Where Did My Brain Go?

Bear Grylls and Man vs. Wild : Reality-Free Reality TV

I used to admire Bear Grylls, and I was shocked when Bear Grylls was exposed as a fraud. However, I expected him to apologize, and be done with it.

Alas, my admiration of Bear Grylls dissipated, when his only statement was:

Re: the recent press accusations around Man Vs Wild and any stagings in the show, all I can say is they don’t always tell the full story, but that’s life and part of being in the public eye I guess.

Sadly, I am not even sure if I like Bear Grylls anymore.

Treacherous Expanse?

The Discovery Channel episode guide for Man vs. Wild describes “Hawaii — Mount Kilauea” as:

To highlight the skills necessary to survive, Bear abseils from a helicopter into this treacherous expanse and demonstrates how to create a gas mask, escape from a moving lava flow, find water in a lava tube and get honey from a bee’s nest.

An aptly named fellow, Volcano Chaser, went to Mount Kilauea, which Wikipedia describes as “one of the most visited active volcanoes on Earth,” and visited some of the places that Bear Grylls visited on this episode of Man vs. Wild.

Volcano Chaser described this treacherous expanse as:

a few feet from various roads and highways used by thousands of tourists daily

Check out volcanochaser’s photos and see for yourself.

Volcano Chaser’s most damaging piece of evidence against Bear Grylls, and Discovery, is this movie (video?).

Watch as Bear Grylls seems nervous about crossing a “crevasse“ on top of a volcano. Volcano Chaser went to that exact spot, and turns his camera, to that Bear Grylls was actually a few feet away from a grassy field, which was a short distance from a parking lot.

Redefining Reality

When I worked for Forbes Magazine, each issue was meticulously checked for errors before it was published. So I know, that whatever I read in Forbes: every number, every date, etc., has been checked for accuracy, and is probably true.

Unfortunately, it seems that Discovery’s checking is limited to spelling. How can I believe that any of Discovery’s shows are real?

Or has reality TV been redefined?