So...I like nature documentaries.
I am not admitting this in shame or anything--its just a little pretext. When I was a child, there was only so much Smurfiness my mother could take, so she often would turn on something else like an Errol Flynn movie or some sort of nature documentary for TV noise--Like Mutual Of Omaha's Wild Kingdom--you know, the ONLY nature documentary show at the time. And there was no arguing in our house--what she wanted to watch, we watched. Because she was the adult. (By the way...um...what happened to that? Since when did kids get to dictate what is on the TV? I had to watch damn near every episode of Murder She Wrote--and I'll be damned if I'm gonna be forced to learn Chinese or look in some kid's backpack all damn day! Not to mention that a majority of kids' programming is the stupidest thing I've ever seen. Yeah, I'm talkin to you Caillou! Paste-eatin motherfucker.)
So, anyholes, the Old Man and I were layin in the bed, watchin god-knows-what, when what must have been the most memorable show ended and the man of the house got up to do what men do when shows end and he's been drinking beer... And I'm flippin around live TV because it isn't enough that we have 2 DVRs full of preferred television, I MUST look at live television to find something meaningless to watch on a Friday night. (#whitegirlproblems) So I scroll down to animal planet or some such and I come across this:
Ok. Let me just state here, I can handle bugs. I ain't sayin' I want a collection or some such--or that some of them don't make me jump and squeak and do the dance of fearful shame, but I've also been known to have spiders crawl DIRECTLY ON ME and not flip out. Had one crawl right out of my work book once at the sprout farm, and I didn't even flinch. And it was a big fucker too. But, like most city girls, I prefer them on television, and have been known to call in the old man to kill anything that wiggles too much, jumps or stings or in any way resembles a vampire. For the most part I have a healthy respect for the creepy crawlies of the world (have I mentioned our back patio is Club Med for Spiders? They've kind of forced my hand here). My only standing rules: if you look like a black widow or brown recluse, you die, and if you are in the bedroom, you die. Anywhere else, and we simply usher them outside to keep the fly population down. Look--I happen to be a smorgasbord of delicious blood where spiders are concerned--and my husband has witnessed it. I have woken up with a gajillion bites on my legs or stomach looking like there was a spider frat party the night before. Oh, and the Old Man? They don't bite him. He says its because they respect his "authoritah", but really he is just coated with a thick layer of fur that seem to deter 99% of them.
Anywhores, I turn on this show to instantly see a spider/praying mantis throw-down. Now that in itself was fairly interesting (I kinda like the major predator battles--it's like the age old question, what if batman and superman had a fight? who would win?) So there's this web-net throwing spider (I shit you not) and the mantis. But that isn't what had me gobsmacked. No. They added sound effects.
Now most of these shows do that--and I hope you realize that many of the sounds you hear--especially with the small animals/insects are not always the actual sounds these little creatures make. Usually they do a good and realistic sounding job, so we don't really mind that we are being bamboozled. Lord knows I've never heard a grasshopper eat that loudly. But these sounds were definitely not real. No. For this battle, they paired the sound of a wild hog and a lion.
Yes, you read that right. A wild hog and a lion.
(which is a fight that might be worth watching)
The spider was the hog--and the only reason I know this is because (SPOILER ALERT) the spider loses and it turns into the sound of a slaughtered pig. At least they stayed true to their effects.
I should mention that my husband walks into this in the middle of the fight, me sitting there with my mouth open in shock and awe, and the sounds of animal armaggeddon on the TV.
He just turned around and walked the fuck OUT.
And to make the show even better, they interview their "experts": two scientists that get so ramped up about bugs that you kinda question how sexually charged they get about bugs. I mean, one lady got VERY excitable over some spider's "giant sexy mandibles"--her words, not mine. Just sayin'.
It used to be some white haired dude would sit at a desk and discuss the mating rituals of warthogs, and they would cut to footage of gnus grazing on the Serengeti. And sometimes it would be a little more exciting with a lion or some such. And I was happy to watch it. But now its gotta be sexy whiz-bang! Check out this nightmare! It's gonna crawl in your ear and eat your brains. And nothing is cooler. NOTHING. Got it?
I realize that my child, being a boy and having Autism, could very well become bug obsessed. I'm kinda hoping for a star wars/astronomy obsession, but I'm not gonna dictate what he is passionate about. If it's hissing cockroaches and praying mantii--so be it. I just hope shows like this don't make him try to stage his own version of cage fights. Unless, of course, I get a cut of the winnings.