"Extreme Trains" hosted by Matt Bown

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DERECCO
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EXTREME TRAINS--SEASON 2 ?

Post by DERECCO » Sat Nov 29, 2008 5:22 pm

Does anyone know if there will be a second season of EXTREME TRAINS on the HISTORY CHANNEL?

Mikejf
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Re: "Extreme Trains" featuring PAR conductor Matt Bown

Post by Mikejf » Sat Nov 29, 2008 6:59 pm

The parts I like most of the show are the historical parts. Matt in a normal voice describing Who, what, when, and why about that segment. I try to overlook the other parts that I am not in favor of.
Mike

lpetrich
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Re: "Extreme Trains" hosted by Matt Bown

Post by lpetrich » Sun Nov 30, 2008 1:18 am

Some YouTube video of the world's longest train, which was 7.4 km / 4.6 mi long, and is listed in the Guinness Book of World Records. It had 8 locomotives distributed along the train and controlled by remote control (Locotrol) from the front one, and it was hauling 682 railcars loaded with iron ore.

I checked out Churchill, Murmansk, Vorkuta, and Yakutsk to see which was the coldest; those towns are at the northern ends of various railroad lines or soon will be. Russian Railways (RZD) goes to Murmansk and Vorkuta, and a line is being built from the Baikal-Amur Mainline to Yakutsk; it currently ends at Tommot.

From http://www.worldclimate.com average January temperatures:
Churchill: -27.4 C / -17.2 F
Murmansk: -10.3 C / 13.5 F
Vorkuta: -19.7 C / -3.4 F
Yakutsk: -42.5 C / -44.4 F

You have to use "j" for the semivowel usually transcribed as "y" in Russian words; that's to avoid confusion with the vowel also transcribed as "y". Thus, I searched for "Jakutsk" and "Syktyvkar".

Though Murmansk and Vorkuta are farther north than Churchill (68.97 N and 67.50 N vs. 58.75 N), they are not as cold, because the Gulf Stream warms them. Yakutsk is very cold, because it is inland, which Churchill more-or-less is.

Mountcastle
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Re: "Extreme Trains" hosted by Matt Bown

Post by Mountcastle » Mon Dec 01, 2008 11:40 am

Well, it's an American show on an American cable network so I'm not sure why the name of the show should be qualified by inserting 'US' into the title. That would be like saying that 'Extreme Makeover' needs to be called 'Extreme US Makeover' because all the participants are American. Well, of course they're all American: this is America.

What they could do, however, depending upon the eventual success of the show, is add--like Ghost Hunters did--an 'international' version to supplement the domestic version.

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Re: EXTREME TRAINS--SEASON 2 ?

Post by Mountcastle » Mon Dec 01, 2008 4:19 pm

I don't know but I would actually recommend to the producers that they 'kick it up a notch', in the words of Emeril, by employing a more engaging format. Give the show a more human and a more intriguing flavour and make it a bit more of a reality show and a bit less of a straight documentary.

Honestly, I'm sorry to repeat the example, but the Ghost Hunters format would work really well, here. If it were up to me, I would call the show Trainspotters. Each week, Matt would get a tip from a fan about a new railroad to visit and he and his team of trainspotters would hop in their Trainspotter vans, go to the railroad of the week and split up into pairs with each pair of trainspotters featuring a different aspect of the railroad.

I think that if the network were to 'humanize' the show like that, it would have the potential to become surprisingly popular. And I say so because that type of format just sucks you right into the show and holds you captive, to the point where you simply cannot miss a moment of it.

Not to beat the horse to a complete bloody pulp, but I am utterly addicted to Ghost Hunters although I'm not the least bit interested in the paranormal. It's the format. It's the investigators and they way they interact. It's the suspense of wondering what on earth they'll do after the commercial break...and next week.

There are a few other niche programs that employ similar formats and they're quite successful. I'd love to see something like that done with railroading and I think Matt would make a superb team leader.

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Re: "Extreme Trains" hosted by Matt Bown

Post by Kamen Rider » Tue Dec 02, 2008 9:22 am

lpetrich wrote:Some YouTube video of the world's longest train, which was 7.4 km / 4.6 mi long, and is listed in the Guinness Book of World Records. It had 8 locomotives distributed along the train and controlled by remote control (Locotrol) from the front one, and it was hauling 682 railcars loaded with iron ore.

I checked out Churchill, Murmansk, Vorkuta, and Yakutsk to see which was the coldest; those towns are at the northern ends of various railroad lines or soon will be. Russian Railways (RZD) goes to Murmansk and Vorkuta, and a line is being built from the Baikal-Amur Mainline to Yakutsk; it currently ends at Tommot.

From http://www.worldclimate.com average January temperatures:
Churchill: -27.4 C / -17.2 F
Murmansk: -10.3 C / 13.5 F
Vorkuta: -19.7 C / -3.4 F
Yakutsk: -42.5 C / -44.4 F

You have to use "j" for the semivowel usually transcribed as "y" in Russian words; that's to avoid confusion with the vowel also transcribed as "y". Thus, I searched for "Jakutsk" and "Syktyvkar".

Though Murmansk and Vorkuta are farther north than Churchill (68.97 N and 67.50 N vs. 58.75 N), they are not as cold, because the Gulf Stream warms them. Yakutsk is very cold, because it is inland, which Churchill more-or-less is.
I hope Matt likes the cold ;)
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scottychaos
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Re: "Extreme Trains" hosted by Matt Bown

Post by scottychaos » Wed Dec 03, 2008 8:52 am

So I caught last nights episode..
"this one has potential" I thought..taking a refrigerated produce train all the way across the country!
from Washington State to Schenectady, NY...practically coast-to-coast.
and hey, it will run right through my backyard! I live 2 minutes away from the New York Central mainline (now CSX) in Rochester, NY.
this train will run through "my territory"..maybe they will show some scenes of Chicago, Ohio, Buffalo..maybe near Rochester, maybe rolling along the Erie Canal in central NY, very scenic.."lots of interesting possibilities with this episode!" I naively thought..I should know better by now! :wink:

So the show runs one hour..10pm to 11pm.

10:05 PM - Here we are loading up the train in Washington state.

10:10 PM - now we are in Oregon.

10:15 PM - Now we are in Idaho. (im obviously paraphrasing with the times! they arent meant to be exact. ;)


Quick detour to Steamtown in Scranton, PA..
I can only assume the planning/writing meetings for the show went something like this:

"Ok, we sent our host guy and the camera crew all the way to Scranton, what should we film?
We have a 2-second clip of an operating steam engine to open the segment..what else should we film while we are here?"

"How about a panoramic shot of the beautifully restored Roundhouse and turntable?"

"nah..not that.."

"How about the Big Boy? Largest steam locomotive in the world!"

"no..thats not very interesting"

"How about more shots of operating steam engines? there sure are a lot of them here!"

"no..not that...Since we are here at one of the largest Railroad museums in the WORLD,
we need to find the most boring and monotonous thing here, and film that...
hey I know! lets put our guy inside a firebox, and show him handing out some bricks from it?"

"great idea boss! you are a genious! What should we have him say while he is in there?"

"Have him say something about how steam engines work..maybe have him say "Here is how steam locomotives work, you have some fire, then steam"..
thats good enough..he doesnt have to mention anything about the boiler actually being filled with WATER! thats too much detail..
dont mention cylinders, pistons, expanding steam, main rods, driving wheels..thats all too complicated..just have him say "fire and steam"..
oh..and while he is inside the firebox, he doesnt need to talk about the FUEL that goes in there, right where he is sitting..
dont mention wood or coal..no need to talk about the Fireman and his shovel..just focus on the BRICKS!
those bricks are really interesting...when people see a TV show about steam engines, they want to know all about BRICKS in the firebox!
yeah..thats good stuff!"

10:25PM - here we are back on the train..still in Idaho.

10:35PM - here we are rolling through Idaho..

Now we need a short segmant that is "rad" and "awesome" and "extreme!"
something the 12-year old kids will think is "cool" and "neat-o"..
Lets show a boxcar being scrapped..

*yawn*

10:40PM - back at the train..check it out..we are in Idaho.

10:50PM - Very interesting shots of the train rolling through Idaho..

At this point, im actually thinking "wow..is this going to a 2-part episode? are they going to continue the journey next week?"

10:58PM - The train is now in Idaho..We love Idaho! its very interesting here.

10:59PM - Here we are inside the warehouse in Schenectady, NY, end of the line. We had a great trip through Idaho..see you next time!

:(

Scot
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Mountcastle
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Re: "Extreme Trains" hosted by Matt Bown

Post by Mountcastle » Wed Dec 03, 2008 9:20 am

Yes, the entire show I thought to myself, "if only they'd showcase the glories of Rochester, New York, this episode would be redeemed." Alas, nary a snooty yuppie on a cell phone, neither a Kodak billboard, nor a retired drag queen from Club Marcella anywhere to be seen. A complete waste of my time.

:wink:

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scottychaos
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Re: "Extreme Trains" hosted by Matt Bown

Post by scottychaos » Wed Dec 03, 2008 9:34 am

Mountcastle wrote:Yes, the entire show I thought to myself, "if only they'd showcase the glories of Rochester, New York, this episode would be redeemed." Alas, nary a snooty yuppie on a cell phone, neither a Kodak billboard, nor a retired drag queen from Club Marcella anywhere to be seen. A complete waste of my time.

:wink:

way to miss the point! ;)
we dont have any yuppies here..thats New York City.

and im not talking about just Rochester..they completely skipped everything between Idaho and Schenectady!
thats a lot of territory...if they said upfront "tonight we are going to take a produce train between Washington state and Idaho"
then I wouldnt have been disappointed..but they suggested we were going to see a lot more than just Idaho..

The series so far isnt terrible..
but whats so disappointing to me is that it could have been SO much better!

Its the History Channel!
they clearly had a fairly decent budget..
you would think they could have hired some writers, or consultants, who at least know something..ANYTHING..about trains!
but they obviously didnt..

Last night they said Steam locomotives operated until the early 20th century..
yes, they said early 20th century..
is it too much to ask to do some basic research?

(my favorite part so far was from the 1st episode where the host told us early brakemen used to stop trains by sticking
their feet out in front of the locomotive and digging in their heels..brilliant! ;)

Its like watching a 10-part documentary about NASCAR filmed by my Grandmother:

"Here is that nice young man Jeffy Gordon inside his racey car, his car is a green one.
lets take a look inside and see what he has in there..
oh, he has some lovely snacks inside his racey car, some twinkies and cupcakes.
he pushes on that pedal to make the car go. the car has an engine in it, and its green."

Scot
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markin303

Re: "Extreme Trains" featuring PAR conductor Matt Bown

Post by markin303 » Wed Dec 03, 2008 3:35 pm

If nothing else, Matt is one smoking hot dude

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shadyjay
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Re: "Extreme Trains" featuring PAR conductor Matt Bown

Post by shadyjay » Thu Dec 04, 2008 3:33 pm

Interesting that they have snuck in something at Steamtown in every episode... even the "Aceler"/High Speed episode. Some interesting stuff in these episodes regardless, and definetely a lot of enthusiasm from Matt. I've been watching every week, and taping as I go... also managed to get Modern Marvels and the GCT documentary. History Channel is definetely catering to us railfans!

And the High Speed episode definetely gives Amtrak some good advertising!

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Re: "Extreme Trains" featuring PAR conductor Matt Bown

Post by gprimr1 » Thu Dec 04, 2008 6:11 pm

They had to use time lapse to make PAR trains travel at normal freight speeds. :)
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Re: "Extreme Trains" hosted by Matt Bown

Post by GOLDEN-ARM » Thu Dec 04, 2008 7:13 pm

So I watched a piece, like Scot said, after being lured in by a friend. I heard phrases like "gas up the engine", "greasing the wheels" and "push the throttle to 8". I kinda felt like the locos should receive fuel, not gas, but hey, that's me. An important part of railroading is greasing the wheels. This is what the host shouted, as the camera tilted to some "extreme" angles. (why is he always shouting, even in a low noise environment?) I watched a plain bearing being lubricated, but I never saw a wheel being greased. (I guess they need greasy wheels to run on that 4'8" narrow gauge) I watched in wonder, as the engineer clearly pulled out the throttle, while the narrator shouted about the throttle being pushed into the 8th. (again, with all types of panning, titling and zooming effects being tried, with the camera. I guess that's the "extreme" part of the show) Watching this got to be a tad old, so I went to CN, and enjoyed some Moral Orel....... :P

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Re: "Extreme Trains" hosted by Matt Bown

Post by Mountcastle » Fri Dec 05, 2008 9:21 am

Scot:

I'm sorry; I just couldn't resist razzing someone from Ra-cha-cha. I'm from Buffalo: it's what we do to each other. :wink:

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Re: "Extreme Trains" hosted by Matt Bown

Post by Kamen Rider » Tue Dec 09, 2008 10:14 pm

400 degree steam, and he not only grabs the pipe, but walks into the stuff.
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