First off Apocalypse Man isn’t a bad show and is very entertaining, it should also be noted that even though a good amount of the information is in my opinion not accurate it is successful in getting people thinking about survival in a post apocalypse world. But should this program be used as a stand alone guide to give you valuable information, absolutely not. Here’s why.
At the beginning of the show the programs host former marine Rudy Reyes tells you that you should remain mobile, moving quickly when travelling open ground and to always be alert of your surroundings. As a former soldier myself I totally agree with this statement, where things go wrong is when he has to cross a river. Instead of looking for a boat or materials to make a makeshift raft, or better yet keep moving to look for an easier point to cross, our hero decides that the best option is to use a home made rappelling hook consisting of a small crowbar and climbing rope. Let me be absolutely clear this method can work if you can hook the crowbar on the bridge, but getting it the first time is like winning the lottery. I’ve tried this using a similar crowbar and rope, the result was that it took over an hour, the one time it connected it was not a secure hold. That time could have been used to look for and find a boat to cross instead.
My next complaint is the manner in which he tells you how to search homes using speed and aggression to bust your way in. he forgot to mention that it’s speed and stealth that are your friends in the post apocalypse. Sound travels farther when there is no background noise to muffle it, which means that anyone in the area will be able to hear you kick in that door. The other thing to remember is that you don’t know if anyone is still living there and if they set up any traps for would be looters such as yourself. Kicking open a door might be met with a shotgun blast to the face.
After this he decides to travel to the local hospital, why frankly I’m not sure other then to charge a car battery which he doesn’t have until a little later on. He talks about the large diesel generator the hospital uses as a backup power source. While this is true he doesn’t mention that if the generator runs try it’s a major pain to restart it due to it seizing up, not to mention it takes a lot of fuel to get the generator going for the 8 hours or more he claims to need it for, much more then the tiny gas can of diesel he manages to find. The amount he took would power a generator of that size 10 minutes at the most, in essence it’s a colossal waste of time and energy.
Now let’s talk about cars. In the hospital parking lot he decides to steal a car, not a new one an older beat up looking truck. Now this in itself is a good idea given that an older car has a less complicated electronic system, what he fails to mention is that even older cars have what’s called a steering wheel lock. This lock locks the steering column keeping the wheels from turning this is designed both as a safety device and an anti-theft device. Simply hotwiring the car will get the engine running but you have to remove the ignition to turn the steering wheel otherwise your just going in a straight line.
Another mistake made at the beginning of the show involves travelling in the sewer systems to avoid detection from other hostile survivors. While this can be a good idea, you have to remember that those sewer systems may not be cleaned out; depending on rain fall they could actually be blocked. There’s also the health factor to consider, in the post apocalypse you’re not going to have any form of health care system. If you get an infection from human or animal waste in a sewer and you have no anti-biotic’s to kill the bacteria, chances are good you could die or loose a limb from gangrene.
While the show makes many mistakes it’s still worth watching in my opinion. As I mentioned in the opening paragraph it is an entertaining show, and it does succeeded at getting you thinking about the subject. But don’t use the show by itself as your sole guide to prepare for the apocalypse. Other shows such as After Armageddon or The Colony have many useful ideas for post apocalypse survival. If you’re looking for more information or tips on post apocalypse survival check out my website The Razors Edge a post apocalypse survival guide.