We don’t know about you guys (and gals), but American Gladiators definitely informed our queer identity. All those sweaty, muscle-bound men (and women) fighting, hitting one another with their big sticks and firing their balls at them with fierce, animalistic passion really got us going. When the show got the ax in 1996, we thought we’d never love again.
Luckily, ESPN Classic recently started rerunning those combustible competition, thus ensuring us at least one hour of happiness per week. Yes, Laser, Nitro, Gemini and all the other preposterously named Gladiators again fill our fantasies.
By some stroke of conversational fate, this retro love came up here at the Jossip office, at which point Debbie Newman – Jossip‘s always informative editor – reminded us that Ellen Degeneres‘ Ellen (the sitcom, not the talk show) once featured an episode in which the then-closeted comedienne fell for and dated Nitro. Nitro, however, had a thing for fellow gladiator, Ice: a climactic revelation that pushed Ellen to beat Ice silly. In fact, Ellen makes good on her promise to turn the beefy gladiator into a “sadiator”. Oh, zinger!
We would provide the entire clip, but some horrid monster disabled the embedding code. Thus, we can only provide you with the picture above and this link. We know navigating away from Queerty can be painful, but this one’s well worth riding the world wide web.