Shark Week 2016: Schedule Updates And A Drinking Game

Beginning this Sunday evening, June 26, the Discovery Channel will begin its 28th annual Shark Week programming, a virtual pop culture phenomenon that is dedicated to these famously carnivorous fish and has even spawned its very own shark-based drinking game!

According to Entertainment Weekly, Shark Week 2016 promises to be an eight-day attack of epic proportions, and the schedule is loaded with 17 programs that will run from June 26 through July 3. Among the scheduled programs, Hostel director Eli Roth returns to bring us Shark After Dark, which will appear Sunday through Thursday at 11 p.m. ET, while Game of Thrones star Lena Headey will provide the voice for the latest Air Jaws special and Jacques Cousteau’s grandson Philippe and his wife Ashlan will bring an exciting new program titled Nuclear Sharks.

As in previous years, Shark Week 2016 promises to be the Discovery Channel network’s biggest event, reported USA Today. Its popularity is due to more than just the subject matter, but also results from its excellent summertime placement and the show’s ideal fit with the Discovery Channel’s overall programming. Of course, having a drinking game associated with Shark Week doesn’t hurt either (keep reading to learn more).

“Sharks get a bad rap, and protecting them by educating the public is a big part of Shark Week,” wrote ABC’s KSAT 12. “There are more than 375 species of shark, some species dating back to 400 million years ago.”

According to the article, overfishing has caused a rapid decline in shark populations, and even in 2016 various species of sharks are continually being added to the list of endangered and threatened animals. In fact, an estimated 100 million sharks are brutally killed each year for their fins alone, and sadly it can take hours or even days for a shark to die after the fin is removed.

“Sharks are vitally important to the ecosystem,” wrote ABC’s KSAT 12. “They help keep food webs in balance by preying on sick and weakened fish, sometimes even scavenging the sea floor for dead carcasses. This prevents the spread of disease among fish populations and helps strengthen the populations of certain species.”

To Drink Or Not To Drink… That Is The Question

But it turns out that Shark Week 2016 is actually about more than just exciting footage and educational soundbites. This year, fans can make watching the impressive lineup of 16 new specials even more fun by bringing back the always-popular Shark Week drinking game, first introduced a few years ago by Oregon Live. There are countless online versions out there, but here are a few ideas for a fun 2016 Shark Week Drinking Game (please drink responsibly and don’t drive):

  • Drink when a narrator says “feeding frenzy.”
  • Drink when someone says “brush with death.”
  • Drink whenever a shark leaps out of the water.
  • Drink when you hear an Australian or South African accent.
  • Drink when someone talks about surviving a shark attack.
  • Drink when a “crunch” sound effect is used to add drama to a scene.
  • Drink when someone is submerged in a diving cage.
  • Drink every time the movie “Jaws” is mentioned.
  • Drink every time the camera shows something with a shark bite taken out of it.

Also, be sure to check out the growing list of amazing Shark Week cocktails posted online, including the Shark Bite and the Great White Shark Attack.

Other highlights of Shark Week 2016 will include Return of the Monster Mako, Sunday, June 26; Jaws of the Deep, a hunt for the world’s largest great white shark, Monday, June 27; Wrath of a Great White Serial Killer, Tuesday, June 28; Deadliest Shark, Wednesday, June 29; Jungle Shark, Thursday, June 30; Blue Serengeti, Friday, July 1; Sharksanity, Saturday, July 2; and The Killing Games, Sunday, July 3.

[Photo via Twitter]