Last night, doe-eyed heartthrob Kris Allen pulled out a stunning victory over scream-queen Adam Lambert to become 2009′s American Idol. The two-hour-plus finale broadcast included guest performances by Kiss, Carlos Santana, Cyndi Lauper, Brian May/Roger Taylor, and a near-death Rod Stewart, and Kara DioGuardi ripped her clothes off for charity, which was fucking epic (I know, I’m sorry), and my God that woman is like the new Elaine Benes, and I mean that in the best possible way.
Directly after, on a fledgling cable channel called Spiked Television (I think?), there was a new reality show about what happens when 16 guys who live together in a house stop being polite and start getting real. Half of them had strange accents, and a fight broke out at the end.
This is their story.
Jason Pierce‘s health problems go from bad to worse, as a staph infection develops on his busted-up leg. "You just gotta do what you gotta do whatcha can," advises Dan Henderson, M.D. His upcoming opponent has problems of his own. David Faulkner, for the life of him, can’t keep his mouthpiece in. He says something about inheriting his gag reflex from his mom, which I don’t even want to think about. Dude’s got oral issues, we’ll leave it at that.
Team USA blows off some steam playing ultimate frisbee, except for the two Jasons, who grumpily sit on the sidelines. Jason Pierce is basically the new "Captain Miserable." Assistant coach Heath Sims tries to convince him to fight through his sore leg, and Dan Henderson complains about his negative energy, which is affecting the group.
Santino Defranco does his "Parce" voice for the first time. (We’ve been waiting for it, bro!) Santino notices that Pierce will be the first in line to eat Santino’s food, but doesn’t associate with anybody otherwise. Frank Lester adds that Jason Dent basically does the same thing, without contributing to the cooking in any way. It’s enough to make him want to kill people. Santino points out how nervous and uncomfortable Dent is, and Damarques Johnson predicts that Dent will have regrets when he watches the show, because he didn’t make the best of his time in the house. Henderson is irritated by the fact that Dent is resistant to change, and doesn’t push himself to improve his weaknesses during training. Dent seems to be one infraction away from a full-on soap-bar beating.
Henderson chooses Dent vs. Jeff Lawson as the next fight, giving Pierce a little more time to get his shit together. Hendo predicts it’ll be "more of a chess match than a brawl," though Bipsing thinks Lawson will submit him pretty quickly.
Lawson emerges as the entertainer of the house. He pulls a rubber-glove over his head, puts on mouse ears, drops his pants — your basic party-clown shtick. Then Jeff, Dave, and Dean put on a pretty solid pro-wrestling match that ends up in the pool. "The show wouldn’t have been shit without Dave Faulkner," says Dave Faulkner.
Lawson’s gave plan for the Dent fight is simple: Fire off some straight punches, throw Dent down really hard, then lock in the armbar, which is how he ends most of his fights. "Everyone underestimates gingers, don’t they," he says.
Dana White calls a meeting with Jason Pierce to get a sense of where his head’s at. "Look alive," Hendo advises him. Pierce shambles in lookin’ like Kenny from South Park. DW asks him how he feels, and Pierce explains his entire medical condition. "I got the shivers, I’m cold as fuck," he says. But, you know, he can totally still fight. Dana doesn’t buy it.
The final lightweight quarterfinal fight between Lawson and Dent is a sloppy wreck. Lawson comes out throwing these wild kicks that hit nothing but air. He hands a leg kick but then whiffs on some punches. Lawson grabs Dent’s arm and falls to the mat with it. He goes for a toe hold when the armbar doesn’t materialize, loses it, then gets on top and starts punching. Dent easily controls his posture; it seems that Lawson is lost whenever he’s in a position that doesn’t allow him to go for the armbar. Lawson slams Dent in frustration, and lands an elbow. Lawson postures up and throws a couple more punches before transitioning to mount. Dent almost gives up his neck, but escapes from the bottom at the very end of the round. 10-9 Lawson, but it ain’t pretty.
Lawson shoots from a mile away to open up round two and gets stuffed. He shoots again and Dent sprawls, firing down some punches from the top. Lawson gets up, clearly exhausted. He stumbles forward to clinch, misses, then falls to guard. A heel hook attempt doesn’t pan out, and they’re back to sloppy brawling on the feet. They both look gassed now. Lawson rests with his hands on his knees, and Dent just kind of stands there. Dent finally advances and almost gets wrecked by a surprise flying knee from Lawson. Lawson comes in for another takedown attempt, Dent sprawls, then locks on an anaconda choke. Lawson taps immediately.
What happened was, Lawson developed bronchitis after he made it onto the show, and couldn’t do any sort of training for the first nine days he was in the house, which ruined his cardio. He’s bummed that he couldn’t win any money to take his family on vacation. Though Dent picks up the victory, Dana White calls his performance "far, far, far from impressive." Expect Ross Pearson or Andre Winner to murder him in the semis.
Finally, Dana calls Jason Pierce back in and tells him he won’t be fighting. Pierce is upset, but doesn’t try to argue, which says it all right there. Dana’s analysis: "He showed up here and realized he wasn’t a fighter."
On the next episode, Michael Bisping and Damarques Johnson nearly come to blows, Frank Lester and Mark Miller lobby to take Pierce’s spot, Dave Faulkner tries hypnotherapy to fix his gagging problem, and the last welterweight quarterfinal (Faulkner vs. Whoever) goes to Sudden Victory.