Did anyone else catch Carrier on their local PBS last night? I loved it. Now while I might be a tad biased towards military programing it really was an interesting documentary. It’s running from the 27th till May 1st and explores, in quite some detail I think, life aboard the USS Nimitz, a “super carrier”.
First, I have a new found respect for the men and women on carriers (or any ship or submarine for that matter). My father in law flew with a Marine EA6-B Prowler squadron so he knows boat life all to well but Flyboy doesn’t deploy with a carrier so I don’t really know a whole heck of a lot about them. As a kid my parents took us on a tour of the battleship USS North Carolina. All I remember is that it smelled like band aids and the power went out, lots of fun.
Carrier is a great way to really see the ins and outs of a major air craft carrier and then men and women that make it run. Such a small space for the number of people on it. Constant noise, constant commotion, no privacy. How these people survive six months with sanity intact is amazing to me. I didn’t think that the first episode sugar coated navy life, nor did it paint it in a disparaging light. There were those who felt like this wasn’t really the life for them and those that loved it. I think they did an excellent job in showing the reasons for various people to join up, whether it be for money for college, to seek out a better life with more direction, to show a parent who’s boss, and for many a need to serve ones county.
Carrier had some great lines and moments with more to come I’m sure. When Navy pilots are discussing having to pay for their food one pilot made the recommendation to fly with the Air Force, they get their food free and you get to wear a scarf he said. I thought this was hilarious even more funny when flyboy pointed out that the Air Force does sometimes wear ascots with their flight suits. And the discussion on call signs was equally as funny. Another more poignant one was when the Nimitz was making its way past the USS Arizona memorial and they stood at attention on the edge of the ship as it passed by. I am a weenie, I teared up a bit.
Its on again tonight, two hour long episodes. Check your local PBS to find out what time.