Predictably, there's been a lot of protest about it. The events of World War II are still too close, and too terrible, for anyone to be entirely neutral, and the BBC was forced to air a debate between several dissatisfied parties and the show's producer. There were several key issues:
- The series was too sympathetic to Germans
- The unsympathetic portrayal of East European partisans
- The unlikely friendship between non-Jews and a Jew
In a media-savvy age, where everything needs to be a metaphor, it seems there is no room for a story about five wartime friends, unless that story is a perfect microcosm of everyone’s wartime experiences.
That, of course, would have been impossible to achieve. Even the dissenting experts broadly agreed that Generation War was a brilliant and moving drama series. But clearly it wouldn't have been if it had tried to be all things to all people.
Perhaps, when we look at something like this, we need to be a little more generous, and a little less prejudiced. After all, if we can't be patient with someone else expressing a subjective account, there's no reason to expect a patient response to personal views of our own.