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Episode 97: Plane on a Conveyor Belt, Cockroach Survival, Shaving Foam Shenanigans

  • Plane on a Conveyor Belt: A plane on a conveyor belt, matching its takeoff speed in reverse, can't take off busted
  • Cockroach Survival: cockroaches will be the only survivors of a nuclear blast busted
  • Shaving Foam Shenanigans: a frozen cyclinder of shaving cream will expand to fill a car when it thaws busted

The plane took off! To quote Adam: "I've read literally thousands of pages, of vitriolic commentary and arguments about airplanes on a conveyor belt, but nowhere did I find anyone who'd put an airplane on a conveyor belt." The MythBusters did and was one of the most straightforward mythbustings they've done: plane + conveyor belt = flight. To those who still have trouble wrapping your head around the problem: the wheels on a plane don't matter; they spin freely. The conveyor belt can't keep the plane stationary.

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Episode 96: Lead Balloon, Surfing with Dynamite

  • Lead Balloon: A lead balloon cannot fly busted
  • Surfing with Dynamite: You can use dynamite to make surfable waves busted

Lead Balloon featured the MythBusters at their best: clever design, difficult construction, good results. It was an engineering challenge and Adam and Jamie succeeded with a delicate 10 ft lead cube balloon.

The Surfing with Dynamite continued the trend towards busting Internet videos that has been appearing in MythBusters. In this case, they busted an absurd video that features people throwing dynamite into a canal and catching waves from the resulting churn. It was mostly an excuse to explode 200lbs of TNT beneath the water.

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Episode 84: Viewer Special

  • Eye-popping sneeze: if you sneeze with your eyes open, your eyes will pop out busted
  • Car Explosion: Adam and Jamie can blow up a kid's parents' car confirmed
  • Stopping a Car in Reverse: you can stop a car by throwing it into reverse busted
  • Killer Butts: Three cigarettes shot from a rifle at 7 feet point-blank can be lethal confirmed
  • Car Remote Capers: You can open a car lock with a tennis ball busted
  • Stopping a Blade: A book in your pocket can stop a sword confirmed, coins in your pocket busted

For this episode, the MythBusters blitzed through several myths submitted by their fans

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Episode 94: Airplane Hour (Talked Into Landing, Parachute Pandemonium)

  • Talked Into Landing: a passenger can be talked into a safe landing of an airplane plausible
  • Parachute Pandemonium (aka Point Break parachute myths):
    • You can fall 4000 ft in 90 seconds: busted
    • You can have a shouting match in mid-air: busted
    • You can catch another skydiver with a 15-second lead: confirmed
  • MacGuyver mini-myth: You can stop a sulfuric acid leak using chocolate and hot water confirmed

This episode gave me ideas on places I want to visit in the Bay Area: NASA Ames' Advanced Concepts Plane Simulator and iFly SFBay's indoor skydive facility.

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Episode 95: James Bond Special (Electro-magnetic Watch, Speedboat Survival, Propane Tank Peril)

The MythBusters tested out three different James Bond movie myths:

  • Electro-magnetic watch (Live and Let Die): you can deflect a bullet using an electro-magnetic watch busted
  • Propane tank peril (Casino Royale): you can explode a propane tank with a 9mm handgun busted
  • Speedboat Survival (Live and Let Die): you can jump a car with a speedboat and continue driving busted

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Episode 92: Pirates 2 (Row Boat Sub, Sand Neck Tie, Cannon Ball Chaos)

  • Row Boat Sub: Jamie and Adam busted the scene from Pirates of the Caribbean where Jack Sparrow and Will Turner walk underwater with a row boat over their heads.
  • Buried in the Sand: You can die from being buried up to the neck in sand confirmed
  • MacGuyver mini-myth: A bottle of drain cleaner can blow-out a light bulb confirmed
  • Cannon ball chaos: Make-shift cannon ammo:
    • Ye old Pirate Rum (glass): busted
    • Forks and spoons: busted
    • Steak knives: plausible
    • Peg leg: busted
    • Nails: plausible
    • Chain link: confirmed

What's a Pirate's favorite element? Arrrrgon

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Episode 91: Shooting Fish in a Barrel, Hot Chili Cures, Elephants are Afraid of Mice

  • Shooting fish in a barrel: confirmed. You may miss them with the bullet, but the shockwave will kill them.
  • Hot chili cures: they tested water, beer, tequila, petroleum jelly, and wasabi to see if any were better than milk, all were busted
  • Elephants afraid of mice: plausible. they don't freak out, but they appear to be cautious

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Episode 90: Supersized Myths

  • Supersized Shark
    • Sharks attracted to low frequency noise: busted
    • Sharks afraid of dolphins: plausible
  • Supersized Jet Taxi: This time, with an actual 747, the Jet Taxi Myth was confirmed
  • Supersized Cruise Water Ski: You can wakeboard behind a cruise ship confirmed
  • Supersized Rocket Car (Jet Car JATO Revisit): appropriately supersized (aka, the car blew up)

This episode was a sort of return-to-the-early-days sort of affair, but adding better budget and addressing past failures. The got to return to their pilot episode (Jet Car JATO), Scottie Chapman made a brief return as builder, Adam was given another opportunity to get seasick, and Jamie found himself in the water with sharks once more.

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Episode 89: Exploding Water Heater, Jeans Myths

  • Exploding Water Heater: a water heater can rocket through the roof of your house: confirmed
  • Jeans Myths
    • Pants on Fire: Your jeans can catch on fire while being dragged by a horse: busted
    • Jean Death Shrinkage: Wearing jeans in a bathtub can cause death: busted

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Episode 87: Myth Evolution

  • You can breath from the tire of a car while underwater: busted
  • A medically implanted RFID chip can explode in an MRI: busted
  • An airbag can rip off your thumbs if your hands are in the classic 10 and 2 o'clock steering position: busted
  • Can a ninja swat a speeding bullet out of the way: busted
  • Can a dog find an avalanche victim? (online special): confirmed
  • Beating a speed camera with...
    • ... plate blockers: busted
    • ... speed: busted (though they did beat the camera at 240mph)

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Episode 86: Superhero Hour

  • Batman's Grappling Gun: busted. Jamie was able to build a plausible ascending rig, but Adam couldn't build a gun that would secure the cable into a concrete wall.
  • The Batmobile can deploy a grappling hook that allows the car to do a quick 90-degree turn: busted
  • The Phantom's Ring Punch that would leave a skull-shaped brand on the evildoer: busted
  • Time to change into a superhero costume in a phone booth: 33 seconds

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Episode 85: Red Rag to a Bull, Hot Bullets, Bull in a China Shop

  • Hot Bullets:
    • Bullets in an oven: Bullets stored in an oven can fire with lethal consequences: bullets busted, but a loaded gun confirmed
    • Bullet on a campfire: Bullets thrown into a campfire can kill: busted (injuries, but not lethal)
    • Aerosol cans on a campfire: busted (injuries, but not lethal)
    • Fire extinguisher on a campfire: busted (safety release valve triggers)
    • Beer keg on a campfire: plausible (big boom)
  • Red Flag to a Bull: Does a red flag incite a bull: busted (any moving object will incite a bull)
  • Bull in a China Shop: Do bulls cause massive damage in a china shop: busted The bulls try to avoid the shelves.

The Red Flag to a Bull myth taught me something new: bulls aren't colorblind. While I had known that red flags aren't better than any other color for bulls, it had been explained to me that this was because bulls are colorblind. They are in fact dichromats, which means that they have two color receptors as opposed to the three (or four) that humans have. Regardless, red still doesn't matter to a bull.

The Bull in a China Shop myth was similarly interesting: who knew that bulls would try to go around shelves full of china rather than easily topple them over? One of the bulls even ran through the rows of shelves like a slalom course, china kept intact.

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