The Vietnam War: Broadcast and Stream Schedule

September 8, 2017

Still from The Vietnam War, a film by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick.

UPDATE October 4 to reflect rebroadcasts.

The Vietnam War, the 18-hour documentary series by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick, is getting priority treatment by PBS, which is making it available often and anywhere, and in several languages. The ten episodes receive encore broadcasts on Tuesday nights at 9pm, beginning October 3. It premiered on September 17 on PBS stations and aired Sunday through Thursday with each episode airing twice on each night, with early morning repeats, and two daytime marathon broadcasts ending October 1.

For more Vietnam-related content and new programs like American Medevac and Legacies of War, see our Vietnam page.

Streaming Schedule

Beginning Sunday, September 17 at 8pm, the first five episodes will be released. All will stream on the web (desktop or mobile) and THIRTEEN Explore and PBS apps for smartphones, tablets, Apple TV, Roku and Amazon Fire TV. Viewers can choose from four streaming options: English broadcast version, English explicit language version (not edited for TV; adult language), Spanish-language version, and a Vietnamese version with subtitles. The last five episodes will be available to stream starting Sunday, September 24.

THIRTEEN station members can view all 10 episodes of the film through the member benefit THIRTEEN Passport, beginning Sunday, September 17, through December 31, 2017.

Broadcast Schedule (Primetime)

Episode One – Déjà Vu (1858-1961)
Premieres Sunday, September 17, 2017 at 8:00 p.m. Repeats at 9:30pm
Tuesday, October 3 at 9pm

France first attacked the city of Danang in 1858 and by 1887 Vietnam was part of its colony called Indochina. In 1954 after a long and brutal war, Vietnamese revolutionaries led by Ho Chi Minh, French-educated and a Communist, end nearly a century of French occupation. With the Cold War intensifying, Vietnam is divided in two at Geneva. Communists in the north aim to reunify the country, while America supports Ngo Dinh Diem’s untested regime in the south.

Episode Two – Riding the Tiger (1961-1963)
Premieres Monday, September 18, 2017 at 8:00 p.m. Repeats at 9:30pm
Tuesday, October 3 at 10:30pm

As a communist insurgency gains strength, President John F. Kennedy wrestles with American involvement in South Vietnam. To protest the Diem regime’s persecution of Buddhists, the 73-year-old monk Thich Quang Duc sets himself on fire at a major traffic intersection in Saigon on June 11, 1963. The monk’s self-immolation makes news around the world in photographs and television footage.

Episode Three – The River Styx (January 1964–December 1965)
Premieres Tuesday, September 19, 2017 at 8:00 p.m. Repeats at 9:30pm
Tuesday, October 10 at 9pm

With South Vietnam near collapse, President Lyndon B. Johnson begins bombing the North and sends US troops to the South.

Episode Four – Resolve (January 1966–June 1967)
Premieres Wednesday, September 20, 2017 at 8:00 p.m. Repeats at 9:30pm
Tuesday, October 17 at 9pm

US soldiers discover Vietnam is unlike their fathers’ war, while the antiwar movement grows.

Episode Five – This Is What We Do (July 1967–December 1967)
Premieres Thursday, September 21, 2017 at 8:00 p.m. Repeats at 9:30pm
Tuesday, October 24 at 9pm

This episode hones in on six months of the Vietnam War. President Johnson escalates the war while promising the public that victory is in sight.

Episode Six – Things Fall Apart (January 1968–July 1968)
Premieres Sunday, September 24, 2017 at 8:00 p.m. Repeats at 9:30pm
Tuesday, October 31 at 9pm

This episode covers seven months of the Vietnam War era. Shaken by the Tet Offensive, assassinations and unrest, America seems to be coming apart.

Episode Seven – The Veneer of Civilization (June 1968–May 1969)
Premieres Monday, September 25, 2017 at 8:00 p.m. Repeats at 9:30pm
Tuesday, November 1 at 9pm

After chaos roils the Democratic Convention, Richard Nixon, promising peace, narrowly wins the presidency.

Episode Eight – The History of the World (April 1969–May 1970)
Premieres Tuesday, September 26, 2017 at 8:00 p.m. Repeats at 9:30pm
Tuesday, November 14 at 9pm

President Nixon withdraws troops but when he sends forces into Cambodia the antiwar movement reignites.

Episode Nine – A Disrespectful Loyalty (May 1970–March 1973)
Premieres Wednesday, September 27, 2017 at 8:00 p.m. Repeats at 9:30pm
Tuesday, November 21 at 9pm

South Vietnam fights on its own as President Nixon and Henry Kissinger find a way out for America. The POWs return.

Episode Ten – The Weight of Memory (March 1973–Onward)
Premieres Thursday, September 28, 2017 at 8:00 p.m. Repeats at 9:30pm
Tuesday, November 28 at 9pm

Saigon, the capital of South Vietnam, falls in 1975 and the war ends. Americans and Vietnamese from all sides search for reconciliation.

Marathon Weekend Broadcasts

The Vietnam War series will also have weekend broadcasts. Episodes one through five will be broadcast in two blocks on Saturday and Sunday, starting September 23; episodes six through 10, the finale, will be broadcast in two blocks the following weekend, starting Saturday, September 30.

Saturday, September 23 and Sunday September 24

See episode descriptions, above.

Episode One – Déjà Vu (1858-1961)
Premieres Saturday, September 23, 2017 at 1:00 p.m.

Episode Two – Riding the Tiger (1961-1963)
Premieres Saturday, September 23, 2017 at 2:30 p.m.

Episode Three – The River Styx (January 1964–December 1965)
Premieres Saturday, September 23, 2017 at 4:00 p.m.

Episode Four – Resolve (January 1966–June 1967)
Premieres Sunday, September 24, 2017 at 1:00 p.m.

Episode Five – This Is What We Do (July 1967–December 1967)
Premieres Sunday, September 24, 2017 at 3:00 p.m.

Saturday, September 30 and Sunday, October 1

See episode descriptions, above.

Episode Six – Things Fall Apart (January 1968–July 1968)
Saturday, September 30, 2017 at 12:30 p.m.

Episode Seven – The Veneer of Civilization (June 1968–May 1969)
Saturday, September 30, 2017 at 2:00 p.m.

Episode Eight – The History of the World (April 1969–May 1970)
Saturday, September 30, 2017 at 4:00 p.m.

Episode Nine – A Disrespectful Loyalty (May 1970–March 1973)
Sunday, October 1, 2017 at 1:00 p.m.

Episode Ten – The Weight of Memory (March 1973–Onward)
Sunday, October 1, 2017 at 3:00 p.m.