Gouge Shark’s Eyes While In Its Jaw

posted: 04/11/12
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As seen in "MythBusters: Jaws II."


Explanation: In 1963, Australian spear-fishing champ Rodney Fox barely made it out of the water alive after a great white shark snapped him up and nearly ripped him to shreds. Miraculously, Fox managed to punch the shark's sensitive eyes, triggering the ferocious fish to release him from its lock-tight jaws.

MythBusters fans were dying to know whether Fox's survival skill has a one-in-a-million success rate, or if giving a shark a black eye is feasible when you're practically in the belly of the beast.

Even to satisfy fan curiosity, Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage weren't willing to fend off an actual shark. Instead, they built an animatronic shark capable of thrashing and biting like the real thing. To signal a successful punch, they also rigged the eye holes with "off" buttons that shut down the machine.

When fellow MythBuster Tory Belleci went for a ride in Frankenshark's jaws, it took him 15 seconds to locate and pound an eye and turn off the shark. In reality, that brief time is still long enough for a shark's razor-sharp teeth to do some life-threatening damage.

Rodney Fox shouldn't have survived his brief tussle with a great white, which broke all of his ribs, punctured his lungs and diaphragm, and required more than 400 stitches. But if you ever end up in Jaws' jaws, going for its eyes is possible - you'd just better do it fast if you want to live to tell about it.

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