The Jeff Corwin Experience was an American television show that largely focused on tropical animals and started airing on the Animal Planet cable channel in 2001. It was hosted by actor and conservationist Jeff Corwin, who had previously appeared in Going Wild With Jeff Corwin on the Disney Channel.
In its initial season, the program included a cobra festival in India, jungles in Thailand, Borneo and the Galapagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador in South America. The following year, the program was greatly expanded and featured Guyana, Australia and Tanzania. In its third season in 2005, Mexico and Peru were included, as well as Kenya and Uganda in Africa. While the program included some North American settings, most of the segments featured the wildlife of other continents around world.
The program had a great deal educational value, but was also a great source of entertainment as well. In a similar vein to Steve Irwin, Jeff was frequently bitten or nearly bitten by the animals being described in the show, something that he always played for laughs or used to make numerous jokes and references to pop culture and movies.
Corwin was awarded an honorary doctorate degree in public education from Bridgewater State College for his contributions to science through the show. He has long been a proponent of rain forest preservation. Programs such as this and those of Steve Irwin and Terri Irwin (of The Crocodile Hunter) were amongst the first to reflect a "human coexistence with wildlife approach", which was in sharp conflict with poachers and past practices in many parts of the world.
Corwin and the show provide examples of the following:
- Admiring the Abomination: Despite treating them with extreme care, he clearly has a lot of respect and admiration for venomous snakes and dangerous reptiles.
- Bears Are Bad News: In a rather comical example, Jeff discovers that Asiatic black bears have really bad gas after eating a big meal.
- During an episode in Alaska, Jeff points out how if a Grizzly bear felt threatened, there's no way he could outrun or climb it. He'd just become its dinner.
- Berserk Button: Goes absolutely apeshit on a group of locals after he discovers they've killed a harmless kingsnake thinking it was dangerous. The next five minutes are of him delivering a calmer but scathing diatribe on how innocent creatures are always the victims when it comes to human ignorance.
- Bring My Brown Pants: The curry and animals of India were not very kind to him.
- "I'm trying to look cool, but I'm this close to having to change my underpants."
- Butt-Monkey: Jeff gets crapped and peed on a lot. Sometimes by monkeys too.
- Deadpan Snarker: His smart-ass snarking is one of the best parts of the show.
- Drives Like Crazy: Jeff's wife and film crew claim that he's one of the worst drivers they've ever met.
- Endangered Species
- Groin Attack: Although not a groin attack in the traditional sense, in the Thailand episode a young elephant's trunk becomes a little too curious for Jeff's liking and he labels it as being "needy" and having "issues".
- Hand in the Hole: He's very fond of sticking his hand in dark holes and then pretending to have been bitten by something horrible.
- Herbivores Are Friendly: Averted. Jeff points out that large herbivores, such as elephants and hippos, are far more likely to kill you than the most feared of African predators.
- Maniac Monkeys: Jeff frequently handles venomous snakes and other reptiles on show, but he's not afraid to admit that monkeys scare the shit out of him. Everywhere he goes, monkeys cause him a long list of problems.
- The Medic: He's certified as an Advanced Field Medical Specialist by the U.S. Army Academy of Health Science.
- Mr. Fanservice: Those short shorts and tight t-shirts. We also get to see him in a robe in "Giant Monsters".
- Nature Documentary
- The Prankster: Jeff loved to play tricks on his film crew and viewers.
- Threatening Shark: As Jeff oh so eloquently explains any sane animal's reaction to this trope:"If you wanna get them all out of the water and onto the beach all you gotta do is go like this...SHARK! SHARK!"
- Toilet Humor: He gets really excited when he finds fresh animal dung. He'll even pretend to eat it to freak out his film crew and viewers.
- Too Dumb to Live: In reference to people in general when it comes to certain animals."Something like 70% of all rattlesnake bites involve alcohol, and I don't think it was the rattlesnake that was drinking."
- Tranquillizer Dart: The show accurately portrays how these work in Real Life, especially in regards to how long it would take the animal (such as an elephant or giraffe) to lose consciousness and the numerous risks that anesthetizing an animal can present.