First, there was Mighty Ships. Then, Mighty Planes, followed by Mighty Cruise Ships and Mighty Trains. Now, there is simply The Mightiest.
Debuting on Wednesday at 8 p.m. ET on Discovery, the latest in the Mighty franchise takes viewers on a six-episode adventure into some of the mega-ist of mega machines around the planet. Hosted by Teddy Wilson (Mighty Trains) and environmental journalist Aliya Jasmine, each installment focuses on one main machine surrounded by smaller stories. Each segment is tied together by Aliya Jasmine and Wilson, who converse while standing in Hanger 1 at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport.
“It’s the latest and the greatest in the Mighty franchise,” Wilson says, on the line during a recent media day with his co-host. “They wanted to take this amazing franchise and really kick it up a notch. This series focuses on planes, trains and ships. We’re going to take viewers on some amazing and epic adventures.”
For environmental journalist Aliya Jasmine, The Mightiest offered her many tales to tell.
“So many of these stories deal with nature and some of the world’s most destructive natural forces,” Aliya Jasmine says. “We were able to fly into the eye of a hurricane and over wildfires. [We’re] not only looking at these mighty machines and the innovation in science and engineering but also the actual humans behind them. There are incredible people who put their lives at stake to operate these machines.”
The adventure begins on Wednesday with “Launch Day,” where Wilson is aboard the U.S. Navy’s newest and largest aircraft carrier, the USS Gerald R. Ford. Updated with the latest in technology—including a switch from steam to electricity to launch and land aircraft—the Gerald R. Ford is a small town on the sea, to which The Mightiest crew were given unprecedented access.
“It was a mind-blowing experience,” Wilson recalls. “It was incredibly loud, incredibly dangerous… the deck of an aircraft carrier is one of the most dangerous places on earth. And, we had to arrive and leave the carrier via a military transport plane landing and taking off, which was one of the coolest experiences of my life.”
In addition to highlighting the USS Gerald R. Ford, Wednesday’s debut looks at the massive Airbus A-380’s first landing into a major North American hub, the re-launch of a flying telescope after being grounded for months, and final touches on a cruise ship three times bigger than the Titanic. And while Wilson says as cool as the aircraft carrier assignment was, he believes his co-star got a plum Season 1 assignment seated inside an F-18 as a member of the Blue Angels.
“The Blue Angels are the only F-18 pilots in the world that don’t wear G-suits and don’t have oxygen masks,” Aliya Jasmine says. “When you see Tom Cruise in Top Gun, he has a G-suit on that helps him stay conscious, keep his eyesight, help him breathe and not be nauseous.
“It takes them years to train, and they trained me in two minutes,” she continues with a laugh. “They did warn me that it’s not uncommon for people to pass out, momentarily go blind, pee or defecate themselves, or puke. My body has never gone through anything like that before.”
So, how did she do?
“We pulled 6Gs, broke the sound barrier, did a couple of loops and I did puke four times on camera.”
The Mightiest airs Wednesdays at 8 p.m. ET on Discovery.
Images courtesy of Bell Media.