ADDITIONAL NOTES: completed airing its first season on 3/28/13; has yet to be renewed for a second season
DESCRIPTION: (from National Geographic Channel's press release, February 2013) The crucifixion is the iconic image of Christianity - the key event from which all else will flow. But this defining moment for Christians barely registers as a blip in Roman history. So how did one man and a few of his followers galvanize a spiritual movement that would become the official religion of the Roman Empire, and one of the most widely practiced faiths in the world today? Jesus' rise to power is the ultimate underdog story. During an era when people were defined by the manner of their death, the crucifixion should have branded Jesus as a failure. But instead of squashing a movement, Jesus' execution sparked a religion. In roughly 400 years, the little-known Judaic church of Jesus transformed into the religious and political powerhouse it is today. In the new three-part special Jesus: Rise to Power, premiering on Holy Thursday, March 28, from 8 to 11 p.m. ET/PT on the National Geographic Channel (NGC), Roman history expert Dr. Michael Scott journeys through the deserts and cities of the ancient world to reveal the epic events that formed the backbone of Christianity.