Remember when the History Channel actually used to be about HISTORY? We can’t quite put our finger on when it happened… Maybe it was around the Ancient Aliens era… But at a certain point, the History Channel completely switched directions… The focus stopped being about education and history, and instead there was an almost frantic rush to entertain the masses. We started to see a huge number of shows that seemingly had nothing to do with history. And when the shows DID touch on historical matters, they often strayed into the territory of pseudo-science and bizarre conspiracy theories. Generally, the reputation of History Channel started to take a blow.
To understand our point, you only need look at some of the lowest-rated shows on this network. Almost everyone agrees that they were mediocre at best… Completely unwatchable at the very worst. We’re talking about gems like Swamp People, Search For The Lost Giants, Big Shrimpin’, and many others. Sure, these shows are entertaining. And if you love them, who are we to argue? But at the end of the day, the critics have spoken. These are the lowest-rated shows in the history of the History Channel, and to be honest, they probably deserve their low IMDB scores…
20 Ice Road Truckers (6.4)
Ice Road Truckers is actually quite popular. Some would even consider it to be one of History Channel’s best shows… But the ratings don’t lie… Critics aren’t exactly fond of this program. The average TV watcher isn’t a huge fan either. Some people have described this show in less than ideal terms, stating that “it’s about as exciting as watching someone drive to the supermarket.” And that’s what Ice Road Truckers is all about.
This show is about people driving trucks, and that’s pretty much it. Yes, it’s shot in Canada where there are some pretty icy roads. But for the most part, you shouldn’t expect to witness anything too spectacular when you watch this show.
19 Swamp People (6.5)
The History Channel is definitely no stranger to reality shows these days. But for whatever reason, their reality shows just keep getting stranger and stranger. Case and point: Swamp People. Yes, this is exactly what it sounds like – a show about people who live in swamps. The show focuses on a few families and follows their activities, which frequently involve roping and shooting alligators.
This show is probably popular because people are interested in the so-called “hillbilly” culture and lifestyle. With a rating of 6.5 on IMDB, it’s not exactly a complete disaster. But many people have started to grow tired of this show, especially as the seasons drag on and on. It’s been going since 2010, and it doesn’t show any signs of slowing down.
18 Treasures Decoded (6.6)
Treasures Decoded was a show that obviously took inspiration from the success of Ancient Aliens. Although the shows are slightly different, they appeal to the same audience – those that want to explore different possibilities of humanity’s history and origins. Airing in 2012, Treasures Decoded took full advantage of the “Nibiru,” “Annunaki” and Mayan Doomsday obsessions that were rampant at that time.
It’s exactly what you would expect from a History Channel show these days. A little bit of historical fact sprinkled with ample conspiracy theories and strange myths for good measure. Honestly, it’s not a particularly bad show, but it does have one of the lowest IMDB ratings, with 6.6.
17 Brothers In Arms (6.2)
Brothers In Arms is a relatively new addition to History Channel’s lineup, and it focuses on military history from the perspective of two military experts. The show follows Rocco and Eli as they try to start up their own store for military enthusiasts. Even though it just started in 2018, it’s already getting some pretty negative feedback – at least on IMBD.
The score of 6.2 is explained by a number of disappointed critics. Many people have pointed out that 20 years combined between two people doesn’t really count as “expert” knowledge. They’re also not happy with the number of inaccuracies within this show, such as referring to an IFV (Infantry Fighting Vehicle) as a tank. At the end of the day, this show was obviously intended to appeal to gun enthusiasts… The problem is that most gun enthusiasts seem to know more than these guys.
16 The Legend Of Shelby The Swamp Man (6.2)
If you’ve seen Swamp People and you crave even more swampy goodness, there’s always The Legend Of Shelby The Swamp Man to keep you entertained. This show actually gets pretty positive reviews on IMDB. For whatever reason, some people absolutely love this guy and his life, and they’re not afraid to share it. That would explain why Shelby gets a pretty mediocre score overall on IMDB.
But there are definitely those who absolutely hate The Legend Of Shelby The Swamp Man. They point out that he’s one of the worst role models imaginable, and that no child should ever watch this show. They also state that Shelby’s lifestyle is a “disaster waiting to happen,” referencing his frightening lack of gun safety or proper boating protocol.
15 Search For The Lost Giants (6.1)
Did giants ever really exist? A normal person would look at the evidence, consider the possibility for a moment, and then immediately dismiss the entire idea. Not these guys. Jim and Bill Viera are on a quest to find real, concrete evidence of giant bones which are apparently scattered around the globe. Do they ever find any bones? Of course not. But hey, it makes for great television.
Or does it? Search For Lost Giants is definitely one of the lowest rated shows on the History Channel – at least according to IMDB. The disappointment stemming from user reviews was always inevitable. After all, these guys were clearly never going to find real giant bones. If they had, it would have been all over the news.
14 Big Shrimpin’ (6.1)
With a name like Big Shrimpin’, it was hard to take this one seriously from the very beginning. And with a rating of 6.1 on IMDB, it seems like this show never really won too many people over. One of the most common complaints about this show is the fact that the Cajun dialect is extremely hard to understand. Even with the added subtitles, it’s hard to keep track of what’s going on.
Luckily, there actually isn’t a whole lot going on in this show, with many describing it as a “snooze festival.” So while it’s easy to follow along, it’s not exactly thrilling television. We’re talking about shrimp fishing, after all.
13 Marked – 6.0
Marked is another interesting addition to the History Channel – although we’re not quite sure why it’s on this network. It’s a show about tattoos, which will definitely interest a lot of people out there. Some of the most negative reviews point out the fact that the subject matter is not suitable for children – especially the episodes which focus on gang-related tattoos. For example, there’s an entire episode focuses on the admittedly beautiful tattoo culture of the Yakuza.
Once again, this isn’t necessarily a bad show. It just didn’t really blow too many people away, and there was only ever a few episodes published in this mini-series.
12 We’re The Fugawis (5.9)
Now we’re getting into the territory of five out of ten ratings, and these shows definitely show a notable dip in quality. We’re The Fugawis left a lot of people confused. What was this show intended to be? The premise is simple – it’s a reality show focused on a completely obscure motorcycle club. And the show definitely tried to be comedic in nature.
But at the end of the day, people weren’t really sure how to react. The jokes weren’t actually that funny, according to many critics. Others used stronger language, describing this entire show as “tasteless.” The whole thing seems to be some kind of parody, and many people were left unimpressed.
11 Mega Movers (5.7)
In theory, Mega Movers sounds like a really cool show. Tune in, and you’ll see massive superstructures being transported across land, sea, and air with impossibly advanced technology. But in reality, the show never really excited us. After all, watching large structures being moved around isn’t actually as thrilling as you might think. Often, these structures are being moved incredibly slowly.
In the end, we’re forced to ask ourselves, “Why make a show about this?” Many of the reviews simply describe the show as “Okay.” And in many ways, that one simple word completely sums up Mega Movers. In the end, the rating of 5.7 is probably well-deserved.
10 Ax Men (5.5)
Ax Men is actually one of the more high profile shows on History Channel. It still has nothing to do with history, but a lot of people tuned in, and a lot of people have their own opinions about this show. Some people love it – but judging by the IMDB rating of 5.5, it’s safe to say that these people are in the minority.
Many people complain that the show seems rehearsed or choreographed. Experienced loggers state that it’s incredibly unrealistic, and that “none of these guys would last a day on a real logging site.” And of course, there are those who criticize its glorification of natural destruction. This show stopped airing back in 2016.
9 Outback Hunters (5.3)
As the Huffington Post notes, this show seems to be the Australian equivalent of Swamp People. It’s a bunch of random people shooting and harpooning giant crocodiles. Same premise, different side of the globe. Not many people are crazy about this show, and that should be obvious judging by its rather low score of 5.3 on IMDB.
Many critics point out the complete lack of safety in the show, and the fact that it’s the “same old croc stuff.” It only went for one season, back in 2012. But hey, if you’re still not bored of wild swamp mayhem, then this show might just be for you.
8 Sliced (5.2)
There’s no denying that human beings are obsessed with seeing things destroyed. Well, the History Channel decided to make that entire concept into a show. It’s called Sliced. The premise is simple – the host of the show spends his time destroying various objects – usually by slicing them in half. Why would he destroy objects in this manner? The vague excuse offered is that he’s “trying to figure out how they work.”
One example is when he sliced a car in half. One critic could pointed out that he could have experienced the same thing by merely opening the car’s doors. Other critics point out there’s something wrong when we’re slicing apart perfectly good cars and other objects for entertainment. There are plenty of people in this world who do not have access to cars.
7 Invention USA (5.2)
Right from the get go, it’s clear that this particular show was intended to follow in the mold of Mythbusters and related programs. You’ve got all the necessary ingredients. Slightly punk looking scientists and engineering experts, the general feel of a reality show, and tons of inventions to talk about.
But with a rating of 5.2 on IMDB, something clearly went wrong. It’s actually hard to find any reviews on this show – which is generally a bad sign. No reviews means that no one is watching it, and those that DID leave a review didn’t even bother to explain their reasoning. Invention USA only lasted for a couple seasons, and we’re not sure anyone even noticed it was gone.
6 Pirate Treasure Of The Knights Templar (5.2)
The mystery of the Knights Templar? The search for missing treasure? Pirates?! Sign us up. At least, that’s what the majority of History Channel fans thought before they saw this thing. According to its IMDB rating, this show was a bit of flop when all was said and done. With a score of just 5.2, it’s one of the lowest-rated shows in the network’s history.
So why the negative reception? According to most of the user reviews, this one was absolutely filled with fake history and pseudo science. In many cases, they didn’t even run tests on the artifacts they had found. According to critics, they failed to run these tests because they wanted to “invent” their own version of history.
5 Revelation: The End Of Days (5.1)
Nothing like a bit of fire and brimstone to stir up the masses. People have been obsessed with doomsday prophecies for thousands of years, and it seems like History Channel is pushing this trend hard. Or at least they tried with shows like Revelation: The End Of Days. It’s described as a “combination” of a documentary and a fictional account of biblical rapture. With a rating of 5.1, audiences weren’t exactly thrilled. So what did they have to say about this show? Many people compared this show to series like Ancient Aliens and other famously inaccurate shows from History Channel. But at the end of the day, most critics just thought it was a bad mini-series.
4 Nor’ Easter Men (4.8)
Nor’ Easter Men is basically another fishing show like Deadliest Catch. But this show never reached the fame and glory of its inspiration, and it now has a low score of 4.8 on IMDB. So what’s this show about? Basically, we follow groups of fishermen based out of Gloucester, New Bedford, and Portland. The critics accuse this show of the obvious – cashing in on the success of Deadliest Catch. But in all honesty, the show never really got very far, and with just three episodes, there was hardly enough time to write a check – let alone cash it. All in all, this show probably received such a negative reception because it got canceled, and it just wasn’t very interesting.
3 Chasing Mummies (4.6)
Zahi Hawass is a massive name in the world of Egyptology, and somewhere along the line History Channel decided to give him his own show. Was this a good idea? Maybe. But the fact remains – Chasing Mummies is one of History Channel’s lowest rated shows of all time, with a score of just 4.6. Once again, it seems like the History Channel focused on creating a fun reality show rather than educating people about history.
Some people might enjoy the scripted nature of this reality show. The majority of critics obviously didn’t see it that way. They accuse the show of focusing on Hawass’ life, rather than the actual process of Egyptology itself.
2 Billion Dollar Wreck (4.6)
A shipwreck filled with treasure should be lots of fun. It should be engrossing, captivating and awe-inspiring. History Channel’s Billion Dollar Wreck seems to be none of those things, and that’s why it fails. With a score of 4.6, it’s almost rock-bottom in terms of IMDB’s rating system. This show is about a guy who is searching for hidden treasure in sunken shipwreck.
The reviews make it painfully clear why this show is rated so poorly. In the words of one critic, “Nothing ever happens.” You tune in hoping that someone will eventually find treasure, but it just seems to drag on and on. It’s a shame, because the premise has so much promise.
1 Blood Money (4.1)