If any single BBC TV show justifies the £145.50 licence fee it’ll be David Attenborough’s Planet Earth 2.
The epic six-part nature documentary’s followed up last week’s incredible snake vs iguana chase with a snow leopard mother and daughter locked in a battle against two males looking to mate.
These rare big cats haven’t been caught on camera at any great length before, so Attenborough’s doc blazed a trail by brilliantly shedding light on their lives high up in the Himalayas.
As the mother and her cub trekked across a mountain top they found themselves ambushed by the two males.
Mum snow leopard submissively rolled over allowing her daughter to escape, then engaged in a ferocious scrap with the two males. Eventually she allowed the older cat to mate with her, and walked away from the encounter with a bad injury.
Attenborough, toying with the viewers’ emotions like the master broadcaster he is, then announced that the two female snow leopards vanished from sight completely.
After leaving the audience with that bombshell – did they live?! – he then revealed that they were spotted by Planet Earth 2’s cameras one month later alive and well.
Delivering the final emotional sucker punch, Attenborough said mother and daughter would likely separate forever now that the offspring has come of age.
There wasn’t a dry eye in the house, as the audience Twitter reaction to the show suggests.
This must be the best television ever made. Astonishingly good. #planetearth2
— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) November 13, 2016
Attenborough's narration about these snow leopards is sending me on an emotional rollercoaster that i'm not prepared for today #PlanetEarth2
— Chris Martin (@ChrisMartin_87) November 13, 2016
*punches air for female snow leopards. #planetearth2
— Rowan Coleman (@rowancoleman) November 13, 2016
Why they gotta play us like that. 'Mother and cub were not seen again…. UNTIL A MONTH LATER LOL YOU THOUGHT THEY WERE DEAD' #planetearth2
— Eleanor Marshall (@eleleleanorr) November 13, 2016
Planet Earth II is pretty much the answer to the question, 'Is the licence fee worth it?' Only the BBC can make a show like this.
— Olly Richards (@olly_richards) November 13, 2016