President Obama on MythBusters Tonight


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Photo: Discovery Channel

Back in October, during his speech for the White House Science Fair, President Barack Obama officially announced that he had filmed an appearance on Discovery Channel’s MythBusters. That episode premieres tonight at 9pm ET/PT.

Having watched a preview of the episode, I can say this: It’s a good episode. That’s really about all I can say. It’s cool to see Mr. Obama on the show, and it’s certainly great to have a president who’s as committed as he is to science education. But it plays as a gimmick, with Mr. Obama appearing only at the beginning and end of the episode, and then in short segments filmed at the White House that are obviously scripted. I’m pretty sure few people — even kids — will believe that the president actually thinks it’s of vital importance that Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman retest the Archimedes Solar Ray for a third time.

Now, that being said, any episode of MythBusters is still better than at least three-quarters of the other shows on TV. It is certainly fun to see them test the solar ray again, this time with the assistance of 500 schoolkids. And Kari, Grant and Tory spend the episode trying to reproduce the scene from Hellboy in which the title character hits the hood of an SUV, causing it to flip in the air 180 degrees. Said testing is pretty fun, too, with a sizable number of SUVs biting the dust. Sadly, there is not a single explosion to be found in the whole episode, but I suppose we can’t reasonably expect that to happen in every one.

So go ahead and watch it tonight: as I said, it’s a good episode. Just don’t expect too much from the president’s appearance.

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