We have to admit: As exciting and thrilling it is to watch Bear Grylls dangerously adventure through the Amazon and endure countless nights in the Arctic, his methods of survival are a little...questionable.
Like most of us, you may be wide-eyed or gasping at his attempts to keep warm or fix his growling stomach, and he sure does make it look easy sometimes. His love and desire for adventure developed when he was only 23, being one of the youngest people to have climbed Mount Everest in Nepal. To top it off, he achieved this only 18 months after a parachuting accident, where he broke three vertebrae in his back. His determination did not stop here.
Bear Grylls hosts many survival-esque shows, but his most popular one, Man vs Wild which he hosted on The Discovery Channel in Canada and the United States was his biggest claim to fame. Man vs Wild led to spin-offs like Running Wild with Bear Grylls, where he brought along celebrities like Kate Winslet, Zac Efron, Channing Tatum, and even Obama, to take part in his wild wilderness adventures.
We have to ask ourselves, is enjoying this? He sure cannot be proud of all these survival tactics or maybe not so well thought out missions. Check out our list of 25 things Bear Grylls had to do in the wild that we have a feeling, he wasn’t so proud of.
25 When He Ate A Tick
We are sure he was not to proud of this snack, but during the height of filming, Bear Grylls decided to eat a tick.
During the filming of one of his episode of Man vs Wild, Bear Grylls was sound asleep, when he woke up to find a tick clung to his body. Instead of picking it off and throwing it out of his way, he decided to do the most Bear Grylls thing possible, and yes, eat the tick.
We are not sure what was going through his head during this, but rest assured, this tick won’t be bothering him anymore.
24 When He Ate A Raw Snake
This episode of Man Vs Wild definitely made headlines. During this episode, Bear Grylls was in Australia’s Northern Territory and had to rely on wildlife, if he wanted to eat that night.
Horrifyingly, he jumps into the waters that are notoriously filed with crocodiles, grabs a snake, and kills it with his mouth. We are not sure if he knew what kind of snake it was, but he took the risk of not fully knowing if it was poisonous or not.
And to top it off, he ate it raw.
23 When He Drank Yak Blood
This one leaves us with a queasy feeling. We definitely believe Grylls was not to pleased with drinking yak blood.
Reflecting back on this episode of Man vs Wild, Grylls claims that drinking the blood or urine of animals was purely for survival, and was only done when needed. He excitedly claims that it is full of vitamins and minerals- exactly what one needs to survive if they are without food for a long period of time.
Yikes. Not sure if I would survive in the wilderness, if this was the solution.
22 When He Ate a Beetle Larva
One of the coldest and most stressful episodes of Man Vs Wild was spent in Siberia.
While filming in Siberia, Bear Grylls had to figure out how to survive in the frozen climate. He does the unimaginable
According to ScreenRant, all Grylls can find to munch on is beetle larva- and he eats a lot of them. While we are not as surprised at this point in Grylls’ career that he found the most unappealing part of the bug to snack on.
21 When He Ate A Yak’s Eyeball
We cannot say that this is a delicacy that we are eager to try.
While in Siberia, according to The Week, Bear Grylls came across the carcass of a frozen yak. He knew that this is a very rare find, so he wanted to take advantage of the situation, and we wish he had not.
He was not too proud of this moment, and we have to agree. The Week quotes him recalling the meal as “awful. It’s like an eruption of just cold, fluid, gristle, blood. You feel gross. Like when you find a hair in your food.”
20 When He Drank Reindeer Blood
This reindeer was definitely not responsible for pulling Santa’s sleigh.
While the graphics are disturbing to most, viewers were ensured that these animals are captured in the most humane way possible. Again, we do not think Grylls would have enjoyed this or it is a fond memory to look back on. But, in order to survive in the harsh weather conditions, he deemed it as necessary.
19 When He Ate An Alligator
Bear Grylls outdid Steve Irwin in this episode of Man Vs Wild.
He did what all of us would never, ever attempt. He jumped in the water and killed an alligator with his bare hands, and then proceeded to eat it. Raw.
Steve Irwin, also known as The Crocodile Hunter” was famous for fearlessly wrangling crocodiles, would never do something as extreme as this. Irwin was also the director of the Australian Zoo and worked closely with the Australian government’s crocodile relocation program. According to IMDb, by the age of 9, he was fearless enough to jump in any body of water and catch a crocodile.
18 When He Ate A Live Salmon
As the list goes on, we notice that Bear Grylls partakes in activities that other wildlife adventurers have already done, but always goes a step too far. This step is usually too risky, and we do not think he would be too proud to read the reviews for his actions.
On the episode with Obama, Bear Grylls captures a salmon out of the water while they are in Alaska filming Running Wild With Bear Grylls. While this is one of the safest meals that Grylls catches, he does it in a manner that has you looking at your television saying, “really?”
17 When He Ate A Live, Slightly Poisonous Spider
You guessed it- another weird and dangerous thing Bear Grylls ate, that the most definitely is not too proud of looking back on Man Vs Wild.
We still do not know why he chose to do this, as it was not a means of survival or out of hunger. It was purely for a sense of adrenaline and risk, and was not reviewed well by his fans.
His risky, life-threatening behaviour is usually not perceived too well, as fans are no longer amused with his attempts to appear as a wilderness adventurer. As the seasons go on, there is less hype for these scenes because of how unnecessary they are.
16 When He Ate Camel Fat
Continuing with the list of the grossest and most questionable things Bear Grylls consumed, digesting camel fat is near the top.
This entire event is something we do not think he would be proud of looking back on. While he was in the Sahara Desert, Grylls decided the best means of survival was to hunt a camel and not eat the ‘meaty’ parts of the animal, but just a chunk of it’s fat.
In addition to this, he climbed inside of the camel carcass and spent the night there for shelter.
15 His Scenes Are Exaggerated
While we should be amazed by anyone who would voluntarily try and survive in the wilderness by sleeping outside and eating only what they found and hunted that day, we were a bit disappointed to learn that Bear Grylls’ scenes are bit exaggerated and not entirely legitimate.
We don’t think he is too overly proud of the lengths his production team had to go through in order to make his fearless and risky scenes look legitimate. After learning this, we definitely would not want to go out and try what Grylls had in the wild.
14 The Bear Scene Is Fake
One of the scariest and most nerve-racking scenes to ever happen in Born Survivor was the scene where Grylls believes a bear is approaching, and he is going to have to make a run for his life.
Fortunately for Grylls, this was just one of his fellow cast members dressed up in a bear costume, as a prank.
Even though this was for fun, it really had dedicated viewers call into question all the other scenes that could have been fake.
13 His Army Training Is Exaggerated
We are sure that Bear Grylls, and his fans, are not too proud of this fact.
The most extensive amount of training that he is certified in his Japanese karate training. While this is still impressive, it is no military training, which is what fans are led to believe.
According to Mpora, Grylls considered signing up for the Indian Army, but he decided to hike the Himalayas instead. During his youth, he decided to attend university, unlike many of his friends in the UK who decided on officer training in the Army.
12 He Is Afraid Of Heights
BBC UK shares with Man Vs Wild how Bear Grylls faces his fears: "I've learned that the best way to get over our fears is right bang through the middle. It really is. The only way you don't see the fear is when you're right on it."
While Grylls was not proud of this, he admitted to having a very huge fear of heights. ScreenRant shares that Grylls gets scared a lot on the show and struggles with heights. He admits that he has learned that he needs to face these fears in order to make better television.
11 His Shows Aren't Always Honest
Well, we knew it was too good to be true.
Travel Fun explains that there was much controversy back in 2007 when viewers were finding out some truths about the new show at the time, Man Vs Wild. While Grylls boasts about being an outdoorsman and eating the most outrageous meals, rumours turned into facts that he was being put up in hotel rooms and eating meals in restraurants when the conditions were not manageable- even for the wild, outdoorsman himself.
What we are bothered about with this is that Grylls would still boast he spent the night outside and really roughed it in the outdoors.
10 When He Ate A Moose’s Heart
When you search Bear Grylls online, this is probably the most popular image. Likewise, when you even think about Bear Grylls, this is probably the image that you associate him with: eating a moose heart.
Many of the events that Grylls took part in were merely to say he has done it, and that really was the only logic. We believe this is one of his regrets on the show. Maybe just for the imagery associated with it, but with the reputation for weird and unnecessary things he did to get attention.
9 Each Episode Required A Lot Of Training
Thankfully, moving on from what Bear Grylls’ poor choice in dining experiences.
According to ScreenRant, the episodes are all premeditated, and his actions are rehearsed. Prior to shooting, Grylls spends a few days in the area getting familiar with it and training to make sure he can endure the conditions. It is not until he gets the okay from his production crew, is he allowed to start training.
We do not think he is too proud of all the work that goes into preparing for the episode, as fans are led to believe everything is new to the star when the episode begins .
8 The Production Team actually Does A Lot
According to ScreenRant, episodes of Man Vs Wild do not happen in the moment, like we are led to believe. The episodes take one to two weeks to film, and even longer to set the are up and make sure it is okay for Grylls to be there.
As fans see this is a bit hypocritical, it is also kind of funny to realize how much acting goes on during this reality show. With all the extravagant and unnecessary situations that Bear Grylls finds himself in, you soon realize that he knew about it all along, and he was not always the one with the original idea.
7 Serious Injuries Don’t Slow Him Down
While we thought eating raw animals and wrestling with wildlife was bad, Grylls has endured some crazy, life threatening injuries that do not involve solving his hunger.
A young 21 year old Grylls faced traumatizing injuries that almost put him in a wheelchair. In 1995, he jumped out of a plane, and did not pull his parachute out in time, resulting in him falling straight down to earth.
Luckily, due to his good health and fitness, he did not have to go through surgery.
However, soon after this, he was back on his feet, and he was one of the youngest to hike Mount Everest, successfully.
6 He Admits He Is Isn’t A Good Cook
By now, we hope this does not come across as too much of a shock to you.
With most of his cooking is well, uncooked. And his meals are derived of the most unappealing and un-tasty parts of sea creatures, bugs, and birds, it seems kind of obvious that he is not a master chef.
This man of the wild prefers to catch his dinner and eat it as is. He does not let anything go to waste, and eats the parts we would typically throw out. To him, that is a waste, but to us, it is normal.
5 He Has Had Too Many Dangerous Encounters
Not that we're keeping track, but here, according to TranFunTu, are a few of the injuries that Grylls has lived through during his Man Vs Wild years:
A dislocated hip; multiple broken bones; smashed knee cartilage; sliced fingers; a crushed shoulder; and bitten/stung by too many animals to count.
None of these injuries slowed him down, and he worked through these risky events. Because of his strong fitness and good health standing, he has always been able to bounce back immediately. However, after looking at this list, we realize that some of the activities Grylls has taken part in (voluntarily) could have been easily avoided, and the injuries would not have happened.
4 His Real Name Is (Surprisingly) Not Bear
Bear Grylls does not have the most wild first name. Edward Michael is what he is known to by his entire family, but he was nicknamed Bear at a young age, and it kind of stuck.
Even though he was given this nickname at only one week old by his older sister, the name is what he most closely identifies with - and it works.
As a man in the wild and an avid adventurer, the name Bear suits him perfectly.
3 His First TV Appearance Isn't What You Expect
Maybe this was not his proudest moment, but it is what got Bear Grylls' name out there.
Right after he was recognized as being one of the youngest individuals to successfully climb Mount Everest, he gained a lot of media attention. So much, in fact, he was featured in a television commercial- but not for something demonstrating his fearlessness or thirst for adventure. It was more so for his desire to...always smell fresh.
Grylls' first television appearance was for a men's deodorant. He advertised how this deodorant was as tough as he was- and protected him against his own body odor while climbing Mount Everest.
2 He's Hosted Too Many Shows
While this seems like an accomplishment, Bear Grylls has had to host and create so many new shows in order to continue the buzz about his wild television persona.
He has a multitude of similar shows that spin off each other.
In 2006, Man Vs Wild got discontinued from The Discovery Channel, and then canceled after seven seasons. Similarly to Man Vs Wild, Running Wild With Bear Grylls is very similar, but with celebrity features. Now, in 2018, he has a new spin of of this called Bear’s Mission.
1 Wildlife Isn’t All That Wild
As our list comes to an end, we can probably note that the man in Man Vs Wild, is not in fact, all that wild.
From all the staged productions, the rumours of him staying in fancy hotels and eating expensive food during his wilderness expeditions, we cannot help but to call into question the legitimacy of this show, and character, as a whole.
Since the age of 21, Bear Grylls has always been hungry for adventure. While he brings shock and dismay to many viewers, he also helps viewers understand that wildlife is not all that scary - and you do not have to go to the extreme in order to rough it the outdoors.
While Bear Grylls would not be proud to admit this, viewers cannot help but see it as true.
References: ScreenRant, BBC, IMDb, The Discovery Channel