Band of Brothers

Season 1 Episode 1


Aired Sunday 8:00 PM Sep 09, 2001 on HBO

Episode Fan Reviews (10)

Write A Review
out of 10
316 votes
  • "Come on, Gonorrhea, as a fellow Italian you should know that calling this crap spaghetti is a mortal sin." - Frank Perconte

    Although this is the first episode of a really great HBO series, I think that this first episode is really hard to follow. Not only are you being introduced to characters on the fly, which is fine, but in the next second you have no idea what their names are, and pretty soon you associate to them only by their faces.

    This episode is all about the training before the war, and the introduction is really nice into this mini-series. The first few scenes really get you hooked in, and it takes off like a rocket. However, next half of the episode is painfully slow, creeping along with the men talking about how Easy Company is the best platoon.

    Not a lot of story, it's just scenes of them in the training camp, but overall, it's a good start.
  • Tonight is the night of nights...

    The story begins July 1942. Easy Company, 506th Battalion, 101st Airborne Corps arrive in Camp Toccoa in Georgia, under the supervision of Company leader, Captain Herbert Sobel.
    A fantastic start to the series that puts our new heroes through intene training. This was a great episode to begin with because it foccused on introducing the men of Easy Company. The main star in this episode was Captain Sobel played by David Schwimmer in a career best performance, you really hate this man like the company does but at the same time can see why he is like he is. 10 out of 10.
  • Impressive but a bit Confusing

    I finally did it! I finally got around to watching the first episode of a show that's already a classic. By the looks of it I will be watching the rest as it was interesting. But I have to admit that because of all the hype about the series I tried a bit harder to stay with it. It is kind of hard to remember who's who, what they said and what the relationship is between that person and the others. I tried to go off of little things they said or did to remember them and try to connect. And since I had no subs it was hard to hear their names or understand them from time to time even more so than regular shows because of the words they used were things I never heard of. Those words did make the show more authentic though. The clothes they wore were also impressive down to the boots. Also when I saw Schwimmer the first couple of seconds I had to laugh because usually that shouting meant something funny happened but he did a great job, because 5 minutes later I had forgotten he was a "Friend" for ten years and even more so hated his character. Another thing I had to warm up to was the "pretty picture" filming that I think I have Spielberg to thank for. Everything looked really clear HD style and at first I was thrown off by that, made some scenes seem less realistic even though it should have the opposite effect I guess. But that's just me and I'll get over it. So far great episode, good basis if you pay attention to everyone and I'm curious to see what they do next.
  • No man stands alone...

    Perfect small-screen story-telling personified. Excellent scripts, scenes, screenplay, acting, camerawork, location/settings, wardrobe, props.

    Great characters begin to tell the story of how it was for a group of your 'average' American GI's who joined the elite of the armed forces - the Airborne.

    The over the top star studdied cast doesnt detract one bit, from the story as you think it may do with so many heavyweights. No they all do their part - even Schwimmer - who has the unfortunate role of the company leader who is the main catalyst for the conflict in this episode. The focus of the story in this episode is to introduce the main characters and expose the audience to the little details of life at that time. To that end the episode succeeds in presenting the situation and providing an apphreciation to what it must have been like 50+yrs ago.

    With the central thread of conflict and struggle cleverly generated to an internal struggle between the band and its supposed father figure, the screenplay is filled with enough action, trials and tribulations to ensure that viewers arent waiting for any low intensity scenes to double-time through, to the next. Therefore as a viewer you will find that you follow the story on an emotional level as well as one of listener/viewer.

    Furthermore, there are a few very satisfying milestones littering the episode that brings our emotional levels up with the troop.

    Overall there is a good pace to the episode which only adds to sense of expectancy, that the promise of the next episode brings and the opening shots of Operation Overlord.

    A fantastic opening to what I see as the greatest TV war drama there has ever been. Its just a shame there werent more seasons made.

    Big thanks to BBC2 for reshowing it this week - the week of National/Global Rememberance for the indescribable thanks we need to show for sacrifice of the dead on past generations (and future ones now).

    Lest we forget....
  • Great 1st Episode

    Finally after watching the series over and over, I decided to finally write reviews of each episode. I am writing these knowing how the story goes along episode by episode. While you can say the episode is a flashback episode because story starts off a day before D-Day then flashes back two years on how the men of Easy Company 506 PIR started off. I found the introductions very well laid out. The extreme conditions that their commanding officer put the company through seemed a bit too harsh at the time went above and beyond the standards the other companies did in training. Even though you see only moments of each character, the dialogue and acting will get you feel what each soldier is enduring within the company. A great starting episode for an awesome series.
  • A captivating first episode.

    I`m a huge Tom Hanks fan, so I knew I`ve got to check this out. Besides, I`m always passionate with World War stories. So this first episode of Band of Brothers was more of an introductory episode (like most pilot) which sets up the mini series. Some intense and fun moments, the episode was more diverted towards the training.
    David Schwimmer plays Lt. Herbert Sobel as a guest performance I guess. Hysterical, severe, abusing but yet bad on the field Soldier. I do hope he appears again later in the series.
    All and all, it did get boring at times but most of it was captivating, sting up some amazing episodes. This looks promising.
  • Very extraordinary series i loved the actions and the ranking and the words they used very realistic also there should be a movie about BOB PLEASE!

    Well very best i love this series i just wish that tom hanks can make a movie with spielburg. anywayz very best i never watched any better series the best series. I liked the medic the best and the platoon leader but i think 506th PIR is the best regiment i liked the pranks they do in some other episodes very funny i liked the POW camp of the jews very saddening and real but too many saddening thing that touched me a lot . i love that guy that becomes the new sergeant and the platoon leader for the 506th PIR
  • It didn't do much with the potential it had.

    "Band of Brothers" is one of those shows I've always thought would be a good watch, but I've never actually gotten around to seeing it. Mainly because of the unfortunate airing schedules it's had in my home country. Like "let's air one episode each day, and let's air it at 23:00 at night". Doesn't exactly fit in well when you have to get up at six in the morning to go to work. Or they've aired all episodes during summer, when you're off on vacation.

    But, now I've gotten my hands on the DVD box so now I can decide for myself when and where to watch it. I wasn't quite sure what my expectations where when I sat down to watch the first episode. Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks are names which pretty much guarantees it will be high quality stuff, and Spielberg definitely proved with "Saving Private Ryan" that he knew how to make a war movie. HBO used to mean "Sex and the City" to me, but being a big "Rome" fan I now know that they can make some pretty good shows. Also I like the fact that it's only ten episodes, which points to going for quality above quantity and knowing when to stop. I hate the fact that most shows these days drag on for umpteen seasons which get worse and worse, instead of having the guts to quit while they're on top (just compare the number of episodes made for Brittish "the Office" and the number made for the American version). On the other hand, I couldn't help but wonder if this series wasn't just a "sequel" of sorts to "Saving Private Ryan", a kind of "well that worked well, let's do something else in that setting". So I had some high expectations and some doubts, which is an odd starting point.

    Now having seen the first episode, I'd say it's about a 5 out of 10. There is some quality stuff in there, and it's usually hard to tell by the first episode if a show is going to be great or only medium. It has potential, that's for sure, but there were a few too many things I didn't like.

    First of all, it's awfully cliché isn't it? Haven't we seen most of this before? I couldn't help but wonder why they decided to make this, which might be harsh since it's the first episode, but I just didn't get the feeling that they were trying to tell us something new. "These men were heroes" - yes, but who ever said they weren't? "The commanding officers were jerks, but some were nice" - yes, as seen in every other war film, basically. "They had to train really hard" - yes, that kind of goes without saying. "Some of them had brothers who were killed" - that also kind of goes without saying. "They didn't always get along, but they liked each other anyway" - yeah, that's how it mostly goes with any group of people. These elements can of course be included in movies (or in this case, shows) which take place during war, after all a lot of it is part of the reality of war. But they should be elements rather than what the whole thing is built of. In far too many war movies they are so busy painting these portraits of heroes who had to go through so much that they forget to make the characters human. They're all kind of a bunch of army Mary Sues. One of the things I liked the best about "Saving Private Ryan" was that they spent very little time painting the hero pictures and instead painted the characters as humans who weren't always heroic, nice or brave. That in the end made them seem much more real and heroic than basically any character in movies like "We Were Soldiers" or "Black Hawk Down". It's too early to tell yet whether or not the characters in this series will be real people or superheroes, but so far they're definitely going in the superhero direction.

    Which brings me to another thing I wasn't very impressed by. They introduce about a dozen characters who get various amount of screen time and very little character introduction. I haven't got a clue what character has what name, who is friends with who, who thinks or feels this or that. They're all just a bunch of nameless faces at this point, which makes it really hard to follow or even care about them. There are a few scenes with characters talking amonst themselves, but I haven't got a clue which of the bunch they are or what their relationship is to one another which makes their conversations kind of pointless to me as a viewer. The commanding officers bark orders at different people but you don't know which soldier was named Guarnere and which was named Perconte. This is a problem most war depictions have, and that's why most war movies don't really move me the way that they perhaps should. When I don't know which character I'm watching I find it hard to care. This is another thing that "Saving Private Ryan" excelled in. During the opening D Day sequence you really only had to focus on Tom Hanks and Tom Sizemore (sp?), who you recognised since you know the actor. Then the rest of the company got enough screen-time and character exposition that you could tell them apart, knew their names and got their characters. During the later battle scenes you knew all the characters and what each character was doing, and you cared a whole lot more than you would have otherwise. At this point, "Band of Brothers" is just Band of Nameless People. I was really disappointed by this, since they handled the character bit so well in "Ryan" I would have expected them to do the same here. Above all I don't understand why they spent the first episode focusing almost entirely on David Schwimmer's character, when from what I've heard this is the only episode he features in for more than five minutes. That's just plain annoying, that nearly all focus is on the guy who won't be around later, while those we're supposed to follow aren't given much attention as individuals.

    All in all... it was an okay watch. I'm definitely going to continue watching. But it was a big disappointment in many ways and it fell into a lot of the pits war stories usually do. I can't help but wonder if people have praised this show because it's about soldiers during the invasion of Normandy, rather than because it's a good show. I truly admire the men who went through that in real life, but a show about it can still be so-so at best.
  • Fantastic episode, I can't wait to know more about the characters.

    Lt. Winters has stood out as my favorite in this episode. He seems to be the nice guy who tries to do the right thing by following orders and not causing trouble.

    Sobel is such a wanker and played excellent by David Swimmer of Friends fame. He likes to be the big shot that pushes the troops a little to far in my opinion, but that has made them all the better ... tougher for the unknown of war.

    I like how the troops of Easy company came together so that Sobel would not lead them into battle. He would have got them all killed for sure. He is much better suited to training with the way he pushed Easy company.
  • Easy company becomes part of a new concept, paratrooper.

    This the beginning of the television adaptation of the Stephen Ambrose book "Band of brother". The book was an exciting and informative look at Easy Company of the 82nd Airbourne. This first secment follows the men of Easy company and their training. The next secments will follow them to their untimate goal: D Day.