Do the Alaskan Bush People get paid? We asked! Read our interview with the Brown family.
Just another beautiful day in the bush, my friends.
I have no idea what the plea deal [Update: Rejected!] means for the longterm future of the show. Discovery went with an all-out media blitz for the Season 3 premiere, and I’ve seen the Browns covered in outlets I’d never seen before. With the fraud case now out in the (sorta) mainstream, lots of people are learning about Alaskan Bush People for the first time. Scandals and negative press usually have a positive impact on audience numbers — and that’s good for the cash flow at Discovery Channel. Is Discovery milking every last drop from the cash cow before reluctantly putting it down? Don’t know.
There’s no indication the show will be yanked before Season 3 ends. Besides, we’re just talking about a little fraud and theft here. Totally forgivable. Nobody cares about that. The Browns just stole from the government, which is totally cool because the government steals from all of us anyway, the bastards. Now, if a Brown family member were suspected of a sexcrime, that would mean immediate cancellation and the name Alaskan Bush People stricken from every book and tablet, erased from the memory of men for all time. This paragraph may contain thinly veiled sarcasm and The Ten Commandments quotes.
On to “Shots Fired,” one of the most farcical entries in the ABP series, and that’s saying a lot.
It’s summer on Chicago Bears Island. But winter is right there!
Bear is being wolflike again, running shirtless and mud-slathered through the woods doing Bush Parkour in an effort to track deer for a very IMPORTANT hunt. This stuff makes some very lonely ladies swoon, apparently.
Are the somersaults a necessary part of the deer stalking? #AlaskanBushPeople
— Ryan Berenz (@ChannelGuideRAB) November 19, 2015
Gabe and Matt (in between chugging cans of whole tomatoes) are building Ami a bed downstairs so she doesn’t have to climb up. Dadgumit, woman! That lumber was supposed to be for Matt’s pool house!
Ami’s recovering from her injury in the “hospital” in Juneau, and her “vertebrae are deteriorating” from living the Bush life for too long. The doctor says she’s not supposed to move. (I’d love to watch a live Ami Bedcam!) This Ami stuff has serious implications for the family. Who will teach Rainy about Bush Biochemistry? Who will make decorative wall hangings out of twigs? “It could literally change the way we live,” Billy says. Everyone will have to step up and do Ami’s share of the weaving and dental emergencies.
The Browns sure as hell don’t want another Dread Winter of ’95. God, that was awful. “Thirty-nine degrees below zero, not including wind shear,” Bear says, possibly confusing wind chill and wind shear. Not sure. Bush Meteorology was not my best subject in high school.
The Council of Brown convenes and decides that getting meat is the best course of action and a good way to burn off a lot of screen time with cool night-vision stuff. “Right now, we need meat. We need it really bad,” Billy says.
The Browns should go to Arby's. THEY HAVE THE MEATS! #AlaskanBushPeople
— Ryan Berenz (@ChannelGuideRAB) November 19, 2015
Matt goes into Hoonah to get parts for Ami’s root cellar.
Now that moms teeth are gone, I am going to give her a root cellar. #AlaskanBushPeople
— Pete (@peteder13) November 19, 2015
This leads Matt to … KENNY! Yes, Kenny from the Junkyard, arguably the most fascinating person ever to appear on this series. Matt is looking for something to reinforce the root cellar, or Alaskan Refrigerator, and help make it bear-proof. He and Kenny sort through a mix of scrapped appliances, eventually coming to this old computer mainframe cabinet that looks like [SPOILER ALERT!] “The Old Man in the Cave” from The Twilight Zone. Matt’s going to haul this beast back to Brownton Abbey and “mix it with nature.” “What comes from the earth shall go back to the earth,” says Kenny, the Confucius of the Bush.
I know nothing about firearms, but can someone who does know something tell us if pouring chicken grease on your rifle actually accomplishes something other than making your gun smell like the garbage can at a Popeye’s? Wouldn’t the smell attract bears? And like hell chicken grease doesn’t “coagulate.” Just ask this Florida Woman.
Noah is in charge of designing the new smokehouse that will preserve all the fish they caught in Excursion and whatever fresh deer carcass Bear brings back. Noah thinks he’s got an innovative design for a smokehouse with some kind of automatic firewood replenishment contraption. “We don’t need to go quite as overkill as you’re talking,” says Bam, ever the voice of reason. “Yes, I’m sure the original Noah cut corners on the Ark,” Noah protests. I can’t speak to that, but I’m pretty sure Darren Aronofsky cut more than a few corners on Noah. Bam gets in some nice digs on Noah about his wearing Puffy Shirts to do construction work. I’m liking Bam so much more these days, and Noah’s pretentious asshat act is wearing thin. Take this exchange:
Bam: Noah, we need to talk, man. I love the dreamhouse you’re building. But it’s taking too long.
Noah: Well …
Bam: Those fish are going to rot out on us. We need the smoker operational as quick as possible.
Noah: When you first walked up, you should’ve said “And I need to talk” not “We need to talk,” because apparently all you’re doing is informing me.
Bam: I suppose more accurate I should’ve said “I need to talk to you.” But can you, real quick, take my stove and hook that up to the smoker?
NOAH FAIL! “I’m completely willing to sacrifice my design so we can have fish now,” he says. “Progress has to suffer, but at least the family won’t.” But the viewers’ suffering continues unabated. Take this exchange:
Noah: Oppenheimer didn’t stop creating the nuke merely because they had missiles.
Bam: I don’t need a nuke. Just trying to smoke some fish.
Noah: You obviously didn’t understand the metaphor.
There are not enough faces or palms on Earth to represent the degree of facepalming I want to do right now.
Bear assembles his hunting team of Gabe and Birdy before dawn, so that they can get up to the summit of the hill at sunrise so they can take advantage of the deer-killin’ happy hour specials. There’s a lot of green night vision stuff and some manufactured elements of danger, as if they’re in Zero Dark Thirty and about to pop a cap in Osama bin Laden instead of hunting for deer.
KENNY! pays a visit to Brownton Abbey and gets a tour of all Matt’s stupid ideas, which, at one point, included a drawbridge connecting his tire hut to the metro Brownton Abbey area. But Matt decided to just lay down a board and call it a day. Other crap includes a knife-throwing target, a dumpster mirror and a doorbell of some kind. “Gotta have a gong, you know,” says Kenny. Indeed. Kenny helps Matt dig a
shallow grave root cellar to drop The Old Man in the Cave inside. Matt eventually has to wave the white flag on his plan, likely due to lack of time and interest (see last week). “In my head, some things don’t work the same as in reality,” Matt says. “Like gravity, for instance.” The wise and practical Bam explains to Matt the folly of Matt’s ambitions. “Bam has been against Franken-Fridge since it started, that it had no place in the root cellar,” Matt says. “And it feels like Bam might have been right.” FRANKEN-FRIDGE FAIL!
It’s daybreak on the hill where Bear believes there will be thousands of deer. But there’s not a deer in sight. EXXXTREME FAIL! “It is EXXXTREMELY important for me that I come home with meat,” Bear says. But all Bear finds are freshly killed deer parts, meaning that there’s been a hunter (I assume he’s not talking about a human one) nearby and the deer have vacated the area. If Bear collects enough deer parts, could he reconstruct a whole new deer from them? You know, like Franken-Deer? … Sorry.
“Disenchanted with the smoker design, Noah retreats to his tent for some spider experimentation,” says our dear narrator. I’ve seen enough ’50s monster movies to know where this is going.
Noah claims to have caught a poisonous male spider in a jar, and Noah says that the spider would bite him but it “doesn’t realize there’s glass in the way.” He also claims that spiders make zombie-like “moaning” sounds. If Noah has caught a purring wolf spider, the spider does not want to bite Noah, but merely wants to have sex with him. Noah names his spiders by drawing from a deck of playing cards with pictures of dead composers. (Or De-Composers?) This particular spider’s namesake is Sergei Rachmaninoff. More like Sergei Arachnidinoff, amiright?
Ami gets out of bed to take a nice stroll through the garden. Look how lovely everything is! This sweet moment could in no way portend some kind of tragedy.
And then tragedy struck. Bear, Birdy and Gabe hear three gunshots coming from Brownton Abbey. Three shots means there’s trouble afoot, probably those goons from up in Chitina coming down to finish the job.
All the preview junk indicates that Billy has some major medical emergency.
Billy is not dead.