Penn & Teller: Bullshit!

Season 2 Episode 5


Aired Monday 10:00 PM Apr 29, 2004 on Showtime

Episode Fan Reviews (5)

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  • My personal favorite episode of the series, but it's going to make you mad, if you're currently for or against recycling. It's an outright fraud.

    Incredibly well written and executed. They break down the pros and cons of recycling point by point. The only regretable thing is that they only had 30 minutes, this should have easily been an hour. I've had my suspicions about recycling, but it's an outright fraud. The other reviews on here complain that they don't educate us on making less waste. We do produce too much waste as a country, but that's not the point of this episode. It's not called "How to Make Less Waste", it's called "RECYCLING" and they stuck to the topic. It's not a valid criticism to say that the episode didn't cover a topic they didn't set out to cover. They set out to uncover the fraud and self-perpetuating business that recycling has turned into and how most of it is doing more harm than good. This episode spurred my interest and I've done a lot of research on this and they're right. Recycling paper is more harmful to the atmosphere than making new paper. That's staggering. I believe in less polution to keep our air and water clean, but if you've ever driven by a recycling plant you will roll up your windows for quite a few miles. New York City even stopped their recycling reprogam all together for about a year because it was too expensive. When they did that it removed the guilt of throwing things away for a lot of people and then haven't gone back even when the program was reinstated.
    I was very pro-recycling in high school and we even had an organization to collect and recycle for the entire school. I feel a bit used from that effort and wish I had known about this sooner.
  • over simplified conclusions from selective data

    The obvious conclusion (from their facts as presented) is to recycle certain things only (aluminum, glass etc) not that all recycling is bullsh*t!
    Also like someone else already said, why not talk about how to reduce waste at source. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . as always though very entertaining which is the main reason to watch this series, just don't expect enlightenment!
  • This was the first episode that i did't like. It was just full of **** The did't say the hole truth.

    This was the first episode that i did't like. It was just full of **** The did't say the hole truth. Please keep recycling. Don't turn against the world not more that you already do. They did't say any thing about the oil that is useing doing the bottels or useing when transporting the tree from the woods. I don't say that you have to recycle ever thing. But it is the small things that matters. Tin of aluminium and steel, glass, papper and electronics(tv), refrigerators(Chlorofluorocarbon is not good for the ozone) . And one last thing the stuff that is batterys. Ok this was not so good review but it show that it ws not a good show.
  • It\'s fun to shock people out of their usual thought patterns and this show is great fun to watch but I think they kinda skipped over an important issue with this one for the sake of entertainment...

    The loud rude one and his short and silent partner take on a pretty confronting issue with this episode, claiming the act of recycling to be an expensive, wasteful, and unneccessary act that was generated by environmental nuts and inflicted on society. They make some very salient points to support their argument, and as usual, like to discuss impossibly broad subjects by using very specific and usually total whack-job examples. But the question I pose to Penn and Teller is this. Instead of yelling at the camera about how much of your MFing tax money is wasted on recycling when you can safely and cheaply throw everything into landfill for the next 200 millenium, wouldn\'t it be more constructive to actually look at why America PRODUCES SO MUCH WASTE, instead of what to do with it. But, that doesn\'t make for as shocking viewing, and would kind of expose them as a tad hypocritical. I\'m a fan of these 2 and this show, but this episode left me scratching my head a bit...
  • Wow!

    All I have to say is wow, after seeing this episode I realize the goverment has really pulled one over on us. From as early as my childhood I have been brainwashed that recycling is good for us and how dare anyone say any different. The show really went over each point that recycling advocates use to say how great recycling is and disproved each one of them.

    First off we are not running out of landfill space and that was just a faceless beurocrat that made that statement in the 80's and we believed it. Then they took a visit to a landfill and I was imressed at how well they are managed and even that the landfill produces methane that they collect and use to fuel houses. Wow!

    The other arguements are that it creats jobs, which it does but what good is a job that is not really needed in the first place, it is just another drain on our resources. Also they say that we save energy. Very wrong, it takes more energy and it cost up to three times as much to take the time to transport, sort and process it rather than just throw it away.

    What a waste of our time, too bad I have to be reminded of this every week as I put out the recycling...