Photo: REX USA/Mike Hollist / Daily Mail/Rex.
Look, Sigourney Weaver, Imma let you finish, but David Attenborough's narration of Planet Earth was one of the best narrations of all time. I don't mean to throw shade at Ms. Weaver, because she is beautiful, and her voice is soothing, and she does a great job. But, I just can't get enough of Sir Attenborough.
My obsession with his nature documentaries has gone so far that, in addition to purchasing Planet Earth and Blue Planet on DVD, I've also streamed The Life of Mammals and The Life of Birds multiple times on Netflix, and purchased several of his other works on Amazon. Basically, everything I know about nature, I learned from Attenborough.
If you don't know who I'm talking about, I am so excited for the journey you are about to embark on when you inevitably spend the next 24 hours binge-watching everything you can find online. But, first, a little background: Sir David Frederick Attenborough has been a mainstay of natural history programming on the BBC for over 60 years, and has won quite a few BAFTAs in his time. He's 87 years old now and incredibly spry. You've probably heard his voice before, though you might not know it.
What I love about his narration style is that he completely turns the educational TV stereotype of a boring, personality-free voiceover on its head. He has some very whimsical turns of phrases, and his enthusiasm is palpable and boundless — evident by the fact that he uses the word "extraordinary" about 7,000 times per hour. That could be annoying coming from someone else, but in his case, all you can do is agree that what you're seeing is, indeed, fascinating.
Attenborough is no armchair naturalist. He regularly brings his formidable presence in front of the camera to interact with the animals firsthand. As you can see from the video above (one of his best moments ever), there's no shortage of silliness in his work. But, together with renowned animal experts from across the globe, highly sophisticated technology operated by super-skilled professionals, and, in my opinion, some of the world's best TV producers and writers, he's also tracked down some impressive never-before-seen footage that has shed light on a number of natural mysteries.
He regularly makes a point to acknowledge the fact that while he may be the star of the programs, he's only one of many who make such thorough investigations into nature possible. I love the fact that his shows take such care to credit the local experts, camera operators, and others who make the magic happen. Of course, Attenborough is something of an expert himself, as demonstrated by this Reddit AMA (make sure you get down to the part where he talks to famed Reddit biologist Unidan. It's thrilling).
All of this aside, the best part about Sir David is his uncontainable joy for the natural world. Despite having been in the field for decades, he's as shocked and awed as a kid seeing a squirrel up close for the first time. You can't not catch the bug.