The Naked Archaeologist (TV Series 2005–2008) Poster

(2005–2008)

User Reviews

Review this title
18 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
8/10
Creative and Fun
ernie8-119 April 2009
This show makes you think and it presents everything in a creative way. Adults as well as children will learn. Anything that stimulates the mind (unlike most reality television) is worth watching. I wish it was released on DVD. The graphics at times are simple agreed, but they provide the additional creativity. Let's face it not everyone is going to get excited over Archaeology. I for one however have always enjoyed this show and would recommend it to others. 98% of the time events are evaluated from several different perspectives. Sure you will get the opinion of Simcha Jacobovici, but the show after all is his and was his idea. Something about him always puts me in a good mood and often makes me laugh. That is a compliment not a cut.
10 out of 11 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
The process of discovery - it's up to you what you do with it
kjobe19 September 2008
OK, so this isn't a show which would be shown at an Ivy League university, but what this show does do is to bring provocative thought and discussion down to the level of the average layperson - in a way that is interesting and entertaining. Even the average layperson knows that you don't believe everything you hear - thus discernment is required. Still, there is value to this program. Simka's upbeat and fun mannerisms allow the viewer to enjoy the process of reasoning through issues they may have questions about......better to be encouraged to think and reason than to fall asleep during a boring, highly-intellectual documentary.

I don't believe Simka is trying to be a Harvard professor. He's trying to reach down to the average man/woman and allow them to enjoy the process of discovery -- thinking discovery - about biblical times. We all seek our roots. This gives the average layperson a chance to perhaps find some roots to trace. Once the bridge of discovery is crossed, doors open up to the possibility of looking deeper.

I say, thank you Simka for entertaining us while trying to encourage us to think. (OK, so the Jesus Tomb stuff was wrong.....maybe you should do a piece to follow up on that. :) ) To make the show more credible, it would be nice to see follow up on things that were well....obviously out of line.

Thanks, Simka for making me laugh - I enjoy your program.
10 out of 11 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
Good Show
webmaster_pdx6 August 2007
As a scientist (in technical fields rather than archeology or similar fields), I find all areas of science fascinating. Archeology presented in the regular manner is interesting. Often I see a show where a controversial theory is presented. Too often I see certain unwritten rules applied to archeology (such as the hand of God CAN NEVER be accepted as part of any explanation). As a true scientist, I accept EVERY view, and like to hear alternate views, even those that contain the mystical, spiritual and religious. Simka in this show does a fantastic job of presenting many fascinating views of the holy land on a myriad of subjects and brings it alive in a context of today. His show transports the viewer to the holy land in ancient times and you can imagine yourself living in a day to day environment there. He does this by allowing all the views in and not excluding anything that isn't Kosher (excuse the pun :-). All in all, a really really good show. I look forward to reruns of the show every week.
13 out of 17 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
I AM a professional archaeologist and this show is GREAT!
sheenarocks25 April 2010
Reading the negative reviews of this show, one has to wonder if these folks have a sense of humor and actually enjoy history and archeology presented in as dry and humorless a form as possible. No wonder kids remember nothing about history from school because for the most part, this is the way it is taught: Dry and totally boring.

I LOVE Simcha's take on archeology. Middle Eastern archeology was not my field but he has sure taught me a lot more about it than any dry textbook because I actually WATCH and LISTEN and LEARN from the Naked Archaeologist. I agree that his sense of humor is not for everyone but the ranting of the negative reviews of this show is a bit much. Really, this show presents history in a way that actually makes one want to know more about the subject presented, instead of falling asleep in class or tuning out, which is unfortunately the way history is generally taught in school.

Keep the faith, Simcha!
14 out of 19 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
9/10
Rethinking archaeology
gb485018 July 2006
As an informed lay-person, a peripheral yet broadcast film-maker educated to post-grad level in archaeological theory, I love the informed energy of 'The Naked Archaeologist'. I believe archaeology pivotal in the understanding of human affairs, though political and indeed, dangerous. I even suggested the eponymous title in print, in a British archaeological journal (clue) a while back and now here we have a very engaging response. I'm not however suggesting that the producer's were necessarily inspired by my humble effort. We are currently watching the 2nd? series in the UK and I think the show is progressively finding its targets, the nature, possession and obsession of archaeology. I'll be writing a follow-up article in, yes you guessed it, 'British Archaeology' (a publication I would highly recommend to all viewers interested in this broadcasting strand). Keep watching the artefacts....
15 out of 22 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
3/10
Too self promoting
Deusvolt20 April 2017
The breaks showing him raising his arms are done too often. His objectivity is flawed because while he explains away and debunks Christian stories or legends, he seems to endorse "miracles" in the Jewish biblical "history." Like Jefferson, I'm willing to discount a lot of the New Testament stories but as for the Jewish bible, I am with Marcion on that.
3 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
one of THE BEST shows on TV!
annieoklieCerrillos25 October 2007
my husband and i are so glad we discovered this show, and we have told everyone we know about it. he combines so many great aspects of history, goes right where the events happened, talks to professionals and historians and the every day person, gaining perspectives on events of the past several thousand years. he intersperses the history with clips from old movies and TV shows, has excellent music, and great editing. my husband has never read the old testament of the Bible until recently, and this show has really brought a lot of that history to life. Simcha is an excellent speaker, playful and humorous, light hearted and silly and serious all wrapped up into one! we eagerly look forward to each week's episode, and hope that the History Channel will continue to make many more episodes. the history of the Bible can be so stuffy, and seem so irrelevant to today's world, but Naked Archaeologist turns all this around for people of all ages. we highly recommend that everyone check out this excellent show!
9 out of 13 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Grade of "B"
jlc-2323 November 2006
If you are real archaeologist and scholar, I could see getting upset with Mr. J., the "naked archaeologist." To me (not one), he is just a showboat. Calling it "Naked" means pandering to get attention. Getting himself "crucified " is a good example. I could not watch that show. But I could not watch Mel Gibson's movie about that topic either. But on the positive side, the locales they visit are real. And he does engage real people in the field who argue all the time with each other anyway. I like any approach to civil discussion about ancient times that doesn't get all misty and religious and doctrinaire. So the show is usually quite fun to watch despite the obvious ego bumping. I give the show a solid "B" and look forward to next week.
12 out of 19 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
archaeologist?
imdb-1302615 March 2006
As a professional archaeologist i am disgusted that this man is considered an archaeologist! - regardless of whether you agree with his biblical study, his methods are more than outdated. he seriously is seeing coincidence as proof, his wish to see what he wants to see completely blinds him from any form of objective study. if you are biblically inclined then seeing some of the places and things which are best candidates for biblical correlates will be very interesting. just do it with the sound down!! its a fun idea which could have created a landmark serious in the study of biblical archaeology, instead we are left with a closed minded psycho. even other professionals he interviews appear to regard him with a certain amount of derision. all in all a big let down
18 out of 49 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
Excellent program for laymen
ryansternmd22 November 2011
Warning: Spoilers
I have read the comments left by persons unhappy with the program and Simcha Jacobovici. What they have in common are: unhappy atheists looking for evidence to disprove the Jewish Bible; unhappy anti-Jews who are looking for evidence to disprove the Jewish Bible; and unhappy Christians who are looking for evidence to support the gospels. Simcha Jacobovici is a secular archaeologist first and a Jew second. Some of the people who leave negative comments admit to not watching his programs out of disgust. If you watch all the episodes from season 1-3, you will find that he does in fact find evidence that does NOT support the Biblical accounts or orthodox Judaism. The reasons given that he is biased also stem from the fact that he is Jewish and reports archaeological evidence that supports the Jewish view of history but not the Christian view of history. This is related to those who complain that he does not cover the "contrary opinions" or "other side" of issues. Simcha Jacobovici does do investigations into the Christian view of history, but he does NOT find archaeological evidence to support the Christian Bible stories. If you have watched all the episodes seasons 1- 3, he does investigate Christian contentions, but he finds evidence that refutes the Christian biblical accounts and when he find conflicting, contradictory evidence, the Christian guardians or these artifacts refuse him interviews or access to the artifacts. A brief list of his Christian investigation episodes in seasons 1 and 2 is helpful: "Jesus: the Early Years"; "John the Baptist"; "Crucifixion"; "The Search for St. Peter"; "Miracle Workers of Galilee";"What Happened to the JC Bunch" 1-3; and "The Beloved Disciple". Christians are offended when he does not find archaeological evidence to support the gospels. Instead, he finds evidence that Jesus lived and died a Jew, and his 1st century followers, lead by his brother James, continued to live as Jews. Christianity as we know it was not founded by Jesus, Peter, James, or any of the apostles. Christianity as we know it was founded by Paul who did not know Jesus but went to the Greaco-Romans and borrowed from their pagan beliefs and the growing Jewish presence in Rome to convert peoples who already believed in divine incarnations and dying savior cults to create a new religion. Christians do not like it when he finds archaeological evidence of this. It is prejudice in favor of Christianity where the viewer expects validation of the gospels. But, he does not find evidence to support the gospels but evidence to refute them. Here is the crux of the negative comments: atheists who are displeased that he does not refute the Jewish view of history and Christians who are upset that he finds evidence to refute the gospels. If the archaeological evidence supports the Jewish view of history, then perhaps it is time to reject your atheistic, anti-Jewish, pro-Christian biases and accept that the archeology he finds supports Judaism. This is a common problem in science vs. religion: people with religious biases reject science that does not support their religion. The same was encountered by Darwin from the publication of "The Origin of Species" to this day: schools that insist that students are presented lessons in "creationism"/"intelligent design" and fundamentalists that refute the archaeological record. It is time to get over it and watch "The Naked Archaeologist" with an open mind. Simcha Jacobovici is not on a mission to promote Judaism: he just does not find archaeological evidence to refute it or prove the contentions of the gospels. I myself have been upset by some of his programs. "Who Wrote the Bible" skips over the secular and religious investigation of the writing styles, word choices, and passages inconsistent with context that suggest that there were 4 sources for the Jewish Bible. Instead, he contends that Moses alone wrote the Torah. I wanted to ask him how Moses managed to write of his own death and burial while he still lived. So, Simcha Jacobovici is not always truly objective. But, for me, when he questions the validity of the historical time line of Joshua, he redeems himself. Like all humans, he is subject to some mistakes in his science. But, you can not reject his work as a whole because he does not validate your atheistic, anti- Jewish, and Christian biases. Archaeology is a science and not a religious pursuit. In all, Jacobovici is a secular scientist who happens to be Jewish. This is not sufficient to dismiss him or his work.
3 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
OK science...good entertainment.
ucraimx-14 March 2008
Depending on what you use this show for; it could either be good, or not so good. Some of his tactics are not exactly scientific. If you use it for a source for archaeological information, then you may be lacking.

However, if you use it as a starting point, then investigate independent sources, you might come up with some balance. Some of the individuals interviewed are true scientists, who have good and thorough backgrounds. For example, Gabriel "Gabby" Barkay has a lengthy and trusted history in the science.

The show is entertaining. It blends in clips from other movies and does present a fresh perspective.
4 out of 8 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Entertaining
robert3-175-81500313 February 2012
I personally think the show is rather entertaining. I'm not an archaeologist nor am I particularly religious. I do believe in god tho and I find his show interesting in the fact that what we've been taught all these years isn't necessarily the truth, at least as far as archaeology is concerned and he seems to have a special way of bringing that to light.

Personally I find most structured religions to be like politics - those in charge want you to believe in their interpretation and their interpretation only and if you don't your dammed to hell, no open minds their. At least he's giving you some facts to work with without trying to make you believe one way or another.

Maybe you don't like his conclusions about what he finds but at least he's trying to bring out some of the truths about the past through looking at the facts on the ground that are available and shows them to everyone that watches even if they contradict current beliefs that are commonly held.

Can you say the same of yourself.
2 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Love Simcha but...
Simcha is highly entertaining. Binged watched both seasons and his other shows a couple of times and occasionally fire up an episode to kill time. Simcha is very credible but there's holes in his theories and evidence. That which can be proved is eye-opening. As an Orthodox Jew he knows faith is unprovable in many instances and doesn't fit into laws or archaeologically.I love the quote from the archaeologist who was in charge of sifting through the rubble excavated from the Dome by Muslims. "I lived through the 6 Day War. I believe in divine intervention and I believe in miracles." The second season theme song is great!!!
1 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Archaeologist,I doubt it,
wilcrstn28 September 2006
Why should anyone give your comments a second look? Who knows who you are. If you truly are a professional you should find it your duty to reveal who you are and your critics of this mans work. Surly you have better evidence or reason that you believe he is wrong? Instead you use words like closed mined psycho. Obviously no one should take anything you say seriously. Sadly this is the state of most of the scientific community when challenged.If you don't believe the status quo you are labeled as a backwater idiot and dismissed.Talk about closed minded.......

Come back when you have something credible to say please.
10 out of 29 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
1/10
Religion and Science - Naked Archaeologist bad for both.
pedroarqueologia26 May 2012
Firstly I would like to state that neither of the hosts are archaeologists, use any form of scientific archaeological methodologies. All it is done in this show is to mix a load of scientific facts and mix in with passages or stories from a religious book. I'm not bothered by any religious position but to assume the truth of any religion by distorting the meaning of archaeological findings is to corrupt the essence of both Religion and Archaeology. Finally I would like to underline my first statement in this review. Just because you call yourself an Archaeologist does not make you one, same as calling yourself a priest does not make one either. All credit attributed to this show and the people behind it is an affront to the Archaeological Comunnity as well as the Religions he tries to depict.
3 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
1/10
Well... for one thing... he's NOT an archaeologist
SanFernandoCurt27 June 2008
Simcha Jocobovici is described in his Wikipedia entry as an Israeli investigative journalist. If that's the case, the quality of Israeli muckraking must be godawful, since this guy's credulous, biased approach starts out by accepting biblical references as fact - then tries to support them with scientific "evidence." Truth is, there's very little in the archaeological record to support the biblical account of ancient Israel. Prior to the seventh century, when trade between then-extant empires like Egypt and Assyria made Judea a key stopover on transport crossroads, the Levant was an overlooked backwater of shepherd kings and bug-eyed fanatics. Were it not for its strategic presence in a region brimming with oil, it would remain that way today. Jocobovici wants to recast ancient Israelites as the central figures in a great tapestry of crucial history, and all their myths as historical fact. It's all storybook stuff... although the story has legs. The History Channel should limit his show to filler; it's one of the more specious entries on what is otherwise a strong network.
9 out of 27 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
2/10
A big disappointment.
adobeone3 November 2006
I love the History Channel. You can always count on it for entertaining and educational shows. First class programming. But, the program, The Naken Archaelogist, is the exception. This fellow is embarrassing to watch. He appears to be quite enamored with himself. It is clear the people who are with him on his excursions are often most uncomfortable with his forward and rude behavior. Tonite I briefly watched the show. In one scene, he knocked on the front door of a private residence. When no one answered, he proceeded to open the door. I truly expected him to walk on in. The lady of the house clearly didn't know what to think or say. Just astounding. I won't watch the show again. I hope the show goes away early. Twenty-six episodes is unthinkable.
10 out of 40 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
3/10
the entire premise of this show runs counter to archeological record
dapdunlap27 May 2018
This show is religious/zionist propaganda. let's start there.

as an academician -- though not an archeologist-- i'm deeply disturbed by the innumerable times this show mistakes coincidence as fact, seeming to string along "history" from pure conjecture and the host's entirely unsupported opinion. the experts seem to be heavily edited, and rarely agree with these conjectures, but in typical academic culture they don't flatly tell the guy he's wrong, they just understate how what he's saying isn't supported. and this the guy emerges from every conversation thinking there's a semblance of truth-- or, worse, confirmation of truth-- for his religiosity. he takes biblical accounts as historic fact which flies in the face of what we already know about the bible's historicity. he talks about exodus as though it really happened even though there is, quite ironically, no archeological record to support the idea that hebrews were ever enslaved in egypt (native egyptian societies didn't even have slavery at the time).

this series is infuriating to a serious scholar. it's like one of those sarah palin alaska shows, only set in the middle east.
1 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews


Recently Viewed