‘Alaskan Bush People’ Episode 7: ‘The Land Giveths and Takeths’ (RECAP)

Alaskan Bush People Gabe chainsaws kittens
Discovery Channel

Alaskan Bush People

The Land Giveths and Takeths

Season 12 • Episode 7

On Discovery Channel’s Alaskan Bush People episode, “The Land Giveths and Takeths” (October 4), the Browns complete the main house before a massive wildfire strikes.

What crazy and out-to-lunch stuff are the Alaskan Bush People up to this week?

[Opens internet]

GAH! So in the past year, Raiv3n has accused Bear of using hard drugs, threatening her with firearms, and being emotionally abusive. She petitioned a court for a restraining order against him. She has been locked in a courtroom custody battle with him over their son, River. Mere weeks ago, she claimed that Alaskan Bush People was 90 percent fake and that none of the Browns get along in real life.

And today, Raiv3n is like, “JUST KIDDING, Y’ALL! We still have feelings for each other!!” I shouldn’t be surprised by this, since Raiv3n is staying consistent with her character, the Princess of Poor Judgment. But this is not the narrative I wanted. Raiv3n was supposed to be the impetus of Alaskan Bush People‘s downfall, now she’s contributing to some B.S. feel-good redemption story.

I have little doubt that money was a factor in Raiv3n’s reappearance. Adding another grandbaby to the cast is simply too tasty for Park Slope to resist. Raiv3n probably realized that Bear isn’t worth jack squat financially, and her only real option to get anything from the Browns is to come crawling back and be an Alaskan Bush circus chimp.

If there’s anything good to come from this, it’s that baby River might get to spend more time with his father, numbskull that he is. Also, I can imagine Billy is through-the-roof pissed off that Raiv3n’s come back into the picture after everything she pulled. Maybe Bear and Raiv3n will get into a big feud with Billy the way Noah and She Who Will Not Be Named did a couple years ago.

So while Bear wants us to think that everything is sunshine, lollipops and rainbows, I’ll remind everyone that Matt was just accused of sexual assault and the cause of the Palmer Fire has yet to be revealed.

It’s winter on Brown Star Ranch, but COVID-19 IS RIGHT THERE!!

Can’t wait for Billy to tell us how the Bush lifestyle is good because the family can go six months without coming into contact with another human being, and we’re all idiots for hoarding toilet paper and living close to other people.

“The Land Giveths and Takeths” is about eight months of stuff crammed into one episode, so the result is this hodgepodge of Fake Construction, Bush Birthday Renaissance Faire and wildfire panic. You can imagine how dull this season would’ve been had it not been interrupted by the pandemic and then by the wildfire.

[DIGRESSION! “Giveths” and “takeths” are someone’s attempt at sounding biblical, but the archaic diction is wrong. “Giveths and takeths” is the equivalent of saying “giveses and takeses.” If someone had actually read the Good Book instead of using it as a prop on a reality TV show, they’d know “The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away” is from the Book of Job. Are they implying that Billy is like Job, having his faith tested by God through all manner of tragedies and disasters? Historical records from that period are sketchy, but I’m just guessing that Job’s tests were not staged by Discovery Channel. More on that later.]

It’s been a difficult winter on Brown Star Ranch. It’s been cold, there have been construction delays, the erosion of Birdy’s sanity continued unabated and they had babies they didn’t know about.

Father Billy is excited that his kids will finally build Mother Ami a permanent home, one that has a closet to store her hideous hats.

Meanwhile, the family is getting ready to celebrate someone’s first birthday!

Happy birthday, caged rabbit! Oh, it’s Elijah’s birthday? I suppose that’s worth celebrating, too.

LOL! She Who Will Not Be Named has no idea what she’s in for! If she thought this was rough, the toddler years are going to absolutely DESTROY her.

Rainy is building a birthday gift for Elijah. It’s going to be a rocking horse toy eventually, but at the moment it looks like nightmare fuel. This monstrosity’s name is Fred.

Construction on Father Billy’s cabin and Mother Ami’s closet continues. Bam and Bear have to shovel snow off the second-floor joists. Bear starts skating down a joist and falls on his ass. EXXXXTREME!

All winter long, snow and ice have threatened construction and the future of the family forever. But now, the problem is water and mud from snowmelt.

Bush Abode! I love that. I wish Asa had said it long before, you know, the Bush Abode was reduced to ash.

I don’t know what kind of chili the Browns are used to eating, but my guess it came from Mother Ami’s Magic Toilet Bowl.

Father Billy and Mother Ami leave the safe confines of their trailer to pretend to groom the horses and get all sentimental about their first grandbaby’s first birthday. Billy supposedly has a pocket watch heirloom from the 1800s, one of the few things that wasn’t lost during one of those 12 times in which the Browns lost everything.

Birdy takes time out of her busy rat-fur footwear enterprise to teach Bear how to hold a baby. She brings Bear a sack of potatoes to substitute for an infant. (This is also the closest Birdy will get to having her own kid.)

On the subject of newborns, Gabe has been spending more time in town with wife Raquell and baby daughter Sophie. Gabe’s suffering from the fear of missing out (FOMO) and wants to contribute again to the Fake Construction on the Bush Abode.

It’s hard for Gabe to juggle fatherhood, Fake Construction and…uh, I’m not sure what else Gabe does. He used to juggle balls, but now he juggles chainsaws. Chainsaws and little kittens.

Gabe’s all raring to climb the Bush Abode and do some damage to it, himself and others. Despite his brothers’ pleas to stay down and not put any more strain on the boards, he climbs up.

While construction progresses, Birdy puts her attention into making the meal for Elijah’s medieval and/or Renaissance-themed birthday celebration. She’s making a stew of some kind, but she’s more interested in eating all of the ingredients.

Birdy’s chowing down on butter again. Noah will have to invent some kind of Bush angioplasty surgical procedure for Birdy or she’ll have a heart attack before she’s 30.

Elijah’s birthday celebration is pretty much what you’d expect from the Browns. They all get in costume and make monkeyshines like nerds at a Lord of the Rings fan convention.

Black Screen of Doom!

Quick! Everyone to Walmart!

And Mother Ami buries her head in her coat, because even she is sick of watching this.

The production crew is hitting the road, but this doesn’t mean work on the show is going to end. Dadgummit. The Browns are going to use their cellphones and stuff (the Browns have cellphones and stuff?) to shoot their own Lost Footage of them pretending to work on the house.

Before the Browns started to annoy the world on Discovery Channel, they were annoying a handful of people with their own cheesy Alaskan Wilderness Family videos on the interweb.

So they’ll just go back to doing that until the state of Bushington opens up too early and lets the production crew come back to work.

What kind of Emmy-caliber stuff did the Browns shoot? Well, here’s shirtless Gabe with a pistol and angry Billy in a blurred-out NASA T-shirt trying to scare off a bear.

This is the most action Billy’s seen since Good Lord knows when.

Here’s Gabe looking like something out of Tiger King.

Billy throws a stick at the bear and puts up his arms to look big, bad and scary. The bear eventually runs off.

I don’t know. It probably just thinks it’s a bear doing what bears do.

There was that one time it flooded inside the half-built Bush Abode.

Then there was this.

So there’s that.

August arrives, and the Bush Abode is practically in the same stage of completion that it was when the production crew left. The Browns broke ground on this thing in early fall 2019. Completing it was the highest priority. A year later, it’s still nowhere near move-in condition.

The production crew returns to see what kind of mess the Browns made while they were away. It doesn’t take too long after that for the chili to hit the fan.

The camera crew seems really close to where the fire started. Probably coincidence. There’s nothing more to see here. Please disperse.

Birdy’s in the middle of an on-camera interview when the news comes that Brown Star Ranch is ablaze.

What’s with Birdy’s face? She’s like that even before the fire news gets delivered. My guess is this was filmed well after the fire started to give the illusion of this stuff happening in real-time.

The pace of the show gets frenetic, with the Browns shooting a bunch of their own footage during the chaos. Birdy didn’t even have time to take off her smartwatch.

Bear and Bam are driving in a different vehicle, supposedly searching for their parents. Firefighters have closed roads to prevent traffic from interfering with emergency vehicles, but Bear seems to think the rules don’t apply to them because the Browns “of course, live here.”

Asshat. You don’t live there. Some people did live there, and they lost more than a bunch of garbage from the set of a TV show. Bam and Bear find Billy driving his SUV with Gabe sticking out the window so he can film this. No doubt the Browns set up this scene on some roads away from where the action was happening.

Birdy and Rainy stop to survey the fire from afar, and Birdy delivers something along the lines of Billy’s episode-ending spiel.

Then we’re treated to the other times bad stuff happened to the Browns. Remember this from Season 1?

Yeah, that was fake. Remember this, from the same episode?

Yeah, that was also kinda fake.

Remember Mother Ami’s lung cancer? That was real, but lots of people thought it was fake.

Next week is the season finale. Will it be the series finale? Since this is 2020 and we can’t have nice things, I am betting all my bottle caps that it won’t be.

Alaskan Bush People, Sundays, 8/7c, Discovery Channel