilience of the community. Yet his yearly visits reveal the increasing desperation of family and friends who remain trapped in psychological as well as political limbo.
August 25 – Big Men
Over five years, director Rachel Boynton and her cinematographer film the quest for oil in Ghana by Dallas-based Kosmos. The company develops the country’s first commercial oil field, yet its success is quickly compromised by political intrigue and accusations of corruption. As Ghanaians wait to reap the benefits of oil, the filmmakers discover violent resistance down the coast in the Niger Delta, where poor Nigerians have yet to prosper from decades-old oil fields. “Big Men,” executive produced by Brad Pitt, provides an unprecedented inside look at the global deal-making and dark underside of energy development — a contest for money and power that is reshaping the world.
Queen and Country
Sundays at 8:00pm
In 2012, all eyes were on Queen Elizabeth II, Britain’s second longest-reigning monarch, as England marks Her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee. Join veteran newsman Sir Trevor McDonald as he looks at the traditions and institutions surrounding the monarchy, from Changing the Guard at Buckingham Palace through the queen’s royal visits … to some of the greatest historic royal palaces.
August 7 – “London: Royal City” Join Trevor McDonald as he reports on Changing the Guard and visits Horseguards in London.
August 20 – “Royal Visit” Follow Queen Elizabeth to the Braemar Gathering in Scotland and on a visit to Liverpool.
August 27 – “The Queen’s Possessions” Find out which possessions constitute “peculiars of the crown.”
Secrets of Her Majesty’s Secret Service
Sunday, August 31 at 8:00pm
Her Majesty’s Secret Service, or MI6 as it is known, is the world’s most legendary spy agency, thanks to the James Bond stories. Set up in 1909 as the Secret Service Bureau, the existence of MI6 was not formally acknowledged until 1994 — which goes a long way toward understanding the modus operandi of this government agency. Initially, the bureau was set up to control secret intelligence operations overseas, particularly concentrating on Imperial Germany’s activities. With unprecedented access to some of the key players in British espionage, this film lifts the veil on the shadowy world of spying, going back in time and behind the scenes to look at some the world’s most calculated and delicately executed operations.