MythBusters (2005 season)
MythBusters (2005 season) Country of origin Australia
No. of episodes 26 (includes 7 specials) Broadcast Original channel Discovery Channel Original run February 2, 2005– November 16, 2005 Season chronology ← Previous
List of MythBusters episodes
The cast of the television series MythBusters perform experiments to verify or debunk urban legends, old wives' tales, and the like. This is a list of the various myths tested on the show as well as the results of the experiments (the myth is Busted, Plausible, or Confirmed).
No. in series No. in season Title Original air date Overall episode No. SP2 Special 1 "Buster Special" February 2, 2005 29 Myths tested:
Buster is rebuilt after sustaining a year's worth of abuse.
Note: This was a special episode.
SP3 Special 2 "Ultimate MythBusters" February 9, 2005 30 Myths tested:
Jamie and Adam have a contest to prove who is the Ultimate Mythbuster.
Note: This was a special episode.
25 1 "Brown Note" February 16, 2005 31 Myths tested:
Can a person be blown away by a bullet?
Can a certain note make a person have fecal incontinence?
Does Chinese water torture work?
26 2 "Salsa Escape" February 23, 2005 32 Myths tested:
Can a person escape from prison using salsa?
Can hardened cement be removed from a cement truck using explosives?
27 3 "Exploding Port-a-Potty" March 2, 2005 33 Myths tested:
Can a car pole-vault from its drive shaft if it hits a pothole?
Can a port-a-potty gather enough methane to explode?
28 4 "Is Yawning Contagious?" March 9, 2005 34 Myths tested:
Can a toy car beat a Dodge Viper in the 1/4 mile?
Is yawning contagious?
Does buttered toast always land buttered side down?
SP4 Special 3 "MythBusters Outtakes" March 16, 2005 35 Myths tested:
Outtakes from the series
Note: This was a special episode.
29 5 "Cooling a Six-Pack" March 23, 2005 36 Myths tested:
What is the fastest way to cool a six pack of beer?
The Mythbusters investigate ancient electricity.
Buster's new body gets tested by being dropped while in a car.
30 6 "Son of a Gun" March 30, 2005 37
Myths tested:Final Appearance of: Mythtern Christine Chamberlain
Could using a phone in a thunderstorm result in being electrocuted?
If a bullet passes through a man's genitals, and into a woman's, could it make her pregnant?
Can a boat be driven with its trailer still attached?
SP5 Special 4 "Shop 'til You Drop Special" April 6, 2005 38 Myths tested:
The MythBusters' favorite places to shop
Note: This was a special episode.
SP6 Special 5 "MythBusters Revealed" April 27, 2005 39 Myths tested:
A behind the scenes insight of Mythbusters, featuring interviews, as well as exploring personal issues between the hosts
Note: This was a special episode.
SP7 Special 6 "Hollywood on Trial" May 11, 2005 40
Myths tested:First Appearance of: Grant Imahara
Busting various Hollywood myths
Note: This was a special episode.
31 7 "Breaking Glass" May 18, 2005 41 Myths tested:
Can an unamplified human voice shatter a wine glass?
Does a rolling stone gather moss?
Can a vacuum cleaner be converted into a jet engine?
32 8 "Jet Pack" June 9, 2005 42 Myths tested:
Can a jet pack be created from plans on the internet?
Do pyramids have special powers?
33 9 "Killer Brace Position" June 22, 2005 43 Myths tested:
Is the brace position recommended in airplane crashes actually designed to kill people?
Is driving while talking on the cell phone as dangerous as driving drunk?
34 10 "Bulletproof Water" July 13, 2005 44 Myths tested:
Will diving underwater protect a person from bullets?
Can a person swing 360 degrees on a swing set?
SP8 Special 7 "Jaws Special" July 17, 2005 45 Myths tested:
The Mythbusters test various Jaws-inspired shark myths:
Will a scuba tank explode if shot?
Can piano wire be used to catch a shark?
Can a shark ram through a boat or shark cage?
Can a shark hold three flotation barrels under water?
Note: This was a special episode.
35 11 "Border Slingshot" July 27, 2005 46 Myths tested:
Is it possible to slingshot a person over the border and onto a mattress?
36 12 "Killer Tissue Box" August 3, 2005 47 Myths tested:
Can a tissue box in the back of a car kill the driver if the car crashes?
Is it possible to split an arrow by hitting it with another?
37 13 "Escape Slide Parachute" August 10, 2005 48 Myths tested:
Can a person make a parachute with an airplane escape slide or life raft?
Will hair cream explode in the right conditions and decapitate the pilot of a fighter plane?
Adam and Jamie also test the myth that a stewardess survived a 33,000-foot fall while still strapped into her seat.
38 14 "MythBusters Revisited" October 12, 2005 49 Myths tested:
Blown Away, Plywood Builder, Running in the Rain, Will a black car heat faster than a white one?
39 15 "Chinese Invasion Alarm" October 19, 2005 50 Myths tested:
Could the Ancient Chinese have used drums to listen for tunneling invaders?
40 16 "Confederate Rocket" October 26, 2005 51 Myths tested:
Did the Confederates really have a 2-stage rocket capable of traveling 100 miles from Richmond to DC?
41 17 "Vodka Myths" November 2, 2005 52 Myths tested:
Can two semi trucks collide head-on and completely crush a compact car?
Can vodka cure foot odor or bad breath?
42 18 "Steel Toe-Cap Amputation" November 9, 2005 53 Myths tested:
Do steel toe boots really put toes in more danger than a regular boot, to the extent that the steel toe would chop off the wearer's toes?
Can bottle rockets be used to launch a human?
43 19 "Seasickness - Kill or Cure" November 16, 2005 54 Myths tested:
What is the best cure for seasickness?
Is it more efficient to drive a truck tailgate up or down?
Can sticking one's finger in a gun barrel stop a bullet?
Episode SP2 – "Buster Special"
- Original airdate: February 2, 2005
In this episode, Adam and Jamie re-lived Buster's finest moments, from his introduction in Exploding Toilet to his ultimate demise (supposedly in Ming Dynasty Astronaut), and showed the construction of the new "Buster 2.0". These moments include:
- Exploding Toilet
- Barrel of Bricks
- Hammer Bridge Drop
- Raccoon Rocket
- The Mad Trombonist
- Forest Fire Scuba Diver
- Elevator of Death
- Boom-Lift Catapult
- Plywood Builder
- Ming Dynasty Astronaut
Episode SP3 – "Ultimate MythBuster"
- Original airdate: February 9, 2005
In this episode, Adam and Jamie competed in a series of arguably ludicrous tests and competitions to determine which of the two was the "Ultimate MythBuster". These competitions tested their ingenuity, constitution, and courage to see just how far they were willing to go to claim the title of "Ultimate MythBuster".
Challenge Winner Notes Challenge 1: Build a machine that can shoot a tortilla as far as possible. Jamie Adam and Jamie had to first construct machines. Adam had built an arm out of wood. His machine took the tortilla and threw it between two aluminum plates. Jamie designed and built a cannon, made from pipe and a compressed air tank. Adam used all three attempts allowed by the competition rules and his best shot was 60 feet (18 m). In Jamie's first (and only) shot the tortilla was projected 73 feet (22 m). Challenge 2: The fear test. Draw The East Bay Vivarium presented a selection of creatures (Corn Snakes, Tarantulas, African Emperor Scorpions, and Tanzanian Giant Millipedes) to test the MythBusters' courage. The scorpions had the most effect on the two, but in this challenge no winner was determined. Challenge 3: Guess the weight of three items. Adam Adam and Jamie had to guess the weight of three items: a toy car, an angel statue, and a hatch from a plane. Both were to wager two guesses, the first by observing the item, the second by holding it. Adam guessed more accurately on all three occasions. Challenge 4: Build a device to drop an egg (without breaking it) with help of two oranges, two latex gloves, paper, 5 feet (1.5 m) of tape, 20 feet (6.1 m) of string, and "other assorted trash found lying around the workshop". Jamie Adam created a cone made of paper. He put an orange on the bottom and the egg was placed inside the inflated gloves. He had two tries to drop the egg without breaking it. Jamie first ate his orange, and put the egg inside the orange peel. The orange went in one glove, and he tied it to a string. At the other end of the string he affixed the five feet of tape. With this approach he could drop the suspended egg from only a few feet off the ground via the string/tape. It was successful. Adam protested, but Jamie was the winner, as this was a contest of ingenuity. Challenge 5: Who possessed the higher threshold of pain was determined in a paintball standoff. Jamie The MythBusters must shoot the other, after one shot they must take a step closer and shoot again. Final challenge 6: The MythBusters episode quiz. Jamie Adam and Jamie quizzed each other regarding the events during some of the previous episodes. Adam had four and a half questions correct. Jamie won with five correct answers. Scores Jamie 4.5; Adam 1.5 Winner Jamie
Episode 25 – "Brown Note, Blown Away, Water Torture"
- Original airdate: February 16, 2005
Someone who is shot and thrown backward a significant distance is a staple Hollywood visual effect.
- Revisited in MythBusters Revisited
Myth statement Status Notes A person will be propelled violently backwards if hit by a bullet. Busted A bullet fired by a gun cannot hold enough momentum. According to Newton's third law, if the bullet were to knock the target 20 feet (6 metres) back, an equal amount of force would be applied in the direction of the gun -- effectively knocking the shooter back about the same distance.
Myth statement Status Notes There is an infrasonic "brown note" that can cause a human to lose control of their bowels. Busted Even after testing a wide range of sub-audible and near-sub-audible noises on him, not once did Adam lose control of his bowels. Some discomfort was reported however, due to the effects of low-frequency sound on the lungs.
Chinese Water Torture
Myth statement Status Notes Chinese water torture can cause one to become insane. Confirmed The required torture equipment (and involuntary movement restrictions) is highly effective even without adding the discomfort of the water drip. The water drip itself, without the equipment, is almost negligible.
Episode 26 – "Salsa Escape, Cement Removal"
- Original airdate: February 23, 2005
Myth statement Status Notes Salsa was used by a prisoner to corrode the window bars of his cell and escape. Plausible Given several years, it would be possible, due to the corrosive elements of the salsa. The use of electrolysis via a direct current source (a radio power supply) in conjunction with the salsa greatly accelerated the effect, as it drew the electrons out of the bars and into the wires. Adam's alternating current setup had no success whatsoever, since the electrolysis worked to both add and subtract metal from the bars, and caused a good deal of the "cooked" salsa to cake onto the bars. A urine-soaked silk shirt is strong enough to bend the bars of a prison cell when wrapped around them and twisted, as depicted in the film Shanghai Noon. Busted Adam tested this myth after he gave up on his salsa/alternating current escape plan. The bars proved too strong for the wet silk, tearing the fabric apart instead of bending the bars.
Myth statement Status Notes A stick of dynamite can clean the leftover scraps of concrete from the inside of a cement truck. Plausible A powder charge equivalent to 1½ sticks of dynamite worked well and loosened or dislodged a lot of the dried excess concrete without noticeably damaging the barrel. A stick of dynamite can remove a slab of concrete from the inside of a cement truck. Busted A solid slab of concrete is too hard to remove practically, and is tougher than the barrel itself. The MythBusters enlisted the aid of FBI explosive experts to load the truck and barrel with 850 pounds (390 kg) of commercial blasting agent. The resulting explosion reduced the truck to numerous very small fragments, and a few larger pieces; the observers had to stand a mile away from the explosion. Billed as the biggest-ever explosion on the show to date, Jamie admitted that "This has got nothing to do with the myth; it's just a big boom". In the "Shop Till You Drop" special, a large chunk of the barrel containing most of the concrete slab was shown in a junkyard.
Episode 27 – "Exploding Port-a-Potty, Car Pole-Vault"
- Original airdate: March 2, 2005
Myth statement Status Notes Lighting a cigarette in a port-a-potty filled with methane gas will cause an explosion. Busted Not enough gas is produced by the decomposing waste in the port-a-potty for it to possibly be flammable. A person would need to be in a tightly sealed port-a-potty filled with thick methane gas in order for it to be flammable. By the time the gas was thick enough in the air to become flammable the person would have long-since passed out from asphyxiation. Larger amounts of decomposing waste can produce more gas, and sewer gas explosions are a known safety hazard.
See also Exploding Toilet.
Driveshaft Pole Vault
Myth statement Status Notes A broken driveshaft dragging on the ground can cause a car to pole vault end-over-end if it strikes a pothole. Busted A car cannot be made to go end-over-end by striking a pothole with the driveshaft. The back end of the car can be lifted, but the likelihood of an event like this happening is extremely improbable. More likely is that the driveshaft would be forced into the trunk.
Episode 28 – "Is Yawning Contagious?"
- Original airdate: March 9, 2005
Toy Car Race
Myth statement Status Notes Over a ¼ mile long down-hill course, a toy car can beat a full-sized Dodge Viper powered only by gravity. Partly Busted A typical toy car, when tested on a real car tire, managed to stay on until the tire reached about 70 miles per hour (110 km/h). After experimenting with various die-cast model cars, the two MythBusters each made their own toy car to experiment with. Adam's toy car proved too unstable to stay on the full course. Jamie's toy car was able to beat the Dodge Viper (the real car) over 100 feet (30 meters), but over the full length of the course the Viper won by an extremely wide margin.
Is Yawning Contagious?
Myth statement Status Notes A person can be subconsciously influenced into yawning if another nearby person yawns. Confirmed A first experiment conducted by the Build Team, constituting ten people going through three separate tests (a control one, one involving the reading of a tax law, and third when Scottie yawned near the subjects), produced only yawns from several people during the tax law test and was deemed to have too small of a sample. In a second test pool of 50 people where only the influence of Kari's yawn was used, those who were influenced into yawning by her yawned 29% of the time. However, those who were not influenced yawned only 25% of the time. It seems that the MythBusters also found the average time to yawn for those who did yawn was 9 minutes for those who had been influenced and 9.6 minutes for those who had not. This was enough for the MythBusters to give the Confirmed rating, although there was the 4% difference between the experimental and control groups, which was not large enough to constitute a statistically significant difference (at alpha = 0.05).
Toast - Butter Side Up or Down?
Myth statement Status Notes Toast is more likely to land buttered side-down when dropped. Busted In an extensive and highly objective test the toast showed no statistical preference for landing buttered side-down or up when dropped. It was an even 50-50 split when the final results were compared. However, when pushed off the side of a table, toast showed a tendency to flip once and land buttered side down, which is likely the source of the myth. Adam also remarks that the results of this test are, by observation, less dependent on the actual butter itself, and is inherent from the process of buttering the toast instead; compressing the toast by applying the butter to the side of a piece of toast causes that side to become concave and encounter more air friction on that side and thus, much like a leaf, causes it flip and land butter-side up.
Episode SP4 – "MythBusters Outtakes"
- Original airdate: March 16, 2005
In this episode, outtakes and other deleted scenes were shown, which included some failed experiments or extra experiments that had to be trimmed out of the show for time and relevancy reasons. Clips edited out of shows previously aired include:
- Ping-Pong Salvage, in which a sea otter managed to interfere with the experiment by stealing some of the ping-pong balls.
- Plywood Builder, where Jamie had trouble with working with the zip line and Christine flat out refused to do the zip line.
- Chinese Water Torture, where Tory and Scottie each had a turn on the torture rack—Scottie with a blindfold and head restraint, and Tory with a head restraint, shackles, and a stream of iced water. In the aired version of this myth, Kari and Adam go 'under the drip', and it's found that Chinese Water Torture is extremely effective—Adam completes his turn without incident (but was not restrained in any way), while Kari, who was restrained, requested that her turn be cut short when she began to suffer an emotional breakdown.
- Buried Alive, where Adam and a producer each tried the experiment, neither able to match Jamie's time in the coffin.
- Cement Mix-Up, where Tory tried to remove concrete from Twister I with a jackhammer, and only barely filling the bottom of the bucket after an hour of work.
- Needle in a Haystack, where Adam, before settling on the Needlefinder 2000, considered using a sieve, a metal detector and a bloodhound to find the needles.
- Escape From Alcatraz, where Adam and Jamie explored the idea that the escape raft washed ashore on Angel Island after making it to the Marin Headlands as a way to throw the FBI off the convicts' trail. Using a scale model of the San Francisco Bay area, it was determined the tide could have washed the raft onto Angel Island if released from the Marin Headlands, but as with the theory of the escape's success, no concrete evidence existed to prove or disprove the theory.
- Carried Away, in which the Build Team used a pressure chamber to determine the height above sea level at which party balloons would pop. The balloons burst at an altitude of between 23,000 and 25,000 feet (7,000 and 7,600 m).
- Eelskin Wallet, in which Adam and Jamie tested neodymium magnets to see whether they had the desired effect. The data were successfully erased in just one swipe. This segment was left out due to them not being able to properly assess the power of the magnets. The magnetometer used in testing the strengths of the other items ceased functioning when a neodymium magnet was held near it.
- Bug Bomb, in which Adam and Jamie tested whether sawdust, flour, straw, or fake smoke could have also caused an explosion if a spark was nearby. None of the materials tested could fully ignite, though sawdust and flour did burn slightly, and reports of flour and saw mill explosions have been confirmed.
- Elevator of Death, in which the elevator expert answered questions on whether pressing elevator buttons can make the elevator move faster, whether someone can be decapitated by a closing elevator door, and whether zero gravity can be attained by jumping in an elevator. All three questions were answered in the negative.
Original myths that were completely edited out include:
Myth statement Status Notes Free Energy - It is possible to get free (stolen) energy by using a coil of baling wire positioned under a power line. Partly Plausible For this myth the MythBusters created a large coil of wire, and wrapped it around a PVC pipe box. They then hoisted it underneath powerlines in order to "catch" some electricity. They were able to obtain about eight millivolts of electricity. They determined that siphoning a practically useful amount of electricity in such a manner would require thousands of pounds of wire, and would be extremely impractical and dangerous, as well as being illegal. Cola Myths - Cola can be used as a toilet cleaner. Busted For this myth, Adam dirtied M5's bathroom with engine oil in preparation for the cleanup. Jamie was greatly upset at this, but Adam assured him he'd be able to clean it. The cola did nothing to the grease; in fact, even if it did, Adam noted he would have to clean up the cola, afterwards, making the job more tedious than it was. Normal bathroom cleaner managed to clean the grease up. Exploding Tattoos - A radio transmitter can cause tattoos to explode. Busted The MythBusters built a small, low power transmitter, as a real one was too dangerous. They used two containers, one with water (control) and one with tattoo ink. They activated the transmitter, which managed to interfere with a radio in the workshop, and left it running. At the end of the test, the temperature of both liquids were almost the same. The tattoo ink was only half a degree warmer. Peeing on the Third Rail - A train can be derailed if coins are placed on the rails. Busted The train simply heated and flattened the pennies. Quoting narrator Rob Lee, "The myth wasn't Busted—it was Flattened." Even the train conductor assessed that the myth wasn't possible, unless the penny "was lodged in the engineer's eye".
Episode 29 – "Cooling a Six pack"
- Original airdate: March 23, 2005
Also featured in this episode is the first test of Buster 2.0, built during the Buster special, as well as the final test of "Earl the MythBusters Caddy".
Cooling a Six pack
Myth statement Status Notes A six pack of beer can be rapidly cooled by burying it in sand, pouring gasoline on top of it, and lighting the gasoline. Busted The fire did not significantly alter the temperature of the beer; in fact, the fire actually raised the temperature slightly (not to mention that burying the beer made the cans sandy, and the gasoline is harmful to the environment.)
- With this myth quickly busted, Adam and Jamie each tried to build devices which could rapidly cool a six pack, but neither device was effective enough. A carbon dioxide fire extinguisher, however, was able to cool a six pack to a satisfactory temperature in approximately three minutes. In terms of practicality, though, one's best bet is to use icy salt water, which cooled the beer to an ideal temperature in 5 minutes. Barring that, normal ice water was next fastest at 15 minutes. The other methods tested (the freezer, ice only, and the refrigerator) did not cool the beer rapidly enough to warrant their use in a spur-of-the-moment event.
Initial measurements: Ice Ice + water Ice + water + salt 33 °F (1 °C) 24 °F (−4 °C) Results (after 5 minutes): Ice Ice + water Ice + water + salt Freezer Fridge 57 °F (14 °C) 44 °F (7 °C) 35.9 °F (2.2 °C) 55 °F (13 °C) 60 °F (16 °C) Final results: Ice + water + salt Ice + water Freezer Ice Fridge 5 minutes 15 minutes 25 minutes 30 minutes 40+ minutes
The ancient people of Babylon created a crude battery for use in...
Myth statement Status Notes ...electroplating. Plausible An overnight plating of zinc over copper seemed to work very well. ...acupuncture therapy. Plausible The electricity from the batteries was felt through the acupuncture needles, though the needles eventually grew hot, causing the Build Team to theorize this technique also being used as a form of torture. ...testing spiritual resolve. Plausible While the ancient batteries were not used on the recreation Ark of the Covenant due to their weak charge (approximately a third of a volt each, or almost 4 volts for a set of ten), Adam theorized that, if any charge was felt with the batteries, the ancient people would believe it to be of divine origin due to their lack of knowledge about electricity. Instead of the batteries, the Build Team wired the ark to the electric source used in the Peeing on the Electric Fence myth, surprising Adam with a nasty shock (They later apologized to him, seeing how painful and potentially dangerous it was).
Episode 30 – "Son of a Gun"
- Original airdate: March 30, 2005
Son of a Gun
Myth statement Status Notes A bullet that struck the groin of a soldier in the American Civil War led to the impregnation of a woman who was struck by the same bullet after it exited the soldier's body. Busted A Civil War era bullet was fired through a pouch containing spermatozoa and into ballistic gel representing the woman's abdomen; no living spermatozoa were subsequently found in the gel. In addition, it was well documented that anyone suffering an abdominal gunshot wound was unlikely to survive.
Phone in a Thunderstorm
Myth statement Status Notes A person can be electrocuted by talking on the phone during a lightning storm. Confirmed Adam and Jamie placed a ballistic gel dummy on a chair and put a telephone receiver on its ear. They activated a machine that was able to shoot 200,000 volts of electricity towards a mock-up hut. The electricity shot from the mouthpiece of the phone into the mouth of the dummy, and it set off the gunpowder charge that Jamie taped to the phone receiver as a signal. A voltmeter wired up to the test rig blew a fuse. A person can be electrocuted by using the shower during a lightning storm. Plausible The dummy was not hit. A small fire did occur, however, and the voltmeter again blew a fuse.
Myth statement Status Notes A boat can be driven with its trailer still attached. Confirmed The boat can still be driven, but there is a great loss in maximum speed. A trailer shop owner said on the show that he once had to deliver a boat and trailer to a customer in such a manner, as the only access to the customer's boat ramp was from the water.
Episode SP5 – "Shop Till You Drop"
- Original airdate: April 6, 2005
This episode explored some of the MythBusters' favorite stores and vendors that they use when buying supplies for the show. The episode also included a tutorial on how to make ballistics gel by Adam and Kari (which is frequently used in the MythBusters' experiments), and revealed the source of the often referenced "Little Black Book," the Pocket Ref.
Episode SP6 – "MythBusters Revealed"
- Original airdate: April 27, 2005
This episode took a behind-the-scenes look at the show. It featured insights from and interviews with Adam, Jamie, Kari, Tory and producer Peter Rees, about various aspects of Mythbusters, as well as explored personal issues between the hosts.
Episode SP7 – "Hollywood on Trial"
- Original airdate: May 11, 2005
The MythBusters test some of the pervasive myths that are created by Hollywood, as well as recall some of their past Hollywood-inspired myths. This special also marks the debut of Grant Imahara as the third member of the Build Team.
Myth statement Status Notes Bullets will spark when ricocheting off other objects. Busted After failing to create sparks when firing real bullets, the build team created sparking "bullets" out of paintballs filled with crushed sparklers. While these did create sparks, the myth was busted as these results could not be obtained with real bullets. The aluminum paint used on actor Jack Haley while portraying the Tin Man in the 1939 movie version of The Wizard of Oz caused an adverse reaction that hospitalized him. Busted Kari survived her aluminum paint session just like Jamie survived his gold paint session when testing the Goldfinger myth. The myth is true, but not as told. Actor Buddy Ebsen (better known later from The Beverly Hillbillies) was originally cast in the role of the Tin Man. Ebsen suffered a near-fatal allergic reaction and was hospitalized for two weeks after inhaling aluminum powder from an experimental aluminum makeup. After the aluminum makeup incident, Ebsen was replaced by actor Jack Haley and the makeup was replaced by an aluminum paint. Haley went on to complete his role as the Tin Man without suffering any serious health issues, except for one time when some paint got in his eye. It is possible for a medium-to-large build man to break through a wooden doorframe on his own power. Plausible Using only his shoulder, Jamie was able to break through three of the four locks installed on the doorframe the Build Team constructed that met the American Building Code standards. The only reason the fourth lock did not break was because the Build Team used stronger screws to anchor it into the frame than what came with the actual lock. Adam attempted to break the fourth lock with a dropkick but slipped on a mat in front of the door and fell on his back instead. Still, considering that Jamie got so far by simply shoulder-ramming, a determined individual could easily break through. It is possible to be thrown through a glass window and walk away without a scratch just like in Hollywood movies. Partly Busted While it is possible to fly through an 1⁄8-inch (3.2 mm) glass pane with little or no injuries, 1⁄4-inch (6.4 mm) glass is thick enough to inflict significant lacerations on a body, should one be thrown through it. In Hollywood, a breakaway faux-glass substance called sugar glass is used in stunts requiring an actor to be thrown through a window. Sugar glass does not fracture into sharp fragments like real glass does and does not injure stunt performers. It is possible to ignite a pool of gasoline using only a cigarette. Partly Plausible A cigarette has the potential to light a pool of gasoline but just doesn't have enough sustained heat. Gas ignites between 500 °F (260 °C) and 540 °F (280 °C), the cigarette at its hottest was between 450 °F (230 °C) and 500 °F but only when it was actually being smoked. An ignition is very improbable.
Episode 31 – "Breaking Glass"
- Original airdate: May 18, 2005
Adam and Jamie investigate whether a human voice could shatter glass, as perpetuated in stories of opera singers and demonstrated by Ella Fitzgerald in a commercial for Memorex and Jim Gillette in the music video for Nitro's Freight Train.
Myth statement Status Notes A wine glass shatters if a person sings at the right pitch. Confirmed Using lead crystal glasses, Adam proved the Memorex part of the myth by breaking a glass with his amplified voice. Rock singer Jaime Vendera was then able to break a glass using his unaided voice, confirming the entire myth.
Rolling Stone Gathers No Moss
The Build Team takes on another old adage, and sees if it remains relevant in modern use. This became the longest MythBusters experiment on record—over six months long.
Myth statement Status Notes A rolling stone can truly gather no moss. Confirmed While a rolling stone can pick up or gather moss when rolled down a hill, that moss cannot grow on the rock as it's rolling, which - for the purposes of this myth - is considered more pertinent.
Jet Engine Vacuum
Myth statement Status Notes A shop vacuum can act similar to a jet engine if it is used to suck up gasoline. Busted Newer model vacuums have the air flow isolated from the motor; even if this were not the case, the only results would be a small fire.
Episode 32 – "Jet Pack"
- Original airdate: June 9, 2005
Myth statement Status Notes A Jet pack can be built from plans purchased off the Internet and limited funds. Busted The jetpack produced by the MythBusters was not powerful enough even to lift itself off the ground, and they had to cheat by going beyond their assigned budget, in order to create it. The sum of its parts cost too much to allow the average person to build it on a budget and the plans did not have enough details to give builders a clear example of what to build.
Myth statement Status Notes Pyramid power can be harnessed for a variety of purposes around the home. Busted The build team constructed a series of pyramid frames using the precise measurements and dimensions required to "harness" pyramid power. Four tests were performed: keeping razor blades sharp, preventing food from spoiling (one test for milk, another for an apple), and preventing the decay of a flower. The apple test at first seemed to be working, however it was later discovered that a contaminated saw blade (used to halve the apple) may have given one half a higher microbial load than the other. A repeated test using sterile equipment yielded approximately the same decay rate for each half. Strangely, a similar test with 'cube power' showed the fruit rotting at a faster rate than the other two tests. Following the verdict, Adam requested "No more oogie boogie myths." Despite this, MythBusters later featured the myth that plants have feelings in season 4.
Episode 33 – "Killer Brace Position"
- Original airdate: June 22, 2005
Killer Brace Position
The MythBusters take on an airline conspiracy theory. Notable for the introduction of the simulaid family as well as Grant's debut.
Myth statement Status Notes The brace position was actually designed by the airline industry to kill people, rather than save them, during an airplane crash (in order to save money by paying off wrongful death suits rather than continuous injury compensations). Busted The brace position protected the test subject (Buster) from serious and possibly fatal injuries. When the test subject was not braced he received far more serious injuries. At the end of the test the MythBusters-team risked their lives; everyone survived the drop. There is a greater chance of dying due to smoke inhalation or immolation from burning debris – due to being immobilized by injury or being pinned down by debris. There is a grain of truth to this myth: it was learned through research that the amount of money paid by airlines in wrongful death suits is lower than the amount of money paid for injury compensation.
Cell Phones vs. Drunk Driving
Adam and Kari take on a contemporary issue in driving, one that has given conflicting scientific data. To do so, Adam and Kari perform a general-purpose road safety test three times (initially sober without a cellphone, then while talking to Jamie on a cell phone, and finally while slightly intoxicated but under the legal blood alcohol content limit of 0.08%) and compare the three results.
Myth statement Status Notes Driving while talking on a cell phone is just as dangerous as driving while intoxicated. Confirmed Both Adam and Kari failed a general-purpose road safety test both while talking on a cell phone and while driving after drinking alcoholic beverages (though with a blood-alcohol content just below 0.08% and not legally drunk). Cell phone driving failed by a wider margin. Adam commented that one can put away a cell phone if necessary, but not simply become sober as needed.
Episode 34 – "Bulletproof Water"
- Original airdate: July 13, 2005
The MythBusters take on a Hollywood action staple, where a hero dives into water to avoid being hit by bullets.
- An alternate scenario of this myth was retested in Guns Fired Underwater.
Myth statement Status Notes Hiding underwater can stop a person from being hit by bullets. Partly Confirmed All supersonic bullets tested (up to .50-caliber) disintegrated in less than 3 feet (90 cm) of water, but slower velocity bullets, like pistol rounds, need up to 8 feet (2.4 metres) of water to slow to non-lethal speeds. Shotgun slugs require even more depth; the exact depth could not be determined because one of their tests broke the rig. However, as most water-bound shots are fired from an angle, less actual depth is needed to create the necessary separation.
Myth statement Status Notes It is possible to do a chain-straight 360° loop on a swingset. Busted Under one's own power it is impossible to do a chain-straight 360° loop on a school yard swingset. With help of other pushers, it is possible, although highly difficult, to do a full circle without the chain being straight. A person would need a rocket strapped to himself to do it. A dummy was set up in such a manner; the rocket was able to propel it in a chain-straight 360° loop, but the setup would be too dangerous with a real person. It is possible to do a 360° loop on a rigid-arm swingset. Partly Confirmed A seventh generation circus performer confirmed the myth by doing a 360° loop while Tory, Kari and Grant observed. The others were not able to do the loop, as it consumes a lot of energy (and can cause nausea to some).
Episode SP8 – "JAWS Special"
- Original airdate: July 17, 2005
As part of Discovery Channel's Shark Week (which Adam and Jamie hosted in 2005), the MythBusters test myths relating to the movie Jaws with the help of a "ShaRammer" designed to simulate the force of a Great White Shark. This is also the first MythBusters special to run for two hours rather than one. More recent reruns have tended to show a version edited down to one hour. The episode was also referred to as the "Shark Special" in the 22,000 Foot Fall episode.
In 2008 there was a sequel but it was just called Shark Week Special 2.
Myth statement Status Notes If a pressurized scuba tank is shot, it will explode. Busted When the tank was punctured by a bullet it simply decompressed quickly, causing it to fly around like a compressed-air rocket. The team was only able to make the tank explode in the end by using explosives. A Great white shark can pull barrels underwater. Plausible A shark's maximum striking force is great enough to pull the barrels under. A Great White Shark can pull barrels underwater and hold them there. Busted The force a shark can generate in a continuous pull is insufficient to keep the barrels under water for a significant amount of time. A Great White Shark can ram a dive cage with enough force to damage or destroy it. Confirmed The "ShaRammer" penetrated the cage with enough force to rip a significant part of it loose and carry it away on its body. The cage, a replica of the one used in the film, was completely destroyed. A Great White Shark can ram a boat with enough force to punch a hole in it. Confirmed A Great White has enough power to punch a hole in the side of a wooden boat under the right circumstances, but an example of this happening has never been documented. A Great White Shark can pull a boat backwards with great enough speed that waves break over the stern. Busted The same reason why the shark cannot hold the barrels underwater continuously. Punching a shark in the nose, eyes, or gills will cause it to flee or at least back off briefly. Plausible The sharks punched by both a specially modified Buster, and by Jamie were driven off briefly and were hesitant about making repeated approaches. Strikes to the gills were noted to be more effective than strikes to the nose. Sharks can be caught using a special piano wire. (from a deleted scene in Jaws) Busted Piano wire doesn't have the tensile strength needed to be used as an adequate shark-catching line.
Episode 35 – "Border Slingshot"
- Original airdate: July 27, 2005
This was the first episode in which the entire hour was devoted to testing a single myth.
Myth statement Status Notes Illegal immigrants are being launched over the United States border by the means of a giant slingshot. Busted In addition to being unable to achieve the distance and accuracy reported, the device could not be constructed in such a way as to allow the quick assembly and disassembly required for the myth. In addition, the person being thrown would likely be killed on impact.
Episode 36 – "Killer Tissue Box"
- Original airdate: August 3, 2005
Killer Tissue Box
Myth statement Status Notes A simple tissue box stored on the backboard of a car can move with sufficient force to kill a person during a crash. Busted Sharp objects or those with masses over 3 lb. (1.2 kg), like a bowling ball, can be deadly if they fly forward during a crash. Lighter objects like tissue boxes may cause injury but cannot kill. A tissue box can stay intact during a crash. Confirmed This was revealed when they crashed the real car and Adam pointed out that the box was intact.
Splitting an Arrow
The Build Team take on a myth stemming from the film The Adventures of Robin Hood, where the most famous stunt is one where an arrow was split in half, from nock to tip. The Build Team explores whether this was at all possible, and also challenges fans at a medieval fair to duplicate this feat.
- This myth was retested in Myths Revisited - Splitting an Arrow.
Myth statement Status Notes It is possible to split an arrow perfectly down the middle with a second arrow like in the film The Adventures of Robin Hood. Partly Busted While it is certainly possible to rear-end an arrow with another, only a fiberglass arrow can be split down the middle (known as telescoping in archery circles). With a wooden arrow, even under the most ideal conditions, the best one can do is a partial split along the grain of the wood, and even that is improbable. They clearly showed that the film's circumstances can be recreated using a hollow shaft, such as bamboo.
Episode 37 – "Escape Slide Parachute"
- Original airdate: August 10, 2005
Escape Slide Parachute
Myth statement Status Notes It is possible to jump from an airplane and use an inflatable life raft to safely return to earth (as in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom) Busted Any attempt to use the raft failed due to the instability of the raft in freefall. It was possible to rig the raft as a parachute and land with minimal injuries, but this would not be possible to perform while jumping from a disabled aircraft. ...Using an escape slide instead of the raft. Busted While it was shown that the slide could safely land Buster with no injuries, he had to be strapped in and there is no possible way to perform this from a disabled aircraft. A person strapped into the rear flight attendant seat could survive the destruction of the aircraft in flight by having the surviving tail section slow her fall and absorb impact. Plausible While Adam and Jamie's attempt to recreate the incident resulted in Buster once again being heavily damaged, this event actually happened in real life. The flight attendant was severely injured in the incident, but did survive. It was agreed that it was very improbable, but could happen if circumstances were just right.
Exploding Hair Cream
Myth statement Status Notes A number of Canadian Air Force pilots were explosively decapitated when their hair gel exploded in the oxygen-rich environment of the cockpit. Busted After recreating the environment in an F-104 Starfighter cockpit, it took some effort to ignite the hair product. Even with extreme amounts of product, the best result was a fire and/or small explosion, which came nowhere near decapitating the test head. It was confirmed that there have been a number of incidents in which small fires have occurred, but there are no recorded fatal injuries. It was noted that a fire in a pure oxygen environment killed the astronauts of Apollo 1.
Episode 38 – "MythBusters Revisited"
- Original airdate: October 12, 2005
This episode is the second episode where the MythBusters team focus on retesting earlier myths, based on fan reaction (the first is Myths Revisited). Grant Imahara is also introduced in this episode.
Blown Away 2
Myth statement Status Notes A body struck by a bullet will be propelled violently backwards. (From Blown Away) Re-Busted Even a .50 Caliber bullet does not have the momentum to knock a person backwards. If it were possible, the shooter would be knocked backwards as well - as per Newton's Third Law.
Myth statement Status Notes Explosive decompression can occur when a bullet is fired through the fuselage of a pressurized airplane (From Explosive Decompression) Re-Busted The Build Team tested the effect of air rushing past an open bullet hole, and surmised that the extra internal pressure caused by this would still not be enough to cause an explosive decompression.
Who Gets Wetter?
Myth statement Status Notes A person will end up drier running in the rain than walking. (From Who Gets Wetter?) Confirmed When retrying the test in actual rain it was conclusively proven that the running test subject got less wet than the walking test subject. The use of artificial rain in the original test led to a false negative.
Myth statement Status Notes Holding a large sheet of plywood will slow a fall from a building enough to make it survivable. (From Plywood Builder) Re-Busted After testing the speed of updrafts with a special rig on Tory's truck it was proven that a person could not hold on to the piece of plywood if he was in free fall. A mere 45-mile-per-hour (72 km/h) gust knocked it out of Tory's hands; updrafts from skyscrapers reach upwards of 90 miles per hour (140 km/h).
Biscuit Bazooka Spinoff
Myth statement Status Notes A black car heats up faster than an identical white car. (Spinoff of Biscuit Bazooka) Confirmed A fan wrote in and asked a follow up question: "Does the color of a car affect the way it heats up?". The MythBusters used two identical cars, one black the other white and left them both out in the summer heat with thermometers in both. By mid-afternoon the white car had a temperature of 126 °F (52.2 °C), while the black car had heated up to a temperature of 135 °F (57.2 °C), about 9 degrees hotter in the Fahrenheit scale. The explanation was that black paint absorbs the heat while white paint deflects it.
AC vs. Windows Down
Myth statement Status Notes Running a car with air conditioning on is more fuel efficient than running with the windows down. (From AC vs. Windows Down) Partly Re-Busted/Partly Confirmed The fundamental flaw in the MythBusters' test was that the point where the drag becomes powerful enough to inhibit a car's performance with windows down was inside their 45–55mph margin at 50mph. Going less than 50mph it is more efficient to leave the windows down, but going greater than 50mph it is more efficient to use the A/C.
Car Capers - Exploding Gas Tank
Myth statement Status Notes A gas tank will explode when shot by a bullet. (From Car Capers - Shooting Cars) Partly Confirmed It has already been proven that when shot by a normal bullet a gasoline tank will not explode. However, if a gasoline tank is shot by a tracer round from a great enough distance so that the round can ignite with air friction, it will cause the gasoline to catch fire. By the time this happened the tank was so riddled with bullets (from previous tracers that were fired too close to ignite) that there was no contained pressure, but the MythBusters surmised that had the tank been properly enclosed, it might have exploded.
Episode 39 – "Chinese Invasion Alarm"
- Original airdate: October 19, 2005
Chinese Invasion Alarm
Myth statement Status Notes The ancient Chinese were able to detect an invading army tunneling beneath the ground by using a drum submerged in a shaft. Plausible Kari was able to hear Jamie and Tory's digging in an underground mine shaft in two of the three tests. She actually detected them better by listening to the drum compared to Grant's use of modern geophone equipment.
Myth statement Status Notes The "Five-second rule" is valid when it comes to food dropped on the floor. Busted This myth yielded a varied number of results, but in the definitive test where the only variable was time, the myth was definitively busted. There was no real difference in the number of bacteria collected from 2 seconds exposure as there was from 6 seconds exposure. Instead, the texture and moisture inherent to the food dropped dictate the amount of bacteria collected. The toilet seat is the cleanest place in the house. Confirmed Adam tested this myth just out of curiosity. When the results were compared to the bacteria samples from the "Five Second Rule" tests, the toilet seat actually proved cleaner than all other surfaces tested. This myth was explored further four seasons later in Hidden Nasties. A dog's mouth is cleaner than a human's. Plausible The sample collected from Adam's mouth had much more bacterial growth than the sample collected from Lulu the dog. Jamie suggested, however, that the bacteria from the dog may be more potent.
Episode 40 – "Confederate Rocket"
- Original airdate: October 26, 2005
This was the second episode in which the entire hour was devoted to testing a single myth. Because the myth dealt with the making of explosive and or dangerous materials, the ingredients used to make nitrous oxide and gun cotton were censored by substituting animal sounds for the actual chemicals.
- This myth was revisited in Salami Rocket.
Myth statement Status Notes During the American Civil War, the Confederacy built and launched a two-stage rocket 120 miles (190 km) from Richmond, Virginia to Washington D.C. Busted While the MythBusters were able to construct and launch a hybrid rocket in under two days using only properties available to Civil War-era engineers, the rocket was not two-stage (as per the myth), and only travelled an estimated 500 yards (460 m). Adam and Jamie agreed that the myth would be impossible with the technology available during the Civil War.
Episode 41 – "Compact Compact, Vodka Myths"
- Original airdate: November 2, 2005
Myth statement Status Notes Two semi trucks that collided head-on welded together due to the accident. After being towed as a whole to the junkyard, workers were shocked to discover that the semis trapped a European compact car and its doomed driver between each other. Busted After obtaining two free semi trucks, their trailers, and a sports car (a Fiat X1/9) from a fan, the MythBusters rigged up the two semis to crash. After several mishaps and numerous technical problems, they finally managed to crash the two trucks together. However, the trucks were slightly offline when they hit the car, pushing the Fiat out of the center of the wreck instead of crushing it altogether. The trucks did not fuse together, however, becoming instead a huge mass of wreckage. The Fiat, despite not receiving the full force of the hit, was totaled as well. This myth was revisited in the 2009 season, when the MythBusters successfully completed the experiment and rebusted the myth.
Vodka Myths I
Myth statement Status Notes ...can clean the odor off feet. Confirmed Comparison of a commercial foot powder wash vs. a vodka wash showed that the odor was eliminated on both feet. ...can kill bad breath. Confirmed After a mixture of 8 US fluid ounces (240 ml) of vodka and 4.5 US fluid ounces (130 ml) of cinnamon powder was left to sit for two weeks in a sealed flask and then strained, it managed to eliminate most odors on par with an over-the-counter mouthwash. The only bad breath smell not eliminated (by either the vodka or mouthwash) was from smoking cigarettes.
Episode 42 – "Steel Toe-Cap Amputation, Bottle Rocket Blast-off"
- Original airdate: November 9, 2005
Steel Toe-Cap Amputation
Myth statement Status Notes Steel-toe boots are more dangerous to one's toes than normal boots when a heavy weight is dropped on them. Whereas a normal boot would just crush the toes, a steel toe would curl and crumple in, cutting off the toes. Busted Using similar tests to those used to test steel-toe boot certification, Adam and Jamie determine that one's toes are much safer with steel toe boots than without. There was no toe-cutting curling of the steel toe, and even using a blade attachment did not work, only glancing off the steel toe to cut right above where it ended.
Bottle Rocket Blast-Off
The Build team attempt to recreate this water bottle jetpack from a Japanese game show.
Myth statement Status Notes According to a Japanese trivia game show, it is possible to use fifteen 3-litre sized water bottle rockets to launch a human 40 meters. Busted While bottle rockets, on their own, could launch 1/15 of Kari's weight a fair distance, their combination into one super-rocket system did not have enough thrust to give the crash test dummy the trajectory or distance stated by the television show, and was considered too dangerous by paramedics to feasibly launch a human being. More bottle rockets proved only to add to the difficulty and complications. The Build Team also found that water cooler jugs, while able to launch higher at the standard air/water ratio for water bottle rockets, were weaker than standard soda bottles (which are designed to hold carbonated liquids), failing at around 60 psi (413 kPa) less than the soda bottles (90psi (600kPa) as opposed to 150psi (1000kPa)).
Episode 43 – "Sea-sickness - Kill or Cure?"
Original airdate: November 16, 2005
Seasickness - Kill or Cure?
Myth statement Status Notes ...using a cinnamon-flavored tongue spray. Busted The spray took no effect on Adam or Grant. ...taking a ginger pill. Plausible Both Adam and Grant endured the spin-chair for twenty to thirty minutes without experiencing any symptoms, however they decided it could not be confirmed as Seasickness is 'very individual' and depends on the person. ...using magnetized arm bands. Busted The arm bands had no effect on Adam or Grant. Some celebrities like Barry Manilow claim they work, but they nonetheless do not operate on any valid scientific principles. ...using an electro-shock wrist band. Busted The shocks mildly discomforted Adam and Grant, who nonetheless became sick. ...using a placebo, like a vitamin or a sugar pill. Plausible While Adam was not affected by the placebo, Grant was successfully tricked into thinking he had taken a store-bought sea-sickness medication and did not throw up. He had taken vitamin B12 and claimed it was the most effective remedy. By falling for the placebo all his test results had to be thrown out on the grounds of psychosomatic influence.
Tailgate Up vs. Tailgate Down
This was revisited in More Myths Revisited.
Myth statement Status Notes It is more fuel efficient to drive a pick-up truck with its tailgate down, rather than up. Busted Driving with the tailgate down actually increased drag on the pick-up and caused it to consume fuel faster than the identical truck driven with the tailgate up. It was later revealed that the closed tailgate creates a locked vortex flow that created a smoother flow of air over the truck. With the tailgate down, the trapped vortex was dissipated and the drag increased.
Finger in a Barrel
Myth statement Status Notes A shotgun plugged by a human finger will backfire and explode injuring or killing the shooter instead of the intended victim. Busted Both test hands (composed of ballistics gel of varying firmness) were completely obliterated by the shotgun blast. Neither had the volume or strength needed to plug the barrel to create enough pressure to cause it to explode. Even under ridiculous circumstances like having the barrel clogged with dirt, being sealed off by a 4-inch (10 cm) spike welded into the barrel and by being blocked by a simulated squib load, the gun still did not explode. The best results seen were minor deformations in the gun barrel.
- ^ "Buster Special". MythBusters: Episode Info. MSN TV. http://tv.msn.com/tv/episode/mythbusters/buster-special/. Retrieved October 22, 2009.
- ^ "Ultimate MythBusters". MythBusters: Episode Info. MSN TV. http://tv.msn.com/tv/episode/mythbusters/ultimate-mythbusters/. Retrieved October 22, 2009.
- ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s "Mythbusters: Episode Guide (2005)". Discovery Channel. http://dsc.discovery.com/fansites/mythbusters/episode/episode-tab-07.html. Retrieved March 25, 2010.
- ^ "Ultimate MythBusters". MythBusters: Episode Info. MSN TV. http://tv.msn.com/tv/episode/mythbusters/mythbusters-outtakes/. Retrieved October 22, 2009.
- ^ "Shop 'til You Drop Special". MythBusters: Episode Info. MSN TV. http://tv.msn.com/tv/episode/mythbusters/shop-%27til-you-drop-special/. Retrieved October 22, 2009.
- ^ "MythBusters Revealed". MythBusters: Episode Info. MSN TV. http://tv.msn.com/tv/episode/mythbusters/mythbusters-revealed/. Retrieved October 22, 2009.
- ^ "Hollywood on Trial". MythBusters: Episode Info. MSN TV. http://tv.msn.com/tv/episode/mythbusters/hollywood-on-trial/. Retrieved October 22, 2009.
- ^ "Jaws Special". MythBusters: Episode Info. MSN TV. http://tv.msn.com/tv/episode/mythbusters/jaws-special/. Retrieved October 22, 2009.
MythBusters Episodes Other
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MythBusters (2006 season) — Country of origin Australia United States No. of episodes 28 (includes 2 specials) Broadcast Original channel Discovery Channel … Wikipedia
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MythBusters (2009 season) — Country of origin Australia United States No. of episodes 23 (includes 3 specials) Broadcast Original channel … Wikipedia
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