The Vietnam War Poster

Air Date: September 17th, 2017

Series Summary
Testimony from nearly 100 witnesses and archival footage provide insight into the Vietnam War.

Rating: TVMA

Genres: War, Documentary, History


  • Season 1 - Episode 10 : The Weight of Memory Sep 28, 2017

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    Civil war continues in Vietnam as President Richard Nixon resigns; North Vietnamese troops regain control of Saigon; Americans and Vietnamese try to heal.

  • Season 1 - Episode 9 : A Disrespectful Loyalty Sep 27, 2017

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    The South Vietnamese fight on their own, succumbing to terrible losses in Laos; after he is re-elected, President Richard Nixon strikes a peace deal with Hanoi that sees the release of American prisoners of war.

  • Season 1 - Episode 8 : The History of the World Sep 26, 2017

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    President Richard Nixon begins withdrawing American troops from Vietnam; the invasion of Cambodia sparks large protests.

  • Season 1 - Episode 7 : The Veneer of Civilization Sep 25, 2017

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    Draft-age Americans wrestle with their choices; Richard Nixon narrowly wins the presidential election; soldiers on all sides of the conflict witness savagery and courage.

  • Season 1 - Episode 6 : Things Fall Apart Sep 24, 2017

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    Shaken by the violence of the Tet Offensive, assassinations and unrest, Americans begin to doubt President Lyndon B. Johnson's promise that victory is near; Johnson decides not to seek re-election.

ratings & reviews

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  • The Vietnam War is both the most powerful film Burns has produced, and the most despairing. ... By the end of the fascinating, sometimes wrenchingly hard to watch 18 hours, it's impossible to regard the Vietnam War as anything other than an agonizing failure, one that taught Americans to be cynical about a government that lied to them, sent Americans off to risk their lives, and made one costly bad decision after another. Show More

  • The strength of The Vietnam War comes from these 80-odd interviewees, who offer a glimpse into the psyches of people on all sides of the conflict--from reluctant American draftees to enthusiastic North Vietnamese recruits. ... At times, the length of The Vietnam War detracts from its appeal. Even with the headings, it can be hard to keep the years and offensives straight. Show More

  • While not quite a documentary war of attrition, Ken Burns and Lynn Novick's The Vietnam War stretches over 10 nights and 18 hours, and even though you feel that length at every turn, the series is meant to wear you down. And yet it's impossible to look away. Show More

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