The first television episodes of “Beagle, in het kielzog van Darwin” (Beagle, in the wake of Darwin) are now online. It is in Dutch, but many of the speakers are English, so well worth a look.
The extra-long first episode of Beagle, in the wake of Darwin we meet our main characters, Sarah Darwin and Dirk Draulans. In port all the equipment is installed and we meet Deniz Haydar, and Katja Phillipart, Marine Biologists. In England we find descendants of Charles Darwin at Down House, the house where Darwin most of his life and wrote On the Origin of Species. You will also meet Simon Keynes, the Beagle scholar, and Randal Keynes, author of the book Annie’s Box, subtitled Darwin, His Daughter, and Human Evolution. In Darwin’s old college town, Cambridge, we find James Moore, a Darwin biographer, who talks about Darwin’s student life. In London we meet with the British Admiral Ian Moncrieff, and he talks about the real mission of the HMS Beagle.
The ship is at sea. Ronald Plasterk, John Francis and Christopher Lloyd are on board and they debate the purpose of this trip and the current state of the Earth. Are we slowly destroying the earth, or are the ominous reports greatly exaggerated? The Ashton Brothers will surprise us with music and theater. Katja Phillipart’s plankton study was initially faced with adversity when sea weed blocked the plankton recorder and therefore part of the journey will not have measurements. The central question in Katja’s research is the warming of the oceans and how the plankton will adapt. Will species movie north? Or will they move to a depth which is cooler? Or will they just stay in the same place? Much of the plankton is photographed by Wim van Egmond and will later appear on this site.
We also have our regular guests on board. Redmond O’Hanlon is a travel writer who gained international fame with books like, In the heart of Borneo, Congo Journey and Trawler. As a “professional reader” he knows everything about Darwin and the great explorers. Anthony Smith is an artist on board and has long been fascinated by Darwin. Anthony is just like the old ship’s artist Conrad Martens, who will make drawings of the places the VPRO Beagle has been.
(Notes on the episodes adapted from the Google translation with a bit of help from my own rusty Dutch)