Discovery Channel’s ‘Eaten Alive’ special was a major disappointment

Who knew snakes could be so boring?

Mar 1, 2020, 3:20 pm*

Internet Culture

Rob Price 

Rob Price

After weeks of teasing it, the Discovery Channel has finally aired its special about a man being “eaten alive” by an anaconda.

Unfortunately, it was a total let-down.

After donning a “snake-proof suit” smeared in pig’s blood, serpent-loving filmmaker Paul Rosolie went head-to-head with one of the largest snakes in the world—and by that we mean that the snake ate his head.

The Discovery special, ostensibly produced to “raise awareness about the plight of the rapidly declining wildlife in the Amazon,” was ultimately just that: A stunt, and not a very good one.

After the anaconda trapped Rosolie in its vice-like grip, it began to devour him whole, but it had barely gotten past his ears when the pain of the constriction forced him to call the whole thing off. His team sprinted in to take him to safety.

The reception to the stunt has been one of disappointment. The Independent called it “kind of underwhelming,” while the Guardian’s verdict was that the stunt “bit off more than it could chew.”

On Twitter, reactions included disappointment, scorn, boredom, and even betrayal.

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Despite criticism from animal rights activists, the anaconda was reportedly uninjured by the ordeal. “We didn’t force the snake to do anything, we didn’t ask from the snake anything out of the ordinary,” Rosolie said. “Snakes very often regurgitate if they’re eating something and a predator comes by, they have to give up their meal so they can escape.”

Photo via Jeff Kubina/Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0) 

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*First Published: Dec 8, 2014, 10:16 am