Sticking to their brief but noticeable pattern of hopping onto novelty trends long after the well has run dry (see Bob Sapp, Bobby Lashley), it appears that the brains behind India-based promotion Super Fight League began filming a TUF-style reality show yesterday. Co-owner Raj Kundra broke the news via his Twitter as things got underway:
Yes we have announced The Super Fighter (Ed note: Nice, Raj. REEEEAAALLL original.) MMA reality show. Auditions are now on pan India.
In addition, Kundra discussed some of the intricacies of the show’s format with the Hindustan Times:
The show will go for 50 days and each week people will vote for who they want to see fight on a Friday night. The fighters will also be given tasks each week.
Given the abysmal numbers this season of The Ultimate Fighter Amurica pulled in, along with the fact that SFL are, you know, hemorrhaging money and all, you’d probably think that this was a boneheaded move on their part. To which we’d partially agree with you.
On the other hand, part of the reason SFL is seeing such paltry attendance numbers is due to the lack of MMA awareness that currently exists in India. Some of the bigger named celebrities who attended SFL’s first event even admitted afterward that they were under the belief that MMA was something along the lines of the WWE, and were abhorred to learn otherwise. A MMA based reality show, however, could easily help stir up some newfound interest in the sport as the first season of The Ultimate Fighter did here in the good old U.S of A.
But whether Kundra and Co. are actually seeking to further awareness of the sport in general or simply exploit it for monetary gain remains to be seen. If they are truly interested in the former, then we would suggest they shy away from the fabricated drama and in-house quarreling that has dragged many seasons of the show down over here. Don’t get us wrong, a stank bref joke is always funny when used sparingly, but 100 of them back-to-back kind of waters the hilarity down.
And what exactly are these tasks they must perform, you ask? We’re not exactly sure, and we don’t want to blow the lid on this thing, but one of our anonymous sources gave us the inside scoop on what went down on the first day of shooting:
After a brief introduction, 32 fighters were brought into a small training facility, half featherweight, half welterweight, where they were met by SFL co-founder Sanjay Dutt, arms crossed and eyes aflame. In an attempt to channel Dana White, Sanjay apparently screamed obscenities at each of the fighters until they cried before asking aloud “Do you want to be a fighter that is fucked?” (Ed note: We think a translation error might have been responsible for this bit of oddly-phrased dialogue). Each fighter was forced to consume one Dinner of Doom and a gallon of camel semen before they stepped into the cage, which was surrounded with barbed-wire, broken two-by-fours, and homemade roman candles, mind you. The first man to be knocked out, submitted, or vomited on lost a spot in the house and was then subjected to eight straight hours of the “Bssshop, Bssshop, Now” section of the SFL theme song on loop.
The coaches were then revealed to be Bob Sapp and Jimmy Ambriz, but Sapp was declared medically unfit for competition after bumping his head on the gym’s door frame while entering. According to several of the show’s participants, Sapp immediately fell into the fetal position and tapped out with such vigor that he shattered all of the bones in his right hand. He will be looking at a minimum 6 months out of action. He was replaced by Eric Esch, who was also pulled from the show after falling onto his back in the parking lot and, being unable to flip over to his front and crawl his way to a patch of nearby shade, roasted to death in the Indian Sun.
A candlelight vigil/ BBQ of his remains was held at the TUF house that night, where each fighter gave a few inspiring words as Esch’s signature American trunks were placed on a door that had been kicked off its hinges before filming even began, and committed to the sea.
An emotional first episode indeed.