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Old June 4 2012, 04:04 AM   #108
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Re: Heads up! MYTHBUSTERS season premiere tonight at 9 Eastern!

Bubble wrap jump: I could guess right off the bat that the viral video was faked. The fact that the "jumper" had no neck protection of any kind was a dead giveaway; even if the bubble wrap had protected his body, he probably would've broken his neck. The fact that "Buster" (and I have a hard time thinking of the Simulaid by that name) landed headfirst despite being in bubble wrap just confirmed that. Also, the figure in the viral video doesn't bounce on landing, so the moment of landing must be where they did the cut between the dummy they dropped and the actor lying on the ground. It does look like there's a bit of an abrupt jump from the falling figure to the figure lying flat.

I wonder why they never used the term "bubble wrap" in the episode, instead using terms like "bubble pack" and "bubble packaging." Is Bubble Wrap a trademark?

I wonder why the different sizes of bubble wrap reacted differently to the fall of the human analog. This show doesn't go into as much detail about the science and the reasons behind things as it used to, and I miss that.

And that human analog test with the big falling pipe looked dangerous -- it bounced alarmingly toward Adam a few times. Why didn't he just move further back?

The revised design they came up with, with the crumple cones, was interesting, what with the physics and engineering involved. But it did turn out to be awfully unwieldy.

The part where Adam had himself wrapped up and dropped was pretty tense, with a real sense of danger. That may have been a bit manufactured by editing, since some of the same footage was used in the leadups to both the aborted drop and the successful one. But it did seem like a rough situation for Adam. And that close-up shot of his face at the moment he was dropped was gasp-inducing. That was pretty scary.

Ejector seat flip: I'm surprised there was no callback to the classic ejector-seat build Adam and Jamie did a few years ago. But I recall that one was rather low-powered -- air-propelled, I think -- so it wouldn't have worked here anyway. Even there, though, they put in a Lexan panel between the driver and passenger sides for safety.

I guess I don't have much else to say about this one. The myth simply didn't work, so they showed us how Hollywood fakes it. No real surprises -- except how dangerous the nitrogen ram rig was. Considering that this is a pretty standard item in the special-FX toolkit, I wouldn't have expected it to be so hazardous.
Written Worlds -- Christopher L. Bennett's blog and webpage
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