Around the 90’s, if you wanted to see some over-the-top sports competitions involving big, burly men and women, you would seeÂ American Gladiators.
This sports game show tested out their strength, agility, stamina, and speed as they competed to win $10,000 to $25,000. Nickelodeon decided to copy off the idea ofÂ American GladiatorsÂ and do it for kids. On September 19, 1992,Â Nickelodeon GUTSÂ debuted on TV asking everyone this question: Do you have it?
The show involved with three kids wearing the colorsÂ red,Â blue,Â andÂ purpleÂ competing against each other to win a glowing piece of the “radical” rock. Each game had four events that would test out their strength, stamina, agility, and speed. The first three events were regular sports like basketball, soccer, football, track, and obstacle courses, but pumped to the extreme. For the highest score of each event, it would be 300 points. Second place would get 200 points. Third place would get 100 points.
As usual for any Nickelodeon game show, they save the best for last. In the final event, the three contestants had to climb a huge mountain known as The Aggro Crag. The Aggro Crag had many obstacles that they had to avoid in order to hit 8 light targets located on their side of the Crag. There were a few rules involving not crossing into another player’s side of the Crag, hitting someone else’s light target accidentally, etc. that would prevent them from winning the rock. The height of the Aggro Crag was 28 feet.
Finally, all the points are tallied and a winner would be announced. They would be awarded medals of gold, silver, and bronze. The winner ofÂ GUTSÂ would be awarded with the piece of the “radical” rock. The rock was green and it would even glow in the dark. When you would look at that rock, you would die to have a chance to compete inÂ GUTSÂ and try to win it. It looked so cool back then and it still does today.
In fact, one of theÂ GUTSÂ winners even sold his “radical” rock on eBay. Today it’s one of the most rarest and iconic items in Nickelodeon history. Since there was 126 episodes ofÂ GUTS,Â there are 126 rocks in the world.Â He eventually sold his rock for around $1500.00.
Around Season 2, they changed the Aggro Crag to the Mega Crag. There were some changes with the obstacles, the looks, and the designs.
Many kids competed inÂ GUTS, even soon-to-be celebrities and athletes. In one episode, future Backstreet Boy member A.J. McLean competed inÂ GUTS.
In another episode, Houston Dynamo soccer player Bobby Boswell competed inÂ GUTS.
In 1995, they decided to change it into a different direction and include contestants from all over the world. This was known asÂ Global GUTS.
Similar to the Olympics, various countries like the United States, Israel, Spain, Portugal, United Kingdom, Mexico, Germany, and the Commonwealth of Independent States (Russia, Georgia, Ukraine, andÂ Kazakhstan) would compete to win the “radical” rock, the gold medal, and the proud representation of their country. Similar to the Olympics, they would count down on who was in the lead for winning the gold, silver, and bronze medals. According to the official tally, this was the results of who won overall.
|1||Â United Kingdom||8||2||2||12|
|3||Â United States||6||4||2||12|
Global GUTSÂ also included a huge overall to the Crag: The Super Aggro Crag. It was bigger, had more obstacles, and more challenging than all the previous Crags. It was 30 feet high compared to the 28 feet of the previous Crags.
The show was hosted by Mike O’Malley fromÂ Get the PictureÂ and refereed by Moira Quirk. Similar toÂ Get the Picture,Â Mike showed off his goofy side when it came to calling out the contestants’ nicknames and shouting out “Spill your guts” and “Do you have it?” throughout the show. Moira was very sufficient when it came to explaining the rules to the contestants and the audience with her British accent. Similar to Robin Marella fromÂ Double DareÂ andÂ What Would You Do?, she was just as well known and beloved as the host was.
The show lasted for 4 seasons ending its run on January 14, 1996. Overall, it was a really neat concept to bring athletics and sports for kids. It was done very well, the sports and obstacles looked like a ton of fun, and the hosts look like they were having as much fun as the kids were. Sure the phrase “Do you have it?” seems a little ridiculous and cheesy nowadays and Mike O’Malley still kept his goofy personality, but everything else holds up pretty well. It may not be as crazy and over-the-top as sayÂ WipeoutÂ orÂ American Ninja,Â but hey, I would love to see a remake ofÂ GUTS.
Ugh! We’ll talk about that some other time.
Overall, if you’re a huge sports fanatic and loved to seeÂ American Gladiators,Â thenÂ GUTSÂ is for you. I highly recommend checking it out. It was my second favorite Nickelodeon game show in the 90’s. As for my favorite 90’s Nickelodeon game show, we’ll discuss about that really soon.
That’s all for now. Hope to see you around Old School Lane soon. Take care.