TV Review: Klondike Mini-Series On Discovery Channel


Geek Alabama TV Reviews

Last night, Discovery Channel premiered Klondike, this is a three-part mini-series about the gold rush in the Yukon in the late 1800’s.  Klondike tells the story of the last great Gold Rush in history.  In 1897, two friends make the perilous journey through the North American wilderness to the Klondike boom town Dawson City, “The Paris of the North” where murder, revenge, riches and, redemption await.  The series is executive produced by Ridley Scott.  And it stars Richard Madden, Abbie Cornish, Sam Shepard and Tim Roth.  And part one did not disappoint!  Over 3.4 million viewers watched part one to make it one of the best nights ever for Discovery Channel!

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So let’s start at the beginning.  The people trying to hike over mountains triggered an avalanche that killed several people.  The avalanche scenes were not done using CGI computer technology, real explosives were used to create the avalanche!  One part right off the bat has to be the great scenery.  You see huge snow capped mountains, lush scenery, beautiful forests and rivers, and unforgiving frozen terrain.  A lot of people are comparing this show to the HBO show Deadwood, and yes, there are beautiful scenery in both shows, but at least you don’t have to pay extra to watch Klondike.

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The crew spent 56 days in Alberta filming Klondike, in the middle of winter.  You can imagine the crew and cast had to find ways to stay warm because temperatures were as cold as 30 degrees below!  The crew lost a few cameras during filming because of the snow and cold, but that did not impact the great video shots you see in Klondike.  And yes, some people compared the opening of Klondike to the opening you see in Game of Thrones.  Are their comparisons in both shows, in some aspects, yes!

The time periods are drastically different, but you see some great aspects in both shows. Richard Madden, who is in Game of Thrones, does a great job here!  I have to admire him and the cast for hiking over mountains and plunging into icy rivers to make this show great!  And the best scene for the character Robb Stark in part one, has to be the scene where he is with those wolves.  Seeing real wolves in the winter wilderness is a beautiful thing!  I am guessing they were trained wolves used for filming, because we don’t want untrained wild wolves being that close to Robb Stark, don’t we?

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The set for Dawson City is just outside Calgary, Alberta.  The set is actually over 20 years old and it was once used for the 1989 Western mini-series Lonesome Dove.  The entire set was modified to be like late 1800’s Dawson City during the Gold Rush.  And during the Gold Rush, it was one busy place!  The first thing you saw while on the river was hot showers for $5.  Today’s inflation for a hot shower would be through the roof!  A lot of the scenes took place at The Monte Carlo Saloon, which was open 24/7 during the Gold Rush.  And yes, Discovery did show a naked women in the saloon.  Remember, it was mostly men in Dawson City and the guys went nuts for the few women there.

In Dawson City, we saw people being shot and killed, people living in outdoor tents in the middle of Winter, and the Northern Lights, I hope those were real.  We quickly saw how things go in Dawson City,  men there are forced to deal with the devastating greed that make men do awful, ungodly things to survive.  Like seeing guys steal the shoes and clothing off of dead people, who would do that?  The Royal Mounted Canadian Police did come into town on horseback, but in a town like Dawson City, there is only so much the police can do.  It’s not like today, where the police can solve crimes such as murder.  You can expect some more crazy things in the second and third parts of Klondike.  Remember, it’s every man for himself.  And only a few will leave Dawson City rich.

Part two of Klondike will air on Tuesday night at 8 pm Central on Discovery.  Part three of Klondike will air on Wednesday night at 8 pm on Discovery.  You are going to want to watch this!  This has been a great mini-series!  Discovery Channel, you need to make more dramas!  If you can’t watch or DVR this show because of other show conflicts, Discovery Channel will air the entire mini-series of Klondike on Saturday January 25th from 8:30 am to 3 pm Central.

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Learn more about Klondike at: http://dsc.discovery.com/tv-shows/klondike/klondike.  Follow Klondike on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/KlondikeTV and on Twitter @KlondikeTV.  Enjoy episode one of the Klondike After Show, don’t play the video below if you have not seen part one yet!

All images and videos copyright from Discovery Channel

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