View Full Version : Bear Grylls is not quite a survivor

Naste Craft
07-24-2007, 01:09 PM

TV 'survival king' stayed in hotels

TO LIVE up to his public image of a rugged, ex-SAS adventurer, it must have seemed essential for Bear Grylls to appear at ease sleeping rough and catching his own food in his television survival series.

But it has emerged that Grylls, 33, was enjoying a far more conventional form of comfort, retreating some nights from filming in mountains and on desert islands to nearby lodges and hotels.

Now Channel 4 has launched an investigation into whether Grylls, who has conquered Everest and the Arctic, deceived the public in his series Born Survivor.

The series, screened in March and April and watched by 1.4m viewers, built up Grylls’s credentials as a tough outdoorsman. In a question and answer session on Channel 4’s website, he recalls how station bosses pitched the venture to him stating: “We just drop you into a lot of different hellholes equipped with nothing, and you do what you have to do to survive.”

But an adviser to Born Survivor has disclosed that at one location where the adventurer claimed to be a “real life Robin-son Crusoe” trapped on “a desert island”, he was actually on an outlying part of the Hawaiian archipelago and spent nights at a motel.

On another occasion in California’s Sierra Nevada mountains where he was filmed biting off the head of a snake for breakfast and struggling for survival “with just a water bottle, a cup and a flint for making fire”, he actually slept some nights with the crew in a lodge fitted with television and internet access. The Pines Resort at Bass Lake is advertised as “a cosy getaway for families” with blueberry pancakes for breakfast.

In one episode Grylls, son of the late Tory MP Sir Michael Grylls, was shown apparently building a Polynesian-style raft using only materials around him, including bamboo, hibiscus twine and palm leaves for a sail.

But according to Mark Weinert, an Oregon-based survival consultant brought in for the job, it was he who led the team that built the raft. It was then dismantled so that Grylls could be shown building it on camera.

In another episode viewers watched as Grylls tried to coax an apparently wild mustang into a lasso in the Sierra Nevada. “I’m in luck,” he told viewers, apparently coming across four wild horses grazing in a meadow. “A chance to use an old native American mode of transport comes my way. This is one of the few places in the whole of the US where horses still roam wild.”

In fact, Weinert said, the horses were not wild but were brought in by trailer from a nearby trekking station for the “choreographed” feature.

“If you really believe everything happens the way it is shown on TV, you are being a little bit naive,” he said.

Channel 4 confirmed that Grylls had used hotels during expeditions and has now asked Diverse, the Bristol-based production company that made the programme, to look into the other claims.

“We take any allegations of misleading our audiences seriously,” said a spokeswoman for the channel.

The latest suggestion that Channel 4 may have breached viewer trust comes as the broad-caster’s supervisory board prepares to issue new editorial guidelines to suppliers in order to stamp out alleged sharp practices that mislead viewers.

“Born Survivor is not an observational documentary series but a ‘how to’ guide to basic survival techniques in extreme environments,” the spokeswoman said.

“The programme explicitly does not claim that presenter Bear Grylls’s experience is one of unaided solo survival.”

Nevertheless, the disclosure is likely to disappoint fans of the Eton-educated adventurer, who at the age of 23 became the youngest Briton to scale Everest. Just two years before that he had broken his back in three places after his parachute ripped during a military exercise.

On screen he has emerged as a natural performer, with stunts such as squeezing water from animal dung and sucking the fluid from fish eyeballs.

Grylls could not be contacted for comment this weekend as he was trekking in the Brecon Beacons with his four-year-old son

07-24-2007, 01:15 PM
I never even liked how he had a camera crew. That just seemed srange. I always liked "Survivor Man". He films himself, no cramera crew. Seems a lot more real.

07-24-2007, 01:24 PM

TV 'survival king' stayed in hotels


next you're going to tell me all those little foot tall people on the screen are really life sized:(

07-24-2007, 01:41 PM
Dude's name is Bear?

07-24-2007, 01:46 PM
Dude's name is Bear?

probably fake too:rolleyes:

07-24-2007, 02:12 PM
I always liked survivorman better also. 'Bear' always seems so enthusiastic about eating gross stuff while survivorman/Les has a more realistic reaction.

Bear always seemed fake.

Naste Craft
07-24-2007, 02:15 PM
He did drink his own pee... I bet it was fake

07-24-2007, 02:17 PM
Yea never was a fan of this show. WAs really "fake" to me. with a camera crew never more than 5ft away how really in danger can he be. I mean com on..... the camera crew isn't really ready for the wild I bet. This just affirms my skepticism about this guy. Always annoyed me from the start! GLad they ousted him

Naste Craft
07-24-2007, 02:18 PM
You know his camera crew feeds him all info. he gives us on the show.

ProTour X9
07-24-2007, 02:52 PM
wow i really looked up to him, maybe he'll change

07-24-2007, 03:22 PM
I always liked survivor man better also. 'Bear' always seems so enthusiastic about eating gross stuff while survivor man/Les has a more realistic reaction.

Bear always seemed fake.

Another thing I noticed about Bear was he always put himself into bad situations, like climbing waterfalls and jumping into ice water and placing himself in grave danger. While Les (survivor man) was actually trying to survive and not put himself in danger, because if he did get hurt no one would be there, VS bear has a whole camera crew to watch his back.

Another thing i hated Abo Man VS Wild was that at the end of the show you never see him get on a boat or find civilization, they ALWAYS cut the show right when they see a boat, car , house, whatever. How do you know if that boat wasn't just the rest of the camera crew coming to get him?

07-24-2007, 03:26 PM
Another thing, have you noticed all the camera angles in Man VS Wild?

Like when he is swiming in the water there will be a diver under him filming form under water. Another camera on the suface of the water filming and one from the Air. But when you see the film from the Air you never see the other filmers... I always thought that was weird.

Man VS Wild gets a lot more hype on discovery than survivor man gets, and survivor man is the real deal, I don't understand it?

07-24-2007, 06:48 PM
Les Stroud is so much better than Bear. Les is showing how you would actually try to survive. I have seen Les make fire with just about anything. I have seen Bear make fire with a flint and that's about it. I really think some producer saw the sucess of Suvivorman and said let's make that more exciting so we can draw more viewers. Well, I for one am not sold on Man V Wild. I can't wait for another season of Survivorman.

07-24-2007, 06:57 PM
I for one am not sold on Man V Wild. I can't wait for another season of Survivorman.

Ya, You and me both. The new season is going to be sweet, he is going to survive in places around the world!

Prostar in Michigain
07-24-2007, 07:12 PM
I watched man vs wild and half the time you cant understand the guy cuz of his accent no offense or anything im just saying

07-24-2007, 10:13 PM
In the Sierra Nevada episode he's filmed floating down a river in clothes. If you look closely you can see that he's got a life vest on underneath his sweatshirt. It's all staged.

07-24-2007, 10:58 PM
Seriously wiley? Thats attrocious... However I do like how he magically makes it through the glacier in alaska.

07-27-2007, 02:12 AM
I don't know how I missed this thread, but I like it! I am constantly up against all my friends on this topic!