From mid-June, Jamie Theakston will be presenting the fourth series of Forbidden History on UKTV’s Yesterday Channel and on Discovery AHC in the autumn. The fourth programme in this series will be The Dark Truths of the Templars and yours truly will be appearing as a contributor.
Jamie and the team landed in my study a few months back and we discussed all things Templar for a couple of hours. It’s been in post-production ever since but excitingly is now ready to broadcast.
I haven’t seen the finished programme but issues we covered included:
How did an order of monastic knights pledged to vow of poverty become so hugely rich?
What could have been the real reasons for the formation of the Knights Templar in 1118?
The connections between the order’s founders and some very wealth and influential people
Why did the Templars base themselves on the Temple mount in Jerusalem and what were they doing there?
The salacious charges brought against the Knights Templar during their trial
Did the secular powers, kings and pope, manage to seize all their treasure or did they escape with some of it?
What do we make of persistent accusations that the Templars were influenced in their rites by pre-Christian and non-Christian ideas?
Do feed back to me what you think. There will be other TV appearances later in the year and I’ll keep you posted. Make sure all your Templar fans and friends are watching!
Portraying the Devil in film is not an easy task – as hard as it was to portray him in paint on the wall of a medieval church. Is he a fallen angel or a hairy beast? Does he appear to us as a human or a monster? One Spanish movie – El Dia de la Bestia (released 1995) – depicted him as an enormous goat headed creature. In this rather bizarre film, a Catholic priest discovers that Anti-Christ is to be born in Madrid in the year 2000. To summon up the devil and kill his creation, the priest deliberately sets out to do evil deeds in the hope the devil will take notice of him. It’s a black comedy for sure with typical Spanish anarchic humor.
While the Devil is indisputably a beast in that Spanish movie – he’s in human form for the movie Devil released last year. A group of people trapped in an elevator discover that somebody among them is not quite what they seem. When the lights go out – this individual bites!
There are those like Faust who summon the devil to make a pact they come to regret at leisure – either for riches or in the case of the 1961 movie The Devil’s Partner, for the return of youth. You can watch the entire movie from Openflix at this link:
Of course there are those unwise souls who get together to indulge in black masses or covens to conjure spells and mess with dark forces. One very underrated Horror movie – Blood on Satan’s Claw (released 1971) – shows a group of young villagers in seventeenth century England indulging in Satanic practices at a time when witch burning was at its height. You can see the full movie here: