Saturday, March 1, 2008

Bear vs Les

In between trips to the toilet over the past few days, I've spent a considerable amount of time watching Discovery Channel. There weren't any shows to explain how I could possibly throw up as many times as I did in a twelve hour period. But I did pick up some interesting things about one of my favorite, and least favorite, shows. WARNING: this post may offend some people much more than my musings on politics and faith.

In "Survivorman," Les Stroud is loaded down with a bunch of camera equipment and dropped in some harsh environment (with hardly the bare essentials) to survive a week. Les has been stranded in the arctic, the bayou, the ocean, the desert, etc... He sets up his own shots, films his own stuff, explains everything to the viewers, and has to actually make it to the end of the week. He can catch a rabbit with a toothpick and some floss--seriously. Though a Canadian by birth, he is amazing.

In "Man vs Wild," Bear Grylls gives viewers a watered-down version of "Survivorman." True, he does some really gross stuff (eating raw grubs and eggs, etc) and has to make it through some harsh situations. But he isn't really surviving on his own. He has a camera crew. He stays in hotels at night sometimes, instead of out in the wild. He also has a survival expert on his crew with him. It says so right in the credits.

Though Collin has argued with me for the past couple of years over who is cooler (Bear or Les), I have to draw this conclusion: while Bear may be all glitz, glam, and camera friendly, he's a fake. Les Stroud, the real Survivorman, should be the only one of these two shows allowed on the Discovery Channel.


Jeremiah said...

I think it would be more interesting to see the Man vs. Wild's camera crew follow Grylls around. They're the ones carrying heavy camera equipment up and down glaciers, mountains, and volcanoes.

Tim said...

I agree with Jeremiah, I often wonder how that crew does all that.
Collin loves Bear because he's a really experienced climber, and he always does stupid climbing. Instead of walking a mile around a waterfall he Bear uses a vine to drop down an extremely dangerous rock wall with water falling on his head, something you would never do if trying to survive.
I'd rather be stuck in the wilderness with Les, that way I'd stay alive safely.
Bear vs Les is like Obama vs Clinton. Obama and Bear have all the glitz and the cool tricks/moves; Les and Clinton have all the real, usefull skill do the job, and have extra work of carrying baggage around while they do it.

JD said...

Nice... way to bring it back to the race. Gotta love that.