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Nearly half a million years ago the most advanced human the world has seen is roaming Europe. Strong and powerful, Homo heidelbergensis are fierce hunters, use sophisticated tools and live in close knit family groups. They resemble humans both physically and behaviourally - yet something crucial is missing.
An extraordinary new breed of ape-men called Homo egaster has taken over Africa. They are expert tool makers, food-finders and travellers, but where they differ most from their predecessors is in their communal lifestyle.
Two specimens of ape-man are examined by Professor Robert Winston - the gentle, root-munching Paranthropus boisei and the enterprising scavenger Homo habilis. Who had the best strategy for survival in their prehistoric world?
Journeying millions of years into the past, Professor Robert Winston goes on the trail of Australopithecus afarensis, an ape who took the first step towards modern man. See how bi-pedalism opens the door to an astonishing set of new skills and abilities that change the shape of human life on Earth.
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- Premiered: March 27, 2003
- Rating: TV-14
- Premise: An examination of 3.5 million years of human evolution, from early hominids to modern Homo sapiens using computer animation, animatronics and re-enactments. (more)