New Season of 'Lost LA' to Premiere October 10

Watch Lost LA Season 2 (trailer)


KCET's renowned history series, "Lost LA," returns on October 10! 

The series,  a co-production with the University of Southern California Libraries, brings Southern California history to life by marrying archival materials from the L.A. as Subject research alliance with innovative forms of documentary storytelling. In its second season, which is sponsored by Union Bank, "Lost LA" uncovers the hidden past of this region through the documents, photos and archives that give a new perspective on the creation of modern-day Los Angeles.

Hosted by public historian Nathan Masters of USC Libraries, each episode of "Lost LA" brings the primary sources of Los Angeles history to the screen in surprising new ways. Much of L.A.’s past is lost to history – but through the region’s archives we can rediscover a forgotten LA that preceded the arrival of Anglo settlers and learn how it transformed so quickly into a sprawling, culturally diverse metropolis.

“'Lost LA' explores L.A’.s past using different interpretive frameworks to the broad sweep of Southern California history,” says Juan Devis, KCETLink’s Chief Creative Officer. “We’re excited to bring the second season of 'Lost LA' to our viewers so they can join us again as we investigate how the region’s explosive and surprising growth inevitably erased or marginalized parts of the city’s identity along the way.”

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Pío de Jesus Pico and his wife, María Ignacia Alvarado Pico, in 1852, with two of their nieces, María Anita Alvarado (far left) and Trinidad Ortega (far right).
Pío de Jesus Pico and his family.

The new episodes will be broadcast as follows (subject to change):

Episode One: “BORDERLANDS” – Tues., Oct. 10 8:30 PM

American history has long been told as a triumphant march westward from the Atlantic coast, but in Southern California our history stretches back further in time. This episode explores the interconnected lives of three people who lived through California’s transition from native land to Spanish colony and from to Mexican province to American state. Featuring the stories of native leader Toypurina, who led the revolt against the San Gabriel Mission, Spanish soldier José María Pico, who served at the mission, and his son Pío Pico, who became the last Mexican Governor of California.

Episode Two: “WILD WEST” – Tues., Oct. 17 8:30 PM

Before Hollywood imagined the Wild West, Los Angeles was a real frontier town of gunslingers, lynch mobs, and smoke-belching locomotives. This episode examines L.A.’s efforts to reckon with its violent past by examining hanging trees, remnants of vigilante justice; the massacre of eighteen Chinese immigrants that took place in 1871 near what is now Olvera Street; and railroad promotional campaigns that painted a picture of Los Angeles as a verdant paradise.

Episode Three: “BUILDING A METROPOLIS” – Tues., Oct. 24 8:30 pm

Adobe, wood, in, steel, concrete – these are the materials that gave form to Los Angeles and shaped its identity in the national imagination. This episode also questions the cultural legacy and environmental costs of the city’s rel:entless growth.

Episode Four: “DREAM FACTORY” – Tues., Oct. 31 8:30 pm

Los Angeles is often identified with Hollywood, but there's more to the entertainment industry than its facade of movie stars and blockbuster films. This episode explores the career of Lois Weber, a filmmaker who rose to greatness in a nascent film industry that welcomed women into creative leadership positions; as well as a Central Casting Bureau that capitalized on the city’s segregated ethnic enclaves when filling background roles.

Imitation of Life 1934 still
Central Casting Bureau capitalized on the city’s segregated ethnic enclaves when filling background roles.

Episode Five: “CODED GEOGRAPHIES” – Tues., Nov. 7 8:30 pm

What if the stories L.A. told about itself relegated you to the margins? This episode explores two underground guidebooks – The Negro Travelers’ Green Book and The Address Book – that reveal the hidden geographies many Angelenos had to navigate, exposing Los Angeles as a place of coded segregation and resistance.

Episode Six: “PACIFIC RIM” – Tues., Nov. 14 8:30 PM

American history once looked at the California shore and saw the end of the continent. Instead, this half-hour documentary interprets that sandy edge as the beginning of a Pacific world – one that has long influenced Los Angeles through the basic earth forces of geology and climate and the transoceanic flows of people, goods, capital, technology, and cultural ideas.


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