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Travis Gorrie




Location: Springfield, Illinois
Joined: 21 Apr 2004

Posts: 32

PostPosted: Sun 04 Mar, 2007 5:01 pm    Post subject: Conquest video clips         Reply with quote

I did a quick search and didn't find any reference to this so I thought I'd post it.

The History Channel website has a few video clips on various medieval weapons (Bill, Mace, Ahlspheiss, Godendag, Ball and Chain and war hammer). They are from the TV show Conquest, just type in Conquest into the search and they should be listed. I don't think he knows what he's talking at times, states that a bill spike can penetrate plate, but are fairly interesting to watch anyway. Enjoy.
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George Hill




Location: Atlanta Ga
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PostPosted: Sun 04 Mar, 2007 5:46 pm    Post subject: Re: Conquest video clips         Reply with quote

Most of us are aware of the show, and most of us have found that only one sentence per episode is accurate.

Best of luck.

To abandon your shield is the basest of crimes. - --Tacitus on Germania
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Bill Grandy
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PostPosted: Mon 05 Mar, 2007 12:24 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Thank you for pointing that out, Travis. I've heard many people reference this show before, but I've never seen it before (believe it or not, I don't watch TV). I've always been curious, and had even asked people to tape it if they ever see it.

Now that I've watched them, I can say the show is far more based on speculation than any actual historical research. There are some things in the show that I can agree with, but they still repeat many myths. In fact, the majority of the weapons they're using to demonstrate with are cheap replicas (I recognized a Denix flail, for example. Denix makes purely decorative weapons). The "techniques" shown are typical stage combat techniques, not techniques laid out by period martial arts masters, and he has some things flat out wrong. (Such as that a bill hook is no good against a sword... clearly, he has never read any of the historical masters who would STRONGLY disagree. Happy )

That said, for a TV aimed at the general audience (most of which barely care anyway), it's better than some other things I've seen.

(edited for a typo)

Virginia Academy of Fencing Historical Swordsmanship
--German Longsword & Italian Rapier in the DC Area--


"A despondent heart will always be defeated regardless of skill."


Last edited by Bill Grandy on Mon 05 Mar, 2007 4:42 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Travis Gorrie




Location: Springfield, Illinois
Joined: 21 Apr 2004

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PostPosted: Mon 05 Mar, 2007 2:37 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Does anyone know if the Godendag is an accurate replica? It looks awful cumbersome.
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Benjamin H. Abbott




Location: New Mexico
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PostPosted: Mon 05 Mar, 2007 3:01 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

They even get the weights wrong. Bills weighing ten pounds! Pollaxes weighing fifteen pounds! That's about as accurate as the D&D Player's Handbook.

And that bill against sword fight was pretty silly.
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Thomas O'Neal




Location: Fort Worth, TX
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PostPosted: Mon 05 Mar, 2007 3:43 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Benjamin H. Abbott wrote:
That's about as accurate as the D&D Player's Handbook.


Be careful; that actually may be the source material (at least for the two episodes I've seen). Big Grin

My impression of the host and the show's format is that the host had served in the military; therefore, the host had either expert knowledge or strong martial intuition of how ANY weapon, regardless of time period or context, would have been used in the filed of battle. I believe the History Channel's desire to make an entertaining program outpaced their commitment to historical fact with this particular show.
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George Hill




Location: Atlanta Ga
Joined: 16 May 2005

Posts: 614

PostPosted: Mon 05 Mar, 2007 4:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Prior to "Conquest" the host played a Technomage on the Babylon 5 Spinoff "Crusade." He is an actor, not a weapons expert.

In one episode, I witnessed him talking about the axe, and he claimed it was a purely offencive weapon. To prove this, he sharged one of his followers with one, swinging wildly, and the follow, who had a SHARP spear, did not attack to his very open body. Three guesses why the fellow with the SHARP POINT did not counter attack, and none of them are what the host said. "You couldn't get a shot in."

In the same episode, he handed out danish axes which were so heavy, they were like garden posts with a huge head on one end. Then he said 'go out and find out how to use these."

They did. They decided that the way to do it was to not use footwork, and to lean all over the place as you swung. He liked that solution.

To abandon your shield is the basest of crimes. - --Tacitus on Germania
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Chris Goerner




Location: Roanoke, Virginia
Joined: 19 Sep 2004
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PostPosted: Tue 06 Mar, 2007 1:09 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

George Hill wrote:
Prior to "Conquest" the host played a Technomage on the Babylon 5 Spinoff "Crusade." He is an actor, not a weapons expert.


Some of you may also recognize him from Gibson's film The Patriot -- he played the aide-de-camp to Cornwallis.

Cheers,
Chris

Sic Semper Tyranus
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Jean Thibodeau




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PostPosted: Tue 06 Mar, 2007 7:23 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Chris Goerner wrote:
George Hill wrote:
Prior to "Conquest" the host played a Technomage on the Babylon 5 Spinoff "Crusade." He is an actor, not a weapons expert.


Some of you may also recognize him from Gibson's film The Patriot -- he played the aide-de-camp to Cornwallis.

Cheers,
Chris


Don't hate the actor, hate the script writter / researcher / director ( One of them or all of them ! The poor actor just says the words. Wink )

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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George Hill




Location: Atlanta Ga
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PostPosted: Tue 06 Mar, 2007 7:41 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Jean Thibodeau wrote:

Don't hate the actor, hate the script writter / researcher / director ( One of them or all of them ! The poor actor just says the words. Wink )


Actually, Woodward is the main writer/producer of Conquest, if Wikipedia is to be believed.

To abandon your shield is the basest of crimes. - --Tacitus on Germania
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Jean Thibodeau




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PostPosted: Tue 06 Mar, 2007 7:53 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

George Hill wrote:
Jean Thibodeau wrote:

Don't hate the actor, hate the script writer / researcher / director ( One of them or all of them ! The poor actor just says the words. Wink )


Actually, Woodward is the main writer/producer of Conquest, if Wikipedia is to be believed.


Well then he's not just a hired actor and qualifies as the hated writer / producer. Wink Razz Laughing Out Loud ( At least to the degree that the content is inaccurate and based on shallow knowledge or research: I haven't seen these programs so I can't judge first hand about the quality ? Might still be fun but of limited usefulness to know what a wallhanger can do to equally unrealistic armour by untrained users ........ fun ??? Razz )

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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William Carew




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PostPosted: Fri 02 Sep, 2011 2:51 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

Travis Gorrie wrote:
Does anyone know if the Godendag is an accurate replica? It looks awful cumbersome.


Sorry for the thread ressurection, but as the clips below are still (unfortunately) available on Youtube, I thought I'd bring this up as the goedendag is something of a project for me.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qy6y9oXkjCo

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dqlIcT9Ps8w

Under no circumstances is the goedendag used in the Conquest video accurate. It's an overbuilt, ridiculously heavy fantasy weapon. To me it looks like a left over 'prop' from the original John Milius Conan movie. Wink

There are surviving goedendag 'pins' (the goedendag is also referred to as a pinned staff at times) as well as artwork that demonstrate that the head of the goedendag was actually quite compact. Also, it appears likely there was only ever one 'spike' on the main goedendag design, the forward spike used for thrusting (and slashing at extreme range).

The informative page below on the goedendag has been around since late 2002:

http://www.liebaart.org/goeden_e.htm

I'm not sure when the Conquest video was shot, but I think it was well after that. If so, it's apparent Conquest didn't bother with even 5 minutes of web research. Which is really disapointing, if not surprising.

For an excellent replica of the goedendag, see the Arms and Armor reproduction here:

http://www.arms-n-armor.com/custom935.html

It's about 4.5 foot long and weighs about 4.5lbs and is obviously a much more accurate and manageable weapon than the Conquest version.

Because the weapons in Conquest are so often too heavy and cumbersome, the host's guesses at what the techniques might look like are also way off. The goedendag is much more nimble than the video would suggest, and an accurate version can be wielded much like a heavy longsword or short 'peasant' staff (ala Paulus Hector Mair) to good effect. Here are some viable methods:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0I7FHG-XOgM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gy-9080epY8

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ohyb9Mc-4AM

Bill Carew
Jogo do Pau Brisbane
COLLEGIUM IN ARMIS
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William P




Location: Sydney, Australia
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PostPosted: Fri 09 Sep, 2011 10:52 pm    Post subject:         Reply with quote

interestingly, he seems to have done ALOT of stage fighting, and it seems to be his specialty\

just watched the firstpartof the broadsword episode.. yeah.. the people handling those viking sword,s and describing the weight. and the charateristics.. as usual its compltely off.
first time i held a reasonabl replica of a viking sword which was a manning imperial model, as well as he hanwei godfreid and niether are as heavy as suggested, infact i was suprised how LIGHT they were.
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Jean Thibodeau




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PostPosted: Sat 10 Sep, 2011 4:50 am    Post subject:         Reply with quote

William P wrote:
interestingly, he seems to have done ALOT of stage fighting, and it seems to be his specialty\



The problem arrises when someone really good at stage fighting assumes that real fighting uses the same techniques !

Stage fighting has exaggerated motion for the sake of drama. Actions are very much telegraphed in part so that the audience can figure out what is happening and also telegraphing one's actions makes it much safer so that one's fighting partner will always know what is coming.

Actions are also done subtlety out of measure so that if a parry is missed the blow will likely also miss and mostly all actions are rehearsed and expected to avoid accidents and to make the action look as exciting as possible.

Very big windups and cocking of blows make the blows seem more powerful.

Real fighting is technique, speed, deception, surprise, economy of motion, control of distance and timing and might even look boring or happen too fast for an audience to follow. ( Well, many more things also. Wink Laughing Out Loud ).

You can easily give up your freedom. You have to fight hard to get it back!
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