I've seen two of the six-episode "Elements" subsections so far, both made in the 2000s: Elements Chemistry and Elements Biology.
They're an excellent way to get a brief summary of the subject's basics. I've tried out some other short series for this purpose, but those are often bloated, boring, and, what's worse, - uninformative, leaving you frustrated and unenlightened.
Assignment Discovery is different. Take Chemistry: they give you 6 episodes. They spend the first 10-15 minutes of the episode giving you a very clear, graphically great, illuminating primer on an aspect of chemistry: the periodic table, acids and bases, hydrocarbons. They play some suitable music - bouncy but unobtrusive - in the background, and the narrators - one male, one female - switch between segments. You don't actually see them, which is a refreshing change from annoying, in-your-face narrators with their lame-looking enthusiasm. AD is made in a way that's perfect for people with concentration problems - it relaxes you into learning.
The rest of each episode will proceed in a completely different vein, and a more BBC-ish style, leisurely telling you about how the subject is topical to our lives, usually - to modern technology. You can watch that part, or you can immediately skip to the next episode and get the next condensed-info 15-minute segment from its beginning. That's what I did. Consequently, you can catch up on chemistry in a little over an hour, maybe a little longer if you're gonna take notes and/or pause to look the issue up on the Web. I had to do a couple of such searches, but mostly the presentation of the material was extremely comprehensible.
История атомного оружия A) разработка (Манхэттенский проект) B) взрыв 1) Хиросима 2) Нагасаки 3) побочные продукты атомного взрыва 4) зоны поражения - Раздел второй! - сразу же воскликнула Сьюзан. - Уран и плутоний. Давай. Все ждали, когда Соши откроет нужный раздел. - Вот, - сказала .