This is a repost on the occassion of "Bear" Grylls being fired from the Discovery channel.
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I have previously lampooned National Geographic's "A Man Among Wolves" featuring the laughable Shaun Ellis in a piece of clap-trap created in the U.K. where no wild wolves exist (and precious little wild, it should be said). Read about that here and here.
The latest bit of nonsense from the U.K. is the howler called "Man Vs Wild" on the Discovery Channel.
Anyone who has seen this show and spent a few months in the woods or has a decent knowledge of field craft is going to laugh out loud. It shows "Bear" Grylls (his real name is Edward) doing such nonsensical things as making a raft to go down a creek, and stopping to make a needle and thread from a Yucca plant.
Excuse me, but if you are lost, you are not supposed to be wasting time and energy on construction projects, nor are you supposed to be risking head injury running rafts down rapids, nor are you supposed to be stopping to sew up bit and pieces of your trousers, nor are you supposed to be risking dysentery by eating beetle grubs.
You are supposed to be figuring out how to get out to a road, or to signal where you are (or have gone), and you should be focused on water and shelter, and water and shelter alone. Get the hell out is all you need. Screw food -- you can go for days and days without food.
But of course that's a simple message you can convey in one show, eh?
It seems the producers at the BBC wanted a whole TV series. And so all kinds of clap- trap was cocked up for show, most of it not only stupid, but downright dangerous.
Some of it, of course, is simply funny. Like putting a guy in a really bad bear outfit.
Yes, you read that right. It turns out that the show faked a "Grizzly bear attack" with a fellow in bear suit that looks like it was made from brown beach towels. Pictures and the rest of the story here.
And be advised that this pathetic bit is not the only bit of fakery on this ghastly television show: Grylls is shown cooking a dead badger, but it's actually a steak inside a badger skin, and he is shown freeing himself from a parachute tangled in a tree, but he was actually pulled into that tree by a safety harness he wore the whole time. As for the stick he throws to "kill" a rabbit, look carefully at the tape -- he misses. My bet is that the rabbit he is shown eating in a quick cut away is actually a store-bought $2-a-pound bunny recently unfrozen and unwrapped from Saran Wrap.
Adding more wood to the fire, it turns out that "Bear" Grylls does not even sleep in the woods! He goes to hotels every night! Hard life!
If there is any television show out there that will actually pay a guy a decent salary to walk solo in the woods anywhere in the world for three or four months at a time, please email me care of this site. I am no super hero, but if you want someone who knows how to walk and camp, I can do that well enough and I will do it anywhere. And we won't have to go to a hotel every night, I assure you.
And yes, you (or your Sherpas) will be carrying the camera equipment.