Case Number 19391: Small Claims Court


History Channel // 2010 // 470 Minutes // Not Rated
Reviewed by Judge Victor Valdivia (Retired) // July 31st, 2010

The Charge

What would happen if every human being on Earth disappeared?

The Case

Then there wouldn't be dopey TV shows like this one. Life After People is one of the dumbest series History has ever aired, and this is coming from a reviewer who sat through two seasons of Ax Men. This is the equivalent of those Fox shows in which buildings collapse, animals attack, and high-speed chases ensue, except dressed up in the veneer of "science."

The premise of Life After People is this: After every human suddenly disappears off the face of the Earth, for unspecified reasons, what will happen to the planet? Already that sounds goofy, but it gets worse. Here are the ten episodes of Life After People: The Complete Season Two compiled on three discs:

Disc One
* "Wrath of God"
How humans' spiritual creations and buildings would fare without humans.

* "Toxic Revenge"
How dangerous chemicals and materials would affect the planet without humans around to control them.

* "Crypt of Civilization"
How people have put together time capsules to preserve their memories and culture after they're gone.

* "Last Supper"
How food products would fare without humans to preserve them.

Disc Two
* "Home Wrecked Homes"
How the various types of homes built for humans would fare without them.

* "Holiday Hell"
How various famous tourist destinations and holiday landmarks would fare without humans.

* "Waves of Devastation"
How rain, rivers, oceans, and floods would devastate monuments and buildings if there were no humans around.

Disc Three
* "Sky's the Limit"
How the flying machines created by humans would fare without maintenance.

* "Depths of Destruction"
How underground creations, such as sewers, tunnels, mines, and power plants, would fare without humans.

* "Take Me to Your Leader"
How the homes and monuments dedicated to heads of state from around the world would fare without humans.

Every episode follows the same exact format: take some aspect of human life, such as food, buildings, airplanes, or chemicals, and then use fancy CG to show it getting ruined and destroyed. That's it. Guess what happens to buildings when humans aren't around to maintain them? They fall down. Wow, what a big surprise. Guess what happens to food when refrigeration fails and people aren't around to eat it? It spoils, and then vermin eat it. Never saw that coming, did you? Guess what happens to ships when humans aren't around to steer them? They crash. Also, metal rusts, concrete cracks, and water wears things down. Did you know that? Those are just some of the spectacularly scintillating reveals you can only get with Life After People. Next season, the series will undoubtedly reveal that without humans around, the global economic marketplace might just possibly collapse. Wait, maybe that's way too intellectually taxing for this series, since it doesn't involve CG shots of stuff blowing up and turning weird colors.

Seriously, how on earth can this drivel be worth more than one hour, let alone two seasons? How many shots of stuff going bad and scientists solemnly intoning "Without humans around, (fill-in-the-blank) would certainly fail" does anyone need? The only mildly interesting historical moments occur when the episodes demonstrate the histories of actual abandoned buildings or towns that exist today, but even these get repetitive after a while. There's only so much decrepitude and squalor that one can take, although judging by the high ratings for this series, apparently that's a lot. If you're one of those fans, then have at it -- this is the set for you. Otherwise, there's absolutely no reason whatsoever to watch Life After People. You won't learn anything you didn't already know, unless you've never heard of such esoteric concepts as gravity, erosion, and decomposition. Ooh, fancy!

Technical specs are typical History: non-anamorphic 1.78:1 transfer, Dolby stereo mix, both acceptable. There are no extras.

The Verdict

Guilty of being really, really, stupid.

Review content copyright © 2010 Victor Valdivia; Site layout and review format copyright © 1998 - 2016 HipClick Designs LLC

Scales of Justice
Judgment: 20

Perp Profile
Studio: History Channel
Video Formats:
* 1.78:1 Non-Anamorphic

Audio Formats:
* Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo (English)

* None

Running Time: 470 Minutes
Release Year: 2010
MPAA Rating: Not Rated

Distinguishing Marks
* None

* IMDb

* Official Site