WATCH | NatGeo’s Iraq War miniseries ‘The Long Road Home’ puts spotlight on ambushed US soldiers

December 21, 2017 - 2:28 AM
Michael Kelly (foreground) in a scene from 'The Long Road Home.'

Based on the New York Times best-selling book by internationally acclaimed journalist Martha Raddatz, “The Long Road Home” tells the story of “Black Sunday,” when a small platoon of soldiers from the US 1st Cavalry Division was ferociously ambushed in Sadr City, Baghdad, in April 2004. Eight soldiers would make the ultimate sacrifice that day and more than 65 would be seriously wounded.

No soldier fights alone. The soldiers in this story are no exception. The scripted eight-part miniseries offers viewers an intimate window into the experience of war as seen through the eyes and the hearts of the soldiers themselves and their families back home.

It is an adrenaline-fueled and emotional journey that follows the action of the battle on two simultaneous fronts — the chaotic, terror-filled streets of Sadr City, where a group of inexperienced young soldiers faces an unexpected and unimaginable attack with bravery they never knew they had, and the home front at Fort Hood in Texas, where family members, desperate for news of their loved ones and fearing the worst, discover their own courage and determination as well.

With unprecedented intimacy, the eight-part series tells the stories not only of these courageous soldiers but also of their compatriots involved in the three desperate and deadly rescue missions launched to save them. Across eight hours, reflecting the exact amount of time the soldiers were pinned down, each episode highlights a different character’s unique and compelling journey as we come to understand their heroism and humanity.

The series stars Michael Kelly (“House of Cards,” “Taboo”) as then Lieutenant Colonel Gary Volesky (now General Volesky), the incoming battalion commander who was in his first hours of assuming authority over Sadr City as the battle broke out; Jason Ritter (“Parenthood,” “Girls”) as Captain Troy Denomy, who bravely led a rescue convoy into the city; E.J. Bonilla (“Unforgettable”) as stranded platoon leader 1st Lieutenant Shane Aguero; Kate Bosworth (“Blue Crush,” “SS-GB,” “The Art of More”) as Gina Denomy, a young wife and new mom battling her own fears while reaching out to the families of the fallen and wounded.

There’s also Sarah Wayne Callies (“Prison Break,” “The Walking Dead,” “Colony”) as Family Readiness Group leader and Gary Volesky’s wife, LeAnn Volesky; Noel Fisher (“Shameless”) as a heroic 24-year-old warrior and later peace activist Private First Class Tomas Young; and Jeremy Sisto (“Suburgatory,” “Law & Order,” “Six Feet Under”) as reluctant hero Staff Sergeant Robert Miltenberger.

Additional cast members include Jon Beavers (“NCIS,” “Gotham,” “The Fresh Beat Band”) as the hot-tempered and heroic young Sergeant Eric Bourquin; Darius Homayoun (“Tyrant”) as the platoon’s Iraqi interpreter, Jassim al-Lani; Jorge Diaz (“Jane the Virgin,” “The 33”) as Specialist Israel Garza; Ian Quinlan (“Gotham”) as Specialist Robert Arsiaga; Patrick Schwarzenegger (“Stuck in Love”) as Sergeant Ben Hayhurst; Kenny Leu (“NCIS”) as Sergeant Eddie Chen; and Joshua Brennan (“Skinford”) as Sergeant Jackson.

The fresh episodes of “The Long Road Home” exclusively premieres on National Geographic every Wednesday night at 10PM with a weekend primetime replay every Sunday at 10PM. National Geographic is seen on Channel 41 (Skycable), Channel 141 (Cignal), Channel 62 (Cablelink) and Channel 153 on (GSAT). National Geographic HD is seen on Channel 195 (Skycable), Channel 240 (Cignal) and Channel 331 (Cablelink).

The series is also accessible through the Fox+ app, available for iOS and Android devices.

Watch the series trailer here: