NBC renews American Gladiators; stars were tested for steroid use

NBC has renewed American Gladiators after airing just two first-season episodes, although its renewal announcement seems to use the renewal as an excuse to just brag about its success. There’s no information about when the show will return, how many episodes have been ordered, or whether or not other former Temptation Island contestants will be cast as challengers or Militia’s gay porn past will be featured in his biographical segment.

Instead, there’s just are just statistics about the show’s ratings and three made-up press-release quotes, full of happy adjectives:

NBC VP Craig Plestis: “‘American Gladiators’ has delivered everything we were hoping for and has come out of the gate as a top contender. We couldn’t be more pleased with the audience reaction to this top-notch show all ages can enjoy.”

Executive producer Howard T. Owens: “Reveille and MGM are so thrilled that America has responded to our reinvention of American Gladiators. The next cycle will allow us to tell more stories, create bigger drama, introduce new challenges and further create the most fun-filled, action-packed hour of television.”

MGM Television’s Jim Packer: “MGM is pleased to bring viewers a highly entertaining show that has sparked a chord with viewers all over the country. We and our partners at Reveille look forward to another action-packed season of ‘American Gladiators’ on NBC.”

Positive-sounding words and phrases: 23.
Informative words and phrases: 0.

Meanwhile, NBC did reveal some actual news about the show via its top executive: the gladiators “were tested as part of their medical examinations and then required to sign a document saying that they were clean and that they could be tested at any time. NBCU co-chairman Ben Silverman confirmed the testing but declined to comment further. NBC insiders said the testing was done more for medical reasons than anything else,” Broadcasting & Cable reports.

NBC Picks Up High-Octane Hit ‘American Gladiators’ to Continue Competing in Second Season [NBC press release]
API Faces on American Gladiators [8 Asians]
Meet Alex Castro [Fleshbot]
NBC’s American Gladiators: No ‘Roids, Just Ratings [Broadcasting & Cable]

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.