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Frozen Seas 

Life on the edge of a frozen sea is tough. Ice at both poles is constantly moving, and in winter freezes solid with air temperatures 70 °C below freezing. Only in spring, with the ... See full summary »

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Episode credited cast:
David Attenborough ... Himself - Narrator
Pierce Brosnan ... Himself - Narrator (US version)


Life on the edge of a frozen sea is tough. Ice at both poles is constantly moving, and in winter freezes solid with air temperatures 70 °C below freezing. Only in spring, with the retreating ice and light reaching the water, does life begin again. Written by Anonymous

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Release Date:

4 October 2001 (UK) See more »

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Arctic oceanic life
30 November 2017 | by TheLittleSongbirdSee all my reviews

David Attenborough, as has been said many times, is wholly deserving of being called a national treasure, although it is a term he happens to not like. He has done so many treasures and even his lesser output of a long and consistently impressive career is still good.

'The Blue Planet' is one of my favourites of his. It leaves me in complete and utter awe every time, with how much is learnt about all the different seas and marine inhabitants and how it all looks visually. It is also one of his most ground-breaking, in that it's the first comprehensive series of oceanic natural history and including and exploring creatures and their behaviour that had never been seen before. As said in my reviews for the individual episodes of 'Frozen Planet', it is a shame that despite being one of IMDb's highest rated shows, the ratings here for each episode individually has such a wide divide between them and that for the show overall. To me, the series overall is wholly deserving of its acclaim and the individual episodes are rated far too low.

"Frozen Seas" for me is one of the series' best episodes. Like "Open Ocean", "Frozen Seas" may not have won or been nominated for awards like "Ocean World" and "The Deep" were or have scenes as memorable as the two shocking and emotionally devastating scenes in "Ocean World", this doesn't matter and neither makes the episode any less inferior.

Visually, "Frozen Seas" is a wonder, same with all the series' episodes and Attenborough's work in general. It has gorgeous scenery and rich colours, while the animals and marine life are captured in all their glory. Standing out even more is the photography, never before or since 'The Blue Planet' has there been more stunning underwater sequences.

George Fenton's music score soars majestically, rousing the spirits while touching the soul. It not only complements the visuals but enhances them to a greater level. Some of my favourite work from him in fact, coming from someone who's liked a lot of what he's done. The main theme is unforgettable.

Can't fault the narrative aspects in "Frozen Seas" either. There are things already known to me, still delivered with a lot of freshness, but there was a lot that was quite an education and after watching the full series it honestly felt like the series taught me a lot.

Attenborough's narration helps quite significantly too, he clearly knows his stuff and knows what to say and how to say it. He delivers it with his usual richness, soft-spoken enthusiasm and sincerity, never talking down to the viewer and keeping them riveted and wanting to know more.

Of the animals, the polar bears, penguins (Emperor and Chinstrap) and leopard seal particularly shine. What was said about the krill was a strong example of something new to me and was of great surprise.

Nothing episodic or repetitive here. Instead, it feels like its own individual story with real, complex emotions and conflicts. One roots for the animals, whether prey or predator.

Overall, wonderful yet again. 10/10 Bethany Cox

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