Gladiators' epic comeback confirmed by BBC with a 'new generation of superhumans' | The Sun

GLADIATORS, ready! Lycra, perms and pugil sticks could once again become a mainstay of Saturday night television as Gladiators is set to return to screens.

The much-loved Saturday night staple will be back with an eleven-episode series – 30 years on from when it first aired.


The show saw members of the public battle it out against its cast of bodybuilders and gymnasts – known as Gladiators – and ran for eight series.

Originally hosted by Ulrika Jonsson and John Fashanu, contestants pitted themselves against the Gladiators in a test of speed, skill, stamina and strength.

The show pitted amateurs against professionals, who competed under nicknames such as Jet, Scorpio and Wolf.

They battled against each other in a series of challenges, including the Gauntlet and Powerball, with contestants aiming to reach the series grand finale.

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Competitors also featured in gruelling games such as Atlas Spheres, The Wall, Danger Zone, Swingshot, Hang Tough and Duel – where its stars battled with giant cotton buds.

The original series was watched by over 14 million viewers, however, it was axed in 1999 after the show lost over half its viewers in later series dropping to six million.  

Twenty years on, the reboot will include brand new games alongside classic challenges, culminating at the end of each episode with fan favourite The Eliminator.

Viewers can look forward to feeling the power of the Gladiators once again and can enjoy the challenge of the champions later in 2023.

Fans of the original have taken to Twitter in their droves to share their excitement about the show's comeback.

Alongside an array of red love heart emojis, one person penned: "Gladiators is coming back to television and I cannot wait! Roll on next year…"

Echoing their comments, someone else said: "I loved Gladiators as a child so I can't wait for it to come back! I'm ready!"

While a third remarked: "I just hope the BBC don't ruin Gladiators by making it too woke. The British public need a fun Saturday night show!"

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Ahead of its return, Kate Phillips, director of unscripted at the BBC, said: “Gladiators is back and a whole new generation of viewers can now look forward to watching a Saturday night spectacle like no other.

"Will the contenders have the will and the skill to succeed against our mighty new Gladiators? You’ll have to tune in to find out!”

Filming will take place at the Utilita Arena Sheffield in 2023 and further information about the series including broadcast details will be announced in due course.


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