The Pol-mobile

article_polmobileBy: Mark Myers, Camera Operator – The Incredible Dr. Pol

Since I was a young boy I’ve always been fascinated with cars and trucks.  I think it’s partially because of all the great comic book and television heroes who drove absolutely fantastic machines.  Who can forget the Batmobile? Remember Knight Rider and KIT, Speed Racer, The Duke’s General Lee, The A-team’s van, to name just a few. The cars almost became synonymous with the characters that traveled in them.  They reflected the personalities of their owners.

As you have probably noticed, Dr. Pol drives a 1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee.  I like to call it the Pol-mobile. It’s come to play a special part of The Incredible Dr. Pol show, at least for me. Most farm call scenes begin and end with the Pol-mobile.  We advance to each farm call so we can capture the Pol-mobile flying onto the scene. Our hero, “The Incredible Dr. Pol” exits and wastes no time in plying his special talents to the animal in concern. He often returns to the Pol-mobile to get just the right tool or medicine to treat the animals.  Then we see him exit in the same manner he arrived with wheels spinning in a trail of dust on his way to his next appointment, which could mean life or death for our four-legged friends. As our hero flies down the road, It’s a great opportunity to show off some of the beautiful scenery in Mid-Michigan.  We see rolling green fields, classic red barns with white trim, and grazing herds amongst streams and ponds.  It’s also a great opportunity to have some genuine, unrehearsed dialog. The Pol-mobile hosts a wonderful atmosphere where two men can comfortably and honestly share with one another.

Unless you’re a man, you might have a hard time understanding this.  We find it much harder to talk about the meaningful things in life while peering into one another’s eyes.  For some reason it’s a whole lot easier when cruising 70 mph down the road.  It must be the same for Dr. Pol and Charles. They always seem to have their best conversations driving, at least while the crew is around.  I think they forget about the miniature cameras mounted in the jeep as they discuss everything from the origin of life to last night’s dinner.

The Pol-mobile has become almost iconic to me and very much a part of Dr. Pol’s identity.  It’s sort of a metaphor for his life.  He drives the thing hard, just like he drives himself.  It takes a lickin and keeps on tickin, like Dr. Pol it’s tough and durable.  The Pol-mobile is utilitarian, like Dr. Pol practices veterinary medicine, no less or no more than what is needed.  It’s an older model, a little banged up rough around the edges, but it reliable and always delivers.  It will be a sad day for me if the Pol-mobile is ever retired. Can you imagine Batman without the Batmobile? I just wouldn’t be the same.

Animals Come First