The Discovery Channel was once a very dry but very earnest item in the basic cable lineup. In the ’80s and ’90s, the cable network ran educational shows, but since every other channel decided to get into reality television in the new millennium, Discovery pivoted to a reality-heavy rotation too. And with reality TV comes scandal.
The MythBusters crew educated as they entertained, informing the masses about how the world really works and debunking widely believed misinformation along the way. The gang also seemed to virtually always find a reason to blow something up, you know, for science! The vast majority of the time, those explosions were conducted in a controlled environment with every precaution considered ahead of time. But with explosions, you really have to get all the boxes checked or things go sideways.
After a MythBusters-created explosion knocked her off her couch and shattered a window in her house in Esparto, California, in 2009, Sherril Stephens told KCRA TV:
“It was a boom that was just – I had never heard anything like that before, it was really weird.”
Seeing a plume of smoke and dust rise about a mile outside town, locals thought there might have been a plane crash or a building explosion. But it had merely been those pesky busters of myth, attempting to see if the phrase “knock your socks off” had any basis in reality. They’d blown up 500 pounds of ammonium nitrate to remove the socks from a mannequin, but they didn’t realize the explosion would be as big as it was. MythBusters paid for several broken windows in and around Esparto.
Watch the video to see more of The Biggest Scandals To Rock The Discovery Channel!
MythBusters vs. an entire town | 0:20
Hopping mad at Eaten Alive | 1:30
Not-so-Alaskan bush people | 2:45
Not terrorists, Sons of Guns | 3:49
MythBusters vs. credit card companies | 4:56
The show goes on | 6:16
Man vs. Wild vs. Truth | 7:16
American Guns’ IRS run-in | 8:23
Jesse James’ polluting ways | 9:49
MythBusters vs. a house | 10:54