Christians and history buffs have been waiting anxiously for “The Bible” on the History Channel, which can be viewed each Sunday evening until Easter. The first two-hour episode aired March 3, 2013 with “Beginnings”, which brought us through the first two books of the bible: Genesis and Exodus. During the premiere episode, we witnessed the story of Noah and the Great Flood through the time of Abraham, culminating with Moses leading his people to the Promised Land.
The special effects in “Beginnings” were impressive; the burning bush where God first appeared to Moses on Mount Sinai appeared as a huge fireball likely fed by some sort of gaseous substance rather than just a bush that was on fire as we might have pictured it in our minds. The parting of the Red Sea is always a crowd-pleaser in film, and “The Bible” was no exception.
Interestingly enough, the ten plagues that fell upon Egypt prior to the Exodus scene earned only a second or two of screen time, which was somewhat disappointing. Each of the plagues could have given special effects crews a chance to really showcase their talent, but each plague disappeared from the screen almost before it appeared – frogs leaping across a bed, someone closing a window and shutter against the oncoming locusts, boils on a man’s face. The last plague got more billing as it showed the Israelites draining blood from a lamb to mark their doorways so that the Angel of Death would pass over them when killing the firstborn child.
Overall, week one of “The Bible” was worth a look, and good enough to have me tune in for more.
New episodes of “The Bible” will air on the History Channel each Sunday evening from 8-10 p.m. through Easter Sunday, March 31.