I’m pleasantly surprised to find myself enjoying PBS’s Walking the Bible. Rather than the typical assortment of discordantly talking heads paired with sonorous narrative and anachronistic dramatizations or stock footage, host Bruce Feiler (author of a book also named Walking the Bible and some others) is producing here a new kind of first person biblical travelogue, and it is entirely refreshing. There are gems here: from Turkey’s Mount Ararat, where a tight-lipped Kurdish mountain guide refuses to divulge the secrets of the mountain, to a leisurely row across Egypt’s Lake Timsah in a boat whose fisherman explains that they call a certain fish “the Moses fish” because, when the waters of the sea were split, the fish were split and so on one side they are grey and one side white. Delightful!
Feiler is a fine host, peppering the program with biblical readings and not uninformed scholarly explanations and conjectures, yet still giving the upper hand to the story in its relation to faith. Such an approach is perfectly in keeping with the goals of this blog and its companion email list. So, I recommend to folks that they catch it on their local PBS station, or if you’re outside of the US, purchase the DVD (available here). Either way, it’s informative, fun, and commercial free! And while it appears that there are only three episodes, the overall quality is quite enough to compensate for the lack of quantity.