Friday, August 22, 2014

Mythbusters—Say it Ain’t So

Kari Byron, Tory Belleci, and Grant Imahara have been axed from the long-running everyman science show Mythbusters. They were sometime referred to as the “B team” of the show, but I often found their antics more interesting than those of the “A team.” There was the time they ran a convertible beneath a semi, only to have the convertible launch over the protective berm of the property and almost land in the street outside. Or the time they lit some coffee creamer, only to run in panic when they saw the size of the explosion.

Self and Grant Imahara

You may be surprised at my calling it a science show, since they also did gonzo stunts. But they often showed how real science is done. Instead of visualizing people in white coats inside a lab, think of how they would measure the lift of toy helicopters or set sensing devices around an explosion to see at what distance it would be fatal to a human body.

As I stated in a previous post, writers often have to write on subjects they don’t know much about. If some of your characters need to speak in a scientific manner, watch several episodes of Mythbusters. You’ll soon have your characters speaking about “proof of concept,” the need “to establish a baseline,” and setting up markers “to measure in precise increments” in a convincing manner.

This may jar some people, but I’m actually not that sad to see Kari Byron go. She was kind of too coy on camera. I much preferred Jessi, the stuntwoman they had on for a few episodes, including the one where they tested Captain Kirk’s cannon against the Gorn.

1 comment:

Stephanie Faris said...

I always liked Kari--but of course I'd like the girl! I definitely like the young hosts much more than the older guys (who are probably younger than I am), but my husband said the older guys were better. Too much facial hair creeps me out. I go back to that experiment someone did where they found more bacteria is in a man's beard than anywhere else on his body. Maybe Mythbusters should take on that one!


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