2001: A Space Odyssey

2001 A Space Odyssey asked the big questions and took the cinema goer on a million year journey of the fate of humanity. NEON responds to this challenge, rolls it’s sleeves up and shows how accurately this sci-fi movie portrays ancient hominid behaviour as well as influencing pop culture and even NASA to this day.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu
Produced by Dan Morelle
Music: Deodato – Also Sprach Zarathustra

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AKIRA

Akira introduced the world to the best of Japanese Anime 30 years ago. NEON goes beyond the fabulous animation and reveals how this cyberpunk dystopia explores fundamental fears in Japanese society as well as it being a natural evolution of 2,000 years of Japanese culture.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu
Produced by Dan Morelle
Music: Kaneda’s Theme – Tsutomu Ōhashi

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Fortnite

fortnite

Fortnite has taken the video game market by storm. It is the very latest in freemium games. But while it’s at the cutting edge of technology, the way it works as a business model takes us back over 100 years ago to a specific type of economics. And as to why people play the game? For that you need to look even further back to ancient Rome. Allow NEON to take you on a journey to show you that Fortnite is a game 2,000 years in the making.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu
Produced by Dan Morelle
Music: Imagine Dragons – Believer
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The A-Team

The A Team was one of the most beloved series of the 1980s (and a fairly average 2010 movie). It made a star of Mr. T and reminded the world of George Peppard, creating an unlikely behind the scenes rivalry. However the question has always been what kind of army unit would ever have this group and rank of people …including a pilot?

NEON rolls it’s sleeves up and does it’s job, stripping away the 80s glitter to reveal the real history. The discussion turns from 80s frivolity to the Vietnam War, and then onto America’s complex relationship with the men who served there.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu

Produced by Dan Morelle

Music: John Swihart – A-Team Theme

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Assassin’s Creed

The video game is over 10 years old now but it started a hugely successful series that is still massively popular today. This episode looks at the game that kicked everything off. The game itself is set during the 3rd crusade it allows NEON to look at these religiously motivated campaigns. Jem explores what they were and what they weren’t and that why everything after 9/11 has been tainted by that event leading to all kinds of misconceptions about the crusades.  This episode features the real assassins, rampaging Mongols, violent pagans and the Pope comparing the attempted assassination of Queen Elizabeth I with a crusade. 

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu

Produced by Dan Morelle

Music: Black Sheep – Counting Sheep

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The Handmaid’s Tale & The Running Man

Again you get two for the price of one in an episode. Arnie’s 80’s action fest and the modern thoughtful TV series about women’s rights are eerie echoes of each other. While there can be little doubt as to which is more morally complex, better shot and acted, that may not mean that it is pulling from history as effectively. Because these are dark stories, the history is equally brutal, from Nazi breeding programmes to the rise of fascist regimes this is a horrifying but fascinating episode. NEON walks a tight rope with this one, trying to entertain but also enlighten about some of the worst moment from human history.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu

Produced by Dan Morelle

Music: Sunset Lover – Petit Biscuit

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World Cup 2018

Football nearly came home, but “the boys did us proud”. When the World Cup coms around, other forms of entertainment run and hide. The sense of togetherness, the millions spent on advertising, the prestige of hosting the games. All of this is part of the concept of “soft power”. NEON delves deep looking at past historical examples of how money and marriages can sometimes get you more than an army ever could. As well as the current battle for hearts and minds carried out by the two giants of soft power in the world today, America and China.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu

Produced by Dan Morelle

Music: House of Pain – On Point (Beatminerz Instrumental)

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Love Island

How can an unscripted reality show, largely filled with vacuous individuals teach us history? For this one NEON goes way back and talks about the biological reason for finding a mate as opposed to the way strawberries or starfish can do it on their own. Finding a mate defines most of the natural world and a lot of human history too and Love Island shows us this. Add to that the dark under belly of human emotion enjoying mocking those less fortunate and you find out a lot about how the show works and about your own psychology in this episode.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu (honest guv, doesn’t watch Love Island but thinks Eyal is a bit too intense and Amy went out too early, poor thing).

Produced by Dan Morelle (doesn’t watch Love Island but thinks the music selection is really good. See you at 9pm on ITV2!).

Music: Kwabs – Wrong or Right

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Vikings

The History Channel’s biggest home grown hit Vikings is now on its 5th series. It started as a historical drama but by season 3 it was clearly trying to be Game of Thrones with longships. NEON takes this to task, if you have a degree in medieval history you can tell when they change the tone, but could the average viewer. Is this kind of disregard for real events dangerous? Are some of the real events left on the cutting room floor even more entertaining than fiction? Have a listen to find out.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu

Produced by Dan Morelle

Music: Massive Attack – Teardrop

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Battlefield 1

With video game logic, Battlefield 1 came out after Battlefield 4, the reason for the title is because it’s set in that most unlikely setting for a video game shooter; World War I. NEON applauds the fresh take on a war that is commonly explained as men sitting in trenches for 4 years. It is, as always, more complicated than the summary and this video game shows us this. From highlighting the brave exploits of now dead nations such as Austro-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire, to the diverse locations the war was fought. This game sneaks real history into the brains of teenagers of today.

Written & Presented by Jem Duducu

Produced by Dan Morelle

Music: Cavern – Liquid Liquid

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