“Surviving the Odds” – Premieres Sunday, August 4 at 9 p.m. ET/PT
The persistence to overcome life’s obstacles; the tenacity to survive the worst circumstances; the determination to drive through any barrier – “Surviving the Odds” tells the stories of everyday people who turned themselves into the unbelievable. Bruce Cook was an up-and-coming competitor on the motorcycle circuit until he suffered a devastating accident. But, he trained relentlessly to get back on his bike until he was able to do the unthinkable – perform a mid-air back flip on his motorcycle without the use of his legs. Rick Maisel is a magician and escape artist, with a twist – or should we say spin? Maisel has taken the classic water escape made popular by Houdini and upped the danger by performing the trick inside a spinning washing machine. Then, how delicious would a food have to be for you to eat it knowing it can kill you? We explore the Japanese delicacy of fugu, as a father passes the deadly knowledge on to his son, who then prepares a dish for their loyal customers. Formerly America’s tallest teenager, Broc Brown is now 20 years old and 7 feet, 8 inches tall – and still growing! He may challenge for the title of World’s Tallest Man or even surpass Ripley’s legend Robert Wadlow. Steve Ludwin always loved snakes, but somewhere along the way he decided to try and become immune to all forms of snake venom—by injecting snake venom into his bloodstream. Not only has he lived to tell the tale, he may end up being the source of a new anti-venom that could save countless lives. After almost dying as a child, Yan Ming was taken to the Shaolin temple in a last-ditch attempt to save his life. He learned the way of the warrior monks, making his body a weapon. Yan has made a new life in New York City, where he has maintained his training and kept his body like iron: able to bend a spear using his throat.
SEASON FINALE: “The Defiant Ones” – Premieres Sunday, August 11 at 9 p.m. ET/PT
There are limits to the physical world and most of us happily exist within that framework. But a rare few seem to transcend everything we thought we knew. Florian Kohler isn’t your average pool shark. He holds several world records and is credited with developing trick shooting into its own art. We see him demonstrate tricks both at home and out in public, and he also breaks his record for a ball-spinning trick. Harrison Okene was working on a tugboat when it was dragged under water. After 60 hours at the bottom of the seabed, in total darkness and losing air, he is miraculously rescued. But Okene won’t survive just to live in fear: he asks his rescuer to teach him how to dive, believing he can one day be someone else’s miracle rescue. Daniel Kish lost his eyesight at the age of one. But he sees as well as you or me, by using echolocation. Kish now teaches others, and we’ll see a blind student learn how to ride a bike using human sonar – believe it or not! Shirley Alvarez was born with a rare and incurable disease that causes her skin and internal organs to incurably harden. But her life changed when she discovered the Goth scene, becoming an icon within the subculture. Finally, Jessica Cox was born without arms, but that’s never stopped her from chasing her dreams. She practices tae kwon do and later became the first woman to fly an airplane with her feet.