(Photo courtesy of the Discovery Channel)
Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman are special effects guys, not scientists, but the kind of curiosity and rigor they bring to their TV series MythBusters certainly befits men of science.
Whether they’re blowing up radiators or probing the reality behind everyday myths and urban legends, Savage and Hyneman have a kind of methodical mischievousness that feels both fun and smart. What happens when the poo really hits the fan? Can you teach an old dog new tricks? Or knock someone out of their socks? Could you defy the odds to make a lead balloon that actually floats?
These are questions a legit scientist might deem beneath them (unless they were vying for the Ignoble Prize). But their wacky experiments have earned Savage and Hyneman a dedicated following on the Discovery Channel and beyond (especially among ten-year-old boys). I, for one, am glad to know the truth behind killer quicksand and exploding tattoos.
In the audio posted above, Dynamic Range goes behind the scenes of MythBusters as they divulge the secrets of their experiments. They spoke to a live audience at Chicago’s Harris Theater in 2009, where moderator John Williams asked them to start by describing an experiment gone horribly wrong. (Two words: cannibal mice.)
Dynamic Range showcases hidden gems unearthed from Chicago Amplified's vast archive of public events and appears on weekends. MythBusters was presented in March of 2009 by Science Chicago and was recorded by Chicago Amplified. Click here to subscribe to the Dynamic Range podcast, and click here for the full MythBusters talk.