Friday nights are gold fever nights on the Discovery Channel, and last night did not disappoint, starting off the evening with the first of several planned behind-the-scenes Gold Rush: The Dirt specials, followed by Gold Rush and, finally, Jungle Gold.
Gold Rush: The Dirt was more than just the sometimes eye-rolling “Twitter” episodes, which trick one’s DVR into thinking that an episode is new, when it’s actually just a re-run with some fan tweets thrown on top of the footage, maybe a “bonus scene” here and there. The Dirt was actually a behind-the-scenes look that one might expect to see on an end-of-the-season wrap-up, where the stars of the show sit down and talk with the show’s executive producer, Christo Doyle. But, instead of looking over the entire season in a couple of episodes, or having the fans go online for an aftershow chat, The Dirt is featuring recent episodes, and giving fans a peek at what else happened and what the stars think while the drama is still fresh in fans' minds.
"It's something very fresh for us at Discovery," Doyle told The Hollywood Reporter. "It's a fresh, different look into a show that's working for diehard fans, and hopefully casual viewers will find it incredibly entertaining."
Parker Ready to Hit the Mother Lode?
After getting the scoop from Todd, Parker and Dakota Fred (Does anyone buy Fred’s explanation of the power board situation, btw, or is Fred just making an excuse for why he was being a jerk yet again?), the new episode of Gold Rush aired, and, once again, the teams spent most of their time working on their equipment—not unusual, however, for anyone working with big equipment in such a demanding capacity. Things get broken, jarred loose, pulled apart—maintenance is a necessary part of any such work. But, it does seem that the Hoffmans, even with their new equipment, end up with more equipment failures than are actually necessary—see Little Blue, now sitting on the side of the road with a “For Sale” sign attached (with all of that traffic going through Quartz Creek, one would expect she’ll be gone in no time).
The Quartz Creek team is still being plagued by Todd’s poor management skills, as they are still waiting on the new wash plant he ordered too late in the pre-season (they said it would be at least three weeks before it arrives; that probably means at least four and a half). Trying to use Little Blue was a disaster—she didn’t work last season, and she still didn’t work, believe it or not, spitting out gold as the water ran off at the end. One might argue that Todd should have fixed the wash plant instead of tearing it apart and pushing it to the side of the road, but here’s the thing: They couldn’t fix it last season, so, really, could they have fixed it this season? And, with no mechanic on-site? So, it was probably just as well that he pushed her to the side and started waiting on the new one.
Things were looking up on Porcupine Creek, however—at least for Parker. After a misunderstanding (probably) with the gold totals, and an initial worry that there was no gold in the new pay dirt, Parker had a great run at the end of the show, ending the week with over 25 ounces for the week’s work—perhaps it will be Parker who hits the mother lode this season? On the other side of the creek, Fred hired two new miners—one woman who appears highly competent, and one man who was terminated by the end of the show for running the machinery while being on painkillers. But, even with some new help and new equipment, the Hurts still found themselves with no gold in their pans.
George, Scott Not Getting It Done
Gold fever night wrapped up with Jungle Gold. George, Scott, and their crew, once again, battled, literally, to keep their claim to themselves. It’s shocking, how far people are willing to go to sabotage each other to get to the gold.
“We’ve gotta get a shotgun out here,” the guys discussed on their walk into the claim. “If we had one, this never would have happened,” they observed, referring to an earlier attack.
Equipment failures are plaguing them, and getting even the simplest of tools or parts is a challenge in the jungles of Ghana. And, the floods are ongoing during the rainy season, causing their site to be close to unworkable, and making it hard for their equipment to function, regardless of its condition.
And, their $150,000-investor, Mitch, is getting stressed, and ready to back out of the deal.
“I gotta be honest with you,” he told Scott in a phone call. “I’m at a point where if you don’t have gold in our hand, I’ll send another guy down to liquidate the whole place, and you’re gonna hate what’s gonna happen to you.”
With a first cleanout of only $550-worth of gold, George and Scott may be in over their heads in Ghana.
Gold Rush: The Dirt airs on Discovery Channel on Friday nights at 8/7c. Gold Rush follows at 9/8c, and Jungle Gold closes out the night at 10/9c.
Image: Discovery Channel