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Programs in this series:
The Violent Past
Earth is a planet born in fire and baptized in ice. Earth grew from the collision of many smaller planets, drawn together by Earth' s gravitational force and melted together from the force and heat of the impact. Some scientists posit the idea that first life emerged on Earth 4.4 billion years ago, and the likely source was simple organisms originating from Mars, as rocks from that planet hurtled through space to land on ours.
Over the ages, continents have shifted their positions, wind and rain shaping and reshaping the surface. Scientists believe that at least two total ice ages have occurred, each lasting for millions of years. But life in the simplest form might have been able to survive in the depths of the oceans, living from the heat and energy that comes from the Earth itself.
From microbes to the first complex creatures, life was always searching for new frontiers. By 450 million years ago, Earth had become a less violent planet - no longer bombarded by giant meteors from space and the great ice ages had passed. Nothing yet lived on the land, but in the warm and shallow seas that fringed the continents, there was a rich diversity of life. Around this time, fossils capture long extinct creatures on the evolutionary path, aquatic organisms defined by jaws and early limbs.
Extinction and Rebirth
The dinosaurs would roam the Earth and ruled for millions of years, until a disaster from space wiped them out and cleared the way for the mammals to rise and dominate the planet. With the early mammals, many steps including the development of opposable thumbs, the ability to walk on two legs and sharper eyesight - would lay the groundwork for primates and the birth of humanity.
Survival of the Fittest
The human race is here today because of its ability to adapt. Our ancestors, the earliest mammals, survived low oxygen levels. Later primates developed sharp eyesight and hands that could clasp for nocturnal life in trees. And about 6 million years ago, fossil evidence in Africa tells us, some primates may have begun to walk upright, perhaps because they were forced out of the trees and into the grasslands. Living on Earth truly was the Survival of the Fittest.
Educator s Guide
Most interesting overview of planetary and animal/plant evolution I've seen without getting into Darwin (If that bothers you and it doesn't bother me). Read morePublished 5 months ago by Mark A Spencer
Though this series has only 5 disks it is very enjoyable to have. It starts out with the formation of the earth in detail showing the evidence as to why they think it occured that... Read morePublished on February 26, 2013 by B. Brierly
I watched the entire series when it was on Cable. It brilliantly gives perspective on the history of planet Earth. Read morePublished on February 13, 2009 by Pamela Rice
I would be extremely interested in purchasing this if it were truly High Def as some reviewers have said in their reviews. Read morePublished on July 5, 2007 by Amazon Customer