Podcast 98: Cryptids, Kooks, & Conspiracies: DISCOVERING BIGFOOT

WHAT’S IT ABOUT?

In this week’s episode, we go back to our roots and review a piece of media in the conspiracy/paranormal genre. And what better way to end the year, than watching a film about the ever elusive cryptid we all know and love called, Bigfoot!

Specifically, we’re talking about Todd Standing’s new Netflix documentary titled: Discovering Bigfoot. I guess he couldn’t call it, Finding Bigfoot, as that name was already taken. So, a suitable synonym will have to suffice.

Like some cryptozoological version of Grizzly Man, which chronicles Timothy Treadwell’s doomed exploits with bears in Alaska, Standing ventures out into the Canadian wilderness, often alone, in search of (and to bond with) Sasquatch. His goal: to not only prove it’s existence to the world, but to secure official recognition and protection for the species.

Will his quest similarly end in being devoured alive?

Watch the trailer here:

Reality Entertainment and The Sylvanic Cooperation presents “Discovering Bigfoot.” Discovering Bigfoot is the first feature film documentary with real live interaction between a Bigfoot creature, wilderness experts, PhD’s and other world renowned experts and researchers of the Bigfoot enigma. Journey into the heart of Sasquatch Country with Todd Standing who appeared with Survivorman’s Les Stroud in “Survivorman Bigfoot”. Experience three incredible days in the field with Bigfoot researchers, Todd Standing and renowned expert Professor Dr. Jeff Meldrum as they encounter a real live Sasquatch.

So, is Standing nuts? Is he sincere? Is he lying? Or, as Adam half-jokingly suggests, is he the target of an incredibly long and unlikely con? A victim, if you will, of a cryptozoological version of gangstalking.

WHAT DID WE THINK?

As many of our listeners know, John is a big believer in the reality of the Sasquatch. Adam, not so much, but he’s coming around. Unfortunately, Standing’s documentary doesn’t get us much closer to definitive proof one way or the other.

Part of the problem is Standing himself, and his seeming lack of self-awareness. Running, jumping, and crawling around the forest in a ghillie suit like some post-modern Sasquatch soldier of fortune, Standing often comes across as a hyperbolic ego-maniac out to demonstrate his own “badassness”, rather than a serious researcher. Can you say, Rex Kwon Do?

Bow to your sensei! 😉

That said, he does appear sincere in his pursuit, albeit in a way only eccentrics and kooks in this field can… which is not a put-down, as it’s often the misfits and outsiders who make the great discoveries in our world. And proof of Sasquatch would definitely fall under the category of a great discovery. But to compare oneself with some of the greatest minds in history… well, to put it mildly, is a bit of a stretch. Especially when the claim is accompanied by incredibly cheesy (and derivative) rock riffs.

However, despite Standing’s comical shortcomings, there’s still something compelling about his work. Now, is he hoaxing everything to make money? After all, he does charge quite a bit to take people on his Bigfoot expeditions. Is it just to gain attention, some kind of deep-seated need for acceptance after a lifetime of rejection?

Or… is he telling the truth.

On the left is Blinky the Teenage Werewolf, and on the right is what Dr. Matthew Johnson likes to refer to as, “Muppet Eskimo Face”.

We suspect it’s a mix of all three, which is what makes this case (and much of the whole Bigfoot story in general) so frustrating and fascinating all at the same time. The cast of characters in this field are often just as compelling, if not more so, than the purported creatures themselves.

At the end of the day, we feel that although some of Standing’s photos and videos are obvious fakes, there’s an underlying truth to his claims. How can something be true and false at the same time? Well, you’ll just have to watch the documentary and decide for yourself.

And despite the film’s obvious flaws, we do recommend people see it… if for nothing else, than as a fascinating, and unintended, sociological portrait of the human (and/or humanoid) animal.

3.25/5 Stars

Here are the rest of your links:

Sasquatch Biologist John Bindernagel, PhD

Dr. Jeffrey Meldrum

Is Blinky the Bigfoot Really Todd Standing?

Critical Examination of Todd Standing’s Video Subjects

B.C. Minister Laughs Off Lawsuit Claiming Proof of Bigfoot

Todd Standing: Legit Bigfoot Researcher or Hoaxer?