Back on November 5th, Discovery Channel uploaded a video titled “Eaten Alive Sneak Peek”, which glimpsed at the promising voyage of a man seeking to be eaten alive by an anaconda.
“We’re gonna get me inside of a snake,” said Paul Rosolie, a naturalist and wild life filmmaker dressed in some type of Tron-like jungle bomb-suit (it’s a custom-built snake-proof suit) that looks strikingly similar to the protagonist’s outfit in Dead Space.
The modern day “Jonah & The Whale” experiment premiered Sunday, December 7th at 9/8 central, but before viewers got to see the spectacle, voices and concerns questioned Rosolie and the Discovery Channel:
- A Change.org petition titled “STOP THE AIRING OF “EATEN ALIVE” – BOYCOTT DISCOVERY CHANNEL” launched the same day the sneak peek video did. It wound up with 38,364 signatures out of 50,000.
- PETA’s Deputy General Counsel Delcianna Winders released a statement to US Weekly, condemning both Discovery Channel and Rosolie.
- Renowned zoologist Frank Indiviglio called out Discovery Channel’s bluff (after all, they did air a “documentary” on mermaids), saying that it was impossible for a human to enter and emerge from the belly of a giant snake unharmed.
So what happened?
— BarstoolTrent (@BarstoolTrent) December 8, 2014
In the first 70 minutes of the two-hour program, we see Rosolie and his crew venturing in Peru’s Amazon jungle, searching for a 25-foot-long anaconda. This was no ordinary anaconda, as Rosolie said he once saw it before.
Finally, the team found a 20-foot 250 lb. green anaconda, which, debatably, might have been a captive snake planted in the jungle by Discovery’s stunt team, according to PEOPLE magazine.
With only 20 minutes left of the show, Rosolie slipped into his crush-resistant, pig-blood covered suit and offered his body to the snake.
The anaconda took some time to warm up before it coiled around and constricted Rosolie.
The moment we’d all been waiting for began with the anaconda opening its jaws widely enough to pierce a few of its fangs on Rosolie’s helmet, then the stunt stopped.
“My arms torqueing, this thing is gonna break! I’m calling it, I need help!” Rosolie told his crew through a microphone in his suit.
The two-hour long program promising a man being eaten by an anaconda turned out to be about eight minutes of Rosolie struggling to unwind with his team rushing to save him.
According to ABC News, the show garnered 4.1 million views.
Viewers were disappointed.
The #EatenAlive hash tag exploded on Twitter, with many accusing Discovery of misleading audiences with it’s promise of a man being eaten alive by a snake.
Paul Rosolie? More like Paul Rosolie.
— Jeff Lewis (@ChicagoPhotoSho) December 8, 2014
— Mrz Mazz (@mrzmazz) December 9, 2014
Discovery letting me think Paul gets eaten by a snake and then not letting that happen is the reason I have trust issues. #EatenAlive
— Zac Dalpe (@ZacDalpe22) December 8, 2014