Synopsis: In 1937, American pilot Amelia Earhart went missing while trying to fly around the world and, to this date, nobody has been able to find conclusive evidence of where she crashed. In the debut episode of his new series, explorer Josh Gates conducts his own investigation in an effort to find the remains of her missing airplane.
Expedition Unknown Episode Review: “Amelia Earhart”
A review of the series premiere that first on aired January 8, 2015.
Among the places visited in this episode are Papua New Guinea and Fiji.
Josh Gates is Back
Ever since discovering the show Destination Truth a few years ago, I have been a big Josh Gates fan. And, like many of his other fans, was very disappointed when SyFy decided to unceremoniously cancel the show. So, when I heard he had a new series, I waited very patiently for it to air. It finally did last night with this episode and I have to say I was not disappointed.
When I started watching this series premiere, I kind of figured he wasn’t going to find Earhart’s plane. This is mostly because I have to think, if he did find it, there would have been no way to keep the news of his discovery from leaking out. However, one of the reasons I loved Destination Truth was, even if he didn’t find what he was looking for, he would usually end up with plenty of other side adventures to keep things interesting. And, that was the case with this episode too.
Within the first thirty minutes or so of this episode, Gates was in an earthquake, got high on some native drug and was abandoned in the middle of the wilderness as a group of natives approached him with spears. He also braved dangerous jungles at night and explored a body of water nestled between some very active volcanoes. That stuff, along with some of the beautiful scenery (a must-have for a show that appears on The Travel Channel), made me an instant fan.
Another thing I loved about this episode was, even though Gates never did find conclusive evidence of what he was searching for, he didn’t overlook the smaller, but just as important, other discoveries he did make, including finding a World War II fighter plane underwater with the crew still inside it (something, as he mentioned, will help to eventually get their remains returned to their families). While Earhart may have been the main subject (and I did learn a bit more about her than I knew before), those little things were just as interesting.
Mostly because there is a focus on the actual travel part of his journey, the show is slightly different from Destination Truth. However, Gates still brings the same energy and his quirky adventure in this episode has me wanting to see what happens next week. If you missed this episode, I recommend finding a way to watch it. You won’t be disappointed.
My Grade: A