Adam Savage Mentors a New Generation of Problem Solvers in ‘MythBusters Jr.’

© Discovery, Inc. Credit: Norman Chan


MythBusters Jr.

Science Channel
Wednesdays beginning Jan. 2 at 9pm ET/PT
Original MythBusters host Adam Savage returns to television with a new twist on an old favorite. “My kids are 19. They’ve just left the house,” explains Savage. “I’m a big believer in sharing. I share the stuff that I build, I share my process, I share my emotions around it, I share my failures. And that’s been my job for years.” And in Science Channel’s MythBusters Jr., Savage is sharing his special-effects know-how with a half-dozen kids who share his wonderment and curiosity.

Just because Savage’s new crew are tweens and teens, don’t expect the new myths to be watered down. The action of this season’s 10 episodes includes engineering a fire extinguisher jetpack, building dominos big enough to crush a car, and testing myths from the film Gravity and TV’s Breaking Bad. And while crushing cars might not be something that viewers could (or should) replicate, Savage shares that the series has elements based around a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) curriculum, and many of its experiments are meant to be imitated. “That’s probably the most significant shift from MythBusters. When it’s stuff you shouldn’t try at home, we’re doing it behind blast shields. We’re doing it with safety equipment and with all the correct precautions,” says Savage. “I think that the difference here is that I’m really into a lot of the interim experiments being ‘do try this at home’ experiments.”

And after whetting our appetites for destruction, Savage answered our “5 Questions.”

1. If your TV had only three shows or networks on it, what would you be watching?
I’m obsessed with Killing Eve right now. I love Insecure, with Issa Rae; oh my God, she’s so amazing! And I just finished watching Mad Men again, and it’s twice as good as I remember.

2. What three foods do you have to have in your fridge or pantry at all times?
Eggs, butter and salsa — or good spicy hot sauce.

3. When was a time that you were completely starstruck?
The first time I saw Peter Jackson at Comic-Con, I couldn’t actually even go up to him. Since then, he’s become a good friend of mine, but I couldn’t approach him the first time I saw him.

4. Tell us about a really funny fan encounter.
I was backstage at Comic-Con a few years ago, and I’m on the loading dock waiting to go up for my signing when this guy comes up and says, “Hey, my family and I are huge fans, we’d really love to take a picture with you.” And I’m taking a picture with them, and he makes this sound, he goes, “Ahhh!” and squeals like that. It was a super-fan moment. And it was Noah Wyle and his family! He’s raised his kids on MythBusters.

5. If you hadn’t done MythBusters, where might your career have taken you?
I would have tried to matriculate through the ranks of Industrial Light & Magic to be an effects director. I love thinking about the big picture. I am a deep student of the history of special effects. And some of my friends who have been there, who started around the time I did, are doing that now. So, yeah, that’s very plausibly what I would be doing.

MythBusters Jr. > Science Channel > Wednesdays at 9/8c, beginning Jan. 2