You might have to be a child of the eighties to remember or appreciate American Gladiators. A TV competition-based show, it featured “gladiators” with names like Malibu and Lace facing off against regular folks in a series of outlandish physical challenges like Tug of War, Jousting, and more. Everything about it was big, including the Gladiators themselves who all had big hair, big muscles, big tans, big everything! It was a fun, “only in the eighties” kind of thing that was much-loved by kids when I was growing up.
Yet, the story behind American Gladiators has never really been told, until now at least, with Deadline reporting that ESPN’s 30 for 30 is going to be doing a documentary on it in their 2021/2022 season. Of course, 30 for 30 is legendary at this point, with them behind some of the most acclaimed docs of all time, including O.J.: Made in America, Lance, The U, The Two Escobars, and more.
Ben Berman, who directed The Amazing Johnathan Documentary, is at the helm with Vice Studios producing. I’m sure it’s gonna be a wild episode. It goes without saying, of course, that 30 for 30 is amazing. Even if you don’t like sports (I’m not a sports fan at all) these docs are fascinating and worth binging on.