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Speed Kills

Speed Kills

  • Premiered: 
    October 7, 2012
    (Click date to see TV listings for that day)

  • Network: Smithsonian
  • Category: Series
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Type: Live Action
  • Concept: 
  • Subject Matter: Animal
  • Tags:

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(That We Know Of)
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Plot Synopsis

Using high-speed cameras to document every minuscule movement at 1,000 frames-per-second, SPEED KILLS captures creatures in their natural habitats in lush rainforests, African savannahs, and watery underworlds. Plus, the program presents CGI animation to more fully explain and better visualize the science behind beastly behaviors. Each one-hour episode documents animal behavior in a different setting, including shows about: "Savannah," which chronicles cheetahs, whose land speed has gone unchallenged for 10 million years, while showing how hyenas, hawks, crocodiles, and other assassins of the savannah use their evolution-perfected design mechanisms to kill with lightening-fast speed; "Ocean," which presents marlins chasing their prey at 75mph, mantis shrimp punching the water so fast it vaporizes any liquid in its path, stonefish striking at jaw-dropping speeds, and caped gannets taking dangerous dives; and "Jungle," which features vipers striking at lightning speed, spiders leaping toward their prey at distances 70 times their body length, and chameleons snatching their targets at speeds of 900mph.
SPEED KILLS returned for its second season on Wednesday, August 20, 2014 at 8pm ET/PT, with new episodes that focus on the desert, the black lagoon, and the dark underworld. The season premiere, "Desert," includes cheetah hunting, a caracal leaping six feet into the air, tiger beetles fighting over scarce resources, and the shovel snouted lizard moving at an amazing three feet per second, as it dives into the ground to cool off from the sun. "Black Lagoon" features otherworldly mantis shrimp -- neither mantis nor shrimp -- that has spears for arms, which it unleashes at blinding speed, impaling fish. Then, "Dark Underworld" uses infra-red cameras to reveal big brown bats chasing down moths in pitch-blackness, only to be taken out by 100mph red-tailed hawks.

Production & Distribution

  • Produced by Earth Touch