Saturday, May 3, 2008

"Man vs Wild" Recap & Review - "Zambia"

Man vs. Wild
“Zambia”

Original Air Date: May 2, 2008

Jeff Pomeroy – Two Cents Reviewer

Not long after May Day (when the weather and climate start to improve), we go back into some of the worst climates on the planet. Welcome back, Bear Grylls. And welcome to Zambia! We hope you survive the experience.

Continue the Adventure....

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  1. Man vs. Wild - “Zambia”

    Original Air Date: May 2, 2008

    Jeff Pomeroy – Two Cents Reviewer



    Not long after May Day (when the weather and climate start to improve), we go back into some of the worst climates on the planet. Welcome back, Bear Grylls. And welcome to Zambia! We hope you survive the experience.


    Bear kicks off by dropping into the enormous rapids of the Pakota Gorge, with only his body board. By staying calm and diving into the larger waves he was able to make it to shore. After getting his bearings, he looks around the riverbank for debris. He finds the bottom half of a flip-flop. I’m sure he’ll find a use for that. Since Zambia has a large population of crocodiles, Bear offers a couple of tips:

    1) Don’t drink from the same spot twice. The croc will watch you the first time, but attack the second.
    2) Don’t make a camp near the riverbank.

    After Bear cuts through dense vegetation, he’s on the lookout for food. Usually, these times tend to be the most unpleasant of each episode. Soon, Bear locates his first meal: some Rhino Beetle larvae. He tosses down two of them, only then to find an even LARGER one. When he bites into the big boy, it’s guts squirt out like when you have too much ketchup on your hot dog. Ugh.

    Continuing his search for food, he finds some Leopard tracks. He hopes they’ll lead him to some leftover prey. And what do you know, at the end of the line lies the mangled carcass of an Impala. Normally, Bear would want to cook leftover prey, however, he doesn’t have the time to stop and camp. Alas, he eats what he can raw.

    Later, Bear runs into some Hippos. Although Hippos are vegetarians, Bear tells us that they kill more humans than Lions, Elephants, Rhinos, Buffalo and Leopards combined. The Hippopotamus is a very territorial creature and will protect it’s turf vigilantly. I did not know this.

    Bear ends up at the base of another river and finds a use for the half flip-flop he found earlier. (How did we know he would?) He uses part of it as a float to fish. He catches a catfish! Good, no more guts and glory.
    Bear starts to look for camp as dusk approaches. He builds a makeshift ladder up a tree for an escape route if necessary. He starts a fire and gets his protein by eating his catch of the day.

    The next day, Bear gets some bayabas fruit and goes on his way. He shows us an old trick he learned from a friend. He ties his shirt around his leg and it collects dew as he walks. He gets a nice gulp of water from it. He runs into a herd of elephants. He admires them from afar, knowing how dangerous they can be if they attacked. After the elephants depart, he grabs a branch to capture an African bullfrog. This will be his dinner.


    Day 3 he sees the mountains in sight. This is his planned rendezvous with the helicopter. For breakfast, he collects some Makami worms. He squeezes them all like a tube of toothpaste to remove the guts, then cooks them up. Unfortunately for Bear, he eats one worm too many. He contracts diarrhea, which can be a disaster in the bush. You have to bury your excrement or you may attract predators. He also is dealing with dehydration. So he decides to create a filter and build a fire to get some water from a nearby river.

    After getting some much needed water, he runs into his largest obstacle; a large flat 90’ cliffside with waterfalls coming down. He starts to climb, and realizes that it would be much easier if he weren’t ill with diarrhea. He has to stop 60’ up the wall to let nature take it’s course, but feels better afterward. He finally gets to the top, and finds a waterfall and small lake to get some well needed refreshment.

    Finally Bear gets to the top of the mountain and builds a signal fire for the helicopter.

    This was a great return of the series. It never ceases to amaze me what this guy goes through. He puts you in his shoes for each adventure, and somehow does it with a smile. There has been a debate/comparison with the other Discovery survival show “Survivorman”. I like them both, but I guess I’m a Bear Grylls guy.

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