National Geographic Society

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The Alpha Male

Ape actor, Peter Elliott, shows his 'apes' how to do a 'pant hoot.'

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Food and sex: with all the benefits that come with being the alpha male it's no surprise that male apes work so hard to get to the top. But it's not just our chimpanzee cousins who are in a constant struggle for power. From the world leader's power walk and the CEO's dominance posture, to our subtle everyday power struggles with strangers, this episode explores how those primitive instincts remain, and how – just like in the jungle – every human relationship is a battle to become king of the swi