Sunday, June 27, 2010

Top Shot 3: Bows and Arrows

I guess I better do my review of this one before the next episode comes out. My wife watched it with me and during the middle I tried to make the comment that "at least there wasn't as much whining as other reality shows."

"Are you kidding me? There is just as much whining and these are supposedly grown-ups who play with macho guns all the time." Point conceded. "The only difference is that they aren't running around in bikinis." Shortly after this we had the bedroom scene of Bill whining while getting changed and I pointed out that now they had a half-naked fat guy, so my wife wasn't totally correct.

Anyway, the weapon of choice was bows and arrows. I shot a bow when I was younger for the archery merit badge. They made a big deal how this was an ancient weapon, the long bow. And that it could rain devastation from hundreds of yards. So for the contest today, instead of using a 180 lb yew wood long bow, they were going to use a 40 lb fiberglass long bow at only 100 yards (for a target that is 30 feet across). What? Why build up the great aspects of the weapon if you are not going to test it? I think it would have been much more fun to see the contestants attempt to pull back on a 180 lb long bow. Besides, the long bow wasn't used for accuracy, you had several hundred that all together loosed their arrows at another group of several hundred soldiers a few hundred yards away. There wasn't much aiming, you just needed to get in the general direction and the sheer mass of arrows would ensure that some would get hit.

What do you know from practice, there aren't a lot of bullseyes. Then again, this group was an assemblage of firearms shooters (a few of whom happen to have experience with other weapons). At scout camp, we were shooting 60 lb recurve bows, and at 100 yards after a day of training, I (and pretty much every one else) could hit a three foot target 2 out of five times. Maybe their training wasn't as good as the pimply faced kid that gave me mine. So we get to the contest and Kelly gets an arrow in the yellow. For a while it looks like the red team might actually win. Then JJ gets up and hits in the yellow. While the host makes it sound like the arrows are close, from the first shot I could tell that JJ's was closer. Yep, after official measurement, JJ's is several inches closer.

There is some minor background drama and to make a long story short, Bill and Brad get put in the elimination round. Brad is whining constantly about having to compete with a bow and arrow when he is an IPSC Grand Master. Wah, wah, wah. If anyone is rooting for Brad at this point, it is probably because you are even more whiny than he is. They go to their practice session and find out that they are going to be competing with the crossbow. As with the previous contest, they build it up as the great ancient weapon that it is and then use a modern equivalent, complete with scope. Brad is very sensible and states that he spent a lot of time practicing his loading.

At the contest, they are shooting apples, in a very loose "re-creation" of William Tell shooting an apple off of his son's head. Of course, William tell didn't have optics on his crossbow, and it probably was not made of specialized materials, but I digress. The teasers of the shot showed the instructor (fuzzy in the background) shooting an apple with a bulbous head which naturally caused the apple to explode into fragments when hit. I was hoping that Bill and Brad would be doing the same thing. No such luck. They had bolts with a simple target point that would fly right through the apple, in some cases, it wasn't apparent except when they showed it in slow-mo that the apple was hit. This was a let down from previous competitions when they had reactive and/or exploding targets. Brad won. Mainly because he could load faster. For as much as he whines, that guy does know a thing or two about strategy.

Bill leaves and doesn't bother to say goodbye to Kelly (who he had a tuft with earlier). Good riddance. Right now, Brad has won two elimination challenges. I am beginning to think that he might be the last of the red team. Next week (today) is a shoot/no shoot with AR-15s.


  1. Just as a note - per the exit interview clip - Bill did say goodbye to Kelly, who gave Bill a note (whcih Bill was going to open "later".) Whether this was at the elimination challenge or later is indeterminate,

  2. Crap on a crutch... if there was ever something to convince me to stop watching this show, it would be the non-stop, fingernails-on-chalkboard whining that is constantly playing in the background.

    Certainly, not all parties are responsible, but... Good LORD. Grow a pair already!