I’ve often wondered what the world would be like if I was the last man on Earth. Different books have been written with that exact premise in mind along with different films being released on the same subject. The Last Man on Earth starring Vincent Price is one of the releases touching on that topic and it gives an eerie look on just how that may be. My biggest concern though is what would happen if I wasn’t the last person in the world, but what would happen to my pets or belongings if there were no-one left around. Would the animals survive? How long would buildings and other structures hold up before succumbing to the elements? Would it even really matter since the disappearance of human beings means that whatever happens would never be witnessed by anyone?
Life After People is a great series from the History Channel that gives the viewing audience a glimpse at something that could possibly happen one day, but that no one would ever see. Each episode of the series takes a look at a few different cities around the world and goes through what life would be like if all humans disappeared. The effect of the environment, weather, and just natural aging on buildings, structures, animals, and so much more is shown in great detail. It starts out one day after humans are gone and then slowly progresses to a week after then a month and onto different amounts of years before going very far into the future. Computer models along with expert analysis gives us all a look at just what may survive, thrive, or even deteriorate completely without humans no longer running the show.
One of the more interesting things about the series is that it is never truly explained why all humans died off. This little fact is both intriguing yet annoying at the very same time and I’ll explain why. It is annoying because the show makes it appear as if all humans fell off the face of the Earth at the exact same time without any warning or prolonged activity. After checking out how the different cities are today; we are immediately taken to the first day after humans letting us realize that some big event and just wiped our race out. Sure it’s annoying, but Life After People is about what the world would look like and how it would develop once people are gone. It never says that we are to find out why people disappeared or how, but just what would go down after their disappearance. That also makes it fun because we are left to come up with our own conclusions as to what finished us off once and for all.
The first season of Life After People truly trumps the ninety minute documentary that introduced us to the series. Sixty minutes is the perfect amount of time here because too much longer and you’re going to start losing your viewers as they’ll just start getting bored as the information starts repeating. Making matters better is that each episode pinpoints different cities and showing locations and structures that people are very familiar with. Every city showcased portrayed different places that I have either visited before or know plenty about making it all so real. The series hits even closer to home when the episode about my hometown of New Orleans (“Waters of Death”) came around showing me places that I see every single day. Knowing that some experts and scientists predict that rain waters could completely decimate the city again as Hurricane Katrina did is just frightening as hell. But what does it really matter since I wouldn’t be around anyway?
Man this is a series that really gives you a lot to think about when in all reality you wouldn’t have to think about a thing if any of this actually happened.
The Bodies Left Behind: Boston and Houston
Outbreak: Chicago, Atlanta, and London
The Capital Threat: Washington DC and Los Angeles
Heavy Metal: New York City and St. Louis
The Invaders: Phoenix, Miami, and Shanghai
Bound And Buried: Washington DC, Philadelphia, and San Francisco
Sin City Meltdown: Las Vegas and Atlantic City
Armed & Defenseless: Denver, Hawaii, and a mysterious abandoned island near New York City
The Road To Nowhere: Detroit and San Antonio
Waters Of Death: New Orleans, Seattle, and Dubai
The episodes are shown in 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen format and they look really good for a much better look then when they first appeared on television. Colors look crisp, bright, and sharp making each demolished city look very realistic and quite frightening.
The episodes are heard in Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo Sound and it does an adequate job allowing the music and dialogue to stay separate and both be heard clearly.
Lacking special features is a problem for the overall DVD set as a whole, but this is still a great series that anyone would be sucked into right away if they merely give it a chance. Life After People shows you an eerie look at just what may come about one day and allows us all to really see something that not a single soul would ever get the chance to experience. It’s quite frightening but also offers a sense of relief because we can sit back and know that currently it is only a television show once the credits starts to roll. Pick up this set right away and get caught up without worrying about the documentary because it’s just not worth it or necessary. Sure it’s a series that will get your mind gears moving and have you thinking a lot, but that shouldn’t turn you off here because in no means is this an educational series. Life After People is just eye-opening, intriguing, and overly creepy making for a really cool viewing experience.
A&E Home Video presents Life After People: The Complete Season One. Created by: David de Vries. Starring: Various. Running time: 470 minutes on 3 discs. Rating: Not Rated. Released on DVD: October 27, 2009. Available at Amazon.com