Anyone that reads this blog with any consistency knows of my undying love for Jared Lipworth’s PBS series Secrets of the Dead. Midway through its tenth season, the show is once again delivering the goods. April 20th’s upcoming profile “Lost in the Amazon,” which chronicles the travels of Col. Percy Harrison Fawcett and his search for the Lost City of Z is first-rate, must-see television. The 50-minute doc retraces the Briton’s steps from his first travels in 1907 to his ill-fated 1925 exploration with his son Jack and Jack’s friend Raleigh Rimmel.
Led by British biologist/explorer Niall McCann — a man who has crossed the Atlantic in a rowboat and navigated the polar regions — the journey finds itself in the Mato Grosso, a dusty expanse of soybean firms and deforested land still inhabited by the Bakarai tribe. In meeting with the indigenous natives, McCann meets with elders who have heard stories of Fawcett’s visit and sets about to retrace his final hours. While the results are somewhat inconclusive, the actual journey to get there is fantastic and awe-inspiring. In the end, the real charm in uncovering Fawcetts’s plight is trying to recreate the life of an Indiana Jones-like figure, and giving life to a man whose imagination, travails and exploits truly knew no bounds.
Much like the past 17 episodes, “Lost in the Amazon,” continues to proves that Secrets of the Dead is indeed a true TV treasure. Come to think of it the only problem I have with the show is that I didn’t start watching until episode 3 of Season 6 and that Season 7 only had two episodes. In the end, I can only hope five years from now, I can talk about watching Season 16 and looking forward to Season 17.
I guess in the end, that’s all anyone can ask for. And hey, don’t take my word for it, here’s a 2008 profile in the New York Times.