I am amazed they got away with this. Bless HBO. I have not seen anything about the military that hits it like Generation Kill...and from many different angles. With so much crap about the military on television today it really amazes me to see something done right for a change. This is the most authentic military film I've ever seen. And I don't think any one's gonna be able to touch it for a very long time.
Enlisted men have always been treated like mushrooms - - kept in the dark and fed lots of shit - - Generation Kill captures the life of the enlisted man with accuracy and humor. The first episode had a Sergeant Major chewing out a noncom over the length of his moustache while in the background a fellow Marine does the John Cleese - Faulty Tower goosestep. The beauty of that moment is so real and authentic...it made me proud I was enlisted.
We also see the incompetence of officers with a very different game plan from the troops. As Trad Dad told me, "You always know the mission comes first but that doesn't mean you waste men like they were office supplies." Not to mention the waste of civilian lives. A constant theme through each episode.
I was lucky enough to see all seven episodes. Yes, it's confusing. But I can't help but think the producers want you to see it from the embedded reporter's point of view. Chaos. If you really fall for this series the way I did rush out and buy the book, Generation Kill. It'll help you understand the strategy as well as why they bought all those Depends.
What can you say about HBO. While the networks force feed us pablum like The Unit and Army Wives - -it took some real balls for HBO to put this out there. I have no doubt they will loose a lot of money because this country is not ready for Generation Kill. As one Grunt in a voice over put it, "Back home all they care about is who's in People Magazine or can they get a triple latte at Starbucks. Nobody gives a shit about us. Nobody cares." Amen to that. Although, the price of gas seems to be waking up some of us.
For more on the series check out Wally's blog at http://wallacestrobycom.blogspot.com/2008/07/