TV Show Recommendation: Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. (2012-)

Quote from Finding Your Roots by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

“Every family has untold stories buried in the fog of the past.”

Executive Producers: Peter W. Kunhardt, Henry Louis Gates, Dyllan McGee, Dalton Delan, Stephen Segaller, Anna Harrington, Anne Harrington, Julie Anderson,

Directors: Hazel Gurland, Jesse Sweet, Sabin Streeter, Josh Gleason, Muriel Soenens, Jamila Wignot, Phil Bertelsen, Hannah Olson, Krista Whetstone, and Lindsey Megrue

Writer: Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Host: Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Number of Seasons so far: Currently in the 6th

Episodes in each Season: Ten

TV Rating: TV-PG

Running Time of Each Episode: 51-53 minutes

Even with the Ben Affleck snafu of hiding his less favorable ancestral members, Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr, is a good show.  The most recent ones I’ve seen is from season four with Fred Armisen and season five with George R.R. Martin.  Sometimes they uncover unsavory parts of the family while other discoveries point to the positive.  Fred Armisen thought he was part Japanese, but his grandfather turned out to be a Korean dancer who took a Japanese name.  George R.R. Martin held the belief he was part Italian from a grandfather who left his grandmother.  When his DNA was tested, he had not a drop of Italian blood in him, but found out he was 22.4% Ashkenazi Jew.  In other words, the grandfather he figured that left his family for another woman turned out not the be the case.  The guests from the episodes travel within and outside the U.S. to find their ancestral historical lineage and the secrets of their family, often having them rethink their long-held beliefs.  This type of show outweighs its criticism because while there are similarities among us with DNA, knowing one’s personal history should be viewed as good even when it includes the bad.

I rate Finding Your Roots GOOD at 80%.





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