By Catalina Righter
Isolated. Starving. Covered in blood. Are these images you would use to describe your breaks away from Washington College? Maybe so if you are Dr. Bill Schindler who took time away from his work as an associate professor of anthropology at the College to star in a new TV show for National Geographic Network titled “The Great Human Race.” On Saturday, Jan. 30 WC was treated to an early showing of the first episode before the show’s TV release on Monday, Feb. 1.
The showing was held in Decker Theatre to make use of the large projecting screen and nearly every seat in the house was full of WC students and staff, members of the community, and Dr. Schindler’s family. The first 50 people to arrive at the event received a promotional T-shirt for the show.
Provost and Dean of the College Emily Chamlee-Wright introduced the screening and praised Dr. Schindler’s dedication as a scholar as well as his talent for making appetizing meals out of scary ingredients.
Dr. Schindler said the show was “the experience of a lifetime,” and thanked the researchers who “worked diligently for months fact- checking and interviewing experts, and wading through what most of you know is a very confusing body of archaeological literature. They did all this to ensure that this series is accurately portraying the way the world was.”
The episode shown was titled “Dawn” and followed Dr. Schindler and his co-star Cat Bingley as they re-create the experience of the early human ancestor species homo habilus.
After the screening, Dr. Schindler and Executive Producer for National Geographic and Show Runner Peter DeLasho held a question and answer session.
DeLasho said Dr. Schindler and Bigney’s dedication to the show impressed him. “It wasn’t like we shot and they went off and got some water or ate some food, which happens on most other shows, to be honest with you… Bill was so willing to do this when most other talent just won’t go there.”
Dr. Schindler gave the audience an inside perspective on some of the events of the first episode which included treacherous water sources and encounters with dangerous wild life. He finished the evening by showing off a souvenir from a later episode of the show set in the arctic: a pair of boots that retailed for $40 and were made of dog fur.
Junior Nicole Blanco had Dr. Schindler as a professor in her freshman year at WC. After viewing the show she said, “It’s so Schindler. I don’t think he could possibly be doing something that’s more in his field. It’s really cool to see him so excited about it.”