This landmark miniseries based on Stephen E. Ambrose’s best-seller, and executive produced by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks, recounts the remarkable achievements of an elite team of U.S. paratroopers during World War II.
This series tells the story of Easy Company of the U.S. Army 101st Airborne Division, 506th Regiment, and their mission in World War II Europe, from Operation Overlord, through V-J Day.
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Episode 1: Currahee
In Toccoa, Ga., 1942, a disparate group of young men begins voluntary training to become members of one of America’s newest military regiments – the paratroopers. Under the harsh leadership of Lt. Sobel (David Schwimmer), members of the newly formed Easy Co. go from green civilians to some of the Army’s most elite soldiers. As training progresses, a rivalry flares between Sobel, whom the men despise, and Lt. Winters (Damian Lewis), a junior officer who’s earned the respect and admiration of the company.
Episode 2: Day of Days
On June 6, 1944, D-Day, planes with thousands of paratroopers cross the English Channel to France, where they come under heavy fire. None of the men land where they expected to, and many lose their weapons and supplies in the drop. Winters links up with solitary soldiers, and they set off to find their units. Winters (Damian Lewis) is later chosen to lead an attack on a fortified German artillery position; the mission is successful, but Winters, now acting company commander, loses his first man.
Episode 3: Carentan
Two days after D-Day, Easy Co. is sent to take the town of Carentan, engaging in a successful battle that results in several casualties. Some soldiers, including Pvt. Blithe (Marc Warren), have a difficult time adjusting to combat. After 36 days in Normandy and several fierce battles, Easy returns to England, but their celebrations are short-lived, as news comes that they’re moving out again.
Episode 4: Replacements
Due to heavy casualties, a group of fresh paratrooper replacements joins Easy Co. in time for a massive drop into German-occupied Holland for Operation Market-Garden. While met with no resistance in Eindhoven, Easy and a cluster of British tanks are repelled from a nearby town by a superior German force, sustaining many casualties as they retreat. The Allied plan to enter Germany through Holland and end the war before Christmas fails.
Episode 5: Crossroads
Winters (Damian Lewis) leads a risky mission on a Dutch dike, resulting in a resounding victory, for which he is promoted to Battalion Executive Officer. Dissatisfied with his new, largely administrative job, Winters is concerned about the leadership of the three companies he now commands. After a weekend pass to Paris, news arrives of a massive Axis effort in the Ardennes Forest, threatening to break the Allied lines. Easy Co. races in to hold the line, ill-equipped for the bitterly cold weather and the entrenched battle ahead.
In the dead of winter, in the forest outside of Bastogne, Belgium, the men of Easy Company struggle to hold the line alone while fending off frostbite and hunger, having arrived with no winter clothes and little supplies and ammunition. Medic Eugene Roe (Shane Taylor) is overwhelmed, on edge and close to combat exhaustion when he finds friendship with a Belgian nurse. Easy Co. spends a miserable Christmas in the trenches, and receives the news that the German army’s demand for surrender was met with Gen. McAuliffe’s defiant answer: “Nuts!”
Having thwarted the Germans at Bastogne, the exhausted Easy Co. must now take the nearby town of Foy from the enemy. Several are killed and wounded in fierce shelling, compounded by the incompetence of their commander, Lt. Dike (Peter O’Meara), about whom Winters (Damian Lewis) can do nothing. Easy takes Foy, but at an enormous cost.
Episode 8: The Last Patrol
Easy Co. arrives in the Alsacian town of Haguenau near the German border, and are ordered to send a patrol across the river to take enemy prisoners. Lt. Jones (Colin Hanks), fresh from West Point and eager for combat experience, volunteers to lead. While successful, the mission costs another paratrooper’s life, prompting Winters (Damian Lewis) to ignore the order to send a second patrol the next night.
Episode 9: Why We Fight
Easy Co. finally enters Germany, to surprisingly little resistance, and has a chance to relax for the first time in a long time. A patrol in a nearby forest discovers an abandoned Nazi concentration camp, still filled with emaciated prisoners. The local citizenry, unbelievably disavowing knowledge of its existence, is made to clean it up, as the news arrives that Hitler is dead.
Episode 10: Points
Once home to the top officers of the Third Reich, Easy Co. enters the Bavarian town of Berchtesgaden, and captures “Eagle’s Nest,” Hitler’s mountaintop fortress. Facing imminent deployment to the Pacific Theater, the men compare their “points” to see who has earned enough to go home. However, the Japanese surrender ends the war. A closing vignette tells what happened to the men of Easy Company after they returned home.
|Band of Brothers
|Tom Hanks, Steven Spielberg
|Scott Grimes, Damian Lewis, Ron Livingston
|English, German, Dutch, French
|Amazon (United States)
|Amazon (United Kingdom)
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