A new drama which has been dubbed a “German Band of Brothers” is set to screen on BBC Two later this year.
Generation War is a violent depiction of the experiences of five friends during the years 1941-1945 and has been described as a “turning point in German television” in its portrayal of the role of ordinary Germans during the war.
The series (the original German title, Unsere Mütter, Unsere Väter, translates as Our Mothers, Our Fathers) was watched by record audiences of more than seven million when it aired on German broadcaster ZDF and has been praised for its unflinching and graphic portrayal of a much-debated and deeply painful period in German history.
"What it does, as Band of Brothers did, is that it makes you look at the horror of war, and you see that depicted,” said a BBC spokesperson.
“You really do engage with the characters – you don't necessarily sympathise with them, at least not initially – and it has real emotional punch. It will have great breadth of appeal because everyone relates to the war."
The drama, mostly set amid the carnage of the Eastern Front, focuses on the lives of two brothers who join the Wehrmacht, a nurse who is in love with one of them, a singer who dreams of being the next Marlene Dietrich and her Jewish boyfriend.