Since we’re in the second severe weather season, perhaps it’s appropriate that I talk about storm chasers for a second time. If you read my earlier post (Storm Chasers–Scientists or Thrill Seekers), you might not be surprised to hear me question the motives of storm chasers.
Competition or Science?
While I watch some shows because of the weather (Deadliest Catch–Weather Fish Tales), I usually don’t watch storm-chasing shows, such as TLC’s Storm Chasers. I did see much of the “Bigger in Texas” episode this week, however.
Perhaps it was just the way the show was edited, but it seems as if beating the other storm chaser was as important (or more important) than the supposed science of storm chasing. Editing makes the show. It takes countless hours on the Plains to produce an hour of action for storm chasers. For instance, storm chaser Sean Casey has been chasing for nine years because he wants to make a movie about tornadoes; if it’s for one film (I’m not sure that it is), then there has been plenty of days with no storms, plenty of failed chases, and countless hours of wasted time on the road; otherwise, there would certainly be a movie by now. Storm chasing is much more boring than is indicated by the show.
Regardless of the editing, there was whining about how the other person was “dominating” and whining about how one person imitated another’s vehicle. There was concern about what the other person was doing. It might all have been simple jealousy since some chasers are better than others, but it set a tone of competition, not science.
That might make for better television; in fact, at the end of each episode, perhaps one storm chaser should be voted off the Plains (Joe, You’re storms have dissipated; please pack your radars and return to Seattle), but it’s not a great show for people more interested in the weather than hype.