First Look: David Attenborough’s Dynasties

Drama, emotion, and breath-taking cinematography – three of the main first impressions from David Attenborough’s new television series Dynasties, as seen in its ‘First Look Trailer’ released on the 4th of October. After the success of 2016’s Planet Earth II, audiences have been without the soft and soothing tones of Sir Attenborough that accompanied the thrill of scenes, such as the snakes vs. iguana chase from the ‘Islands’ episode, which went on to win a Bafta for ‘Must-See TV Moment’. With the release of this new trailer, the British public are now waiting in anticipation for the full series of Dynasties, which, at present, does not have an official release date.

The trailer itself does not disappoint. Shadows of wildebeest walk in front of the gigantic sun as an atmospheric music track plays, creating a sense of anticipation that continues to build in the viewer as the trailer progresses. The main focus in this series gives rise to its name, Dynasties, and it follows the lives of five different animal families – lion, tiger, wild dog, emperor penguin and chimpanzee – with filming taking place over the last four years.

Once again, the visual elements are striking, with wide landscape shots giving way to dramatic close-ups of the animals looking piercingly into the camera. Suspenseful moments are intercut by intense, quiet moments. In one particular example, a shot of a roaring lion, accompanied by a relentless beat, is followed immediately by a pause in the music as a group of four wild dogs prowl forward with heads down and ears back. The spell is then broken by a chimpanzee’s shriek, and the trailer barrels forward once more.

With the recent news that we only have 12 years to save our planet, this series can hopefully seek to remind us that the Earth is fragile and needs everyone to do their part in order to save our beautiful planet from ruin and do Sir Attenborough proud. 

Images: [BBC America, Carbon Brief, UK Air Dates]

Yasmin Bye