YMMV: Gladiators

The 1992-2000 original:

  • Awesome Music: Using several Queen songs. Including "Another One Bites the Dust" whenever someone fell out, the Gladiators theme, Duel, the Eliminator.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Wolf and Jet.
    • Helped by the fact that Michael Van Wijk asked the producers to let him be mean, with the result being that he really stood out against the rather polite and friendly Gladiators.
  • Foe Yay
  • Funny Moments:
  • Heartwarming Moments: Gladiator Panther, who made her return in a Celebrity Special after suffering a nasty injury on Tilt note , thanking those who sent her "get well" wishes during her recovery...and the flowers.
    • On top of that, the contestant she was competing against at the time of the accident actually stopped as soon as she could see Panther fall and rushed to her side in a show of support.
    • The final montage provided on the last ever episode of the original UK show. It really is heartwarming, bordering on tear-jerking, seeing all of the great moments the show has provided, with insights from Urika Johnson and John Fashanu on the show as a whole. It especially heartwarming seeing Wolf, of all the Glads, break character to give his thanks to the fans and genuinely express his sadness of the show ending but also his happiness for the great memories the show provided. The montage really does bring a tear to your eye knowing it's all over.
  • Love to Hate: Wolf.
  • Memetic Badass: Wolf, who didn't excel at any event but reached legendary status among fans as the most ferocious of the Gladiators (and was promoted as such by the show.)
  • Moment Of Awesome: The Action Girl above, but also the Duel between Wolf and Vulcan.
    • And prior to that, the fact that the Contender managed to knock Wolf off the platform in 3 seconds!
  • Seasonal Rot: By about Series 5, it was clear that the producers had run out of ideas and the public was starting to get bored. It was also the year that saw a few popular Gladiators suffer a Career-Ending Injury. The series never really recovered from there.
    • It also didn't help that they tried to play up the Narm and Kayabe tropes more. The Wolf/Vulcan duel, while awesome and funny; is also obviously staged, which went against the subtly that made the series work.
  • Narm Charm: It could get silly, and the stuff that was an act seems obvious nowadays; however it really knew how to grip an audience and play up the competitiveness of it all.
  • So Cool It's Awesome: The whole damn show. Even if it may seem silly these days, it's hard to dispute how epic the setting and events were.
  • Tear Jerker: Early on in the run, someone failed to finish the Eliminator because they couldn't climb the ropes, the second obstacle. They broke down into tears, as well.
    • Another contender infamously broke down during Gauntlet after several false starts cost them the chance to earn some much-needed points.
  • The Scrappy: Tilt, because it was dangerous even by the standards of the show. It was axed due to serious injuries to Panther and Nightshade.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks: Unfortunately this happened in the final series, which likely killed off the show too. Changing the iconic outfits, very poorly thought-out new games, as well as the fact they made the games easier for Contenders caused a big backlash.
    • Pyramid also suffered from this. Following Jet's injury it was suspended until they could make it safer, which unfortunately killed off any tension it once had. It was canned shortly after.
    • Pole-Axe as well, also due to injuries. They added safety harnesses onto it, while a sensible move also eliminated any tension it once had. it managed to survive into the final regular series however.


The 2008-09 version:

  • Foe Yay: In series one, one female contender pulled off Panther's clothes in Earthquake.
  • Moment Of Awesome: Wolf's return in the 2008 Legends Special was apparently subject to five solid minutes of applause, sadly cut for time. It forced the producers to quiet the crowd.
  • Tear Jerker: Like the original series, one episode had a contestant get seriously injured in one of the events, but they insisted on playing through. However when they made it to the Eliminator, the contestant was not able to run it, choosing to just watch on from the starting point. Their family, especialy their child, were in tears.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks: Getting John Anderson and the Legends back may have helped Series 1, but then getting rid of John, keeping Wolf on the sidelines, and getting rid of Kirsty Gallacher obviously didn't help. Considering the series only had lukewarm ratings and reception and seemed cheesier than the original, it's no wonder it was cancelled.
    • There was also the fact that most of the male Gladiators had this damn attitude which felt like all of them were trying to be Wolf.