04.09.10 9 years ago 18 Comments

Everyone I’ve talked to about Discovery’s “Life” has two overriding about it: (1) “Wow, the footage is amazing!” and (2) “Oprah’s narration is f*cking terrible.” For whatever reason, Discovery decided to punish America, while BBC viewers get naturalist David Attenborough (who also narrated the BBC’s “Planet Earth” while American viewers got Sigourney Weaver). Now, the Amazon page for the pre-order of “Life” is getting its first reviews, and almost 90% of the reviews give the series just one star our of five. Let’s see if we can find the reason:

“This is atrocious. Oprah narrates this thing as if she were reading a bedtime story to little kids and comes off as snarky and condescending. In the opening segment, she’s discussing a fox chasing an ibex kid and it’s basically like ‘Heeeere comes the fox! UH OH!!’… Don’t get this. Get the real version.”

“Oprah’s narration KILLS this series. It’s awful. What made the first series so great is that it was beautifully shot, and it didn’t have someone (Oprah) talking about it like her audience is in pre-school. I have stopped watching the series, and will be purchasing the BBC version. I’m very disappointed.”

“How and why the fratboy marketing majors at Discovery Communications got the bright idea to overdub naturalist David Attenborough with Oprah baffles the mind… her monotone cadence is just awful, totally devoid of any emotion or care.”

“Ms. Winfrey sounds like she needs a decongestant, and the script is so infantile. Looking forward to hearing David Attenborough’s version. I won’t be watching any more with Oprah’s narration”

“One of the worst editorial decisions in TV ever”

“Oprah’s voice is slightly scratchy, abrasive, and she sort of sounds like a frustrated nun. Off of that, the way she speaks to you sounds like she’s talking down to you; like a self-absorbed kindergarten teacher, who can’t wait for the day to end. She doesn’t even seem to have any passion or insight. I cannot stress enough how terrible her narrative for this show is. I was physiologically incapable of sitting through an hour of her grinding drivel.”

In case you’ve never heard how Attenborough rolls, check out his narration for the vampire squid from hell. Relative to other shots from “Planet Earth” and “Life,” it’s not a particularly moving clip of wildlife, but his delivery gives the scene a dramatic flair. In a related story, Vampire Squid from Hell is now in pre-production to be a Syfy original movie.

[via The Live Feed]

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