TV appearances

Tony McMahon

THE BEARDY HISTORIAN – Tony McMahon – as seen on TV!


Join me on YouTube: @tonymcmahon_historybear

Whether I’m being filmed on location or in the studio, on my own or with fellow contributors and experts – my role as a former journalist as well as historian and author is to bring my investigative skills to the past. Examining with forensic precision those mysteries that have enthralled us for centuries, even millennia. No stone is left unturned as I ask the uncomfortable questions in my quest for the truth.

In recent years I’ve been a regular history and science contributor on TV documentaries. I cover Royal scandals from around the world; science and engineering marvels in history; mysteries of the Knights Templar and Holy Grail; the Nazis and the Second World War; the bible and Jesus; evidence for UFOs and extraterrestrials and the wonders of ancient civilisations such as Egypt and the Roman Empire.

My TV appearances grouped around topics:

ROYALTY: I have been a regular commentator on issues around royal scandals and the history of some of the world’s most magnificent palaces. I appeared in several episodes of Private Lives of the Monarchs (UKTV/Smithsonian) and Secrets of the Royal Palaces (Channel 5). This included detailing the lives and loves of monarchs from Louis XIV of France, Peter the Great of Russia, Princess Margaret and Queen Victoria in the UK.

ENGINEERING AND SCIENCE IN HISTORY: On Discovery Science’s Secrets of the Lost Ark I reconstructed a 2,000 year-old Baghdad battery in my kitchen for American TV audiences. I’ve just completed filming for several episodes of a new series on great inventions in history from the Post-It note to photography.

MYSTERIES OF THE KNIGHTS TEMPLAR AND HOLY GRAIL: For over ten years, I’ve run the hugely successful Templar Knight blog covering medieval mysteries. On History, I was a contributor to a Grail quest series called Buried. Also on History, I’ve appeared on several episodes of William Shatner’s The UnXplained discussing the Ark of the Covenant, Holy Grail and strange Templar rituals in Portugal. On Discovery Travel’s America Unearthed I examined evidence of Templar activity in Scotland and also accompanied Saturday Night Live veteran comic Rob Riggle on his Templar investigations.

UFO EVIDENCE AND EXTRA-TERRESTRIALS: I have been a contributor on several seasons of Discovery’s Strange Evidence and NASA’s Unexplained Files discussing UFOs, extraterrestrial life, paranormal activity and unexplained phenomena. On Dutch TV, I appeared on location with Dutch actress Georgina Verbaan on the series Am I here alone? I’ve summarised all the main UFO conspiracy theories in a recent YouTube video.

ANCIENT CIVILISATIONS AND THE BIBLE: On several seasons of Forbidden History (UKTV and Discovery), I have discussed the mysteries of Ancient Egypt and the lives of biblical figures such as Moses and Noah. I’ve investigated various aspects of the life of Jesus including theories about his crucifixion and resurrection.

NAZIS AND THE SECOND WORLD WAR: On Forbidden History (UKTV and Discovery), I discussed the early years of Adolf Hitler when he was sent to prison and whether scurrilous rumours about his anatomy were true! I’ve examined all the stories about stolen Nazi treasure; the Nazis and the occult and the escape routes taken by leading Nazis after the Second World War.

Below we have British TV presenter Jamie Theakston and the production team from Like A Shot Entertainment filming for UKTV in my study at home!

Contact for broadcast: or


Secrets of the Royal Palaces – Channel 5

  • Appearing in episodes on Hampton Court Palace, Whitehall Palace, Versailles and Kensington Palace – broadcast 2022

The UnXplained – William Shatner – History

  • Broadcast from late 2021

Secrets of the Lost Ark – Discovery Science

  • Appeared in four episodes broadcast 2021

Rob Riggle Global Investigator – Discovery Science

  • Episode on the Knights Templar broadcast 2020

Strange Evidence – Discovery Science

  • Filmed in late 2021 for the 2022 season
  • Have appeared in many episodes over the last three seasons

America Unearthed – Discovery Travel

  • Presented by Scott Wolter. Appeared in the episode: Exodus of the Templars. First broadcast July 2019

NASA Unexplained Files – Discovery Science

  • Appeared in several episodes broadcast 2019

Forbidden History – UKTV/Yesterday TV

Filming in 2022 for series seven.

Appeared in the following episodes of series six, filmed in September 2019

  • First broadcast 2020: Crystal skulls
  • First broadcast 2020: Moses the prophet
  • First broadcast 2020: The real Noah
  • First broadcast 2020: Hidden Japanese gold on the Philippines
  • First broadcast 2020: Nazis and the occult

Appeared in the following episodes of series five:

  • First broadcast 2018: Series five. Episode One. Uncovering the Historical Jesus
  • First broadcast 2018: Series five. Episode Two. The Stasi – Behind the Berlin Wall
  • First broadcast 2018: Series five. Episode Three. The Nazi Treasure Quest
  • First broadcast 2018: Series five. Episode Four. The Real James Bond
  • First broadcast 2018: Series five. Episode Five. The Dead Sea Scrolls Conspiracy


  • First broadcast 2017: Series four. Episode Four. The Dark Truths of the Templars

Buried – History channel – presented by Mikey Kay and Garth Baldwin. A documentary series on the Knights Templar to accompany History’s Templar ten-part drama Knightfall:

  • First broadcast in the United States 2017 (UK 2018): Series one. Episode Four. Land of Secrets (the Templars in Portugal)

The Big Audition – ITV – a prime-time ITV 1 series where contestants vie for a very interesting job.

  • Broadcast on ITV on 5 October, 2018 at 21:00 to a prime-time audience. I was in full costume as King Henry VIII. The show was reviewed with my image in national media including The Sun newspaper.

Private Lives of the Monarchs – UKTV/Yesterday TV and other channels globally – presented by Tracy Borman, curator of the Royal Palaces. Tony McMahon appeared in the following episodes:

  • First broadcast 2017: Series Two. Episode One. Queen Victoria
  • First broadcast 2017: Series Two. Episode Two. George III and the Prince Regent
  • First broadcast 2017: Series Two. Episode Three. Louis XIV
  • First broadcast 2017: Series Two. Episode Four. Charles II
  • First broadcast 2017: Series Two. Episode Five. Henry VIII

Private Lives – UKTV/Yesterday TV and other channels globally – presented by Tracy Borman. Tony McMahon appears in the following episodes, first half of 2019:

  • Series Three. Broadcast March, 2019. Princess Margaret
  • Series Three. Broadcast March 2019. Edward VIII and Mrs Simpson
  • Series Three. Broadcast March 2019. Adolf Hitler and the Nazis
  • Series Three. Broadcast March 2019. Napoleon
  • Series Three. Broadcast April 2019. Peter the Great
  • Series Three. Broadcast April 2019. Al Capone

Four Rooms Channel 4 – presented by Sarah Beeny

  • First broadcast December 2017: Series three. Episode 1

Dressed as Henry VIII on ITV in October 2018 – very much a tongue in cheek TV appearance as I walked in full costume through west London

In March 2019, talking about the scandals around Princess Margaret – sister of Queen Elizabeth II and featured in the Netflix series, The Crown

Why did the notorious English king Henry VIII have no friends later in life?

Same TV series – but a different monarch. Victoria and Abdul – the real story of Queen Victoria’s relationship with her Indian servant and his introduction of curry to the royal court.

On Forbidden History presented by Jamie Theakston. We discuss the mysteries of the Knights Templar at my house in London for an episode broadcast in the spring of 2017. I appeared in every episode of Forbidden History in 2018 discussing topics as varied as the historical Jesus, the East German Stasi secret police and the real James Bond.

Filming with the History channel in Portugal in the summer of 2017 for the Knight Templar documentary series Buried (broadcast in the US in 2017 and the UK in 2018) made to complement the multi-million dollar drama series Knightfall.

IMG_0553 (1)

Appearing on ITV’s The Big Audition in October 2018 dressed as Henry VIII – press photo that appeared in The Sun newspaper.

Screen Shot 2018-09-21 at 23.20.03

And the Daily Mail covers The Big Audition with a lovely photo of me in the middle!