Category Archives: Smash Lab

Smash Lab on The Discovery Channel

Is Smash Lab more “scripted”?

I think I might have the answer to why Smash Lab doesn’t seem as “engaging” as MythBusters (though, judging from the comments on the rest of this site, that’s far from certain).

Smash Lab conversations seem more “scripted”.

But, looking at Mythbusters, it’s certainly “scriped” as well.  Maybe it’s that the Smash Lab gang just looks like they’re trying too hard to be spontaneous?

That means we need to find interviews with the Smash Lab “cast”, outside of the show.  Especially Deanne.  Hmmm…

Why is Deanne NOT Kari?

As the comments roll in, they reflect the same thing I’ve felt as I’ve watched Smash Lab:  for whatever reason, Deanne Bell is not the next Kari Byron, and Smash Lab is not the next Mythbusters.

But… why?

On paper, Smash Lab looks like a slam-dunk.  But in reality, compared to Mythbusters, it seems… well, “dumb”.   Sure, Adam and Jamie (and Grant and Kari and Tory) do silly things, but there seems to be an air of, “Yeah, it’s silly, but it’ll be cool!”  In Smash Lab, silly stuff seems to be done in the name of scientific investigation.

Example:  Last night I caught the “magnetic fire escape” episode, where their two choices were “freefall to a dead stop at the bottom” or “creep your way down slowly”.   (The concept of “use increasingly strong magnets to decelerate a freefall” never appeared.)  So, to “test” this, they used a 30-degree ramp… and freefall-dude ended up crashing off the bottom.  On Mythbusters, I could see Adam doing the same thing… but it would be in the context of, “Hey, this looks like fun!  I want to try it!”  Not “I’m riding a glorified skateboard to gather valid data”.

Anyway, back to the Deanne vs. Kari question.  With all due respect, Deanne (who, I’m sure, is very bright) comes across as a ditz.  Kari doesn’t.  Why?

They’re both cute.  Is it just because Deanne is “girl next door who’ll grow up to be June Cleaver” cute and Kari is “girl next door who’s riding a tractor” cute?  Is it really just the difference in their voices?  Are we guys blinded by Kari’s red hair and can’t see Deanne’s hidden Kari qualities?  The mystery continues…

Is Deanne Bell the next Kari Byron?

A few days ago I caught a promo for what I thought was a brand new show on the Discovery Channel: “Smash Lab”, which sounds like MythBusters without the pesky myths and non-explosive experiements that get in the way of the action.

And in the frenetic video that flashed by on the screen, I spotted a woman.

She’s Deanne Bell and, as an attractive not-quite-30-year-old, she’s hitting the exact same demographic that Kari did when she appeared on the scene.

The Smash Lab site says “new episodes” are coming, which implies that there were old episodes.  It seems Deanne was (is?) on PBS in “Design Squad”… but I haven’t heard of that one, either.

Has anyone else heard of this person?  Credentials seem impressive enough, as TV show hosts go.  I’m looking forward to catching my first Smash Lab episode in a couple weeks…