This week, Joe's tackling a personal obsession of his: finding Bigfoot. We open with a preview, and this promises to get REAL, quick. Bigfoot eyewitnesses, night vision, human/animal hybrids, government cover-ups, a scientist wearing suspenders, another one sporting a mohawk, Sasquatch poop... and then Joe goes out into the woods himself! With stakes so high, no way Joe can trust finding Sasquatch to others. Yes, we're in.
First on Joe's agenda: meeting with Bigfoot expert Dr. Matthew Johnson. At first glance, the doctor's philosophy seems sound: you don't find Bigfoot, Bigfoot finds you. Dr. Johnson recounts his first encounter with Bigfoot during a family hiking trip in 2000, complete with grainy reenactment. He then takes Joe out to his woods behind his house to show him more evidence. Pretty convenient for a Bigfoot expert to have the subject of his life's work living in his backyard, right? Johnson claims, however, to have bumped into Sasquatches back there, and his fiancee corroborates the story. Joe thinks what Dr. Johnson's shown him is cool, but what's troubling is that his techniques are too low-tech and rely too heavily on waiting for the Sasquatch to come to you. And Joe doesn't have the patience to do things on Bigfoot's schedule. He needs answers NOW. His show's called "Joe Rogan Questions EVERYTHING", not "Joe Rogan Leisurely Ponders One Thing". He's gotta wrap this up in an hour so he can move on to the next item on his "Everything" list.
Back in Los Angeles at what appears to be his podcast bunker, Joe and everyone's favorite wacky bearded hipster sidekick Duncan interview our next expert, anthropologist Dr. Jeff Meldrum. Meldrum's one of those badass professors with white beards dressed all in black studying a topic that everyone else has discredited. He adds his voice to the premise that we haven't found all of earth's species yet -- and surely Bigfoot could be one of the undiscovered.
Joe's back on the road again, this time talking to geneticist and DNA expert Dr. David Swenson (we've found our scientist in suspenders!). The doctor cites a study by Dr. Ketchum, the famed Sasquatch researcher who claims to have found DNA that proves the existence of a hybrid creature that's half human and half (to use his scientific term) "something else." Dr. Swenson elaborates by explaining some science stuff that makes no sense to us because we were English majors but that does involve some pretty sweet animation of revolving DNA molecules. Conclusion: Ketchum's data reveals unknown DNA.
The quest leads him to Portland, where Joe meets Thom Powell, a teacher/ Bigfoot expert whose classroom displays Bigfoot artifacts with all the pizzazz of an elementary school science fair. The reason for Joe's visit with Powell: he allegedly has Sasquatch poop. And why is Powell convinced that these turds come from Bigfoot? The shape, of course. They're CYLINDRICAL. And everyone knows that only humans (or human HYBRIDS) poop cylindrically. (Side note: huh?)
Powell agrees to give Joe the sample -- Joe's now got his DNA. He's sending the fecal sample to primatologist Todd Disotell at NYU (and here's our Mohawk Scientist!) for an independent analysis. But we'll come back to him later. Meanwhile, Joe meets with R. Scott Nelson, a vocal crypto-linguist who believes, based on "Bigfoot vocalizations" he found on Google, that Bigfoot speaks a complex language. And he has the fancy computer monitors with undulating sound waves to prove it. The voices sound like a garble of snarling dogs, Ewoks, and the Three Stooges on fast-forward. Nelson's ears are more gifted than ours, however, so he concludes it's talking Sasquatches. As further proof, he compares those recordings to ones of people IMITATING the voices, which he says are clearly different. While Nelson does use a very authoritative tone, we have no idea what he's talking about, and neither does Joe.
Back at the podcast bunker, Joe and Duncan make a fateful decision: they're going to find Bigfoot themselves -- they're going "Squatching"! They travel back to the Pacific Northwest, suggesting that the travel budget on this show must be astronomical. After a brief stop interviewing Bigfoot enthusiast Barbara, who may or may not be a park ranger based on her hat, they arrive at their destination to meet John and Mojo, two members of the Washington Sasquatch Research Team. They load equipment and themselves into two vans and head deeper into the forest. The Squatching has begun!
In the woods, they get to their first stop: tree branches arranged like a teepee. John and Mojo argue: neither gravity nor an animal could have done this. Joe suggest maybe people did it -- maybe even to try to convince people Bigfoot exists, but John and Mojo don't have time for that kind of crap. Next stop: the gifting stump -- a tree stump where John and Mojo place "offerings" for Sasquatches to take. With spooky music accompanying them, John and Mojo announce, "Dude, the shiny rocks have been MOVED!" Further proof -- why would mere woodland animals move shiny rocks? Gotta be Bigfoot. Joe declares this "wild!"
Night finally falls, which means time for NIGHT OPS. John and Mojo set up cameras and audio recording equipment in the woods. Meanwhile, Joe and Duncan take Louisville Slugger-size sticks and whack some trees, simulating what John and Mojo told them is the Sasquatch mating call, hoping to flush out some lonely Sasquatch dudes looking for a casual encounter. After a long night of monitoring equipment and whacking trees with sticks, suddenly something registers on some sort of hand-held device! Holy crap, is it Bigfoot??? Commercial break!
We're back from commercial break and it's...not Bigfoot. The hand-held device was registering something from another device. Joe's horribly disappointed. At this point, John and Mojo admit that they enjoy Squatching because it's fun to go camping.
Joe's got one more place to go -- time to find out the DNA results of the Sasquatch poop. Joe goes to visit Dr. Disotell in New York (again with the travel budget). Disotell says that, while the scientific methods of other Sasquatch researchers are sound, their conclusions didn't match the data. However, he does tell Joe... that from the fecal sample... he DID find DNA. Holy crap, is it Sasquatch DNA??? Commercial break!
We're back from commercial break and it's...not Sasquatch DNA. The poop came from bears, who apparently do poop cylindrically. Joe calls Disotell the "Bigfoot Dream Crusher."
But Joe offers us hope, reminding us of what we like to call Rogan's Theory of Big Forest Density. The forests of the Pacific Northwest are huge! And dense! We can't possibly know everything that's out there. Including maybe... just maybe... Bigfoot?
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