Season 1, Episode 1
Marcus and Ed are challenged to fly stunt planes over the Pacific Ocean. They will have to master complex aerobatic maneuvers to win this challenge.
Marcus and Ed arrive at Sky Thrills, a stunt plane facility. Owner Mike Blackstone (a.k.a. “Rocket”) shows the two guys the planes they’ll be flying: An Extra 300L, which goes over 250 mph and “pulls plus or minus 10Gs” and a Pit S2C, which has 260 horsepower and rolls 300 degrees per second.
Marcus and Ed are challenged to complete two aerial stunts: A 360-degree sideways Aileron roll, and a vertical Loop. Marcus reads the manual on how to do the stunts. Ed's watched airplane movies.
Before the challenge, Rocket takes the pair up for a “disorientation stress test” during which they’re submitted to G forces he says feel like “an elephant sitting on your chest".
Marcus and Ed wager a side bet on the stress test: Whoever wins gives the other a “wingman” name. The pair suit up and board their planes. At the last minute, Marcus tells Ed, “Remember AGSM.” Ed -- who hasn’t read the manual -- doesn’t know what that means.
Marcus’s plane spirals towards the ground and he “screams like a little school girl” but stays conscious. Ed, however, passes out during his test and fails. After Marcus explains AGSM (Anti Gravity Straining Maneuver) – during which you strain your muscles to stop the blood from draining away from your brain -- Ed passes his second test. “That was just insanely terrifying,” says Ed, but Marcus has won the stress test. Ed dubs him the “English Muffin.”
Marcus reads more manuals on flying. Ed gets tips from Rocket and his staff for the next day’s challenge. One advises Ed to study the manuals; another suggests Ed not force the plane’s controls. Ed excuses himself “to go change his diaper.”
The next day, Ed and Marcus suit up, promising to help each other out. In the air, Ed attempts an Aileron roll, but the plane starts to spiral out of control. “Be more patient with it,” says Marcus over headset. Ed pulls off a perfect roll on his second attempt. Marcus also completes the roll after two tries, and they move on to the Loop.
According to Marcus, Ed’s first Loop looks like “a semi-circle mixed with a corkscrew.” Ed nails his second attempt. Marcus is up next and also completes the Loop on the second try.
Back on the ground, Ed and Marcus high five. As a reward, they go back up for a dog fight with two Marchetti SF-250 planes.