The Strongmen is episode 1 in the six part documentary Love, Hate & Propaganda which begins Thursday March 4th 2010 at 9 on the CBC. Hosted by George Sroumboulopoulos, this series looks at various aspects of WW II from a information – image making - propanga perspective. If the first episode, Strongmen, is any indication, this is going to be one hell of a documentary series.
What sets Love, Hate & Propaganda apart from the usual WW II documentary is its focus on the PR and image-making behind the history we all know. If you thought the W. Bush White House was big on packaging and set-up photo ops, you will see it was nothing compared to the main players of WW II. Those familiar with marketing theories will certainly recognize the genesis of many a campaign in some of the events and strategies presented here.
As the title suggests, Strongmen focuses on the usual suspects: Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin, and Hiro Hito. There is a bit of a primer approach to this documentary but history fans will learn a few new things here such as the stories of Canadian Father Alphonse Dube (there would be a great documentary in just that story) and of Japanese writer and correspondent Tatsuzo Ishikawa or how Goebbels commandeered German factories to build a “people’s” radio set so everyone could get the propaganda at home.
Other episodes in the Love, Hate & Propaganda series will include Selling War (March 11th), Meet the Enemy (March 18th), Truth and Total War (March 25th) Hiding the Horrors (April 1st), and Changing the Story (April 8th).
This CBC documentary series is most certainly worth making setting your DVD recorder to if you plan on being out one of those nights.