Everything's coming up tactical this fall as network television jumps on the military show bandwagon with CBS, the CW, and NBC each recently announcing plans to add military shows to their lineups.
But while the networks might be trying to attract a more military-specific audience with these shows, they’ve neglected to consult the Pentagon for any direction on authenticity.
Task & Purpose spoke to the Department of Defense’s entertainment media director who said so far no show producers have reached us for any guidance or direction.
“None of them came to us with their scripts,” Phil Strub told Task & Purpose.
The office, which Strub has helmed since 1989, offers military assistance in producing feature motion pictures, TV shows, documentaries, music videos, advertisements, and video games.
Private advocacy organizations like Got Your 6 also work to ensure military authenticity in the media, but in many cases, veterans still reject TV and movie portrayals of service for their inability to accurately show military life.
In recent years, there has been an uptick in Hollywood’s desire to portray military life on the silver screen and your home screens, like American Sniper, setting off a number of other movies and shows about the post-9/11 veteran. This past year, the History Channel added a number of military-specific shows (both scripted and reality) to its roster, including Six, The Warfighters, and The Selection, while Netflix recently released an original movie starring Brad Pitt about the Afghanistan War. It’s clear that TV and movie producers believe viewers have a thirst for military action dramas.
Whether these three new shows carry will weight in the minds of veterans and service members remains to be seen, but their trailers are all available for critiquing:
Coming to CBS in the fall, this scripted drama will feature David Boreanaz, previously of Bones, as a Navy SEAL.
According to CBS, “In this action-packed new drama, these stealthy and fearless warriors conduct high-risk clandestine missions against impossible odds. And when they return to the home front they face stress of a different nature.”
The CW’s show Valor is described as a “military drama/conspiracy theory,” starring Matt Barr.
“In Valor, the boundaries between military discipline and human desire are tested on a U.S. Army base that houses an elite unit of helicopter pilots trained to perform clandestine international and domestic missions,” writes Deadline.com.
NBC will offer its military drama in the form of a “journey” into the covert lives of Defense Intelligence Agency operatives.
Starring Anne Heche as the agency’s deputy director, the show will take viewers from Washington, D.C., to some of the most dangerous places on earth.
A small unmanned aerial vehicle built by service academy cadets is shown here flying above ground. This type of small UAV was used by cadets and midshipmen from the U.S. Air Force Academy, the U.S. Military Academy and the U.S. Naval Academy, during a Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency-sponsored competition at Camp Roberts, California, April 23-25, 2017. During the competition, cadets and midshipmen controlled small UAVs in "swarm" formations to guard territory on the ground at Camp Roberts. (U.S. Air Force photo)
Drones have been used in conflicts across the globe and will play an even more important role in the future of warfare. But, the future of drones in combat will be different than what we have seen before.
The U.S. military can set itself apart from others by embracing autonomous drone warfare through swarming — attacking an enemy from multiple directions through dispersed and pulsing attacks. There is already work being done in this area: The U.S. military tested its own drone swarm in 2017, and the UK announced this week it would fund research into drone swarms that could potentially overwhelm enemy air defenses.
I propose we look to the amoeba, a single-celled organism, as a model for autonomous drones in swarm warfare. If we were to use the amoeba as this model, then we could mimic how the organism propels itself by changing the structure of its body with the purpose of swarming and destroying an enemy.
Soldiers from 4th Squadron, 9th U.S. Cavalry Regiment "Dark Horse," 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, are escorted by observer controllers from the U.S. Army Operational Test Command after completing field testing of the Armored Multi-Purpose Vehicle (AMPV) Sept. 24, 2018. (U.S. Army/Maj. Carson Petry)
The Army has awarded a $575 million contract to BAE Systems for the initial production of its replacement for the M113 armored personnel carriers the service has been rocking downrange since the Vietnam War.
President Donald Trump has formally outlined how his administration plans to stand up the Space Force as the sixth U.S. military service – if Congress approves.
On Tuesday, Trump signed a directive that calls for the Defense Department to submit a proposal to Congress that would make Space Force fall under Department of the Air Force, a senior administration official said.