Deadliest Warrior

#1
I apologise for bringing the topic of Deadliest Warrior up. Those of us who have seen it are trying hard to blank it from our fore-brains, while those who haven't are lucky beyond erm luck?

The basic premise is of the kind beloved of squaddies through the ages. you're on stag in a fire trench and despite your massive fieldcraft knowledge, decide to enliven the night watches by talking bollox. So you suggest to your oppo "Who would win in a battle between a Mongol horseman and a landesknecht..." or whatever juxtaposition of ancient warriors floats your boat.

The muppets behind this series however have taken it all to extremes and applied biomechanical and other models to the proposition. However it is all horribly flawed by perspectives and prejudices (e.g. Viking good, Norman bad) and the use of a commercial gaming engine to run the sims.

Many experts are produced in each show - including a surprising number of americans who have intimate knowledge of the fighting styles, rather surprisingly, of e.g. Maori warriors.

You get, I hope my drift. It is a pretty pants programme and really has little by way of a saving grace - unless you are a 16 year old High School boy for whom physical exercise requires a box of Kleenex and an internet connection?

Sadly "IRA vs Taliban" will not be shown on Bravo, prsumably out of a sense of decency. Yet this sense does not prevent Bravo screening The Real Housewives of NYC nor its' west coast cousin TRH of OC...
 
#2
Is this one of the American made 'Movies' which they seem to use to educate the US and some of the worlds uniformed, on the US view of how they won the war, that's all of the wars they have ever been involved in ?
We get them on the local TV all the time.
I must admit that some are commissioned from UK company's, but follow the Yank guidelines.

john
 
#3
Whenever people go on about the martial prowess of the Zulu / Maori / Mahratta etc, I'm always reminded of that bit in Raiders of the Lost Ark where the bloke is waving his sword about before being dispatched with a disinterested pistol shot.
 
#5
I've only seen one episode, 'Viking vs. Samurai', and it was one episode more than I would have liked. It was quite possibly the worst programme I have ever seen - which is quite an achievement considering I've seen 'Making Waves'.

It was an hour of historical inaccuracies dressed up as science: Samurai were disciplined fighters, but Vikings were a drunken rabble; Samurai weapons couldn't penetrate Viking armour, yet somehow the Samurai won. Utter dross.
 

Andy_S

LE
Book Reviewer
#6
I have seen bits of this series and found it crass but entertaining; silly but informative.

Speaking more broadly, some TV doccos are adding greatly to our knowldge of military history by using techniques - archeological, technical, etc - not commonly used by military historians. And in some cases, their findings are showing that even respected military history writers got it very wrong indeed.

Case in point:
John Keegan (in his acclaimed "The Face of Battle") made the point that " the "head high piles of French bodies" at Agincourt could only be exaggeration by the chroniclers.

Wrong.

A Discovery channel docco crew visited the battleground, computer modelled the terrain, fed in the numbers and ran them through a crowd control program. What they found was that a build up o piles of suffocating French knights in front of the English battleline is EXACTLY what would have happened in the given situation.

They also shed light on the issue of the English archers throwing down their bows, joinning the melee and slaughtering the French knights who, on paper, should have cut the unarmoured archers to pieces (literally).

Digging a meter or so down, they pulled up some 14th century mud, and checked its viscosity on steel plate. What they found was the French knights would have barely been able to lift their feet, as their armour would have adhered clingingly to the mud. The English hooligans, OTOH, would have been highly mobile; they did the same experiment with the kind of wool sock and leather shoes they would have been wearing and found they would have been running rings around the knights.

So TV research does have much to offer.
 
#7
Along the same lines. I remember around 10 years ago seeing a series about 'The Ultimate Soldier' or some such title.

It involved ex CIA, Delta, Force Recon, SEALs, SWAT, Ranger and Chefs etc competing through a series of scenarios to be crowned the winner.

Some real egos but some genuinely scarey guys. The series finale was farcical tho'.

Did anyone else catch it?
 
#8
Andy_S said:
They also shed light on the issue of the English archers throwing down their bows, joinning the melee and slaughtering the French knights who, on paper, should have cut the unarmoured archers to pieces (literally).

Digging a meter or so down, they pulled up some 14th century mud, and checked its viscosity on steel plate. What they found was the French knights would have barely been able to lift their feet, as their armour would have adhered clingingly to the mud. The English hooligans, OTOH, would have been highly mobile; they did the same experiment with the kind of wool sock and leather shoes they would have been wearing and found they would have been running rings around the knights.

So TV research does have much to offer.
Why did they need to dig?

I remember being taught about the dismounted French knights and men-at-arms being bogged-down and chopped-up by the more agile English, when I was at school in the 1960's.
 

terroratthepicnic

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#9
Andy_S said:
I have seen bits of this series and found it crass but entertaining; silly but informative.

Speaking more broadly, some TV doccos are adding greatly to our knowldge of military history by using techniques - archeological, technical, etc - not commonly used by military historians. And in some cases, their findings are showing that even respected military history writers got it very wrong indeed.

Case in point:
John Keegan (in his acclaimed "The Face of Battle") made the point that " the "head high piles of French bodies" at Agincourt could only be exaggeration by the chroniclers.

Wrong.

A Discovery channel docco crew visited the battleground, computer modelled the terrain, fed in the numbers and ran them through a crowd control program. What they found was that a build up o piles of suffocating French knights in front of the English battleline is EXACTLY what would have happened in the given situation.

They also shed light on the issue of the English archers throwing down their bows, joinning the melee and slaughtering the French knights who, on paper, should have cut the unarmoured archers to pieces (literally).

Digging a meter or so down, they pulled up some 14th century mud, and checked its viscosity on steel plate. What they found was the French knights would have barely been able to lift their feet, as their armour would have adhered clingingly to the mud. The English hooligans, OTOH, would have been highly mobile; they did the same experiment with the kind of wool sock and leather shoes they would have been wearing and found they would have been running rings around the knights.

So TV research does have much to offer.
I think you will find it was the Welsh Longbowmen. Interestingly, it was at about this time that the V sign was first used as a cuss.
 
#10
Andy S.
The Prog was shown in Thailand as "Battlefield Discovery's", History or National Geographic channel.
Brit made and in my opinion well researched and presented. Probably the Best of these Brit made for US audience TV series.
I remember the demonstration of how the ground would turn into 'Sticky' gripping mud and that the Valley of the Somme was quite close.
A Brit Academic showed a modern demonstration of Crowd control and a vid showing how just one man collapsing would and did drag down the surrounding men.
They also showed that the battle field 'dropped' off on both sides of the centre and the expert stated that it would be normal for the troops to force their way to the centre to avoid going down hill.
john
 
#11
Cuddles said:
Sadly "IRA vs Taliban" will not be shown on Bravo, prsumably out of a sense of decency. Yet this sense does not prevent Bravo screening The Real Housewives of NYC nor its' west coast cousin TRH of OC...
This is a real pity, as I have not laughed so much for a long time. Just why the Taliban would choose to take on the 'RA in a scrapyard was beyond my understanding....
 
#12
terroratthepicnic said:
I think you will find it was the Welsh Longbowmen. Interestingly, it was at about this time that the V sign was first used as a cuss.
I think you'll find that some were English, some were Welsh.
 
#13
wedge35 said:
terroratthepicnic said:
I think you will find it was the Welsh Longbowmen. Interestingly, it was at about this time that the V sign was first used as a cuss.
I think you'll find that some were English, some were Welsh.
and some Irish were there as well.... (unless their families were topped by the, hang on, wrong thread for that)

MfI (or similar)
 
#14
IMHO some of the most deadly Psyco loony worrior's I have come across, where in normal situations the quiet soft spoken little bloke in the corner who would not hurt a fly, and not the squadron gobshite /hardman, who went around telling every one how hard he was wearing his judo,karate. Llapp goch, kit around the block.
 

terroratthepicnic

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#15
Very few were english in fact if any at all. And seeing as the English had no Longbowmen and it was the longbowmen that put down their arms to run into the fight to collect arrows as they had run out. But while there, realised they could move faster in the mud than the knights, so took advantage.

Seeing how quickly the welsh could move with just leather armour, the English knights and swordsmen removed a lot of their armour to allow them to move freely also.
By the end of the day, the french had over 10000 dead and dying, while the English had a little over 500. All due to the Welsh Longbowmen.

The english bowmen, were shipped back to England before the long march to Azencourt. The reason for this is because Henry V thought he would be marching for a couple of days along the coast. He didn't take into account that the French would stop the crossing the river to calaise and forcing them inland towards Paris.
 
#16
terroratthepicnic said:
By the end of the day, the french had over 10000 dead and dying, while the English had a little over 500. All due to the Welsh Longbowmen.
So your saying the Welsh shot the English? :p What absolute rotters.
 
#17
wedge35 said:
Whenever people go on about the martial prowess of the Zulu / Maori / Mahratta etc, I'm always reminded of that bit in Raiders of the Lost Ark where the bloke is waving his sword about before being dispatched with a disinterested pistol shot.
Apparently that was to be a really elaborate scene with whips and sword twirling extraordinaire, but everyone was hot and tired and Harrison Ford said "hey, why don't I just shoot him", and that's what they did.
 
#18
Theres a really great book about Agincourt by Juliet Barker, and believe it or not a list of every man who fought at the battle on the "Soldiers of medieval wars "website that was researched by Reading and Southampton universities, well worth a look,it even has Owain Glyndwr's pay records from when he fought for the English King in his younger days
 
#19
Sinner251 said:
terroratthepicnic said:
By the end of the day, the french had over 10000 dead and dying, while the English had a little over 500. All due to the Welsh Longbowmen.
So your saying the Welsh shot the English? :p What absolute rotters.
That was a few years earlier in 1402 when the Welsh slautered the English army at the battle of Pilleth, where Sir Edward Mortmer had been stupid enough to hire Mercenary Welsh Archers to fight Glyndwr, they promptly opened fire on his troops as the charged the Welsh line killing over 800 of his troops
 
#20
terroratthepicnic said:
Andy_S said:
I have seen bits of this series and found it crass but entertaining; silly but informative.

Speaking more broadly, some TV doccos are adding greatly to our knowldge of military history by using techniques - archeological, technical, etc - not commonly used by military historians. And in some cases, their findings are showing that even respected military history writers got it very wrong indeed.

Case in point:
John Keegan (in his acclaimed "The Face of Battle") made the point that " the "head high piles of French bodies" at Agincourt could only be exaggeration by the chroniclers.

Wrong.

A Discovery channel docco crew visited the battleground, computer modelled the terrain, fed in the numbers and ran them through a crowd control program. What they found was that a build up o piles of suffocating French knights in front of the English battleline is EXACTLY what would have happened in the given situation.

They also shed light on the issue of the English archers throwing down their bows, joinning the melee and slaughtering the French knights who, on paper, should have cut the unarmoured archers to pieces (literally).

Digging a meter or so down, they pulled up some 14th century mud, and checked its viscosity on steel plate. What they found was the French knights would have barely been able to lift their feet, as their armour would have adhered clingingly to the mud. The English hooligans, OTOH, would have been highly mobile; they did the same experiment with the kind of wool sock and leather shoes they would have been wearing and found they would have been running rings around the knights.

So TV research does have much to offer.
I think you will find it was the Welsh Longbowmen. Interestingly, it was at about this time that the V sign was first used as a cuss.
http://www.snopes.com/language/apocryph/pluckyew.asp
 

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