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In The Footsteps of Marco Polo Previous Broadcasts

KQED World: Sun, May 13, 2012 -- 10:30 PM

Some people dream big dreams. Only a few bold adventurers live them. Two such adventurers are Denis Belliveau and Francis O'Donnell, who took a wild idea - to retrace Marco Polo's entire 25,000 mile land-and-sea route from Venice to China and back - and spent 2 incredible years of their lives trying to turn it into reality. "We made a pact," says O'Donnell, "that, under any conditions, no matter what, we were only coming back to the US 1 of 2 ways - either dead or successful."
This program chronicles the extraordinary journey of two ordinary guys - Denis, at the time a wedding photographer, Francis an artist and US Marine veteran - as they venture on foot, on horseback, on camelback, in jeeps and trucks and boats and trains, through Venice, Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, several former republics of the Soviet Union, China, Indonesia and India. Equal parts travelogue, adventure story, history trek and buddy movie, it chronicles their highs and lows as they retrace Polo's path, trying to see what he must have seen, feel what he must have felt.
In a feat of undaunted courage, in the spirit of history's great adventurers, Belliveau and O'Donnell make their way across the world's largest land mass and back, securing - or, when necessary, forging - visas, surviving extreme temperatures, and talking their way out of jams brought on by Tajik soldiers, Chinese security officers, and an assortment of other bureaucrats, border guards and armed warriors. Interweaving Belliveau and O'Donnell's own tales with the original 13th century descriptions of Marco Polo, brimming with adventure, history, art, and no small amount of humor, this program is a unique cinematic experience.

Repeat Broadcasts:

  • KQED World: Mon, May 14, 2012 -- 4:30 AM

KQED 9: Fri, May 4, 2012 -- 9:00 PM

Some people dream big dreams. Only a few bold adventurers live them. Two such adventurers are Denis Belliveau and Francis O'Donnell, who took a wild idea - to retrace Marco Polo's entire 25,000 mile land-and-sea route from Venice to China and back - and spent 2 incredible years of their lives trying to turn it into reality. "We made a pact," says O'Donnell, "that, under any conditions, no matter what, we were only coming back to the US 1 of 2 ways - either dead or successful."
This program chronicles the extraordinary journey of two ordinary guys - Denis, at the time a wedding photographer, Francis an artist and US Marine veteran - as they venture on foot, on horseback, on camelback, in jeeps and trucks and boats and trains, through Venice, Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, several former republics of the Soviet Union, China, Indonesia and India. Equal parts travelogue, adventure story, history trek and buddy movie, it chronicles their highs and lows as they retrace Polo's path, trying to see what he must have seen, feel what he must have felt.
In a feat of undaunted courage, in the spirit of history's great adventurers, Belliveau and O'Donnell make their way across the world's largest land mass and back, securing - or, when necessary, forging - visas, surviving extreme temperatures, and talking their way out of jams brought on by Tajik soldiers, Chinese security officers, and an assortment of other bureaucrats, border guards and armed warriors. Interweaving Belliveau and O'Donnell's own tales with the original 13th century descriptions of Marco Polo, brimming with adventure, history, art, and no small amount of humor, this program is a unique cinematic experience.

Repeat Broadcasts:

  • KQED 9: Sat, May 5, 2012 -- 3:00 AM
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TV Technical Issues

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    • 2/22/17: Fremont Peak tower transmissions, including KQET DT25

      (DT25.1 through 25.3) Recent storms have taken out dozens of trees on Fremont Peak, which in turn have taken down power lines leading to the transmission tower located on the peak. It has been running on generators for several days, and regular trips are scheduled to re-fuel those generators with gas. However, the truck has […]

    • KQED TV All Channels: Planned outage late Fri/early Sat 1/14 midnight-2am

      All KQED television channels will be off the air late Friday/early Saturday 1/14 beginning at midnight for approximately two hours to perform maintenance and upgrades to our electrical system. These improvements will help KQED maintain and continue our broadcast service to the community. We will return to our regularly scheduled programs as soon as work […]

    • Wed 12/28: KQET DT25 Over the Air signal restored

      UPDATE: signal was restored apx 6pm (DT25.1 through 25.3) We are aware that our transmitter servicing the Watsonville/Monterey/Salinas area, KQET, is off the air. Engineers are on their way from San Francisco to check it out. Estimated time for repairs not yet known.

To view previous issues and how they were resolved, go to our TV Technical Issues page.

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