One of the greatest weeks of the year! Discovery's most popular programming is back this week to provide viewers with educational (and gruesome) content about sharks.
For me, Shark Week is pretty synonymous with summertime. While people rush to the beach, Discovery works to educate (and scare) viewers about the fish they share the ocean with. I personally enjoy the more educational content about sharks and their important impact on the ocean, but the more dramatic programming is entertaining too.
With the recent string of shark attacks in the United States, I think Discovery has a real chance to educate viewers about sharks, what makes them attack and how to stay safe in the ocean. Some of the network's more dramatic content can unfairly villainize sharks, which has negative effects on human perceptions of them. They're still an important part of the ocean and they need conserving, so Discovery should work to promote that.
Rumor has it that this year's shark week will be more educational than most, with Discovery spokesperson calling it "literally 18 hours of pure shark science.” That sounds awesome to me. If they have to use a bit of dramatic content to gain an audience, that's okay, as long as they then work to educate viewers.
Shark Week 2015 begins today and runs for the next eight days. But as Tracy Jordan once said, we really should "live every week like it's shark week."
Shout out to @cullenquigley's card about sharks with celebrity smiles for inspiring me to write about Shark Week. If shark science isn't your thing but you love celebrities (and funny photoshopping), check it out.