From Academic Kids

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Mythbusters Adam (left) and Jamie

MythBusters is an American science television program on the Discovery Channel starring Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman, two special effect specialists who set out to prove or disprove myths and urban legends of popular culture.

In Australia Mythbusters also airs in full on SBS free to air television and as an abridged segment on the Seven Network show Beyond Tomorrow.



Adam and Jamie perform experiments to prove popular myths and urban legends plausible or "busted." They use their extensive building and engineering knowledge to construct devices to perform their experiments. In most cases when a myth involves the human body, they use either their crash test dummy, Buster, or ballistics gelatin, which is used to make a jello-like reproduction of the human body. Buster the dummy has had to be rebuilt extensively over the series, with one or two experiments nearly destroying it completely. Some of the myths tested involve explosives, the resulting experiment is usually quite destructive. When an experiment proves a myth to be implausible, they will often go out of their way to create the conditions necessary for the desired result to occur, leading to many humurous moments.

Adam and Jamie are also assisted by a small team refered to as "The Build Team" or "MythBuilders". Often this team will, on their own, tackle a seperate myth. During the second season the team was comprised of:

  • Kari Byron
  • Scottie Chapman
  • Tory Belleci

Between Seasons two and three, Scottie Chapman left the show to, in her words, "Have a life". She was replaced by Grant Imahara. At this time it is unknown how many episodes Scottie filmed for season three.

Also aiding the crew for the first two seasons was "Mythtern" Christine Chamberlain, whose main job seems to be somewhere between doing research and being the third (unofficial) Mythbuster, helping out when needed and providing her own ideas and suggestions. Christine, however, left the show at the end of season two when she got married, deciding to focus more on her new family life.

Another oft-appearing personality is Heather Joseph-Witham, who explains the origins of many of the urban legends confronted on the show.

The Mythbusters typically perform their experiments in a variety of locations around San Francisco, most often Jamie's M5 Industries or, for experiments requiring extensive safety zones, the decommissioned Naval Air Station Alameda.

Myths examined

Some of the questions the show has tried to answer include:

  • Do you get wetter running or walking in the rain?
  • Can a penny dropped from a skyscraper kill a pedestrian on the sidewalk below?
  • Is cola really able to remove bloodstains, clean rust, dissolve your teeth and preserve meat?
  • How many party balloons does it take to lift a 4-year-old girl?
  • Can you actually use ping-pong balls to raise a sunken ship?
  • What REALLY happens when you drop a hair dryer in a bathtub full of water?
  • Does "Killer Quicksand" like in the movies really exist?
  • Can tattoos explode when exposed to an MRI?
  • Will Pop Rocks and cola really cause your stomach to explode?
  • If you unceremoniously drop a frozen turkey into a deep-fat fryer, will it explode?
  • Can an assassin fire an ice bullet to kill someone without leaving a trace?
  • Will using your cellphone while pumping gas cause an explosion?
  • Do silicone breast implants explode at high altitudes?
  • Will CDs shatter if placed in a high-speed (i.e. 40X or faster) CD-ROM drive?
  • Can an obese person get stuck on an airline toilet?
  • Can a boom lift be turned into a catapult?
  • What (if anything) gets rid of skunk stink?
  • Can you get electrocuted from urinating on the electric third rail of a train track?
  • Does talking help a plant grow?
  • Was Jimmy Hoffa really buried in Giants Stadium?
  • Does the Brown note really exist?
  • Can Chinese water torture make you go crazy?
  • Can you be thrown backwards by a bullet?
  • Is it more fuel efficient to run a car with air conditioning on or with the windows rolled down?
  • Can you drive a boat with the trailer still attached?
  • Can you be electrocuted by talking on the phone or using the shower during a lightning storm?
  • Did a Civil War soldier impregnate a woman after being shot in the groin and having the bullet continue on into the woman in question?
  • Can salsa be used to dissolve prison bars?
  • Can a Rowing Eight pull a waterskier?
  • Could the famed Alcatraz escape have been successful?
  • Does a Daddy long-legs spider have the most potent venom of a spider, but is unable to pierce human skin?
  • Can you build a Jetpack from plans purchased off the internet and limited funds?


Mythbusters Specials

# Original Airdate Title
1 23-Jan-2003 "Jet Assisted Chevy"
2 23-Jan-2003 "Airplane Toilet, Biscuit Bazooka, Leaping Lawyer"
3 07-Mar-2003 "Lawn Chair Balloon, Poppy Seed Drug Test, Goldfinger"

Season One

# Original Airdate Title
1 Sept. 23, 2003 "Ice Bullet, Exploding Toilet, Who Gets Wetter?"
2 Oct. 03, 2003 "Cell Phone Destruction, Silicone Breasts, CD-ROM Shattering"
3 Oct. 10, 2003 "Barrel of Bricks, Pissing on the Third Rail, Eel Skin Wallet"
4 Oct. 17, 2003 "Penny Drop, Deadly Microwaves, Radio Tooth Fillings"
5 Oct. 24, 2003 "Hammer Bridge Drop, Buried Alive, Cola"
6 Nov. 7, 2003 "Lightning Strikes Tongue Piercing, Tree Cannon, Beat the Breath Test"
7 Dec. 5, 2003 "Stinky Car, Raccoon Rocket"
8 Dec. 12, 2003 "Escape From Alcatraz, Duck Quack, Stud Finder"
9 Jan. 18, 2004 "Chicken Gun, Octopus Egg Pregnancy, Killer Washing Machine"
10 Feb. 22, 2004 "Explosive Decompression, Frog Giggin', Rear Axle"
11 Jan. 25, 2004 "Sinking Titanic, Goldfish Memory, Trombone Explosion"
12 Jan. 25, 2004 "Break Step Bridge, Toothbrush Surprise, Rowing Water Skier"
13 Feb. 15, 2004 "Buried in Concrete, Daddy—Longlegs, Jet Taxi"

Season Two

# Original Airdate Title
14 June 8, 2004 "Myths Revisited"
15 July 27, 2004 "Scuba Diver, Car Capers"
16 Sept. 29, 2004 "Ancient Death Ray, Skunk Cleaning, What Is Bulletproof?"
17 Oct. 6, 2004 "Elevator of Death, Levitation Machine"
18 Oct. 13, 2004 "Beat the Radar Detector"
19 Oct. 20, 2004 "Quicksand"
20 Oct. 27, 2004 "Exploding Jawbreaker"
21 Nov. 3, 2004 "Pingpong Rescue"
22 Nov. 10, 2004 "Boom-Lift Catapult"
23 Nov. 16, 2004 "Exploding House"
24 Dec. 5, 2004 "Ming Dynasty Astronaut"
25 Feb. 16, 2005 "Brown Note"
26 Feb. 23, 2005 "Salsa Escape"
27 March 2, 2005 "Exploding Port-a-Potty"
28 March 9, 2005 "Is Yawning Contagious?"
29 March 23, 2005 "Cooling a Six-Pack"
30 March 30, 2005 "Son of a Gun"
31 May 11, 2005 "Hollywood on Trial"
32 May 18, 2005 "Breaking Glass"
33 June 9, 2005 "Jet Pack"
34 June 22, 2005 "Killer Brace Position"

See also

External links


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