Kingdom of the Oceans: Predator’s Paradise
Sunday, 7.30pm, National Geographic After Boardwalk Empire I couldn’t bear to begin this week’s page with more crime. So I thought this beautiful doco about the underwater world might break the spell. The narration begins: ‘‘ Night on the reef. The streets are dark. Most of the residents are asleep or hiding. They are wise to stay indoors tonight because predators are on the prowl.’’ OK, it’s not James Ellroy, but it sure sounds like crime. Or is it an underwater version of West Side Story, as a gang of white tipped reef sharks cruise in, looking for action? Of course it’s neither, as nature’s theme song always has been Live and Let Die. If you thought fishing a brutal sport, just watch the way these puppies rip their prey in half. No wonder the gentle reef residents are advised to stay indoors at night. Happily, from about five minutes in, the crime metaphor drifts away and the sheer beauty of a coral atoll in the daytime emerges. ‘‘ It’s the marine equivalent of a rainforest,’’ says our man. Ah, that’s better.