“At this point we know we have to look after ourselves. 11 years of doing this shit and barely escaping intact, we have learned a thing or two,” says Jamie Hyneman. Photo: Genevieve / CC BY 2.0 / cropped and colour edited
The special effects expert, and co-host of the television series MythBusters, answered questions on the popular social media site, Reddit, Wednesday evening. Here’s what Jamie Hyneman had to say.
The full thread from Jamie Hyneman’s Reddit “Ask Me Anything” thread is here, but if you just want the top 10 questions he answered and his responses, have a look below.
QUESTION #1 from rickyrockslide: My favorite episodes of the Mythbusters tend to focus on some kind of build. It’s fun and encouraging to see you all overcome your crazy engineering challenges. Will Mythbusters be showing more of the build process in the future?
Jamie Hyneman: In fact, yes, we are.
QUESTION #2 from adertal: We know you’re an inventor and that you love to build “weird shit”, so what has been your favorite thing to build, either on the show or off it? And did you ever get to build something with the giant magnets you talked about last year?
QUESTION #3 from zakster90: What is that brown vest you always wear? Did you make that?
Jamie Hyneman: It’s goat. I did make it but I did not kill and eat the goat first.
QUESTION #4 from Litmusdragon: I’ve heard on the show that the legal team sometimes gives you and Adam a hard time about what kinds of testing you can’t do because it might be too dangerous. Was there any particular time you got the green light to do something and then afterwards you were like “I can’t believe they let us do that”? Conversely was there any time that they would not allow you to do something that you thought was pretty harmless?
Jamie Hyneman: At this point we know we have to look after ourselves. 11 years of doing this shit and barely escaping intact, we have learned a thing or two. That is why we work with the bomb squad when it comes to explosives and even then we check everything ourselves as well. Insurance adjusters and safety consultants pick up the obvious stuff, but we are pretty much only dealing with the stuff on the periphery, where unexpected things happen. So we back off on things all the time.
QUESTION #5 from stormageddon102: Which co-host would you choose to be your companion in the zombie apocalypse and why?
Jamie Hyneman: I wouldn’t choose a co host. My companion would be my double barreled, over under, belt fed full auto 12 guage shotgun with the belts crossing over each other as they go through the gun. One ammo case of deer slugs, one with buck shot, strapped to my back. Fucking zombies.
QUESTION #6 from tmakalpha: Would you be willing to take part in that one-way ticket to Mars?
Jamie Hyneman: Yes.
QUESTION #7 from danboy4: Although everyone else does, do you personally think you look like a walrus?
Jamie Hyneman: God, I hope not.
QUESTION #8 from sacrumwoes: My family donated our speed boat to Mythbusters in 2009. You used it on “Dive to Survive” among other myths. How is the boat? (it’s a white and blue Sea Ray) Do you still have it?
Jamie Hyneman: No, we gave it to one of our staff.
QUESTION #9 from kittymcmeowmeow: Given a relatively level playing field, IE Water deep enough for a shark to maneuver proficiently, yet shallow enough for a bear to stand and fight with his characteristic dexterity… Who would win in a fight between a bear and a shark?
Jamie Hyneman: A horse sized duck..
QUESTION #10 from wallowls: If I were you right now, I’d be overwhelmed trying to sort through all of these questions (~850 in 30 minutes.) I’ve also read about how you’ve been involved in a lot of different pursuits over the years. How do you keep from getting overwhelmed by an ever-increasing flow of information coming at you and keep cool enough to run a tv show, among so many other pursuits?
Jamie Hyneman: Its hard to keep up with stuff, and I have trouble with it. It’s all surreal to me; I am someone who doesn’t socialize much, talk much, don’t care to be on camera, and I don’t do well handling more than one thing at a time. And yet my job for the last 11 years has been to do exactly those things. Go figure.