Planet Earth Returns - Relive The Spectacular First Series Now!
Planet Earth Returns - Relive The Spectacular First Series Now!

Planet Earth Returns - Relive The Spectacular First Series Now!

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Mafia Island Whale Shark Conservation

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Posted by Leanne Sturrock on 4th Nov 2016 4 mins

At last, something positive to break through the bleakness that we call winter: Planet Earth is making its return to the BBC! And as an (equally exciting) addition, we’ll be treated to the dulcet tones of Sir David Attenborough. That’s right, everybody’s favourite national treasure is back to narrate the stunning series…and as we all know, this is a partnership made in heaven.

The brand-new series is set to air on Sunday the 6th of November, and to celebrate its return we’ve decided to shortlist some of our favourite moments from the spectacular first series! So sit back, relax, and enjoy the majesty of the natural world as told by Planet Earth.

Whale Shark

While it may be relatively common knowledge that the whale shark is the world’s biggest fish, hearing Attenborough describe their true weight and size makes me realise just how monumental these creatures are. The cinematography here is stunning: serene and beautiful, reflecting the peaceful gait of this beautiful behemoth. As the tone changes, and the action plays out on screen, I can’t help but stare in awe. I’d love to someday swim with the whale shark, but for now this video puts into perspective just how much their incredible presence is felt in our oceans.

Polar Bear

From the sun rising over the earth to its position over the arctic itself, and the way it bathes the whole scene in a lovely warming glow, the cinematography in this scene is just gorgeous, beautifully setting the tone of what’s to come…which is, of course, Attenborough’s narration of a sweet interaction between mother polar bear and her cubs. I love watching the adult bear emerge from beneath the snow for the first time in months, as well as the insouciance of how she ‘toboggans down the slope, perhaps to clean her fur…perhaps for sheer joy.’ The notion of this giant taking relaxed pleasure in her freedom may be anthropomorphising the animal somewhat, but to project such childlike emotions onto what truly is a beast of the natural world, really does engage the viewer and provides a wonderful sense of charm to the (already striking) footage on-screen. Similarly, introducing us to this adorable family before touching for just a second on the implications of melting ice, subtly and subliminally reminds us of important global issues, tugs on the heart strings just enough to make us want to protect these creatures.

Bird of Paradise

Perhaps one of the most instantly recognisable clips from the first season (as well as being perfect viral-sharing material on social media), the ‘Bird of Paradise mating dance’ clip reminds us of Plant Earth’s brilliant sense of humour, and acts as a comedic reprieve in what can otherwise be a nail-biting and emotional show. To witness this exotic bird in all is gawky glory, we’re given the chance to reflect on our own desperate times of courting – who else busts moves like this guy when trying to impress on the dancefloor?! When Attenborough bitingly utters how the bird’s dance is ‘very impressive, but no-one is watching’, I think it’s fair to say we all feel a smack of second-hand embarrassment for this budding bird-Romeo.

The Impala Escapes

To touch on what, I feel at least, is possibly the most gripping scene in Planet Earth history (so far!), it’s time to look at the famous ‘impala versus the African wild dog’. One thing that this show has exquisitely gotten down pat, is its ability to toy with all emotions – alongside the joy of seeing animals interacting with their young, and our amusement towards dorky-looking dancing birds, there is always going to be a place for conflicting emotions. Planet Earth make no secret of the fact that nature can be brutal, and we’ve frequently played witness to carnivores stalking their prey…but there’s just something so very desperate about the battle between the impala and the wild dogs. The impala, a sweet and gangly member of the animal kingdom, is seen to be fleeing from rabid dogs in a frantic attempt to live another day. It’s impossible to not feel sorry for the solitary doe, but similarly, we all know that animals must eat…making this frenzied attack completely enthralling. Emotions are high throughout the clip, with syncopated drums and impassioned vocals working with intense aerial shots to create a sincerely heart-pounding spectacle. At last, as the impala escapes, we’re able to catch our breath…but the endangered wild dog must retire from the chase, exhausted in its defeat.

There are many favourite moments to pick out from Planet Earth's first season, but one thing's for sure: we cannot wait to discover further corners of the earth with Attenborough and co.! Make sure to tune into BBC One this Sunday, and check out the first episode of the brand-new season - it's bound to be breathtaking!

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