Shark Week is to me what the Stanley Cup Playoffs are to my husband.
These two massively important televised events are the only times of the year where either my husband or I get to exclusively hog the TV with no questions asked. My husband knows better than to come between me and my shark attack survival stories just as I know not to protest when hockey is the only thing on TV for like the entire month of June.
Since I could care less about hockey, let’s talk sharks.
This year’s Shark Week has been totally top notch, despite being one of the most controversial for The Discovery Channel since Shark Week began twenty six years ago.
In case you haven’t heard, this year Shark Week opened with a kick-ass documentary called, Megalodon: The Monster Shark Lives. The synopsis is basically that two highly attractive couples go fishing together on a swanky boat in South Africa and they never return. Divers find their boat at the bottom of the ocean and are gobsmacked on what could have caused it to be ripped completely in half. Miraculously, the video camera belonging to one of the ill fated passengers is recovered and obviously it contains shocking footage of the tragic incident. This footage ends up in the hands of a passionate, young marine biologist who is determined to prove that it was the giant prehistoric Megalodon shark that was the guilty of the attack.
It’s jarringly obviously that this documentary is fake. It’s essentially The Blair Witch Project with sharks.
So why the controversy? Apparently The Discovery Channel has pissed off hundreds of die hard, Shark Week love’n viewers by showing a mockumentary instead of real, scientifically valid programming about sharks.
Disgusted Shark Week enthusiasts have been all over social media demanding an apology from The Discovery Channel for showing such shlock. People have been boycotting Shark Week altogether and claiming that The Discovery Channel is going the way of TLC.
Even my beloved Wil Wheaton has spoken out about his disappointment. His exact word used to describe the mockumentary was “disgusting”.
Why you gotta be like that, Wil Wheaton?
You’re adorable and you’re great on The Big Band Theory and you are pretty much the God of all things geek.
Don’t be a hater, Wil Wheaton!
Embrace the fantasy and mystery and possibility of a giant boat smashing, whale eating, world record chum slick love’n, prehistoric marvel lurking in the ocean.
COME ON, WIL WHEATON!!!
Here’s the thing…maybe the people over at The Discovery Channel should have put some sort of disclaimer at the beginning of the mockumentary to ensure the audience that they were about to watch something fictional.
Where’s the fun in that?
Also, I find it pretty hard to believe that anyone would believe this mockumentary to be fact after watching the first few minutes. Here’s why…
1. Everything that was said sounded completely scripted and everyone involved was ridiculously attractive.
2. The “found footage” was obviously professionally shot.
3. It dawned on me right from the get-go that there had been absolutely nothing in the news since April 2013 about a massive manhunt going on in South Africa for a humongous prehistoric shark.
For all the negative attention that this mockumentary has received, I for one absolutely loved it. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time. It was exciting and griping and certainly entertaining. Watching it reminded me of the exhilaration that I felt when I watched Jaws for the very first time. I was horrified and captivated and an instant shark lover for life. Jaws was completely fictional yet it entranced the world. It motivated me to learn more about Sharks and I’m sure it inspired many to become marine biologists or shark activists or sexy police chiefs on picturesque islands.
I guess my point here is who cares if The Discovery Channel aired a fake show. It was darn entertaining and, surprisingly enough, it’s been the only show during Shark Week that hasn’t put my husband to sleep.
That’s right, my husband and I bonded over Megalodon. It was a magical two hours of television that we shared with 4.8 million other Shark Week FINatics.
Maybe when the Stanley Cup Playoffs come around next spring, I’ll put in a little more effort, try a little harder to watch with my husband. If he can get excited about Megalodon, maybe I can try to get pumped about power plays and penalty shots.
*Serious italic disclaimer… I just wrote that whole nice paragraph about me watching hockey with my husband to sound like a thoughtful and kind person. I have no intent to ever willingly watch hockey on TV with my husband or anyone else. Well maybe if Wil Wheaton wanted to come over and watch hockey I’d be okay with that. I would probs just tell him we were going to watch hockey and then make him watch the Megalodon mockumentary and make him love it and then he would say how wrong he was for calling it “disgusting” and then we’d become total besties and then he’d get me a part on the Big Bang Theory as like a shark expert or something because he would obviously convince the writers to do like a Megalodon / Big Bang Theory crossover episode as like an ode to the beginning of our friendship. How awesome would that be? Or should I say JAWSome…