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Episode 82: Snow Special (Avalanche, Driving in Reverse, Frozen Tongue)

  • You can start an avalanche by yodeling: busted
  • Your tongue can get stuck to a cold metal pole: confirmed
  • It's better to drive in reverse on ice: busted. You do have better traction with a front-wheel drive car, but you're driving in reverse, which makes the car harder to control.

The avalanche myth was a chance for Adam and Jamie to showcase the artillery of the Colorado ski patrol. After testing with a yodeler, megaphone, bull-whip, and machine gun, they were able to get to the real stuff. They started with an air cannon and gradually worked up to tossing dynamite out the window of a helicopter. There was really no myth being tested at this point, but that's not the point, is it?

The tongue-sticking myth was fun for its grossness -- it featured Grant "re-animating" a pig tongue -- but the myth itself was an obvious non-myth.

The reverse-driving myth, even if busted, offers some useful snow advise: they got 40% more traction driving in reverse with a front-wheel drive car. You probably won't be able to use this driving around South Lake Tahoe, but you can probably put it to good use getting out of the driveway.

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Episode 81: Grenades and Guts

  • Diet Coke + Mentos can rupture a stomach: busted
  • Self-hypnosis can cure seasickness: busted
  • Self-hypnosis can cure a fear of bees: busted
  • Self-hypnosis can change your eye color: busted
  • Grenade heroes:
    • Jumping on a grenade to save the people around you: confirmed
    • Throwing a grenade into a bucket of water to save your life: no official judgement, plausible?
    • Throwing a grenade in a refrigerator to save your life: busted

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Episode 80: Big Rig Myths

  • An exploding big rig tire can decapitate a person: confirmed
  • You can drive up into a big rig trailer (i.e. Knight Rider): confirmed
  • Drafting a big rig saves gas: confirmed
  • Drafting a big rig with on a bike saves energy: plausible

The MythBusters tested three big-rig-related myths. The exploding tire myth allowed Adam and Jamie to build a deadly rubber chucker. The Knight Rider myth was a fun confirmation that you, too, could someday have a mobile garage to deploy you on the highway. There wasn't much mythbusting in the drafting myth: NASCAR drivers and bikers have take advantage of the draft regularly. The main contribution the MythBusters offered was demonstrating the advantage for their viewers -- they showed up to 39% improvement if you're crazy enough to risk your life at extremely dangerous following distances.

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Episode 79: Western Myths, Lock Pick of Death (Airbags)

westermyths.adam.b.jpg * Western myths: * Can you take someone's hat off with a bullet? busted * Can you pull the bars out of a jail cell window with a horse? busted * Can you bust out of a jail cell with dynamite? * Can a side airbag launch a lockpick into your head? busted

photo by Golden Gate Western Wear

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Episode 78: Ninja Myths - Walking on Water, Catching a Sword, Catching an Arrow

  • Running on water (using special shoes): busted
  • Catching a sword: busted
  • Catching an arrow: busted

Ninja fans will be disappointed as the MythBusters busted several ninja-related myths. They investigated several skills that ninjas mythically possessed but were unable to replicate any of them. While it is debatable whether or not ninjas actually existed, one historical theory about ninjas is that they were peasants who developed unusual fighting techniques to defend against the samurai class. Their skills were reputed to be 'supernatural.' The MythBusters don't have supernatural abilities, so they relied on their usual means for testing.

Dale Seago of the San Francisco Bujikan dojo served as their ninja expert during the testing of these tests.

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Episode 77: Birds in a Truck, Bifurcated boat

  • Birds in a Truck: If birds in a truck fly, does the truck get lighter? busted
  • Bifurcating a boat at 25mph: busted

The Birds in a Truck myth tried to go against Newton's Third Law with predictable results and was mostly notable for Adam and Jamie's failed attempts to capture pigeons. The Bifurcated Boat myth was another opportunity for the build team to crash large objects into one another over at Alameda. The Birds on a Truck myth was credited to the fan site while the boat myth was based on an Internet photo and story.

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Episode 74: Dog Myths

  • You can't teach an old dog new tricks: Adam and Jamie were both able to teach their seven-year-old dog plenty of new tricks in only a week. busted
  • You can fool a pursuing bloodhound: the bloodhound got confused in an urban setting but had no problem with backtracking, rivers, and various scent-altering techniques. Overall this was marked busted
  • Beat an guard dog: overall plausible, but you have to worry with any of these techniques that the guard dog won't stay distracted for long
    • Big juicy steaks: plausible
    • Submissive posture: busted
    • Aggressive posture: *busted
    • Scent of a lactating bitch: busted
    • Wolf urine: plausible
    • Scent of a bitch in heat: confirmed
    • Kari's Human Hamster Ball: busted
    • Grant's Robotic Cat Decoy: busted
    • Tory's Secure Drum: busted

This was the 'cuddliest' MythBusters episode yet as the MythBusters got to work with several dogs to test old adages and mythical evasion techniques. You can teach an old dog new tricks, you can distract a guard dog but you best remain on guard, and you probably can't fool a bloodhound.

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Episode 73: Beating the Speed Camera, Exploding Nitroglycerine Patches (with Defibrillators)

  • Speed camera myths: You can beat a speed camera by..
    • ... driving too fast for the camera
      • Dodge Neon: busted
      • Lamborghini Murcielago: busted
    • ... placing over your license plate
      • Glitter license plate: busted
      • Lenticular plastic cover: busted
      • Plastic wrap: busted
      • Commercial plate blocker spray: busted
      • Hair spray: busted
    • ... changing lanes rapidly: busted
  • A bird can set off a speed camera: confirmed
  • A defibrillator can explode a medical nitroglycerine patch: busted

Adam and Jamie went through a stockpile of speed camera myths to try and fool an ATS Axsis SC-300 speed camera. Two things did fool the camera: a falcon was able to set off the camera and Jamie installed a plate flipper that rotated the plate out of view, but neither is a way of actually getting out of a ticket. In fact, many of the devices they tested would easily get you pulled over by a cop with or without speed camera.

The defibrillator myth was clearly busted once the paddles were unable to explode even concentrated nitroglycerine. All that was left to do was replicate the myth with exploding ballistics gel bits.

Update: As John notes, BBC Show Top Gear was able to beat the speed camera but it took 2 miles of track and 170+mph * Top Gear Part 1 * Top Gear Part 2 * Top Gear Part 3

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Episode 72: Underwater Car and Seven Folds

  • Seven folds: you can't fold a piece of paper more than seven times: busted
  • Underwater car escape:
    • If a car goes underwater, you cannot open the door until the cabin of the car completely fills with water: confirmed
    • Variations on escape: opening the door when the water is above the...
      • ankles: confirmed
      • knees/waist: confirmed
      • top of window: busted
    • Escaping through the car window: confirmed
      • Opening a car window underwater (before the pressure equalizes):
      • manually powered window: busted
      • electrically powered window: busted -- though an electrical window does operate underwater
      • Breaking a car window underwater with:
      • keys: busted
      • cellphone: busted
      • steel toed boots: busted
      • emergency window hammer: confirmed
      • spring-loaded window punch: confirmed
    • Escaping by waiting (holding breath until pressure equalizes): confirmed

Underwater Car Escape is one of those rare myths that you can apply in real life. Adam and Jamie relentlessly tested this myth and showed viewers the opportune moments for escaping from a car slipping underwater. I wouldn't be surprised if sales of emergency hammers and spring-loaded window punches increases after this episode.

The Seven Folds myth was a fun experiment culminating in the folding of a gigantic 170' x 220' piece of a paper.

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Episode 70: Hindenburg Mystery and Crocodile Zig Zags

  • The Hindenburg disaster caused by material painted on the skin, not the hydrogen inside: busted
  • If you are getting chased by a crocodile, you can escape by running in a zig-zag pattern as crocs cannot turn corners: busted. Crocodiles are ambushers -- they probably won't chase you on land.

The Hindenburg myth is one of the best mythbustings they have done in awhile as it coupled a well-known historical debate with compelling results -- their footage looked very similar to the actual Hindenburg newsreels. It also added in the explosive element that the MythBusters are well-known for. They were able to give some credence to the paint theory as their experiment did show some thermite-like reactions occurring, but it was clear that the hydrogen as the main contributor to the disaster.

The crocodile myth was more of bust as there really wasn't much to test. After spending a lot of time building and calibrating a rig, they were reduced to dangling food in front of an alligator's mouth. This was really a test of whether or not crocodiles and alligators chase prey on land rather than any particular escape technique.

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