01 February 2008
lame television: Smash Lab from discovery channel
I'm traveling on business. when I get back to the hotel I don't have much to do but flip through the channels until I fall asleep. (i don't read because I save my books for when I'm at the airport/on the plane). it usually doesn't take long.
last night I got a chance to review some crap TV. Smash Lab, over on the discovery channel, takes the most popular parts of Mythbusters (the parts where they break stuff) and expands them into a whole show, with a new cast of characters. The new show gets a rating of Fail.
What makes Mythbusters good is that they test all the myths rigorously and scientifically, sometimes to the point of ridiculousness. Jamie and Adam (we're on a first name basis) make a big effort to use the scientific method, they do scale modeling, and they test in the real world. It's legit, or at least a serious attempt at legitimacy.
Smash Lab, on the other hand, are a bunch of idiots trying to break stuff. I haven't seen this much f'ing around on Discovery since they moved the animal sex over to Animal Planet.
Team Smash Lab dropped a car on a bounce house and were surprised when it popped, even though they had made some special valves out of PVC pipe. No scale modeling, no testing, just go for it. Then they built a "shed" to test it against hurricane force winds. They nailed some 2x4's and plywood together, put a door in it, a plywood roof, and blew it over with some big fans. It pretty much exploded, but since they are idiots and didn't even try to build it to code, what did that prove? It proved they are assholes that don't know anything about construction. Or science. They went on in this vein for the entire hour.
It is neither good science nor good television. I don't recommend it.
aside - the "engineeer" Chuck is probably a good guy in real life, but he seems like a douche on TV. Free costume tip to Chuck: if your button-up shirt stretches across your soft white underbelly that means it is too small.
special thanks to uncov for the photo. that blog is no longer current, but the fail photos will live on forever.