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What's History Doing on the History Channel? "Hatfields and McCoys" Trailer

By Steven Lloyd Wilson | Trailers | February 23, 2012 |

By Steven Lloyd Wilson | Trailers | February 23, 2012 |

Remember the good old days when we mocked the History Channel for just being the World War II channel? It was in good fun because we liked history, even if they were a bit heavy on 1939-1945, but the executives at the channel went all sad panda on us. They realized that there actually was a separate World War II channel on broader cable packages, and then just gave up entirely and started airing reality shows about arctic pawn shop truckers with axes. Cable channels used to be the homes of middling fare that had something to do with their name. But over the last decade they separated into two groups. The ones who went the HBO route and started making high quality original series. And the ones that went the route of just hitting rock bottom and airing whatever two guys and a camcorder could record at their local strip mall.

The good news is that the History Channel might be showing signs of reversing course and moving to the winning team.They’ve put together a three day mini-series slated for Memorial Day weekend based on the legendary feuding families of the Hatfields and McCoys. And they managed to land Kevin Costner, Bill Paxton, and Tom Berenger.

Here’s the trailer:

I’m rooting for the series to do well no matter how good it actually is, if only to reward a channel for trying to turn away from the infested squalor of reality series.

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Steven Lloyd Wilson is the sci-fi and history editor. You can email him here or follow him on Twitter.