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"The Pacific" - can it possibly live up to expectations?

Levallois

Practically Family
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665
What was the significance of Gunny giving Sledgehammer the lighter at the end of the last episode? A passing of the torch (literally and figuratively)?
 

Doublegun

Practically Family
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773
Location
Michigan
Levallois said:
What was the significance of Gunny giving Sledgehammer the lighter at the end of the last episode? A passing of the torch (literally and figuratively)?

I thought it was AkAk's lighter. There is a scene toward the beginning where AkAk (I think) lights a cigarette for Sledge. If you watch the episode again you will see it.

I am really looking forward to Eposide 8 and the landing at Iwa Jima.
 

Doctor Strange

I'll Lock Up
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5,062
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Hudson Valley, NY
So far, I've been mostly underwhelmed by this series. Sure, the battle sequences are jaw-dropping and gripping, but the characters and situations have mostly left me cold: up until last night, my comment has been, "It's okay, but it's no Band of Brothers."

However, Episode 8 hit me where I live: My mother was a Marine sergeant in California (but at El Toro, not Pendleton) during the war, and though I don't know very much about her service, I do know that she was a kitchen-staff liason part of the time! So I had a real hook into this specific story: Lena could have been my mom. (Though she didn't meet my dad - a sergeant in the Army Air Corps - until after the war.)

Anyway, it certainly made me sit up and take notice... and that it was a more focused, character-driven episode also helped.
 

Doublegun

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773
Location
Michigan
Had the house to myself Friday night so I watched Episodes 1-7, back to back. The stories flow much better when watched that way and the stories weave together nicely. It was much easier to relate to all of the characters because you have more time to get to know them. It's definitely different than BoB but just as good in many respects. TP is certainly more graphic in terms of the violence, blood and gore and certainly sexual situations.
 

Levallois

Practically Family
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665
I think that the episodes are getting better and better. The Peleilu episodes (5-7) were as good as anything on BOB. And Episode 8 was very powerful at the end - not much battle footage but it gave the idea of just how messed up and chaotic a battle can be - I was feeling melancholy the rest of the night. Episode 9 will be close to home as my father-in-law was on Okinawa (and then in China) with the 1st Marines. He passed before I met her but she said that his experiences in the Marines seemed to affect him the rest of his short life. I can't imagine how you would ever get over most of this stuff.

John
 

GallatinHatMan

One of the Regulars
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153
Location
Gallatin, Tennessee
It goes into far more stories than the series, including naval and air stories, principally, at least at this point, the Coral Sea and Midway. I'm hoping that it will "fill in" some of the depth and character development that seems to be needed in the series. I also downloaded With the Old Breed from Amazon for my iPhone. I was reading it today while waiting in Court and I know I'm going to enjoy it immensely, for filing in details. My father and his brothers all went through Pendleton so the boot camp experience sounds very familiar. Apparently, Sledge and my father were virtual contemporaries there. My father went to the 3rd and Guam and Iwo, rather than to the 1st.
 

xwray

Familiar Face
Messages
67
Location
Houston, TX
last Sunday's episode was great

The scenes toward the end with the Japanese baby and dying woman tore me up...couldn't help shedding a few tears...very moving.
 

GallatinHatMan

One of the Regulars
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153
Location
Gallatin, Tennessee
I downloaded With the Old Breed earlier this week and am through D+1 on Pelelieu. It makes the scenes on The Pacific much more understandable and real. I highly recommend it as a supplement to the series.
 

Shangas

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6,114
Location
Melbourne, Australia
I've been following this series religiously since it started. And so far, I'm pretty impressed with what I've seen. Of course, I've never seen BoB, so I've nothing to compare it to, but I like what I'm looking at.

I was pretty impressed with the recreation of 1940s Melbourne.
 

Smithy

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5,137
Location
Norway
I just can't get into it. I've watched the first half dozen episodes or so but it just doesn't grab me.

I'm probably judging this hugely against Band of Brothers and for me the characterisation development is not nearly the same nor the tension which is built up.

Technically it's very impressive but IMHO it lacks "soul".

I'm packing it in with watching this.
 

Norumbega

One of the Regulars
Messages
106
Location
Maine
Profoundly sad that this is over, having just watched the last episode tonight. There is so much I could say about how much this series has resonated with me regarding personal experience, having grown up at the feet of Pacific Marines, and watching my sons go off to war as Marines......and to be there when they returned.

I am so glad this series was not another BoB.....and if anyone needed to measure The Pacific against that, they probably never understood to begin with.
I loved it...overwhelmingly.
 

Doublegun

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773
Location
Michigan
A fitting conclusion to a tremendous series. I have always had a great deal of respect for veterans of any war but I am in awe of those who fought in the PTO.

As the one who started this thread several weeks ago and having watched and re-watched every episode for me personally, it did exceed expectations but in ways I never really expected. Comparing The Pacific to Band of Brothers is like comparing the ETO to the PTO - they were completely different wars, fought against completely different enemies in completely different environments under completely different conditions.

On Memorial Day I am sure I'll think of Sledge, Leckie, Basilone, Gunny, Snafu and what they endured and I will have a greater appreciation for everyone who served in the PTO. And, I am sure that I will not be the only one who feels that way.

JDG
 

Doctor Strange

I'll Lock Up
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5,062
Location
Hudson Valley, NY
I watched the series all the way through, but I was essentially underwhelmed: I will not be rewatching this every time I stumble on an episode while channel surfing like I do with BoB. While technically masterful, and with unbearably tense and hypnotic battle sequences, I thought the series' storytelling was disjointed and very weak on character. (E.g.: I couldn't recall who many of the men summed up in the postscript what-happened-to-them sequence were.)

The series partially redeemed itself for me in the finale, which was completely character-driven, and featured many extremely moving scenes. (Some owing an awful lot to The Best Years of Our Lives, but if you're going to borrow, you might as well borrow from the best!)

It was fascinating seeing Leckie readjusting to civilian life, Lena and the mourning Basilone family, and especially Sledge - whose character arc finally fulfilled what seemed like a draggy set-up in the earlier episodes, with his doctor father fearful that, like the Great War vets he'd known, Eugene would return emotionally damaged. Hell, yeah.

It was a strong ending to what - for me, anyway - was a largely disappointing series.
 

Norumbega

One of the Regulars
Messages
106
Location
Maine
Doublegun said:
A fitting conclusion to a tremendous series. I have always had a great deal of respect for veterans of any war but I am in awe of those who fought in the PTO.

As the one who started this thread several weeks ago and having watched and re-watched every episode for me personally, it did exceed expectations but in ways I never really expected. Comparing The Pacific to Band of Brothers is like comparing the ETO to the PTO - they were completely different wars, fought against completely different enemies in completely different environments under completely different conditions.

On Memorial Day I am sure I'll think of Sledge, Leckie, Basilone, Gunny, Snafu and what they endured and I will have a greater appreciation for everyone who served in the PTO. And, I am sure that I will not be the only one who feels that way.
JDG

Amen. You echo my thoughts. It was not the same, nor was the series to be a companion piece. My hope is that in time, others will come to appreciate that fact as it was never the intent.
I did want to share an excellent article from Leatherneck Magazine in conclusion.

https://feedback.mca-marines.org/leatherneck/mar10-sledgehammer-at-war-and-at-peace.asp
 

YETI

A-List Customer
Messages
439
Location
Bay Area, CA
It took a while to warm-up to this series, but it ended on a strong note. Eugene Sledge's account is the only reason why I continued to follow "The Pacific". Now, I have a much deeper respect for those who fought in the PTO. My grandfather was a survivor(barely) of the Bataan death march. My mom told me that he was never the same after that.
 

Norumbega

One of the Regulars
Messages
106
Location
Maine
I don't want to wander away from the focus of The Pacific, but for those of you who would like a deeper understanding of the events that set the stage for the arrival of the Marines in the Pacific, you should pick up and read two very moving books, the first, "Bataan, Our Last Ditch", chronicles the heroic stand by American and Philippine forces as they attempted to blunt the Japanese juggernaut that was sweeping through the islands, a must read for those with connections to Bataan.
The second is "Ship of Ghosts", which is a testament to human endurance---a Bridge Over the River Kwai story, and one book that has movie written all over it.

Read these two, and with The Pacific, it will bring you full circle.
 
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