The War: Season 1

Poster for The War: Season 1

Ken Burns' documentary series on the Second World War told through the personal accounts of a handful of men and... More

Where to watch The War: Season 1

The War: Season 1 is available to stream in New... More Zealand now on DocPlay.

The War: Season 1 episodes

Episode 1.1

A Necessary War

December 1941 - December 1942: The tranquil lives of the... More citizens of Mobile, Alabama; Sacramento, California; Waterbury, Connecticut; and Luverne, Minnesota are shattered on December 7, 1941, as they, along with the rest of America, are thrust into the greatest cataclysm in history.

Episode 1.2

When Things Get Tough

January 1943 - December 1943: Americans mobilize for total war... More at home and overseas. Factories hum around the clock, while in North Africa and then Italy, inexperienced GIs learn how to fight. Meanwhile, in the skies over Europe, thousands of American airmen gamble their lives against preposterous odds on daylight bombing missions.

Episode 1.3

A Deadly Calling

November 1943 - June 1944: Americans are shocked by terrible... More losses on the Pacific atoll of Tarawa, while in Italy Allied forces are stalled for months at Monte Cassino, and a risky landing at Anzio fails utterly. At home, as overcrowded "war towns" boom, economic transformation leads to confrontation and ugly racial violence.

Episode 1.4

Pride of Our Nation / A Volunteer Basis

June 1944 - August 1944: On June 6, 1944, D-Day,... More 1.5 million Allied troops take part in the greatest invasion in history, but then bog down in the Norman hedgerows for weeks. Saipan proves the costliest Pacific battle to date, while back home dreaded telegrams from the War Department begin arriving at an inconceivable rate.



September 1944 - December 1944: Victory in Europe seems imminent,... More but in Holland, the Vosges Mountains, and the Hurtgen Forest, GIs learn painful lessons as old as war itself - that generals make plans, plans go wrong and soldiers die. Meanwhile, on the island of Peleliu, the Marines fight one of the most brutal and unnecessary battles of the Pacific.


The Ghost Front

December 1944 - March 1945: Americans are shocked by Hitler's... More massive counterattack in the Ardennes forest - but by mid-March, 1945, they are across the Rhine, while the Russians are 50 miles from Berlin. In the Pacific, after weeks of desperate fighting, Iwo Jima is secured, and American bombers begin a full-fledged air assault on Japan.


A World Without War

March 1945 - December 1945: A few weeks after the... More death of President Roosevelt shocks the country, Germany surrenders. Meanwhile, American sailors, soldiers and Marines endure the worst battle of the Pacific - Okinawa. In August, American planes drop atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and the Japanese, too, surrender. Millions return home - to try to learn how to live in a world without war.

The War: Season 1 | Trailers