Recently there was a story about Bear's injuries in Antarctica, and several people expressed their more than sarcastic views about the support camera crew that the Man vs. Wild host employs.
Is he a phony for doing this? No way, one of the first thing you see when the show starts is a statement that many of the sections of the show is staged.
Here's a comment from a Just South of North reader:
Good thing Bear had his standard camera crew of a Nobel Prize winning brain surgeon, an astronaut, Chuck Norris, and Megatron.
Otherwise, you know, he'd be out on his own and have to rough it.
The goal of Man vs. Wild is a mere dramatic portrayal of what you can do out in the wild, hence the reason he scales down waterfalls rather than walking around them. It's entertainment and that's it.
If you actually want to make a raft and ford a river, be my guest. I'll check out the bridge a quarter mile down the road.
But what gets me about the criticism of the show is that it never claims to be something that it isn't.
Now Survivorman on the other hand, which claims that the host is all on his own. Well I hate to break it to all the liberal college hippies out there, but he's not on his own. There's not a rich enough insurance company or channel that would underwrite him to go out there in the wild by himself.
There's a support team ready to come at moment's notice to extract him from the environment. It's just as "fake" as Man vs. Wild, only he's not as bad ass as Bear.
Bear is a former UK Special Forces member... something that couch-surfing Americans are not. And he eats Zebra meat, drinks his own urine and killed a Komodo Dragon with his bear hands.
Now how many people can say that?