Thursday, August 29, 2019

Review of "PBS Home Video: The Natural History of the Chicken"

Review of

PBS Home Video: The Natural History of the Chicken, VHS version

Three out of five stars

 The phrase “natural history” is generally used to reference a scientific study, albeit presented in a popular form. That was my thought when I decided to watch this tape and why I was disappointed. This is not a scientific analysis of the role of the chicken in human society down through history, but a series of short stories that involve chickens.

 The least useful is the story about a man that has a very large number of roosters that crow a lot, causing so much noise that the neighbors have trouble conducting their lives. After their initial complaints, the neighbors filed legal action and there are short interviews of the people on both sides. I have no idea how conforms to the natural history of the chicken.

 Another story features a woman that has a pet chicken that she washes regularly and cuddles with. The most interesting story is a documented case of a headless chicken that lived for some time after its head was cut off. It seems unbelievable, but there is convincing documentation.

 While the stories are interesting, in most cases they are more about relationships between humans and chickens where the chickens are not quite a secondary partner.

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