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Season 2
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Forty men and women have come to Hollywood with one goal: to take on the next generation of American Gladiators for a shot at $100,000.

Recaps by Joe Mello, GSNN


FACT FILE:
Hosts: Hulk Hogan & Laila Ali
Gladiators: Gina Carano (Crush), Monica Carlson (Jet), Alex Castro (Militia), Robin Coleman (Hellga), Evan Dollard (Rocket), Beth Horn (Venom), Mike O'Hearn (Titan), Tanoai Reed (Toa), Justice Smith (Justice), Valerie Waugaman (Siren), Jennifer Widerstrom (Phoenix), Don "Hollywood" Yates (Wolf)
Referee: Al Kaplon
Announcer: Van Earl Wright
Creators: Johnny Ferraro & Dan Carr
EP: Howard T. Owens, Mark Koops, Johnny C. Ferraro, J. Rupert Thompson
Origin: Gladiator Arena, LA Sports Arena, Los Angeles
Packager: Reveille, Room 403 Productions, MGM
Website: nbc.com/gladiators

 

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Preliminaries 1
January 6

Itís Season 2 of American Gladiators!  More events, more space, more contenders, more Glads, same old pounding.  At the end, another $100K and a new car.  Get ready, for this is Monday Night Gladiators.

We start with the men in the new event of Rocket Ball.  Think of it as either Swingshot done backwards or Powerball meets wire fu.  The contenders take balls and fling themselves towards the center goal.  Here are your contenders.

Randee Haynes
5í8Ē 175 lbs
Construction Worker

Jay Martinez
6í0Ē 191 lbs
S.W.A.T. Officer

These two are against the loudmouthed duo of Toa and Wolf.  Sixty seconds later and each contender end up with 2 one-point goals.  Itís the double deuce after one.

First up for the women is ye olde Pyramid.  Hereís who we got.

Elena Maskalik
5í6Ē 143 lbs
Fire Fighter

Melissa Trinidad
5í1Ē 111 lbs
Martial Arts Teacher

They go against the classic combo of Crush and Venom.  Both were undefeated heading into the event, and both are undefeated heading out of the event.  The ladies start scoreless.

Itís Round 2 time.  We start with the men and the new 46-ring Hang Tough, which means Wolf is the Gladiator to beat.  Heís able to pull down Randee, but itís at the 60.3-second mark, which means itís 5 points to the contender.  Jay isnít so lucky. He lasts only 23 seconds to fall behind 7-2.

Game 2 for the ladies is the Joust, and the never-been-beaten Crush.  Elena was surprisingly resilient, but the bout was too one-sided and she goes down.  MelissaÖÖlasted 7 seconds.  Itís still a shutout on the ladies side at the half. 

Menís Round 3 is the rough and tough Gauntlet.  In the contendersí path are Titan, Toa, Militia, and Justice.  Jay gets through in 16 seconds for the full 10.  Randee gets a heapiní helpiní of Justice to the face and only comes up with 6, but still keeps a 13-12 advantage.

Back to the women for the Assault, now with no load times.  Hellga mans the gun here.  Melissa manages the Slingshot, Turret Gun, Bazooka (where the arrow was), and Crossbow before getting picked off; thatís four points.  Elena fires the Slingshot (poorly), Turret, Bazooka (backwards?!) and Crossbow before time expired.  Both girls are on the board and itís still tied 4-4.

We return to the Pyramid for the menís last event.  Justice and Titan man the mountain.  The contenders get closeóJay even gets a knee upóbut neither one is able to score, which means itís 13-12 in Randeeís favor heading into the Eliminator.

Our last event for the women is the bigger, badder, 50-foot Wall.  On the chase is Venom and the new AG-champ-turned-Glad Jet.  Itís a long haul, and both Glads get their shots in, but itís Elena who gets up to the top in 52 seconds for 10 big points.  Melissa fell off of her own volition, which means the tie is broken and Elena has a big 14-4 advantage.

We end the night with the Eliminator, also bigger and badder.  We start with a swim across two columns of fire, then the 30-foot cargo net.  Next is the rope swing, tightrope (commando lines from the old old show), and hand bike.  Then, a declining spinning log, up the Pyramid and back down the zip line.  Finally, itís a see-saw, that damned Travellator, and the classic rope swing through the paper to finish.

We lead with the men and Randeeís half-second advantage.  Itís even after swim, but Randee takes the lead at the cargo net.  He never looks back and wins in 2:06.  Elenaís 5-second lead evaporates on the cargo net, and itís dead even through the tight rope.  Elena starts to pull away again, but falls off the hand bike, making it back even.  Melissa starts to pull away and reaches the Travellator at the 3:50 mark.  However, itís slow going for both contenders.  After more than 5 and a half minutes, we finally get a breakthrough.  Melissa makes it up and survives after 9:42.4 of torture.

Thank god for the night cap.  Ladiesí first this time with the Pyramid.

Nikki Key
5í6Ē 138 lbs
Bartender

Maj. Vanessa Warren
5í2Ē 119 lbs
Air Force Helicopter Pilot

Itís more Venom, and newbie Jet.  The new Glad may have lost on the Wall, but she had zero problem with Pyramid.  Venom had no issues, either, so itís 0-0 after one.

Time for the menís first event, and we have a surprise.

John Siciliano
5í7Ē 155 lbs
Prosthetics Manfacturer

Gerry Garcia
5í5Ē 157 lbs
Special Education Teacher

Johnís also a client.  Heís playing with a prosthetic leg.  However, thatís not really an issue for Hang Tough.  Gerry doesnít last too long against Justice, and John is pretty much a deer in headlights.  He loses his momentum and drops fast.  No score all around.

Round 2 for the women equals the Gauntlet.  In the track is Venom, Crush, Jet, and Hellga.  Vanessa takes a major licking from Hellga, but is able to break through with 1/5 seconds left for the full 10.  On the other side, thereís an injury update.  During one of her falls, Nikkiís leg clipped the side of the pad, rolling her ankle.  She has to drop out, so we get a new Nikki.

Nikki Smith
5í7Ē 141 lbs.
6th Grade Teacher

 

She gets through the Gauntlet 3 seconds faster, so itís 10-10 at the half.

Round 2 for the men is Rocket Ball.  On the defense are Titan and Wolf.  John still looks a little skittish and only manages 1 point.  Gerry was able to get a couple of 2-point baskets for a total of 5 and the lead.

Round 3 for the women is NEW NEW NEW!  The event is our first untimed event of Vertigo.  Pulled straight from the UK is Vertigo, a race across 30-foot poles.  Itís 5 points for the contender if they make it half way, 10 for a win.  However, they have to go against another new Gladiator.  Itís not the video gameís final boss, they just market her that wayóitís Phoenix.  Nikki has a fear of heights, Vanessa flies choppers for a living.  Both are no match for the new Glad, as itís no points for either and itís still tied.

Menís round 3 is Power Ball.  Alas, itís harder to score and points are reduced to 1 for the outer and 2 for the center, and Toa, Titan, and Militia are making sure neither contestant has a leg to stand on.  Only one goal is scored in the minute, but it belongs to John.  In this pitcherís duel, Gerry only has a 5-2 lead.

The last event for the women is also Power Ball.  Jet, Hellga, and Venom are tonightís obstacles.  Nikki breaks the tie 2-1 for a narrow 1-point advantage heading into the final round.

On the menís side, itís time for the Wall.  This round itís Wolf, and the other champ-turned-Glad Rocket.  For fairness, both contenders start at the base of the Wall for this round.  However, Rocket is able to fully cut his teeth with his victory over Gerry.  Wolf gets John, so itís 5-2 Gerry after 4.

Itís Eliminator time.  Nikkiís half-second head start is nothing, but she leads by a length after the cargo net.  However, she takes a header off the rope swing and Vanessa takes the lead.  Both fall off the hand bike and into the ball pit below.  Nikkiís the first one out and takes a wicked hit off the cylinder.  Itís still too close down the zip line, and see-saw, but Vanessa uses her momentum going down to go up the Travellator in one go to win in a time of 3:24.5.  The menís race is, alas, anticlimactic.  Itís close at the base of the cargo net, but Jonís leg serves as too big of a handicap.  Gerry wins going away with a time of 3:03.  John does finish, though, to a roaring ovation from everyone.