Sunday, June 28, 2015

Hooked

7:52 PM

Share it Please


His name is Jeremy Wade – extreme angler and marine biologist. He also happens to be the host of River Monsters, surprisingly the biggest show in Animal Planet history.  The premise: A crazy English guy travels all over the world to catch crazy freshwater fish.

“Crazy freshwater fish,” however, can mean anything from a huge bull shark, a seven-foot-long alligator that can cut you with its scales, a sawfish with a mouth that looks like (well) a saw, and on one memorable occasion, a 400 pound stingray so heavy it snapped Jeremy’s heavy-duty fiberglass fishing rod right in half –and made him lose a tendon in his upper arm.

If you’re not there for the fish, you’re there for the sheer crazy in nearly every episode. The very first episode had Jeremy dumping himself into a piranha-infested river to prove that they wouldn’t attack him. Later in the same episode, he put some piranhas in a swimming pool, starved them, and then climbed in. Just to be sure, of course.

Since that first crazy stunt, Jeremy Wade has jumped into rivers with his predators of the week, removed carnivorous salamanders from their underwater lairs, chased after giant catfish by following them into hella strong currents, poked a crocodile’s tail while diving, and stuck a bloodsucking lamprey onto his neck for kicks (he did this last stunt again on an interview with Conan O’Brien. No, really).

Oh, and we can’t forget that time that Jeremy got rammed in the chest by a hundred-pound arapaima. Or that time the show’s sound guy got struck by lightning and survived. Or that time that their plane crashed into a jungle with a camera still rolling.

Following Jeremy’s adventures is like watching a horrifyingly educational detective drama – someone (or multiple someones) is attacked by something in a river, the incident pops up in somewhere in the news, and he packs up to investigate what could have done it. He tries to catch it too, but there have been heartbreaking misses (see: Death Ray and Killer Torpedo) before the successful catch.

And if this is a drama, then it’s one that’s almost always somewhere exciting.  River Monsters has checked out Chernobyl’s irradiated waters, caught a shaman woman summoning spirits in Mongolia, and followed a South American tribe known to catch electric eels with their bare hands.
Jeremy’s even gone looking for the Loch Ness Monster – and may have actually found it, though it looks nothing like the scaly green thing we like to think it is.

The wild side isn’t a place we tend to visit, in this day and age – some of us will never go to Africa, and a surprising number probably won’t even ride a jeepney! Living wild for a lot of us is living in the concrete jungle called Metro Manila: sometimes we forget that the world we live in is a lot bigger than we think – wild in a more literal way.

There’s a world out there to explore, and what a wonder television is, that we can watch an old guy wrestling with man-sized fish in that wild world in the name of science, all in the comfort of our own homes.

How could you not get hooked on that?


Article by PaCho
Art by Jao
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PaCho is the nickname of a full-time fangirl who wants an infinite amount of money with which to travel the world and buy merchandise. This girl is currently amassing the skills to achieve these goals, and collecting stories and perspectives along the way (to consequently be the best that no one ever was) at a university. She will smile in satisfaction at the fall of the patriarchy and Western domination of international affairs. She is only half-joking about this (which means that she's completely serious).


Jao San Pedro is a 16-year-old aesthetically driven visual artist, fashion student, & french fry enthusiast from Manila. He started his visual folio in summer 2015 known as "Cool Girl (The Label)" ~ironic~. In his time of idle, he enjoys listening to alternative/indie music often psychedelic or acoustic & binge watching tv series such as "Girls", "HIMYM" and the like. View his label at http://cargocollective.com/coolgirl & his tweets @jaosanpedro.

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