From Wonderstruck to ‘Elephant,’ nature documentaries offer an escape to cooped-up viewers

From Wonderstruck to 'Elephant,' nature documentaries offer an escape to cooped-up viewers

Nature fare, furthermore, has by no means been in additional plentiful provide on tv and streaming providers, with a number of new titles becoming a member of the combination. As a bonus, technological improvements — together with high-definition imagery and advances in filming methods — have produced what quantities to a golden age for such programming.

BBC America continues to rework its weekend lineup into Wonderstruck, a showcase for British-produced documentaries corresponding to “Planet Earth” and “Blue Planet,” lots of them narrated by the extraordinary naturalist Sir David Attenborough.

On Tuesday, the community introduced it could develop that programming starting April 2 to 2 days per week and launch a free digital companion website,, providing short-form movies that the community described as “anxiety-easing content material.”

Different networks and providers are becoming a member of in as nicely. Disney+, for instance, provides to that bounty this weekend with “Elephant,” a documentary a few household of elephants narrated by Meghan, The Duchess of Sussex; and “Dolphin Reef,” the most recent movie that anthropomorphizes animals produced underneath the Disneynature banner.
A scene from BBC America's nature documentaries presented under the "Wonderstruck:" banner.

In a barely extra salacious vein, Discovery Channel will premiere “Legends of the Wild,” a brand new collection that incorporates a pair of wilderness consultants, Damian Duffy and Matt Hoffman, investigating “mysteries of the pure world,” together with journeys to Brazil, Australia and the Philippines. (Discovery, in fact, is the flagship in a lineup of networks that additionally contains Animal Planet.)

Netflix has additionally gotten into the sport, with such collection as “Our Planet” and “Evening on Earth,” the latter benefiting from dazzling technical developments — as many of those latest packages do — to current night-vision photos of animals’ nocturnal actions in a approach that could not be captured beforehand.

Lastly, there’s Nationwide Geographic, which has ordered its personal formidable collection corresponding to “Hostile Planet,” providing an array of packages each on its linear community and by way of Disney+.

When BBC America launched Wonderstruck final November, AMC Networks Leisure Group president Sarah Barnett in contrast the “mini-network” to Grownup Swim by way of taking on a part of an present channel. On the time, she instructed CNN that nature fare provides a a lot yearned for sense of communal watching” and recommended that it’s good for folks’s “emotional well being.”

TV programming can clearly solely accomplish that a lot. However with communal experiences briefly provide, and emotional well being being examined, that appears like a reasonably good prescription for what ails us proper now.

“Elephant” and “Dolphin Reef” premiere April three on Disney+, and “Legends of the Wild” premieres April 1 at 10 p.m. on Discovery Channel.

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