Despite the fear struck for everyday ocean waders by the notorious great white shark, there are numerous occurrences more likely to result in your death – from dog bites and hornet stings to driving to the beach that morning. You can now even add simulation sharks and the angry social-media mobs that follow to this list.
Still, Michael Phelps continues to dress in both good and bad press as smoothly as the fit of a swank speedo.
The Discovery Channel’s 29th installment of Shark Week flaunted its headliner early as “Great Gold” Olympian swimmer Phelps’ stage set to host a race against a great white shark back on July 23rd. What the record-breaking 5 million viewers ended up witnessing was Star Wars effects adapted for sea, adding a CGI version of his adversary while using pre-measured shark speed to determine the winner.
The tweets of betrayal poured steadily, to which Phelps reminded haters how common sense and reality never supported this preconception of such a live dare, with preceding interviews and telecasts explicitly backing the gimmick’s relay team.
This is as much of a non-issue as Shark Week in general has pruned in the face of jumping itself and prompting cinematic tornado abominations. Nonetheless, Phelps emerges from his pool of public incrimination the same way he always does: swimmingly.
For the record, the all-time medals leader’s butterflies were ultimately no match for the faux fins, as he came up short by two seconds. Not too many people, though, can pull off the specialized scuba onesie topped with customized mono-fin with such style.
Whether in defeat, spotlight, glimmering DUI handcuffs, 12,000-calorie jealousy, screen-based cameos, blatant absence from any aquatic event, untouchable glory, swimsuits or actual clothes, this lankily average-looking figurehead of athletics wears winning nonstop.
I spent a share of this past Sunday afternoon engulfing U.S. domination in the 2017 FINA World Championships (swimming events sans the polos) with my nine-year-old twin siblings. Victory after victory, featuring Caeleb Dressel’s Phelps-tying collection of seven golds, the followup question from either side of the couch insisted upon being “Okay, but where is Michael Phelps?”
Yep. The retired Phelps still skims up nicely. In the challenge of Kids Choice golden slime versus blood-red shed skin, the former always prevails as the more dapper choice.
Mike L. // The Guide