US Soldiers: “Over There” is Bogus
These Soldiers Say “Over There” is “Bogus” (Seattle PI)
“Bogus” was the preferred adjective among the eight soldiers — most of them Iraq vets — viewing the series pilot last week at Camp Murray, headquarters of the Washington State National Guard in Tacoma.
“Thank God that’s over,” said a master sergeant as the credits rolled.
The uniformed skeptics dissected the series pilot scene by scene, beginning with the roadside bombing and panicked soldiers. Who, they asked, was pulling security? And what kind of idiot pulls off his helmet after a bombing attack? “In real life, training takes over. Not in Hollywood,” said Sgt. Dan Purcell.
The Camp Murray soldiers dismissed the military firefights as “bull—- ” (“Where is the air support? Where is the armor support?”), the dialogue as contrived (“It sucked”) and plot drivers as pure Hollywood.
In the script, characters are thrown together for the first time. They constantly ask each other to explain nicknames. In real life, soldiers are sent to Iraq in units. “They don’t have to ask each other’s nicknames. They all know each other.”
After one week in-country, the soldier-actors mull life and death and war in eloquent speeches home to loved ones, talking about how war unmasks the monster within. “Nobody is that reflective after one week in-country. It’s more like, “Ohmigod, we’re in Iraq. Hi. What the hell am I doing here?”
I didn’t catch the show, but it’s being marketed as a tool for understanding the human side of the war. It sounds like more Hollywood melodrama instead.