I used to love Mythbusters, but the allure wore off. I wanted to give this season a chance, because they decided to trim the fat and bring the focus back to what I enjoyed about the show early on. I liked seeing the methodology they worked through to devise their testing scenarios. I loved it when you could see the frustration of an initial design not working out, then the flow of ideas to a viable solution.
The show delivered on the promise of what I wanted. They only worked on two “myths” and there was plenty of building and brainstorming showcased. I was entertained by the updated graphic overlays, and the show looked absolutely gorgeous, which Adam detailed in the most recent episode of Still Untitled. The show looked great, and the content was back to the basics of what made me fall in love with it more than a decade ago, but I got so bored I nearly abandoned the episode before completion. So what happened?
A lot has changed over the last decade in how I seek out and view content. When I only had cable television, my choices for smarter entertainment were substantially limited. Now, I follow about fifteen channels on YouTube that sate my desire for knowledge, and they don’t dumb down the subject for mass consumption.
I understand the confines of broadcast television, and fitting content between commercial breaks, and how it’s all driven by statistics on viewership and advertising. I get it, I just don’t want to tolerate it any longer.
Compare the average amount of science content in an episode of Mythbusters and just some random episode — heh, get it? — of Veritasium.
I wanted to give the MB reboot a shot, I did, and I decided it wasn’t for me. I can’t go back to network television’s model of science. I guess I just don’t need superfluous destruction after a bunch of words to keep me entertained any more.
Hell, the Tested YouTube channel produces so much interesting content that I’ve been spoiled. We’ll get an entire video of nothing but Adam building something, or some cool insight into the decisions made by Jamie when he decides to build something. We don’t get bogged down with contrived skits introducing content, we just get content.
It’s dense and concise, and we don’t get previews and recaps every six and a half minutes either. Why would I bother with Mythbusters, when there’s such a viable alternative being produced?