Men: Construction worker vs SWAT-team dude.
First new event: Rocketball. Like Powerball gone vertical. Hit the big red button and go flying on wires up to big nets. Oh, man, do I want to do that.
Women: Hey, mllelaurel! One of the female contenders is Ukrainian! She's a firefighter; the other contender's a martial-arts teacher and single mom. Their first event is Pyramid.
Men: Hang Tough: Construction worker is possibly the most hyper man I have ever seen, and I used to hang out with career speedfreaks. Wolf is still my favorite Gladiator. Oh, do I want some of that.
...what? You don't?
Women: Joust against Crush. Who is, incidentally, my favorite female Gladiator. Undefeated in Joust... for a reason.
Men: Gauntlet, against Titan, Toa, Militia, and Justice. Is it me, or is Militia the least interesting Gladiator ever? Titan is a seven-foot-tall Ken doll on steroids with a cheesy smirk, Toa's entertainingly batshit, Justice is a behemoth (and the inspiration for the commentator actually saying "Justice is served - facially!"), and Militia... salutes.
Construction worker to his kids: "Did you see the big man push Daddy down and make it hurt?"
Women: Gauntlet! Stage 3 is a bazooka now. And man, I love Hellga. So clearly in her element.
"Is she... firing that backwards? Nearly took out our camera guy!"
Men: Pyramid. Justice is 6'8" and 290", by the way. Construction-worker dude has a naked fear seen previously only on Evan in the episode that gave us this icon.
Women: Wall, which is now fifty feet high. Gladiators are Venom and new Gladiator Jet,previously known as last season's champ, Monica!
Elayna:"Monica's probably looking at the new contenders like I look at the sixth graders."
Monica now has black hair with blue streaks, a spray tan, entrance music, and a slightly abashed look at prancing out in a silver bikini.
The new Eliminator! Additions: Underwater swim is longer than before, but no initial wall. Cargo net as usual. New: rope swing, then tightrope, then handbike, balance barrel, pyramid, zipline, up and down a teeter-totter, travelator, rope swing through a paper wall and into the pool. Woo! They actually have divers stationed by the pool to pull out the exhausted, cramping contenders. I will not tell you who won, but I'll tell you it's who we were rooting for. :)
Oh,hey, now if you fall off the handbike, you fall into a ball pit.
The women's? Brutal. Took almost ten minutes. I have never seen a contender just sit down and give up anymore. Wow.
Women: Air force major vs. motivational-speech-mouthing bartender. Their first event is Pyramid, versus Venom and Jet. Jet is clearly relishing being a Gladiator. :) Aaand one of the contenders is out.
Men: Jerry Garcia (not the dead one) vs. Paralympic athlete. Their first event? Hang Tough, against Justice. Who can casually toss down a contender like a rag doll, while hanging easily by one arm. We know, because he just did it.
Women: Gauntlet, against Venom, Crush, Jet, and Hellga. New contender is agile, y0.
Men: Rocketball! Titan and Wolk. Wolf leapfrogged Titan. :) Those two are always in character. This is why I watch this show. :)
Women: Vertigo.Which looks like the climax of Iron Monkey, but without fire. Cooool. Against new Gladiator Phoenix - who makes an entrance through fire, wearing big black wings. Climbing up a 30' pole,then swaying from one to the next. Dude, I would love that. Phoenix dominates, swinging effortlessly and gracefully from pole to pole.
Commercial break while we catch up. Here is where I confess. I so want to be on American Gladiators. I never,ever can; the warranty on this body ran out a few years back, as you may have noticed. And there's some stuff that I just could not do, like Hang Tough. But anything where I get to be airborne. Whee. :)
Men: Powerball, against Toa, Titan, and yawn Militia.
Women: Powerball, against Jet, Hellga, and Venom. Someone had a "Hurt me Hellga" sign. Heh.
Men: Wall, against Wolf and Evan, now called Rocket. Wow. Evan bulked up over the summer. Mostly upper-body. Wolf says he's glad he doesn't have to chase Evan up the wall anymore. :) Evan is still supernaturally fast.
Commercial break: Medium is an hour of Patricia Arquette chewing her cud at the camera. She wakes with a jolt, then mumbles vacantly for an hour.
Eliminator. "I don't think that was strategy as much as desperation." Something that was strategy, though - winning contender paused at the fulcrum of the teeter-totter instead of going straight across.To build up momentum.Launched herself onto the travelator. That was smart.
Heartbreaking to watch the paralympic athlete on the Eliminator. Heartbreaking.There are things his prosthetic puts him at such a horrible disadvantage at, and the Eliminator is packed full of those things. He finished the course, though.
Still at least two more new Gladiators and new events to be revealed!