BBC Select Launches

BBC Select has launched as a subscription streamer with “all-new documentaries on culture, politics and ideas.”

The current lineup includes:

Murdoch Dynasty, BBC Select
(Rupert Murdoch with a former U.S. president)
  • The Rise of the Murdoch Dynasty, three 50-minute episodes promising “the inside story” of Rupert Murdoch’s global empire, which includes Fox News, The Wall Street Journal and the New York Post.
  • TV’s Black Renaissance: Reggie Yates in Hollywood – an hour-long special in which the actor/DJ travels to Los Angeles to tackle how TV series with mostly Black casts like FX’s Atlanta, Netflix’s Dear White People and HBOs Insecure are “pioneering a new frankness about race and identity.” In the following clip, however, he speaks with Caleb McLaughlin of Netflix’s Stranger Things:
Shock of the Nude, BBC Select
Grayson Perry, BBC Select
  • Grayson Perry: Big American Road Trip, three hour-long episodes with the Brit (left) creating art while crossing the U.S. by motorcycle.
  • Shock of the Nude, two hour-long episodes with Professor Mary Beard (right) giving a personal take on the nude in western art, from ancient Greece to the present.
  • The Mystery of the Missing Princess, one 50-minute episode telling the story of Dubai’s Princess Latifa, who tried to escape from imprisonment at the hands of her father.
The Mystery of the Missing Princess, BBC Select
(Princess Latifa skydiving)

BBC Select also features The Drop, consisting of a weekly collection of shows around a given theme — plus a short film from one individual on the theme. The opener: Civil rights activist Alicia Garza on “Power.”

Future guest speakers will include Roxane Gay, Lionel Shriver, Malcolm Gladwell, Karl Ove Knausgaard, Ai Weiwei, Elif Shafak, Padma Lakshmi, Chuck D and Jamelle Bouie.

You can check out BBC Select’s library at bbcselect.com. The service is available for $4.99 a month following a seven-day free trial as an Amazon Prime add-on channel or via the Apple TV app.

BBC Select’s documentary competition includes Discovery+ and CuriosityStream. On the Anglophile side, it’s competing with Acorn TV and its own BritBox, co-owned with ITV.

(Top image source: BBC Select Facebook page. Other images courtesy BBC Studios)

About Les Luchter

Les Luchter is a former managing editor of Multichannel News, editor-in-chief of Cable Marketing, and news editor of Broadcast Week.

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